Going for the CCNP

tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
After going for other certifications, I have enough technical knowledge and some real world experience with BGP, route maps CCNP level material in general to go for the CCNP R&S. I'll be going over the exams in this order:
  • CCNP ROUTE (642-902) - Exam scheduled for 14-03-2014.
  • CCNP SWITCH (642-813) - Starting after route
  • CCNP TSHOOT (632-832) - Starting after switch
Preperation material I've used for route:

-> Chris Bryant's CCNP material
-> GNS3 for lab possibility, GNS3vault for labs

As I mentioned the ROUTE exam is scheduled for 14-3-2014 (14 March). I've really enjoyed doing the ROUTE portion, and think SWITCH will be a lot harder, because I have more real world overlap with ROUTE. I still have some topics left on the menu:
  • IPv6 review
  • PBR
I'm hoping to work through both this week and spend my last weeks reviewing and labbing every item once again.

After CCNP, I'm starting a long journey towards CCIE, which will be a few years of study work before attempting the written exam.
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Comments

  • EV42TMANEV42TMAN Member Posts: 256
    Good Luck, I'm currently working on CCNA Security and when that is done my work wants me to do either Exchange 2013 or CCNP depending on what the current needs are.... I'm hopping for CCNP
    Current Certification Exam: ???
    Future Certifications: CCNP Route Switch, CCNA Datacenter, random vendor training.
  • Danielh22185Danielh22185 Member Posts: 1,195 ■■■■□□□□□□
    tomtom1 wrote: »
    After going for other certifications, I have enough technical knowledge and some real world experience with BGP, route maps CCNP level material in general to go for the CCNP R&S. I'll be going over the exams in this order:
    • CCNP ROUTE (642-902) - Exam scheduled for 14-03-2014.
    • CCNP SWITCH (642-813) - Starting after route
    • CCNP TSHOOT (632-832) - Starting after switch
    Preperation material I've used for route:

    -> Chris Bryant's CCNP material
    -> GNS3 for lab possibility, GNS3vault for labs

    As I mentioned the ROUTE exam is scheduled for 14-3-2014 (14 March). I've really enjoyed doing the ROUTE portion, and think SWITCH will be a lot harder, because I have more real world overlap with ROUTE. I still have some topics left on the menu:
    • IPv6 review
    • PBR
    I'm hoping to work through both this week and spend my last weeks reviewing and labbing every item once again.

    After CCNP, I'm starting a long journey towards CCIE, which will be a few years of study work before attempting the written exam.

    It sounds like you have some Routing experience that would prove helpful in the Route exam so sounds like you are on the right track. Route is a beast though I speak from experience I have had thus far.
    Currently Studying: IE Stuff...kinda...for now...
    My ultimate career goal: To climb to the top of the computer network industry food chain.
    "Winning means you're willing to go longer, work harder, and give more than anyone else." - Vince Lombardi
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Did some extensive labbing tonight with multi area OSPF and BGP. Objectives did include route summarization, injecting a default route in the OSPF routing domain and some basic adjacency work. An overview of the topology:



    Now some video work about PBR and we've made some good progress towards the NP Route exam.

    @Danielh22185: I assume you've already taken the exam? If so, did you pass?
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Today I've made some great progress with IPv6. Still don't see why parts of the configuration has to be done on the interface level rather than under the routing process (e.g. ipv6 ospf 1 area 1) , but OK..

