Saturday, September 23, 2023

The Adventure to CCIE Certification, a Non-public Tale


This visitor publish was once authored by way of Cisco Designated VIP Christian Kellerer. 

In case you’re an aspiring CCIE, that attaining this prestigious certification calls for laborious paintings, self-discipline, and patience. My title is Chris Kellerer, and as a Cisco Finding out Community VIP, I’ve effectively climbed the Cisco certification mountain from backside to best. I am hoping that my tale supplies treasured perception and inspiration that will help you succeed in your personal CCIE certification targets.  

From apprentice to finding Cisco certifications 

My networking adventure started after I completed my apprenticeship in 2011, however I used to be nonetheless not sure of my long-term profession trail at that time. Then, in 2017, I discovered myself operating along a CCIE-certified contractor on a fancy networking mission.  

He patiently taught me complex networking applied sciences corresponding to NX-OS, ASA, FirePOWER, ISE, and PRIME. After sharing his personal CCIE Lab revel in, it was once the recommendation he gave subsequent that began my certification adventure.  

“In case you in point of fact wish to turn into licensed, you want the fervour for it and will have to do it step-by-step. Get started on the backside. First, get your CCNA, after which in case you’re nonetheless , do the CCNP. After all, in case you in point of fact wish to dig deep, get the CCIE.”  

That’s what began me down the trail to certification. 

Tackling the primary hurdles: CCNA and CCNP 

The usage of Cisco whitepapers and respectable E-learning lessons, I started my CCNA Routing & Switching research (now merely referred to as the CCNA) in early 2018. I finished it in simply six months. After passing the tests, I straight away dove proper into the CCNP Routing & Switching (now CCNP Endeavor) certification, finishing it by way of March 2019.  

I discovered TSHOOT to be essentially the most relaxing examination, and looking back, it felt like a teeny-tiny child model of the CCIE lab examination. Whilst passing the tests boosted my self assurance, I used to be nonetheless unsure about my profession route.  

Cisco Are living and the redesigned CCIE Certification Program 

My adventure was once now not with out its roadblocks. Regardless of my early luck with CCNA and CCNP, it was once at this level that I discovered myself caught and unsure about my profession trail. No longer simplest was once the CCIE blueprint intimidating, nevertheless it additionally felt relatively out of date from a era perspective.  

I finished learning for a couple of months. On the other hand, that every one modified when Cisco Are living 2019 introduced the readability and motivation I had to proceed. That yr, Cisco introduced the approaching of a redesigned certification program, together with the successor to the CCIE Routing & Switching: The newly named CCIE Endeavor Infrastructure (CCIE EI) observe.  

The up to date blueprint integrated conventional networking whilst additionally introducing fashionable subjects like SDx and programming/automation. That’s the instant I changed into made up our minds to take your next step and earn my CCIE.  

The CCIE lab examination: First, 2d, and 3rd makes an attempt 

My first strive on the CCIE Lab in October 2020 was once a nerve-wracking revel in. Despite the fact that I felt ready for some sides, I felt underprepared for others.  

I discovered myself suffering with the duties, going via them in an unordered collection—to not point out the massive selection of duties was once intimidating. The redesigned CCIE program added to the problem, because the new lab setting was once nonetheless in its early levels. Disenchanted in my efficiency, I gained the scoop that I had failed each modules. The failure hit me laborious, and with the lab’s uncertainty because of the pandemic, I finished learning for a number of months.  

After I restarted my research in January 2021, I used to be extra made up our minds than ever. This time, I evolved a “easy” 7-step technique for the CCIE lab examination itself: 

  1. Learn the fabric.
  2. Learn the fabric once more.
  3. Resolution the query.
  4. Learn the fabric once more.
  5. Take a look at the solution.
  6. Learn the fabric once more.
  7. Recheck the solution. 

My 2d strive in July 2021 went higher than the primary, however as I approached the two.5-hour mark within the DOO module, I panicked. I noticed I had made some errors and achieved some illogical issues which led to me to expire of time and simplest end 2/3 of the duties.  

After the second one lab, I once more knew I had failed nevertheless it was once on account of easy errors and overconfidence. But if I gained my rankings the following morning, I noticed my preparation had vastly higher my rankings this time round: I handed the DESIGN module, however nonetheless failed the DOO module.  

For my 3rd strive in September 2021, I booked the examination simply seven days after the second one check out.  

The additional preparation paid off. The DESIGN module went neatly, and I felt assured coming near the DOO module. Regardless of getting caught at one level, I driven via.  

On the very finish, with simplest 25 mins at the clock and virtually not one of the duties having been reviewed, I made a daring determination. I made up our minds to save lots of the operating configuration to the startup configuration for each instrument, ensuring they have been all in privileged EXEC mode, and used the rest time to do a minimum of a bit little bit of configuration verification. With simplest 10 seconds to spare, I hit the Finish Examination button.  

After my highest strive but, I gained the scoop by way of 5 p.m. that very same day. I had handed the examination and earned my CCIE EI certification! The adventure have been lengthy and difficult, however the setbacks simplest made the win extra gratifying.  

Lifestyles after CCIE: Embracing new alternatives and private targets 

Changing into a CCIE calls for laborious paintings, self-discipline, and patience. It wasn’t with out its demanding situations, to not point out the considerable funding of time, power, and value. With my CCIE in hand and newfound loose time, I’ve rediscovered my previous spare time activities and passions of taking part in piano… and in the end getting again to my non-public lifestyles. I’m excited to find the place my studying adventure will take me subsequent. I will be able to at all times be thankful to the CCIE contractor who offered me to the sector of Cisco certification.   

In case you’re enthusiastic about pursuing a CCIE certification your self, I invite you to learn CCIE Find out about Fabrics, Prices, and Preparation Pointers. There you’ll be able to to find my find out about guidelines, price breakdowns, and different helpful guidelines that I collected alongside my very own CCIE certification adventure. I additionally made my lab notes to be had to everybody at Whether or not you’re simply beginning out or neatly into your research, I am hoping you to find those assets useful to your pursuit of this difficult certification. Absolute best of success! 

Pay attention Christian Kellerer inform the tale of ways he changed into CCIE #65551 at the Cisco Finding out Community Podcast.

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 Learn subsequent: “What It Takes to Develop into a CCIE” by way of Yusuf Bhaiji, Director of Cisco Certifications. Learn weblog.



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