CCNA Exam Changes from Oct 2013

Cisco have just announced that they will be retiring the current version of CCNA and CCENT/ICND2 exams at the end of September 2013.  Read the full press release over on the Cisco website.

The new exams will be A LOT harder than the current versions, and this means you only have until 30th September 2013 to study and pass your CCNA before the exam syllabus changes, your CCNA certification will then last you 3 years as usual.

Here are a few things that will be included in the new exam...

  • IOS v15 commands
  • IPv6 configuration
  • 802.1x security
  • Advanced troubleshooting scenarios

Devices that run Cisco IOS v15 are very expensive at the moment so setting up a home lab probably won't be an option from October 2013 until the foreseeable future.

Also, no study guides or study materials will exist for the new exams for quite a while yet, so if you've been thinking about getting your CCNA, this is really your LAST OPPORTUNITY before things become a whole lot harder and more expensive for you. 

Over the next few weeks and months we will be updating our training ready for the new exam, but we strongly advise you to begin your CCNA studies as soon as possible.

CCNA Exam Advice

Our latest CCNA graduate, Michael Tyler from Ontario, used our website to cram for his CCNA exam after enrolling in Cisco's Networking Academy at a local college. We asked him a few questions about his experience that we get asked all the time here at Internetwork Training HQ.


1.) A lot of people never know if they are ready to sit the exam, what advice would you give them?
You only get out what you put in. I'm 42 years old and it has taken me over one year studying in class. It's a lot of work but it's worth it.
I did a lot of practice tests online for free, I went over them again and again, I also played the commands in my mind over and over.
I have been told, and it's true, you will know when you are ready, you'll have that feeling when it happens and it's good.

2.) Revising for the CCNA exam can be daunting due to the amount of knowledge you need to be able to recall, how did you overcome this?
Keep going back to old labs and re-doing them. Practice, practice, practice, if you realy want this you can make it happen.

3.) What kept you motivated towards your goal of becoming CCNA certified?

My job. I don't work in IT just yet, I'm a die polisher and there is no moving up or moving on unless I make something happen and I like networking.

4.) How did you ensure you had studied enough on specific topics?
Be honest, the practice tests will give you a good idea of where to study more. Try to explain to a friend the process of what your doing at the time, by teaching someone else you will reinforce the information you know. You can not do enough sub-netting practice.

5.) What methods did you use to study for the CCNA?
I enrolled in the Cisco Networking Academy at Humber College in Toronto, so I studied in class and online and with the Cisco Press books ICND1 and ICND2. I created a home lab with two switches at layer 2 and two layer 3 switches and five routers, one being a frame relay router.

6.) If you were to begin studying again, what would you do differently?
I would not go through the Cisco Networking Academy. This was not because of the course itself, but because the course teachers and pricing changed during the course which had a detrimental effect.

7.) What difference did our site have on your overall success?
The practice tests, flash cards and videos were indispensable.

Michael Tyler
CCNA Certified Engineer
Brampton Ontario, Canada

Tips From Our Latest CCENT Success

"There really is nothing like seeing your name on something you worked hard to achieve" ~ Kyle Kuhn

We asked our latest CCENT certified student, Kyle Kuhn about his studies, the ICND1 exam, and any tips he could provide to fellow CCENT and CCNA students.


1.) What books and materials did you read or use to study?

"In order to pass my ICND1 exam I used Todd Lammle's CCENT Cisco Certified Entry Networking Technician Study Guide as my only printed book. I read this book cover to cover and used it as my primary source of information. It's dry and boring material with many typos but Todd does a great job of getting the information across. His book has many multiple choice sample questions that to my surprise, mimicked the ICND1 questions very closely."

Aside from the printed book I also utilized many different online resources. My goal was to pass the ICND1 for the price of a book and exam cost. I did quite a bit of searching to find as many resources as possible.

2.) What do you think helped you pass?

