Cisco Tips & Tricks

June 29, 2009

Cisco Certified Architect ?

Filed under: ccie, cisco — ciscotips @ 9:23 pm

New Certification Resides Above CCIE to Validate Competency and Experience in Support of Growing Innovation in Network Infrastructure Architecture

SAN JOSE, Calif., June 29, 2009 – Responding to strong customer and market demand to recognize the architectural expertise of network designers, Cisco today introduced the Cisco Certified Architect, the highest level of accreditation achievable within Cisco® Career Certifications

Key Facts/Highlights:
  • Advanced technologies such as Cisco Unified Communications, Cisco TelePresenceTM and mobility are converging and increasing the opportunities for innovation and collaboration while adding to the complexity of enterprise networks.
  • According to IDC, “With many existing certifications focused on point technologies, architect-level certifications bring together project management, business needs analysis, and IT elements into a true solutions framework and validate a candidate’s ability to address planning, design, interoperability, and connectivity issues.” *
  • Gartner reported in its 2008 IT market compensation study (U.S. based), that “IT organizations continue to have difficulty in finding skilled IT professionals, especially enterprise architects, network architects, project managers and Web application programmers.” **

Cisco Certified Architect:

  • The Cisco Certified Architect certification recognizes the architectural experience and competency of network designers who can support the increasingly complex networks of global organizations and effectively translate business strategies into evolutionary technical strategies.
  • Cisco channel partners play a critical role in enabling customers to deploy advanced new technologies supported by professionals with the skills required to use these innovative solutions.
  • The certification stands above the expert-level CCIE® certification in terms of difficulty, with an emphasis on expertise in network infrastructure architecture and a proven ability to work with executive-level customers to ensure that business requirements are incorporated into successful designs.

Certification Process:

  • The Cisco Certified Architect certification will be administered as a board exam.
  • Candidates will propose and defend an architecture solution to a set of business requirements, and the candidates will be asked to modify their proposals “on the fly,” based on additional requirements presented by the board.
  • Prerequisites include a CCDETM certification, approximately 10 years of industry experience, and acceptance into the program via an application process.

Supporting Quotes:

  • “It’s exciting to see Cisco raising the bar at the high end of its certification program for IT professionals,” said Zeus Kerravala, senior vice president, Yankee Group. “Organizations will be encouraged to view architecture as a defined job role rather than as a component of a job role. For individuals, this new certification provides a level of expertise that will be attractive to CCDE and CCIE holders as a way to advance their careers.”
  • “Architecture is not just another name for ‘design’ – it’s a different perspective and set of skills,” said renowned author and networking expert Terry Slattery, CCIE® #1026. “The Cisco Certified Architect demonstrates a breadth and depth of knowledge and perspective, incorporating technology with the trade-offs required by real-world business requirements. It provides individuals with a clear path through their professional development. This new certification recognizes that an architectural view of network design is far more efficient than tackling network problems after implementation.”
  • “We applaud Cisco for taking an architectural approach and mapping it to the organization’s business requirements,” said Robert Stephens, vice president of the Revere Group. “As a partner, we spend a great deal of time looking at the network from a global perspective.  The new Cisco Certified Architect affirms the need to look at business drivers and validates that an individual possesses not only the expert technical acumen but can communicate the strategic business value of new technologies to senior business executives.”
  • “The Cisco Certified Architect designation was developed to meet the demands of global organizations for specialists with the advanced design skills to support increasingly complex networks and effectively translate business strategies into evolutionary architectural implementations,” said Jeanne Beliveau Dunn, general manager, Learning@Cisco. “This prestigious certification represents an exclusive group of architects who possess the hard skills to support complex network design and the soft skills to articulate the value of the technology to their colleagues.”

Supporting Resources:


June 26, 2009

Narbik on Steroids

Filed under: ccie — ciscotips @ 2:56 pm

Interview by Emmanuel Conde aka CCIE Agent with Narbik Kocharians

*The whole world is going nuts and the best way to distinguish yourself from
the herd during this crazy time is by raising the bar on your own
accomplishments every day.  I do it and it keeps me fresh and in demand as
the CCIE Agentb “.  Those around me that I associate professionally with do
too, like M and Jack Taylor my team.  We hustle every day and try to take
care of our network of clients and CCIEs as we navigate the muck and mire.

