CCIE Lab Rats?

bryguybryguy Member Posts: 190
I was listening to Show 67, of the "Packet Pushers" podcast describing the CCIE Security Track update with Natalie Timms, CCIE Security Program/Product Manager for Cisco. It's a little over a year old, but contained some interesting insights on the CCIE program in general and where it's going. One of the challenges that Natalie described was preventing cheating on the labs. There was also mention of how many CCIE candidates are "spoon fed" the lab content, in terms of 3rd party vendors teaching to the CCIE lab, instead of candidates reading the blue print, seeking out the documentation, and relying on current and past experience in order to pass. Do you feel that's a fair assessment? Do 3rd party vendors go too far in how they provide training, or is Cisco just threatened by the increase in competition from training vendors such as INE or IPExpert. I'd be interested to hear your thoughts and opinions!


  • spiderjerichospiderjericho CCNA, CCNP Enterprise, CISSP, CASP, SEC+, Pentest+, CYSA+, CISA, CGEIT, CRISC, CISM, VCP 6.7 San DiegoRegistered Users, Member Posts: 856 ■■■■□□□□□□
    There is a rampant cheating. There are CCIE mail groups and forums geared toward sharing information on the exam.

    You could technically use test prep to pass the written. Then utilize one of the above to memorize for the lab. And bam, you're an expert network engineer. It's sad and sort of degrades the reputation of the exam. That's what Natalie was discussing in the Packet Pushers.

    And the thing that would be infuriating for a person who earned their CCIE legitimatly is the time and money they invested into obtaining their goal. There are those who took the exam four times to get CCIE.
  • ScalesScales Member Posts: 95 ■■□□□□□□□□
    So is using INE and IPExpert not a legitimate way to pass the Exam jericho?
  • spiderjerichospiderjericho CCNA, CCNP Enterprise, CISSP, CASP, SEC+, Pentest+, CYSA+, CISA, CGEIT, CRISC, CISM, VCP 6.7 San DiegoRegistered Users, Member Posts: 856 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Yes, Micronics, Internetwork Expert and IP Expert are probably the top and only real reputable CCIE training vendors.

    Narbik and INE's workbooks are renowned.

    The Brian's and Narbik always get positive feedback for the way they teach and knowledge.

    In the above case, these vendors are concerned with creating a good test taker but also someone who can handle whatever configuration or troubleshooting scenario versus rote memorization of a few scenarios.

    When you think of a CCIE, it's the former not the latter that a perspective employer is looking for.

    However some have the mentality is it's just a test, a means to an end.

    And there are less venerable/reputable vendors who just make workbooks of the information out there on the lab. But I'm not going to put them on blast since it would make me a hypocrit. I attended a CCNP boot camp and it was basically a dry power point overview of technology/exam topics and going over actual exam questions. My job at the time paid for me to go. Personally, I wouldn't invest that kind of money since it's a waste since I'm not actually learning anything versus investing 2-3 months reading the books.
  • ScalesScales Member Posts: 95 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I have used the following in the past and highly recommend all of them:
    CBT nuggets
    Train Signal (Chris Bryant)

    I have never been to a bootcamp for anything so can't comment. However, the only bootcamp I would invest in is INE or Narbik.
  • AhriakinAhriakin SupremeNetworkOverlord Member Posts: 1,800 ■■■■■■■■□□
    When I did the INE Security bootcamp they always emphasized learning the technology and not the Lab, they would interject with comments on quirks (like known bugs in the software used for that blueprint) but that was it.
    The thing about folks cheating on the CCIE is it is ridiculously pointless. As you move up the ladder you can spoof your way into less and less positions, even if a cheater made it past an interview it would be immediately obvious they were fakes on day one, there is no learning time as you are expected to be THE guy from the start. It'd be like lying your way into a Pilot position and not knowing how to fly, immediate crash and burn (and if anyone was silly enough to let you into their driving seat it's their own fault imho).
    We responded to the Year 2000 issue with "Y2K" solutions...isn't this the kind of thinking that got us into trouble in the first place?
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