How long does it take to finish the CCNA without experience?

I started studying for the CCNA last July. I realized that I didn't have the background to thoroughly understand the material, so I gave up on it and ended up studying for the A+ which I plan to finish soon. How long did it take for others here to get the CCNA? I basically got stuck when using the GNS3 because I did not know how to get an IOS image on my MAC so I could start building my topology.


  • Jon_CiscoJon_Cisco Posts: 1,772Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    GNS3 is a great tool but you need to be a little creative when setting it up. Cisco does not give out IOS images unless you are purchasing them. Most industry sites will not give you information on IOS images. I would spend some time looking up GNS setup on Google.

    I hope to obtain my CCNA after one year of study. I had plenty of computer experience but networking was limited to connecting our work computers together using a single non-cisco router.

    Good Luck
  • fiftyofiftyo Posts: 71Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Took me about 1½ months for ICND1 and an additional month for ICND2. Guesstimate the study time was on average between 3-4 hours per day. It's worth mentioning I had about 4 months exposure to the ccna academy before beginning the certification studies.
  • aftereffectoraftereffector Posts: 525Member
    I passed Net+ and then put in three hard weeks of studying 4-5 hours a day, every day, to pass CCNA.
    CCIE Security - this one might take a while...
  • jamthatjamthat Posts: 303Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    0 -> network+ -> CCNA took me around 4 months of regular study. 2-3 weeks for Network+, one month for ICND1, and ~two months for ICND2. The whole process was around 6 months, but I had about 2 months there where I didn't touch a book :)
  • theodoxatheodoxa Posts: 1,340Member
    I started studying networking in August 2000 (Novell), got my CNA in December 2000 and A+ in March 2001 (I had been building/upgrading PCs since 1995, so I didn't exactly start from zero on that unlike networking). I was looking for a couple courses to take Summer semester 2001 and happened upon the Cisco Netacademy courses. I took semesters 1 the first half and 2 the second half of summer. I finished up semesters 3 and 4 that fall (7 months), and had even planned to continue on to the CCNP courses, but I graduated before CCNP 1 was offered again and never got around to taking the CCNA exam. I don't know if I would have passed the actual exam or not, but I aced the classes.

    I finished up my BS degree, but that was more focused on programming and web design than networking. I never touched IOS (I worked mainly with hardware, layer 1 - cabling - and layer 7 - applications) again [from 2002] until about January 2013. I had to relearn alot - I still remembered the basic concepts - OSI Model, Subnetting, TCP/IP, etc..., but had forgotten pretty much all the actual commands] to finally earned my CCNA in July 2013.
    Security: CCNA [ ]
    Virtualization: VCA-DCV [ ]
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