*Training material for CCIEs is another area of distinction for some
authors.  I have personally seen some very good ones out there and
distinguishing themselves becomes difficult for some of the authors.  CCIE
training material is written and published all the time by various sources
and authors.  I have heard of some plagiarized products out there from
several of my network members.  I speak with one author regularly, Narbik
who recently called while I was in Jamaica (did you know only one CCIE lives
in Jamaica?) talking to him about his new 2.0 Boot Camp.  I get excited
about CCIE stuff so I was excited to help spread the word about this news.*

*So when I landed back in the states I called Narbik back and asked him to
answer a few questions about his latest work and activities on behalf of
CCIEs around the world.  What follows is my best effort to capture that

*Q: Narbik why do I go on vacation to get away from work just to end up
taking your calls?  Is it the love of what we do or are we both nuts?*

*A: Eman I think we are both nuts driven by a passion that is based upon our
love of helping others.  What we do is not all for money we both spend so
much time helping others and we are lucky we get paid for what we do and
love.  Vacation is for people who are stressed out every day and need a
break.  We are kindred spirits in that way and we donb t need a relief from
stress, just more time with family that is less interrupted!  I know you
took my call because it was me.  How many calls did you not take?*

*Q: Narbik I am asking the questions here.  Yes I took your call because it
was you but I also took a few others.  I actually added two new clients
while on vacation since they called out of the blue and rekindled an old
relationship with another channel partner.  The call from Dubai was a good
one since some of my CCIE network will have a chance there to get submitted
for new roles.  But in all I did avoid a few callers and M was instrumental
in keeping everyone happy for me.*

*Tell me whatb s new with you?  I know you have been working on new training
materials and had a few calls with Cisco lately.*

*A: *As of Aug, who ever attends my book camp, they will get b *THE BEST OF
THE BEST*b  the reason I call it the best of the best is because the
get my ALL NEW 2.0 boot camp which is by far the best, and they also get
another best which is Ciscob s CCIE training called b The 360 programb .

Q: Whoa!  You are now offering the 360b 0 Learning Program?

A: Only select Cisco Learning Partners are invited to deliver the Cisco 360
Learning Program, and I am proud to be a company that is recognized by
Cisco. BTW, I am also a Master instructor.

Q: How did you come to the conclusion that combining your efforts with Cisco
was a good idea?

A: I have been thinking about this for the longest time and I had to come up
with a program that best serves *MY* students, a program that provides a
passing rate of 80 percent, and I mean that, therefore, I wrote the all new
foundation called b Foundation 2.0b , b Advanced CCIE R&S 2.0b  and b The
Boot Camp 2.0b . We are also coming up with an b Advanced Troubleshooting
which is 10 rigorous Mock labs, basically you load the initial configuration
file and start going from task to task and resolve one problem after
another, you see I never cared for 8 hour mock labs, NEVER, but this is very
interesting and actually teaches the students to troubleshoot one task after
another, and let me tell you, they are pretty tough, as a matter of fact
very tough BUT RELEVENT.

Q: With all this did you feel you would be diluting your offerings?

A: The last thing that I wanted to add to this program was another program,
and who better than CISCO or I should say who better than Bruce and Valb s

Q: Do you think this separates you from your competitors?

A: I donb t have to brag about our boot camps, but if you thought the old
boot camp was great, you have not seen anything yet. Come and see the
difference in philosophy.  This program is what I had BUT on Steroids.  I
honestly believe that this is by far the BEST of the BEST.

Q: Ok.  You are getting all worked up again and I canb t keep up.  Give me a
real run down.

A: Some of the new offerings are as follows:

  – Ciers-1 PLUS my 2.0 boot camp:

               This providers 60 percent lecture and 40 percent hands on.

  – Ciers-2 PLUS my 2.0 boot camp material.

               This provides 5 days of intense MOCK labs + lectures.

