Just Halabi's book OK for BGP test?

wolverene13wolverene13 Posts: 87Member ■■□□□□□□□□
I am currently studying for the BGP test and I got Sam Halabi's "Internet Routing Architectures," which is supposed to basically be the "BGP Bible." However, it's a little dated being that it refers to MPLS as "an emerging technology" and seems to be almost too easy being that I already read half the book in 3 days. In the experience of those who have taken the BGP test, is this book sufficient? Because I was also thinking about getting BGP Design and Implementation as well if Halabi's book is not enough.
Currently Studying: CCIP - 642-611 - MPLS
Occupation: Tier II NOC Tech - Centurylink
CCIP Progress: [x] BSCI
[x] BGP
[ ] MPLS
[ ] QoS
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Comments

  • networker050184networker050184 Posts: 11,962Mod Mod
    That was the only book I read completely for the exam but I wouldn't use that as your single source. I also went through the official course material and lots of white papers.
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
  • jovan88jovan88 Posts: 393Member
    I'm about to sit this exam soon, I've read IRA and I would say it is lacking a bit. Hopefully whitepapers and plenty of lab hours will be key to passing this.
  • mkomonmkomon Posts: 37Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    I would not use it as the only source for the BGP exam (as I haven't done it myself). The CLI syntax in the book is rather out of date and it lacks a number of features that appear on the blueprint/exam. You should get at least one more resource, preferably BGP case studies/config guides at cisco.com.
  • j4sj4s Posts: 18Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    It was the only book I read, but I did quite a lot of lab using GNS, and went through a number of other resources such as the cisco command line guide and some white papers.

    The book is a good grounding in BGP, but you need to check the up to date cli options as they could well appear in the exam.

    JC
  • Forsaken_GAForsaken_GA Posts: 4,024Member
    supplement Halabi's book with the BGP-4 Configuration guide and lots of lab time and you'll do fine
  • wolverene13wolverene13 Posts: 87Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    So it seems like the general consensus is that Halabi's book doesn't provide enough in the way of current BGP commands that exist in more recent versions of the IOS. BGP-4 Command and Configuration Handbook seems to take care of that, but what about BGP theory? Is there more needed in that area, or is Halabi's book still relevant in that respect?
    Currently Studying: CCIP - 642-611 - MPLS
    Occupation: Tier II NOC Tech - Centurylink
    CCIP Progress: [x] BSCI
    [x] BGP
    [ ] MPLS
    [ ] QoS
  • Forsaken_GAForsaken_GA Posts: 4,024Member
    So it seems like the general consensus is that Halabi's book doesn't provide enough in the way of current BGP commands that exist in more recent versions of the IOS. BGP-4 Command and Configuration Handbook seems to take care of that, but what about BGP theory? Is there more needed in that area, or is Halabi's book still relevant in that respect?

    For theory, Halabi is generally fine as far as the architectures of BGP are concerned.

    But as I've said before - it's a good idea to look over the BGP command guide, look for commands Halabi didn't cover, and then do some research into the use of those commands. The configuration guides on cisco.com will cover it adequately.
  • wolverene13wolverene13 Posts: 87Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    For theory, Halabi is generally fine as far as the architectures of BGP are concerned.

    But as I've said before - it's a good idea to look over the BGP command guide, look for commands Halabi didn't cover, and then do some research into the use of those commands. The configuration guides on cisco.com will cover it adequately.

    Ok cool, thanks for the help! That's why I still think this is the best cert forum on the Internet.
    Currently Studying: CCIP - 642-611 - MPLS
    Occupation: Tier II NOC Tech - Centurylink
    CCIP Progress: [x] BSCI
    [x] BGP
    [ ] MPLS
    [ ] QoS
  • mkomonmkomon Posts: 37Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Forsaken_GA> I totally agree.
  • creamy_stewcreamy_stew Posts: 406Member
    I am currently studying for the BGP test and I got Sam Halabi's "Internet Routing Architectures," which is supposed to basically be the "BGP Bible." However, it's a little dated being that it refers to MPLS as "an emerging technology" and seems to be almost too easy being that I already read half the book in 3 days. In the experience of those who have taken the BGP test, is this book sufficient? Because I was also thinking about getting BGP Design and Implementation as well if Halabi's book is not enough.

