CCIE is one of the widely recognized IT industry certifications and is probably the most respected of them. Sometimes, it is compared to PhD, speaking of networking. CCIE certified persons are experts in at least one networking field (often, more than one). The most widespread and, thus, the oldest is the Routing and Switching CCIE program, but there are also other tracks in the CCIE. For example, VoIP experts are certified as CCIE Voice, while network security experts get CCIE Security certifications. There are also CCIE Service Provider, CCIE Wireless, CCIE Storage Networking, and CCIE Provider Operations. Regardless of the track, one thing is always the same – the CCIE certified person has gone through some tough preparation and an even harder onsite practical test, provided by Cisco. This certification is administered by the Cisco Corporation, but is recognized and respected as a certificate of an ultimate networking talent by everyone.
This certification’s greatest value is that there are no easy ways, brain-dumps, and cheats in the process. Due to the fact that this is an onsite, practical examination that continues for eight hours, there’s no question why. Moreover, Cisco has fostered and improved their CCIE certification program almost for 30 years, since 1993. Persons with CCIE certifications bring a lot of advantages to their firms, like faster and improved access to proper support staffs within Cisco, but even more significantly, by simply being specialists everyone can rely on.
So, what does a networking expert has to do to turn into a CCIE? Here are several tips that will help you to prepare for the CCIE program and exam effectively.
Be ready to spend at least 6 to 9 months studying and working hard, both day and night. If you have an opportunity, plan to spend one month prior to your examination date on studying only.
CCIE is an expert-level certification, so a certified CCIE has to be expert in their particular field. This demands tons of reading along with practice. Take a look at Cisco’s site and products and check on Cisco Press books.
Select the CCIE track that suits you best in terms of interest and current networking experience. Remember, there are six tracks available: CCIE Voice, CCIE Service Provider, CCIE Routing and Switching, CCIE Wireless, CCIE Storage Networking, and CCIE Security.
Learn, prepare, and pass the written qualification examination for the chosen track. Cisco Press has published certification guides for the majority of popular tracks and, normally, this isn’t a big issue for students. Getting well prepared for the qualification exam will compensate during laboratory preparation, since this should provide a sound theoretical base.
Choose a reliable partner for CCIE training, who has a proven methodology and track record, combined with harmonized studying solutions, which include extensive self-learning materials and classes led by an instructor for the second certification part – the all-feared CCIE lab exam.
Comprehend advanced concepts and theory related to the track you chose and start a targeted, technology-focused study by watching and listening to video and audio on demand products along with practicing your own technologies. Listening to instructions and watching videos at your comfort is a perfect CCIE preparation impetus.
Start doing multiprotocol exercises from your laboratory practice workbooks to strengthen theory, advanced technologies, and knowledge altogether.
Attend one of the classes led by the instructor to strengthen advanced knowledge. These classes are widely regarded as CCIE Boot Camps and are quite intense. They normally continue for a week and are meant to fill-in any gaps in your knowledge that are present at this preparation point.
Do advanced and the most complicated lab exercises you can to perfect troubleshooting skills and advanced knowledge. Most respected CCIE training sellers offer self-study materials of various difficulties. Both beginners and experienced engineers can easily be stunned by the complexity levels of certain material. These toughest challenges and practice lab exercises have to be executed on a later stage of your preparation process.
Attend specialized Lab Experience classes to practice taking the lab. Same as with self-study materials, there are weeks of lab experience available, where students are plunged into the most complicated practical lab works, thoroughly watched by instructors with the purpose to reproduce the real practical lab exam conducted by Cisco. These classes are invaluable at the last-stage preparation for the exam.
Follow these tips and you will be able to get prepared to becoming one of just 20,000 certified CCIE’s in the world. Sounds like a true honor, doesn’t it?