  – Once again, my retake policy is still in place, you can retake any one
  of these classes *any number of times*. As a matter of fact, I RECOMMEND


  – Micronics has a total of 24 R&S racks and these racks can be rented by
  our students for a price of $450 per month.


  – Soup-to-Nuts on special for $50


  – The new b Advanced CCIE R&S 2.0b  for $395.


Q: Will this affect your delivery?  I mean come on, the colored markers and
white boards are a hallmark of your teaching style.

A: I will NEVER change the style of teaching, because if I do, I will be
another vendor offering boot camps. When I tell everyone that my philosophy
is different, some vendors get upset but, heyb& my philosophy is different,
my philosophy is to b TEACHb  and NOT b LECTUREb .  I have combined the
courses so my students get the BEST, I have added another 5 hours to my
lectures, and if you have been to any of my boot camps you know that I DO
NOT COVER FAT, I cover the MEAT of the subject.

Always remember it is NOT the company that the students should look for,
itb s the instructor, I do not care if the company has been around since
Rocky Marciano days, the company is NOT the one teaching the class, itb s
instructor. In real estate there is a saying and I quote b *Location,
Location, Location*b , in CCIE or any training for that matter, the saying
b *Instructor, Instructor, Instructor*b .

June 10, 2009

Cisco Revising CCIE R&S Certification

Filed under: bgp, ccie, cisco, IP Routing, Technology and Software — ciscotips @ 8:10 pm

The upcoming Version 4.0 of Cisco CCIE® Routing and Switching certification will test hands-on troubleshooting, Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), and VPN networking


To reflect the growth of the network as a service platform, Cisco is revising the certification requirements for CCIE Routing & Switching (CCIE R&S)–the expert level certification for network engineers. The new requirements were developed with assistance from Cisco enterprise customers and reflect the expectations of employers across industries.


The competencies required for CCIE R&S v4.0 certification were released on May 5, 2009, and are available on the Cisco Learning Network under the CCIE R&S v4.0 Written Exam topics and CCIE R&S v4.0 Lab Exam topics. Exams based on the new requirements are scheduled for release on October 18, 2009, and will immediately replace the currently available v3.0 exams. Candidates who plan to take their exams on October 18, 2009, or later should prepare using the new v4.0 exam topics.


Both the written and lab exams will be refreshed with new questions and will cover MPLS and VPN networking. The written exam will add scenario-based questions to the multiple choice questions, and the lab will now require hands-on troubleshooting of preconfigured networks, in addition to configuration. Exam duration and pricing will remain the same, with the two-hour written exam at USD$350 and the eight-hour lab at USD$1400.


A beta version of the new CCIE R&S v4.0 written exam (351-001) will be available to all customers in the July–August 2009 timeframe at a discounted price of USD$50. An announcement will be made when scheduling begins.


Cisco 360 Learning Program Updates Available

Cisco 360 Learning Program components aligned to the new CCIE R&S certification standards will be available on May 11, 2009.  All current students will have access to the new materials throughout their subscription period.  New materials include additional lessons on MPLS and troubleshooting, enhanced coverage of these topics in the instructor-led workshops, an updated Practice Lab Workbook for self-paced practice, and new Performance Assessments that gauge skill level and offer mentoring feedback.


CCIE Assessor, the first CCIE R&S practice lab, will be retired on June 5, 2009, and will be replaced by the 10 eight-hour assessment labs available through the Cisco 360 Learning Program. Find out more


Frequently Asked Questions

1  –  Q: What exactly is being changed on the CCIE R&S written exam?


A: The CCIE R&S v4.0 written exam will be refreshed with new questions to reflect the current job role expectations of employers. Scenario-based questions will be added to the multiple choice questions. New topics include the skills associated with planning and evaluating network changes, implementing MPLS, Layer 3 VPN, IPv6, EIGRP and multicast; and configuring performance-based routing.  More information is available on the CCIE Written Exam Overview page.



2  –  Q: What exactly is being changed on the CCIE R&S lab exam?