    From what I've heard, ISP guys who deal with BGP on a daily basis and have worked in that capacity for a couple of years seem to think the IRA does a great job of bringing it all together (they have generally worked with all kinds of IOS versions, all of which are more recent than what you'd see on the exam :))

    As a single resource, it's probably not enough; but I haven't heard of anyone being asked to take the CCIP who wasn't already employed by a national ISP (Sweden)
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  • wolverene13wolverene13 Posts: 87Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    From what I've heard, ISP guys who deal with BGP on a daily basis and have worked in that capacity for a couple of years seem to think the IRA does a great job of bringing it all together (they have generally worked with all kinds of IOS versions, all of which are more recent than what you'd see on the exam :))

    As a single resource, it's probably not enough; but I haven't heard of anyone being asked to take the CCIP who wasn't already employed by a national ISP (Sweden)

    If what you say is true, I should be fine then. I work with BGP a few times a day at work, working for a national ISP.
    Currently Studying: CCIP - 642-611 - MPLS
    Occupation: Tier II NOC Tech - Centurylink
    CCIP Progress: [x] BSCI
    [x] BGP
    [ ] MPLS
    [ ] QoS
  • notgoing2failnotgoing2fail Posts: 1,138Member
    What a timely post. I am currently reading IRA as well.

    I don't have any other resources other than to lab things up in GNS3.

    Based on what I've read here, it looks like I should pick up this book.

    Amazon.com: Cisco BGP-4 Command and Configuration Handbook (9781587050176): William R. Parkhurst: Books


    I think a lot of labbing is what's going to really help make the concepts sink in.

    Having had to deal and resolve a BGP issue for the last couple of weeks, I got my first taste of BGP....

  • Ryan82Ryan82 Posts: 428Member
    NG2F,

    Those two are the exact resources for books that I am currently using. I additionally am thinking about picking up either the O'Reilly BGP book or BGP Design and Implementation.

    For video resources I am using Internetwork Expert's BGP bootcamp which is pretty good.
  • notgoing2failnotgoing2fail Posts: 1,138Member
    Ryan82 wrote: »
    NG2F,

    Those two are the exact resources for books that I am currently using. I additionally am thinking about picking up either the O'Reilly BGP book or BGP Design and Implementation.

    For video resources I am using Internetwork Expert's BGP bootcamp which is pretty good.


    Thanks Ryan, I have the O'Reilly BGP and BGP Design & Implementation books in my amazon shopping cart but I haven't pulled the trigger yet as I wasn't sure if they would "directly" help me with passing this exam. I'm sure they make fine books on my bookshelf though!

    I will check out Internetwork Expert's BGP bootcamp, I'm hoping it's not too much money....

    Ok I just checked it out, LOL, wow it is $300.....

    I must ask, how do you like it? Would you spend $300 again for it? Is it really informative or dry? Only because I will pay if it's really educational....

  • Ryan82Ryan82 Posts: 428Member
    INE pretty much always has a ~30% discount going on. If you plug in the current discount it comes out to 206.50

    Keith Barker is the instructor and is pretty engaging. I would spend the money again, but not if I had to eat Ramen noodles for a month or anything like that icon_lol.gif.

    I haven't read them yet, but I believe the O'Reilly BGP and Design and Implementation books are probably more useful for the real world "why is it done this way?" design approach than directly helping with the exam. But again, I haven't read them so I can't say for sure.
  • notgoing2failnotgoing2fail Posts: 1,138Member
    Ryan82 wrote: »
    INE pretty much always has a ~30% discount going on. If you plug in the current discount it comes out to 206.50

    Keith Barker is the instructor and is pretty engaging. I would spend the money again, but not if I had to eat Ramen noodles for a month or anything like that icon_lol.gif.

    I haven't read them yet, but I believe the O'Reilly BGP and Design and Implementation books are probably more useful for the real world "why is it done this way?" design approach than directly helping with the exam. But again, I haven't read them so I can't say for sure.


    I think you're spot on regarding those books. That's what the reviews seem to mention. I'm going to be ordering them today along with Network Warrior.

    $206 is much more bearable than $300....I'll see if I can find any coupons out there....

    Thanks!

  • Forsaken_GAForsaken_GA Posts: 4,024Member
    Ryan82 wrote: »
    INE pretty much always has a ~30% discount going on. If you plug in the current discount it comes out to 206.50

    Keith Barker is the instructor and is pretty engaging. I would spend the money again, but not if I had to eat Ramen noodles for a month or anything like that icon_lol.gif.

    I haven't read them yet, but I believe the O'Reilly BGP and Design and Implementation books are probably more useful for the real world "why is it done this way?" design approach than directly helping with the exam. But again, I haven't read them so I can't say for sure.

    Keith is too damn cheerful sometimes, makes me want to smack him, but he's loads better than Sequira.