    The different kinds of address types need to settle in a bit more. Stuff like FE80 and FF01 needs to sink in a bit more, but I'm digging the autoconfiguration!
  • joetestjoetest Member Posts: 99 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I think you should be prepared to do it on the interface level. You can also do it with the IPv4, and it actually makes more sense if you think about it. Atleast in my mind. You're advertising the network attached to the interface, so why not? :)
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    joetest wrote: »
    I think you should be prepared to do it on the interface level. You can also do it with the IPv4, and it actually makes more sense if you think about it. Atleast in my mind. You're advertising the network attached to the interface, so why not? :)
    If you think of it that way, it makes some more sense. :)Did some OSPF Virtual-Links again today and stumbled upon a phrase that helps me in understanding the virtual link process: One end of the virtual-link should be terminated on a backbone router. Backbone router = Routers that are part of area 0 (backbone).Also did some BGP, OSPF and EIGRP self-made labs (topology looking like this) mostly for playing with path selection in the different routing protocols.One interesting thing I came across, in the topology stated above (iBGP not fully meshed) you should configure R2 and R4 als Route Reflectors in order to have loopbacks advertised on R1 or R3 visible in the BGP table throughout the AS (knew that already). Also, because this is all iBGP the next-hop does not change. Those 2 things combined gives some interesting behaviour.Easy, you'd think, I'd configure the neighbors on R2 and R4 with the next-hop-self command, but interesting enough, when this command is used in combination with the route-reflectors, this only effects EBGP neighbors! In order for R1 and R3 to receive the correct next-hop, I had to use a route map with the set ip next-hop command. Relevant config looks like this:
    access-list 18 permit 3.3.3.3!route-map USE_LOCAL_ROUTER permit 10 match ip address 18 set ip next-hop 172.12.12.2!neighbor 172.12.12.3 route-map USE_LOCAL_ROUTER out
    
    Relevant Cisco article:BGP Next Hop Propagation - CiscoCan someone explain the logic behind this?
  • kohr-ahkohr-ah Member Posts: 1,277
    Awesome! Keep it up!
    I love reading people's progression posts and showing what they are learning. I will try to explain the next hop when I get home. It is easy and it seems we set it a lot on our MPLS connections.
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    kohr-ah wrote: »
    Awesome! Keep it up!
    I love reading people's progression posts and showing what they are learning. I will try to explain the next hop when I get home. It is easy and it seems we set it a lot on our MPLS connections.

    I understand the next-hop-self command, because in an iBGP routing update the next-hop doesn't update. It only does that on eBGP updates. What I'm curious to know is, why this command does not work as expected (only for eBGP routes and not iBGP routes) when used together with a route reflector.
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Did some more labs today. Subjects included:
    • eBGP
    • BGP Default Routing (neighbor x.x.x.x default-originate)
    • Prefix-list filtering
    • P / (N)AT
    • OSPF stub, totally stub and NSSA
    • Route maps to influence LocPref.
    Still trying to keep this schedule up for the exam, in 11 days!
  • Danielh22185Danielh22185 Member Posts: 1,195 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Good stuff! I look forward to seeing more of your progress!
    Currently Studying: IE Stuff...kinda...for now...
    My ultimate career goal: To climb to the top of the computer network industry food chain.
    "Winning means you're willing to go longer, work harder, and give more than anyone else." - Vince Lombardi
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Good stuff! I look forward to seeing more of your progress!

    Thanks, always great to here.

    Clocked another few hours into the lab / theory today:
    • BGP Synchronization rule
    • EIGRP stub configuration and SIA routes
    • EIGRP Un-equal cost loadbalancing (variance + maximum-paths)
    • OSPF / EIGRP mutual route redistribution
    • PBR Basics
    Exam date is closing in on me, and I must have this stuff down cold :)
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Did some practice exams (non braindump) today (Link for those interested). Identified some spots that need extra work:
    • PBR
    • (BGP) Prefix-lists, specifically the le ge bit.
    Example question from the practice exam:

    Which two prefixes are matched by the following command: ip prefix-list List2 permit 192.168.0.0/16 ge 18? (Choose two.)
    A) 192.168.0.0/16
    B) 192.168.0.0/20
    C) 192.168.2.0/24
    D) 192.128.0.0/24

    Does anyone have some valid material on the prefix-list stuff? Could use some valid explanation here. Also got myself an extra read on BGP: BGP*-*O'Reilly Media. Will be arriving tomorrow.
  • cisco_nerdcisco_nerd Member Posts: 198
    I'm enjoying eading others posts on CCNP ventures also, as I am currently in the same boat studying for ROUTE at the moment to have the exam completed once i'm back off deployment.

