How Would You Prepare for CCIE Lab Exam? Here are the tips……

I am writing this after passing my CCIE Routing & Switching Lab and CCIE Service Provider Lab, just over 2 years ago. I think my experience will help students those are preparing for CCIE lab. I would request you to read all sections till the end.

  • Have you ever thought, why people are so crazy about CCIE?

The first question comes to my mind why I will do CCIE? Is my CCIE required to be a good network engineer? I hope “no”, then why are we even bother to be a CCIE? You are investing lot of money, spending lot of time for practice, why so? Is my CCIE will help to get Job without an Interview? My answer is “no”. If I complete CCIE shall I learn everything in the networking world? I would say again “no”. Then why people are so crazy about CCIE certification?

Guys, I would simply say, just to achieve CCIE. CCIE Certification is one of the most prestigious certification in the world, everyone wants to earn it.

CCIE Exam preparation is required following 5 things to go on…..

  • Your Dedication
  • Your Patience
  • Your Money
  • Your Smart Study on Subjects
  • You have to think like CCIE

Let me first talk about “Dedication”, from the day you decide to start for CCIE lab exam preparation, you have do lot of study and practice as per CCIE blue print. You also have to decide the date of your lab exam, or else you won’t be very serious in your study. You must have a dedication on the subject and one by one you have to complete all the topics covered in the blue print. One small tip here, try to ignore few things from your life where you have to spent time unnecessary, instead of put your valuable time for CCIE preparation. Follow it until you clear your exam.

You have to keep Your Patience while you are doing theory study and practice. Lot of technologies you won’t be able to understand by reading in first time. Hence you have study couple of times to understand it better, also when you are on CLI you may be facing lot issues, try to troubleshoot it. Don’t just reload the router or switches in first place to solve problem. Use different verification commands (show and debug commands) to find out where is the exact problem. It will help you to improve your troubleshooting skills. Do not lose your patience here, if you are feeling bored just get out of your seat for some time then come back again.

Your money matters – to book your CCIE lab exam you have to spend 1600 USD, it’s not a small amount, and also first you have to clear your written exam which will cost 450 USD. Total cost of your CCIE exam is 2050 USD, not all student can afford it. Friends, do not take loan or mortgage for your lab exam and do not just think that you can pass out the lab exam in first attempt. If you can pass the exam in first attempt that is excellent. But if you cannot pass then, what? So my suggestion is, do not take loan for your exam.

You have to study smartly on regular basis. Think simply about technology concepts, do not make it complicated. Go through CCIE Exam Blue Print and complete topics one by one. Use CCIE Exam blue print as a checklist. One thing keep in your mind that not all technologies covered in CCIE exam blue print, so do not try to study all networking technologies for exam preparation. Think smartly, if you are preparing for CCIE Routing and Switching exam, then go through all topics covered in Routing and Switching blue print, do not follow CCIE Service Provider blue print. You may think of OSPF is common topic of CCIE RS and SP both, so I have to know all technologies covered in OSPF, but guys “NO”, you don’t have to know all. CCIE RS has some specific topics on OSPF for exam, also CCIE SP has some specific topics on OSPF for exam. CCIE RS technology basically follows technologies which are used in Enterprise network, CCIE SP follows for SP used technologies.

Last but not least, when you are preparing for CCIE lab exam, you have think everything like CCIE. You have feel like you are a CCIE. One line of the song “la la la la” sang by Shakira toughed my heart “Is it true that you want it, then act like you mean it”. Its true guys, you have to act like CCIE then only you can achieve CCIE number.

My analysis of study on any CISCO technology to understand better and for long time just following three steps:

  1. Read out complete theory of the technology for couple of times. You will understand at least little bit for sure.
  2. Jump for Configuration – do configure the technology step by step.
  3. Now time for verification, try to use related verification commands to verify whether my configuration is right or wrong, also try to read verification command’s output to understand better of the technology. Basically what happened, when you configure and verify the things it creates an image in your brain that helps you keep in mind for long time. Guys, do not just read theory again and again, also do lab at the same time otherwise it won’t help you in this track.
  1. Use CISCO CCIE official cert guide which is good. Also you can study TCP/IP volume 1 and 2.
  2. Use lab workbook of INE or others for lab practice.
  3. Join CISCO learning network forum to discuss different type of doubts.
  4. Watch some technology videos on youtube.
  5. Use GNS3 or IOU simulator at home for lab practice.

Friends, if you find something informative then please do share with your friends. Thank You.

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