TECH Is there anyone here that has ever gotten a CCNA? I need some short advice.

Stilgar1973

New Member
Aug 12, 2006
8,340
I am quickly approaching the point in my study where I have to commit to either one test or two.
~if I get a CCENT it will only be because I decided to take 2 tests. CCNA is the goal~

Did you take one test or two?
Do you regret whichever decision you made?
Why?

Thanks.
 

7960

Well-Known Member
Oct 17, 2004
60,033
New England
two tests costs twice as much, but you have more time to study for each section.

one test costs half as much, but the pool of questions encompasses everything from both courses so you have to prepare for the wider range of topics.




personally, i would study for the first exam and get to the point where I knew it cold and was ready to take it, then start studying for the 2nd exam while continuing to brush up on the first. it'll be fairly easy because many of the topics have some amount of overlap, so just studying for icnd2 will help you retain what you needed to know for icnd1.

also, do you have any real experience doing this stuff are is it all book/classroom learning for you? many people who choose 1 exam do it because they're very familiar with one (or more) topics so they really didn't have anything to learn about that. factor that in as well...if this is all book/classroom learning for you, two exams might be the better option.
 

FormulaLS1

Member
Nov 14, 2006
541
If you have real world experience I would just take one test...

You're less likely to get hammered on 1 topic taking the single exam.
 
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Stilgar1973

New Member
Aug 12, 2006
8,340
also, do you have any real experience doing this stuff are is it all book/classroom learning for you? many people who choose 1 exam do it because they're very familiar with one (or more) topics so they really didn't have anything to learn about that. factor that in as well...if this is all book/classroom learning for you, two exams might be the better option.

I would sell a kidney for real world experience.
I have a head full of theory but no real practice.

The test itself I have under control. I have taken and passed cert tests before.... I have even failed the ICND1 already, twice.
~that was 3 years ago. A LOT has happened between now and then. ~

My main study material is 2 textbooks - CCENT/CCNA the one book is ICND1 and the other is ICND2. The books recomend that if you are going the two test route to study the first book, take the first test and then crack open the 2nd. But if you are doing one test then you jump around between the two.

When I get to something like page 150 I have to start jumping if I want to to do one test. I am trying to decide which route before that page.

I can see value in both routes. Cost isn't really an issue. That is why I asked the question, I just wanted to see if anyone had anything enlightening to say about it.
 

dorkultra

OT's resident crohns dude
OT Supporter
Oct 14, 2005
33,415
nilbog, trollhio
i went through classes for the ccna and ccnp. i never took either test. i'm 2 years out of college and i've forgotten quite a bit

i think i'm going to get my ccent, because i know i will not pass my ccna.

i'll get my A+ and Net+ first because my work will pay for them :dunno:
 

slt

OT Supporter
Sep 15, 2004
7,759
I did the year long Cisco Academy course, passed the CCNA no problem. I would much rather take it on one test than have to drive all the way out to the test center and stress out twice.
 

Vito_Corleone

New Member
Oct 12, 2003
29,355
Tampa, FL
The rule is, if you have experience with Cisco/networking, take one test. If you're just starting out, take the two tests.

Edit: If you haven't gotten the CBTNuggets, get them immediately. If not for the Nuggs, I wouldn't have any of the certs I have.
 
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Stilgar1973

New Member
Aug 12, 2006
8,340
I did the year long Cisco Academy course, passed the CCNA no problem. I would much rather take it on one test than have to drive all the way out to the test center and stress out twice.

I did the CCNA course 4 years ago. I walked into that course with only an A+. I had no experience in networking, no knowledge - nothing.

I found the course interesting and worthwhile. But I walked out of it feeling like I was really in over my head.
I kind of said to myself that while I wasn't ready for the test it might be worth my while to get ready for the test.

I got an Net+ last year. The logic was that the Net+ would teach me the basics and then when I went for the CCNA I could concentrate on the hard stuff.

So far I am still in the first 1/3 of the material, but 98% of the stuff I have encountered I have previously studied and it is refresher.

On that note....
80% of the work for one of these things is memorization. It is kind of scandalous actually. I get the cert and I kind of feel like what I have proven is that I can memorize something and then take a test for it.

Anyways.... I use flashcards for it. There is a site called Flashcard Exchange. They have publicly searchable flashcards. All mine are on that site. You only pay a fee if you want to print your flashcards or transfer them to your Iphone or Android phone (and that fee is a onetime payment of $20).