    Keep up the good work.

    Studying ROUTE has made me realise EIGRP is not as bad as I once thought, but so eager to get stuck deep into OSPF ad BGP! icon_study.gif
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    cisco_nerd wrote: »
    I'm enjoying eading others posts on CCNP ventures also, as I am currently in the same boat studying for ROUTE at the moment to have the exam completed once i'm back off deployment.

    Keep up the good work.

    Studying ROUTE has made me realise EIGRP is not as bad as I once thought, but so eager to get stuck deep into OSPF ad BGP! icon_study.gif

    BGP is the real deal in terms of complexity (especially for the NP ROUTE curriculum) but EIGRP and OSPF score higher on the blueprint, so make sure you study both. I really like EIGRP because of the feasible successor backup route, it has already been calculated for you when you might need it. Also, the option of being able to do manual summarization at any point in the netwerk, whereas OSPF is confined to summarization on either an ABR or an ASBR provides some extra flexibility. However, the disadvantage is of course the Cisco proprietary, although steps are being made towards opening up the hood for EIGRP.

    Am going to do some hard study over the weekend, exam in 7 days. Might stick around with the ROUTE topics after passing, reading the BGP o reily book will give me a better understanding of tools & tips I need in my daily job. After that, I'm considering to do either the VCAP5-DCD, which is a whole different kind of sport, or stick to the entire CCNP program first.

    Choices, choices.. But first let's see if we can nail this CCNP ROUTE.
  • cisco_nerdcisco_nerd Member Posts: 198
    tomtom1 wrote: »
    BGP is the real deal in terms of complexity (especially for the NP ROUTE curriculum) but EIGRP and OSPF score higher on the blueprint, so make sure you study both. I really like EIGRP because of the feasible successor backup route, it has already been calculated for you when you might need it. Also, the option of being able to do manual summarization at any point in the netwerk, whereas OSPF is confined to summarization on either an ABR or an ASBR provides some extra flexibility. However, the disadvantage is of course the Cisco proprietary, although steps are being made towards opening up the hood for EIGRP.

    Am going to do some hard study over the weekend, exam in 7 days. Might stick around with the ROUTE topics after passing, reading the BGP o reily book will give me a better understanding of tools & tips I need in my daily job. After that, I'm considering to do either the VCAP5-DCD, which is a whole different kind of sport, or stick to the entire CCNP program first.

    Choices, choices.. But first let's see if we can nail this CCNP ROUTE.


    we use OSPF religiously in our network and BGP as well naturally.

    What books are you using? I have the CCNP Simplified series with lab book, and the Cisco press OCG and lab books for each exam.
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    cisco_nerd wrote: »
    we use OSPF religiously in our network and BGP as well naturally.

    What books are you using? I have the CCNP Simplified series with lab book, and the Cisco press OCG and lab books for each exam.

    I have the labs books, the OCG (which I found detailed, but kinda.. boring. Only use this to clarify stuff), and as main material the CCNP course by Chris Bryant / The Bryant Advantage. Really happy with that last one. Chris and I go back to my CCNA studies which are almost 3 years ago (CCNP ROUTE is also recertification for the CCNA) but the quality and support of his material are excellent.
  • joetestjoetest Member Posts: 99 ■■□□□□□□□□
    tomtom1 wrote: »
    I have the labs books, the OCG (which I found detailed, but kinda.. boring. Only use this to clarify stuff), and as main material the CCNP course by Chris Bryant / The Bryant Advantage. Really happy with that last one. Chris and I go back to my CCNA studies which are almost 3 years ago (CCNP ROUTE is also recertification for the CCNA) but the quality and support of his material are excellent.

