I have booked my CCIE Routing and Switching v5 lab exam. So, now, the real fun starts.
It is booked for July 10th at Feltham, in the UK. It is a mobile lab, so costs $1900, which equates to around £1200. There are hotels nearby, so I plan to get there the day before – after all, who wants to travel down on the morning and risk getting caught in traffic, or late/missed trains, and losing out on both the exam attempt and £1200!
I have seven full months to get prepared for it, which should be plenty of time.
My study plan, is a mix of learning and doing – after-all, there is no better method! So the plan (at the moment, but subject to change) is as follows:
|December||DMVPN & NAT||DMVPN & NAT Labs|
|March||BGP & MPLS refresher||Revision & Labs|
|April||Multicast & QoS||Labs on both|
|May||VTP, STP, PPP||Small labs on weak areas|
|June||Services*||Medium scale labs|
|July 1st – 9th||Minor revision||Full scale labs|
|July 10th||Exam||Celebrate / commiserate|
|July 18th||Go on holiday||Have fun|
Most of my learning will be through reading, and by doing the Narbik labs.
The reading list is going to be:
Routing TCP/IP (volumes 1 & 2) by Jeff Doyle
Developing IP Multicast networks by Beau Williamson
Cisco QoS by Wendell Odom
This does mean that my planned books; Volume 3: DMVPN and NAT, and Volume 4: IGPs, will probably not be published until after the exam. Both are well under way, and will be added to as I go through, but writing a book is a long endeavour, and now I have a date for the exam I do need to work towards it, keeping my eyes on the prize, rather than letting the writing take all my time up. Besides, if I do pass then it will stop people leaving reviews saying “he’s not even a CCIE” – which is true, but to me it’s like saying “you can’t teach me to swim, you are not a fish”.
Anyway, I have a date, I have the books, I have plenty of time. Booking it has now lead to a slight increase in nerves, but also will help to focus me a lot more.
Onwards and upwards!