A: The CCIE R&S v4.0 lab exam will be refreshed with new questions to reflect the current job role expectations of employers. The equipment in the testing lab will be updated with Cisco 1800 and 3800 Series Integrated Services Routers running Cisco IOS® Software Version 12.4(T) and Cisco Catalyst® 3560 Series Switches running Cisco IOS Version 12.2 Advanced IP Services. The biggest change will be the testing of hands-on troubleshooting for the first two hours of the eight-hour exam. Candidates will be presented with a series of trouble tickets for preconfigured networks, and they will need to diagnose and resolve the network fault or faults—a realistic and challenging job task. Candidates who finish the troubleshooting section early can move on to the configuration section, but they will not be allowed to go back to the troubleshooting section, since their equipment will need to be reinitialized for the configuration portion of the exam.

To make time for new material, CCIE R&S v4.0 exams will put less emphasis on equipment operation and concepts generally understood at the professional level. These skills are still assumed, but will not be the sole objective of CCIE test questions. Go to the Lab Exam Study/Learn section for more information.



3  –  Q: Now that the CCIE R&S v4.0 has been announced, can I still take the CCIE R&S v3.0 exam? How long will it be valid?


A: The CCIE R&S v3.0 written exam will be available through October 17, 2009, at all Pearson VUE testing centers. Passing the v3.0 written exam qualifies a candidate to take any available version of the CCIE R&S lab exam. As with all CCIE written exams, a passing score on v3.0 written exam will remain valid for three years, as long as the candidate attempts the lab exam once within the first 18 months. If the lab is not attempted, the written exam becomes invalid and the candidate will have to retest using whatever written exam is available at that time.



4  –  Q: If I take the CCIE R&S written beta test in July or August 2009, will I still be able to schedule the CCIE R&S v3.0 lab exam?


A: Scores on CCIE written beta tests are not available until 4 to 6 weeks after the close of the beta period. At this time, there is no guarantee the CCIE R&S v3.0 lab exam will still be available when a beta test candidate receives his or her score. Beta testers should plan on taking the CCIE R&S v4.0 lab test to achieve certification.



5  –  Q: If I don’t pass the CCIE R&S v4.0 written beta exam, can I take it again in five days?


A: No, a candidate can only take a CCIE written beta test once during the beta testing period.




6  –  Q: Will there be any changes to the recently-added Core Knowledge portion of the exam, the part with the short-answer questions?


A: The questions in the Core Knowledge section of the lab exam may cover any area on the CCIE R&S v4.0 Lab Exam topics.




7  –  Q: What can a candidate expect in the troubleshooting portion of the lab exam?


A: Troubleshooting is allotted two of the eight hours required for the CCIE lab exam. Candidates will be presented with a series of trouble tickets for preconfigured networks and will need to diagnose and resolve the fault or faults. As with previous CCIE labs, the network will need to be up and running for the candidate to receive credit.  Candidates who finish the troubleshooting section early can move on to the configuration section, but they will not be allowed to go back to the troubleshooting section.



8  –  Q: Does a candidate have to pass both the troubleshooting and configuration sections in order to pass the entire CCIE R&S v4.0 lab exam and earn a CCIE?


A: Candidates will receive a single pass/fail grade on the entire exam, including both configuration and troubleshooting. Failing score reports will give an indication of where the candidate scored lower, to help the candidate prepare for another attempt.



9  –  Q: Will the CCIE R&S mobile lab exam also be updated?


A: Yes, CCIE R&S mobile labs use the same lab version as Cisco office locations, and they will switch to the v4.0 lab exam on October 18, 2009 as well.



10  –  Q: Which exam will be used for recertification?


A: As of October 18, 2009, CCIEs who take the CCIE R&S written exam for recertification will be given the v4.0 exam and should prepare using the exam topics found on the Cisco Learning Network.



11  –  Q: Are the previous Cisco 360 components applicable to the CCIE R&S v4.0 exams? Should candidates studying for CCIE R&S v4.0 exams wait for the new Cisco 360 materials to begin work?


A: The learning components available at first launch of Cisco 360 are still relevant to candidates studying for the CCIE R&S v4.0 certification exams. No Cisco 360 Learning Program components are being retired.  There is no need for candidates to wait for revised Cisco 360 material to begin their study and practice. The subscription model ensures that Cisco 360 customers can take advantage of all new content as it is released and do not need to wait.

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