I already have A+, Net+ and Sec+. I am always willing to chat with someone about those things. Feel free to PM me.
 
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Stilgar1973

New Member
Aug 12, 2006
8,340
The rule is, if you have experience with Cisco/networking, take one test. If you're just starting out, take the two tests.

Edit: If you haven't gotten the CBTNuggets, get them immediately. If not for the Nuggs, I wouldn't have any of the certs I have.

So what certs do you have?
 

Vito_Corleone

New Member
Oct 12, 2003
29,355
Tampa, FL
CCNP
CCDP
CCIP
CCNA: Voice
CCDA
CCNA

JNCIA-ER

ITILv3: F (had to get this one for work)

I passed the CCIE written as well (about a year ago), but I'll end up having to retake it as I don't plan on taking the lab anytime soon. Working on the VP now, three exams left.
 
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Stilgar1973

New Member
Aug 12, 2006
8,340
ITILv3: F (had to get this one for work)

I passed the CCIE written as well (about a year ago), but I'll end up having to retake it as I don't plan on taking the lab anytime soon. Working on the VP now, three exams left.

I googled the ITIL thing cause I didn't recognize it at all....
oh lord. I can do these networking and computer related certs till the end of time. I mean, I see no reason to stop at the CCNA. I have already figured out that Cisco's security exam is remarkably similar to the COMPTIA security I already have, and wireless seems like it could be interesting. Something with voice in it could pay dividends... honestly, I could do this sort of exam thing for 10 years. I really wouldn't mind.

But that ITIL thing sounded like my idea of hell. It read like some highminded and superior SOB decided that HE knows the CORRECT way of documentation ... it read like a bad Dilbert strip.

OTOH... it also sounds like you go to a weekend seminar and take an exam at the end that you can't help but passing and you are done with it.
 
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Stilgar1973

New Member
Aug 12, 2006
8,340
I now have subnetting down ... cold.

Got half a mind to flip ahead to VLSM.

Know what Dexter and me have in common?
He subnets people. I subnet networks. Er, um... theoretical networks. OK. Theoretical networks on Network simulators. OK, you got me. I bought the simulator, but I haven't actually used it yet. I am hopeing to get to that next week.

The only thing I subnet is practice questions on pieces of paper. But hey, I am getting all the questions correct. That must account for something!

Damn all this theory in my head. I would give my left nut for some real world practice.
 

7960

Well-Known Member
Oct 17, 2004
60,033
New England
I now have subnetting down ... cold.

Got half a mind to flip ahead to VLSM.

Know what Dexter and me have in common?
He subnets people. I subnet networks. Er, um... theoretical networks. OK. Theoretical networks on Network simulators. OK, you got me. I bought the simulator, but I haven't actually used it yet. I am hopeing to get to that next week.

The only thing I subnet is practice questions on pieces of paper. But hey, I am getting all the questions correct. That must account for something!

Damn all this theory in my head. I would give my left nut for some real world practice.

dirty secret................... you won't do subnetting in the real world :bowrofl:
 
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Stilgar1973

New Member
Aug 12, 2006
8,340
dirty secret................... you won't do subnetting in the real world :bowrofl:

I have seen the subnetting calculators. I can read the writing on the wall.

3 years ago I failed the CCENT (test 1 of the CCNA) twice. Both times subnetting was the root of my downfall.

I need to know it for the test. Good enough for me.

BTW: bragging that I knew it cold might have been a bit early. I came across a question I need some people to look over and comment on. I am gonna start a new thread with it.
 
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Stilgar1973

New Member
Aug 12, 2006
8,340
Scratch that. Nothing like a nights sleep to resolve problems. I looked it over and I was making a simple error. I have that question figured out.

oh yea...

I know subnetting COLD.
 

Vito_Corleone

New Member
Oct 12, 2003
29,355
Tampa, FL
Honestly, I use degrees of subnetting quite a bit. At the very least, you need to know what the CIDR notation of a mask is. You also need to be able to look at a mask and know how many IPs it fits. You need to know it for summarization on the fly too.

Now I definitely don't go as deep as the Cisco exams on a daily basis, but it's an important thing to know.

And yea, the ITIL was horrible. I dig Cisco/networking certs because I'm into the material. I enjoy it. ITIL was a huge struggle for me because I couldn't care less about the shit I had to "learn". It was required for my job though, so I did it.

Also, no seminar or training provided. I grabbed some PDFs and CBTs and worked through them.
 

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