"Two things helped me by FAR the most:"

  1. Motivation: You will not pass if you cannot be disciplined and study. Working full time and studying wore me down. This was not easy for me, and without staying motivated I would have failed.
  2. Practice tests: Take as many as you can. Take a test until you consistently score 95%+, then move on to another one. The questions on your site were a god send. I recommend taking the Mixed Topic 50 question test until you can get your certificate at least 3x in a row. I used about 4 different sites for practice test questions and all of them had some new question I had not been asked before. Take as many tests as you can, and then take them again.

3.) If you were to give some tips to a friend what would you tell them?

"I would recommend enrolling in a class if you have the time and money. Computer books are dry and I was easily distracted. Having someone speak to you would make a world of difference."

"Make sure you find the quickest method of subnetting that works for you. Preferably be able to subnet in your head. I developed a method that worked best for me using my fingers as the 8 bits. This method cut my subnetting question time down significantly and I feel it was very helpful to me. I'm sure there are guides out there on some type of a fingering method if you search. I plan to place a video guide on Youtube at some point showing my version if there's not already a good video." 

4.) How did you find the CCENT exam? Was it hard, or was it as you expected?

"For me staying calm and keeping a clear head was actually harder than the exam. I failed my first attempt by 1 question and was devastated. I recommend leaving yourself double the amount of time you think it will take to get to the testing center. Believe me, if you can't find your exam center because it's buried deep inside a college campus and spend an hour wandering the campus stressing before hand, you will go into the test flustered and fail. My second attempt I came in 5 days later, cool, calm, and collected and very nearly aced it. I was shocked that it had been possible for me to fail the test previously because the exam seemed too easy. Also, ask the moderators for a pair of ear pugs before starting the test. The campus was doing construction work on my first try and you would be amazed how hard it is to concentrate with a jack hammer going outside your window. It took about 20 minutes before the moderators brought us all a pair."

5.) Do you think getting the CCENT was worth it?

"I can't answer this question yet because I only took the CCENT with the intent of using it as a stepping-stone towards my CCNA.  Right now I am working full time as a County Deputy in a Sheriff's office and love my job. I decided to get my CCNA because I took a CCNA class in high school and never pursued it. It always bothered me that I chose not to become certified and I wanted "revenge" if you will. I plan to find a part time job after I am certified, and possibly change careers or keep the CCNA active as a backup plan."

Please keep up the good work because I will be using the site very much again in the near future.

Kyle Kuhn
CCENT Certified Network Engineer

CCENT Video Training Boot Camp

We offer an online CCNA video course that contains all the training and exam preparation materials you need to study for the CCNA exam, however some students prefer to take the two exam pathway to gain their CCNA certification. This involves studying and passing the ICND1 and ICND2 exams. When you pass the ICND1 exam you become CCENT certified, this allows you to study for the ICND2 exam which will make you CCNA certified.

While our CCNA Bootcamp is designed to train you up to the CCNA level you can also use it to train for the ICND1 (CCENT) and ICND2 exams, enroll in the course and watch the appropriate videos of our course below.

CCENT (ICND1)

1.    Introduction to Networking
2.    Five Ways to Learn Cisco IOS
3.    How to Build a CCNA Lab
4.    The OSI Model
5.    The TCP/IP Model
6.    Binary and Hexadecimal
7.    Local Area Networks (LANs)
8.    Introduction to Wide Area Networks (WANs)
9.    The Cisco Hierarchical Model
10.    Cisco Hardware and Software
11.    TCP/IP Protocols
12.    IP Addressing
13.    Subnetting
15.    Introduction to Switching
16.    Layer 2 Switching
20.    Routing
21.    Routing Information Protocol (RIP)
24.    Wireless LAN (WLAN)
25.    Introduction to Network Security
33.    Router Troubleshooting

CCNA (ICND2)

14.    IP Version 6
17.    Virtual LANs (VLANs)
18.    The Spanning Tree Protocol
19.    Voice Over IP (VoIP)
22.    Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol (EIGRP)
23.    Open Shortest Path First (OSPF)
26.    IP Access Lists
27.    Network Address Translation (NAT)
28.    Virtual Private Networks (VPN)
29.    WAN Basics
30.    High-Level Data Link Control (HDLC)
31.    Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP)
32.    Frame Relay ...[34 minutes]
34.    How to Install a TFTP Server
35.    How to Upgrade Cisco IOS
36.    Terminating RJ45 Ethernet Cables

Enroll or request a demo of our CCNA Video Training Bootcamp.