    The O'Reilly BGP book is good for folks familiar with BGP. It's a decent reference manual, and a good primer for those with solid grounding in BGP fundamentals, but it is not an all in one guide.

    Most BGP books are sadly outdated on how BGP operations work, at least if you're multihomed. The lack of mention of using communities to influence local pref that alot of SP's use is noteworthy.
  • notgoing2failnotgoing2fail Posts: 1,138Member
    Keith is too damn cheerful sometimes, makes me want to smack him, but he's loads better than Sequira.

    The O'Reilly BGP book is good for folks familiar with BGP. It's a decent reference manual, and a good primer for those with solid grounding in BGP fundamentals, but it is not an all in one guide.

    Most BGP books are sadly outdated on how BGP operations work, at least if you're multihomed. The lack of mention of using communities to influence local pref that alot of SP's use is noteworthy.


    I've noticed this too. Everytime I look at a book, I check the published date. Not that it means I won't purchase them, but it helps give me a reference of how outdated the material could be.

    I don't know enough about BGP to know if there have been major changes in BGP-4 since the year 2001? Most of the BGP books seem to have been written around 2001 - 2003.......

    Same goes for MPLS as well...?

  • Ryan82Ryan82 Posts: 428Member
    The MPLS books are more current. Some popular titles that I plan to read soon are MPLS Fundamentals and MPLS Enabled Applications.
  • Forsaken_GAForsaken_GA Posts: 4,024Member
    I've noticed this too. Everytime I look at a book, I check the published date. Not that it means I won't purchase them, but it helps give me a reference of how outdated the material could be.

    I don't know enough about BGP to know if there have been major changes in BGP-4 since the year 2001? Most of the BGP books seem to have been written around 2001 - 2003.......

    Same goes for MPLS as well...?

    BGP4 itself hasn't changed. There have been changes to BGP with Multiprotocol BGP, but BGP4 was designed to be an extensible protocol.

    It's just the way BGP is used has changed. Mostly, it's routing policy that's evolved, as people have gotten smarter about using the tools they've always had, but none of the texts really go into it.
  • notgoing2failnotgoing2fail Posts: 1,138Member
    Signed and ordered! Can't wait to read this books....it's like Xmas when I order books...err...tech books and see them by my door when I get home....



    Items Ordered Price 1 of: Network Warrior: Everything you need to know that wasn't on the CCNA exam [Paperback]
    By: Gary A. Donahue
    Condition: New
    $26.99
    - 1 item(s) Gift options: None
    1 of: Cisco BGP-4 Command and Configuration Handbook [Hardcover]
    By: William R. Parkhurst
    Condition: Used - Very Good
    $15.92
    - 1 item(s) Gift options: None
    1 of: BGP [Paperback]
    By: Iljitsch Van Beijnum
    Condition: New
    $32.32

  • Forsaken_GAForsaken_GA Posts: 4,024Member
    The command and configuration guide is the perfect complement to halabi's book. Work through the scenarios halabi presents in his book, that will give you a solid understanding of BGP fundamentals. Then look through the command and configuration guide for any commands halabi didn't cover and learn them. If you ever take the BGP exam, at least in it's current state, you will be glad you did this.
  • notgoing2failnotgoing2fail Posts: 1,138Member
    The command and configuration guide is the perfect complement to halabi's book. Work through the scenarios halabi presents in his book, that will give you a solid understanding of BGP fundamentals. Then look through the command and configuration guide for any commands halabi didn't cover and learn them. If you ever take the BGP exam, at least in it's current state, you will be glad you did this.


    Appreciate the advice, I plan to methodologically go over any labs presented to me. I will also blog about them too as that will help me to better understand the concepts. Doing it is one thing, but being able to explain it is the half IMO.

    I've been working with BGP for about 3-4 weeks now. I plan to put in another 4 weeks of studying.

    Depending on where I am, I hope I can take the BGP exam somewhere in the middle of March....

  • wolverene13wolverene13 Posts: 87Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    The command and configuration guide is the perfect complement to halabi's book. Work through the scenarios halabi presents in his book, that will give you a solid understanding of BGP fundamentals. Then look through the command and configuration guide for any commands halabi didn't cover and learn them. If you ever take the BGP exam, at least in it's current state, you will be glad you did this.