    I'm considering using twice the amount of time I spent on SWITCH(2months~). Thinking I'm gonna go through the Simplified book and Chris Bryant book. I've only been through IP routing and EIGRP topics so far.. this stuff is hard! :)
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Still, I think it's a lot more fun than switch, which is next for me. Did some more labbing + practice questions today. Exam in 4 days. :)
  • maharalielmaharaliel Member Posts: 119
    Good luck, GNS3 will help in the preparation of routing exam, but it will not be helpful in preparing of switching and tshout.
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Writing the route exam in less than 3 hours! Very excited to see what's in store for me.
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Managed to pass the NP routing exam. Now I'll first take a look at VCAP-DCD (VMware) and let a colleague finish up his CCNA before attempting CCNP switch together. At least my CCNA is retained now :).
  • shyguyITshyguyIT Member Posts: 380
    Congrats! icon_thumright.gif
    2017 Goals:
    Route[X], Switch [], TSHOOT[]
  • Danielh22185Danielh22185 Member Posts: 1,195 ■■■■□□□□□□
    tomtom1 wrote: »
    Managed to pass the NP routing exam. Now I'll first take a look at VCAP-DCD (VMware) and let a colleague finish up his CCNA before attempting CCNP switch together. At least my CCNA is retained now :).

    Congrats on the pass! First attempt?
    Currently Studying: IE Stuff...kinda...for now...
    My ultimate career goal: To climb to the top of the computer network industry food chain.
    "Winning means you're willing to go longer, work harder, and give more than anyone else." - Vince Lombardi
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Congrats on the pass! First attempt?

    Yes! Branch connectivity caught me off guard (33% score), but managed to score points on the rest. :)
  • Danielh22185Danielh22185 Member Posts: 1,195 ■■■■□□□□□□
    tomtom1 wrote: »
    Yes! Branch connectivity caught me off guard (33% score), but managed to score points on the rest. :)


    Awesome! You got it done quick! Ya the branch connectivity stuff is pure junk if you ask me. The test covers so little (5% according to the blue print) I'd rather have another EIGRP or OSPF question.

    I hope to join the pass ranks tomorrow when I re-take mine.
    Currently Studying: IE Stuff...kinda...for now...
    My ultimate career goal: To climb to the top of the computer network industry food chain.
    "Winning means you're willing to go longer, work harder, and give more than anyone else." - Vince Lombardi
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    Allrighty, although I'm writing the JCNIA JunOS exam in a few days, a recent job has come up in which I could be working for a service provider. The SP is all Cisco based, so I'm hoping me working there might give me the solid basis to continue the CCNP road. Who knows, perhaps one day even CCIE. I think I'm motivated enough to do it, only one does get to know oneself in such preparation.

    I think I will accept their job offer and start this track / topic up again! Wish me luck.

    Preparation materials for the SWITCH exam:

    -> Bryant's CCNP SWITCH material
    -> CCNP switch simplified

    Anything other worth mentioning? I'm hoping to get my hands on an old 3750 switch and I still have some (2) older 100 meg switches (Cisco of course) lying around. Should that suffice or should I invest in more / better switches?
  • FloOzFloOz Member Posts: 1,614 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I'd go with 4x 3560s. It'll be pricey but it will pay off if you do go for your CCIE. I would check with your employer if they have any extra gear lying around.
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    FloOz wrote: »
    I'd go with 4x 3560s. It'll be pricey but it will pay off if you do go for your CCIE. I would check with your employer if they have any extra gear lying around.

    I have my eyes on this, so that might be a good investment.
  • gorebrushgorebrush Member Posts: 2,741
    If you are going to buy switches, buy ones that'll at least run 15 code. 3560's will, but I believe they *must* have 32MB flash, there are certain product codes of 3560 that will definitely run it.

    Otherwise you will be looking at rack rentals for some of the CCIE features (VTP Version 3)
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    gorebrush wrote: »
    If you are going to buy switches, buy ones that'll at least run 15 code. 3560's will, but I believe they *must* have 32MB flash, there are certain product codes of 3560 that will definitely run it.

    Otherwise you will be looking at rack rentals for some of the CCIE features (VTP Version 3)

    I'll ask a sh ver first, have some in mind. Thanks for the advice guys and best of luck in your CCIE prep.
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