Internetwork Training Voucher Coupon

Half price voucher code

Enroll in our online CCNA Success Bootcamp today and get the whole course for HALF the usual price with this special voucher code.

The material has been fully updated to cover the new CCNA and ICND1 & ICND2 syllabuses.

You'll get over 12½ hours of video training, 30 lab walkthroughs, 13 interactive quizzes, 750 practice questions, 300 flash cards, an online router simulator, plus a CCNA cheat sheet and subnetting eBook.

To be sure of getting this offer you need to act quickly as we close the doors each month as soon as the spaces fill up.

Visit our promotional page and enter the voucher code:

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Make a decision to improve your career prospects today and get CCNA certified the easy way for half price.

CCNA or CCNP?

Both the CCNA and CCNP are part of Cisco Systems IT certification program.

There are five levels of certifications in Cisco's certification program. They start with the entry-level CCENT and progress through to the associate-level CCNA, professional-level CCNP, expert-level CCIE and finish with the Cisco Certified Architect.  The Cisco Certified Architect it is the highest level of accreditation achievable within the Cisco certification program.


There are also more specialized certifications such as the CCNA Voice, CCNP Voice, CCNA Wireless, CCDP, CCIE Security. The diagram above only shows the most common Cisco certifications at each level.

In order to begin studying for a professional-level certification such as the CCNP you need to pass the CCNA exam first, however you don't need to get the CCENT certification to take the CCNA exam. Read more about the CCENT and CCNA.

CCNA Syllabus

The CCNA syllabus is comprised of both the ICND1 (CCENT) syllabus and the ICND2 syllabus.

These are the topics you will need to master to pass Cisco's CCNA exam.

To learn the all the theory and configurations required to pass the CCNA exam, enroll in our online CCNA video bootcamp.

You will enjoy learning by watching videos, playing games, configuring Cisco equipment in your own lab.

When you're ready to take the exam, you can use our extensive suite of CCNA practice questions, flashcards and cheatsheet revision notes to ensure you pass first time!

Try our online CCNA video training today!

CCENT or CCNA?

CCENT stands for Cisco Certified Entry level Network Technician.  Cisco launched the CCENT is 2008 to help make gaining a networking certification easier.  Before the CCENT existed the CCNA was Cisco’s entry level qualification.

As a networking student, you now have two routes to gaining the popular CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate) certification.  You can either take one exam or take two exams (ICND1 and ICND2).  When you pass the ICND1 you get the CCENT certification, then when you pass the second exam (ICND2) you will be CCNA certified.

Certification Exams
CCENT Pass one exam - ICND1
CCNA

Two options:
Pass one CCNA exam or pass ICND1 and ICND2 exam

Each ICND exam is approximately half the CCNA syllabus giving you the time and flexibility to gain a certification (CCENT) and learn the subject matter in more depth while working towards your CCNA.

If you are fairly new to networking it would be preferable to take earn the CCENT certification first (by taking the ICND1 exam) rather than trying to learn all the knowledge required to pass the CCNA in one go.    On the other hand if you have been working in IT for some time and already have a good understanding of networking you may prefer to take the CCNA exam straight away.  Take a look at the pros and cons of obtaining your CCNA via the CCENT route below.

Pros and Cons for CCENT

 

Pros Cons
Less to study and memorise You will pay for two exams (ICND1 and 2)
Less pressure/commitment on yourself Takes longer to pass the CCNA
Learn the subjects in more depth CCENT is not as well known as CCNA
Get a CCENT qualification when you pass You won’t be able to apply for CCNA jobs
  Your knowledge will be tested to a greater depth over two exams because its roughly twice as many questions than CCNA exam