    I've definitely realized this, that's for sure. I finished Halabi's book, taking notes along the way, then I typed up a study guide for myself that put everything that I thought I needed to work on into everyday verbiage that I would use, and then labbed everything in the book out at least 3-4 times and went over my study guide for hours and hours. Then I went and looked at the exam blueprint again, and there's a bunch of stuff in there that Halabi never covered (what do I expect from a book written in 2001?) and realized I definitely needed another resource. So, I got the BGP-4 Command and Config Guide and it definitely looks like it's got everything I need. So, long story short for people who come across this thread in the future - read IRA and BGP-4 C & C and lab the heck out of everything and you should be good to go.
    Currently Studying: CCIP - 642-611 - MPLS
    Occupation: Tier II NOC Tech - Centurylink
    CCIP Progress: [x] BSCI
    [x] BGP
    [ ] MPLS
    [ ] QoS
  • TurgonTurgon Posts: 6,313Banned
    I am currently studying for the BGP test and I got Sam Halabi's "Internet Routing Architectures," which is supposed to basically be the "BGP Bible." However, it's a little dated being that it refers to MPLS as "an emerging technology" and seems to be almost too easy being that I already read half the book in 3 days. In the experience of those who have taken the BGP test, is this book sufficient? Because I was also thinking about getting BGP Design and Implementation as well if Halabi's book is not enough.


    It is dated but certainly the sort of material you should be reading if you want deep understanding of the protocol and its application. A lot of books like this get passed by these days because they are not in and of themselves great primers for the actual test.

    Supplement with more current materials.
  • tomaifauchaitomaifauchai Posts: 301Member
    Started reading it and having read already about BGP in the ROUTE book, i can easily recognize some outdated stuff already, but the introduction chapter was very cool to read about, NSFNET and pre-1992 history!

    When i've seen that the next chapters from the MPLS book will be "Advanced MPLS", i decided to switch to BGP, because i felt it was already advanced when i've read about LDP. There was some references to VRF's and MP-BGP which i don't know at all.
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  • burbankmarcburbankmarc Posts: 460Member
    Started reading it and having read already about BGP in the ROUTE book, i can easily recognize some outdated stuff already, but the introduction chapter was very cool to read about, NSFNET and pre-1992 history!

    When i've seen that the next chapters from the MPLS book will be "Advanced MPLS", i decided to switch to BGP, because i felt it was already advanced when i've read about LDP. There was some references to VRF's and MP-BGP which i don't know at all.

    The Advanced stuff goes over MP-BGP and VRFs in detail. I got to mid chapter 8 of the MPLS fundamentals book then I decided to go back and refresh on BGP. I have IRA, and TCP/IP vol II.

    I went through TCP/IP Vol II all ready and I just purchased the INE BGP class on demand. The instructor is Keith Barker who seems goofy but easy to follow. I'm only on class 6 out of 30 so I'll keep you posted and let you know if it's worth the $$$$
  • wolverene13wolverene13 Posts: 87Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Just wanted to let everyone know that I took the BGP test yesterday and passed with a 925! Much higher score than I expected, that's for sure. For anyone who comes across this in the future, here's what I did:

    1.) Read chapters 1-10 of Sam Halabi's Internet Routing Architectures and took notes along the way as I read, writing down things I knew I wouldn't remember or that I would need to go over again.

    2.) Watched the CBT Nuggets videos for the BGP section of the BSCI test (I had them from way back when I got my CCNP).

    3.) Read chapter 11 of Halabi's book, then labbed out all of the examples on my lab at home.

    4.) Went through chapter 11, typing notes about each concept (advertise maps, suppress maps, etc.). I also included configuration examples for each one.

    5.) Repeated steps 3 and 4 for chapter 12.

    6.) Read the BGP-4 Command and Configuration Guide.

    7.) Read the BGP Case Studies on Cisco's web site.

    8.) Go over my notes for chapters 1-12 of Halabi's book over and over again until my eyes fell out of my head.

    Thank you to everyone who weighed in on what materials to use for the test; it definitely helped me out a lot. Now, on to MPLS!
    Currently Studying: CCIP - 642-611 - MPLS
    Occupation: Tier II NOC Tech - Centurylink
    CCIP Progress: [x] BSCI
    [x] BGP
    [ ] MPLS
    [ ] QoS
  • burbankmarcburbankmarc Posts: 460Member
    Big congrats! Now you just need MPLS and QoS, no?
  • APAAPA Posts: 959Member
    Read Internet Routing Architectures by Halabi & BGP Design and Implementation by Rhandy Zhang.

    Easily the top two books necessary for the BGP exam and more...

    Personally I consider Zhang's book to be the bible for BGP, especially BGP in the IOS domain.

    Otherwise there is an O'Reiley's book on BGP as well... can't remember its name... but it is suppose to be very good as well.

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