Microsoft or Cisco Certs?

We sometimes get asked, "What's the difference between Microsoft and Cisco certifications?"

To quickly summarize:

Microsoft certifications are about managing computers and servers, working with operating systems, potentially opening the boxes and working with hardware, and definitely a lot of application and other software installation, troubleshooting, and upgrading. There are some major specializations, such as Exchange, SQL Server, or SharePoint.

Cisco certifications are networking-based, that's subnetting, routing, switching, working with networking devices and managing traffic. The focus isn't on servers or end-users, but on the underlying networks and the technologies that make data flow over the wire. You'll also see things like voice, wireless, and storage networking, which are all fairly specialized. All of the fundamentals of routing and switching are covered in the CCNA certification.

How to Setup Your CCNA Lab

We often get asked the question "How do I set up my CCNA lab?".

Your CCNA lab setup will change depending what exercises you are working on.

For example: If you are building an EIGRP lab, you will need a completely different configuration to a lab designed for Router-On-A-Stick.

Luckily our CCNA Bootcamp explains all the kit you will require in your CCNA lab, and during the course you will discover how to setup your lab for certain exercises.

Getting hands-on lab practice is important, but sometimes it isn't practical to build your own lab, so we will explain alternatives you can use such as lab simulators.

You'll learn about the different cable types, connectors and devices, how to connect and configure them, and then how to troubleshoot the setup. You will also learn all the syllabus required to take and pass the Cisco CCNA exam.

So what are you waiting for? Enroll in our online CCNA Bootcamp today and begin your journey into the world of computer networking.

If you are unsure about the CCNA or you want to try our training course enter your name and email address on our homepage to begin your free trial.

See you in class soon!

Do you Offer a CCENT Boot Camp?

We get this question a lot, so we thought we would clear up the concerns some people have before deciding to enroll.

Most people who set out to get a Cisco certification aim to get their CCNA, as this is the most popular Cisco certification. This is why our course focuses on the CCNA.
While the CCENT is a certification in it's own right, many students use the CCENT as a stepping stone to the CCNA certification.

Our online CCNA Success Bootcamp covers both the CCENT and the CCNA certifications.
So you can pursue the CCENT first should you choose, but you could equally study for the CCNA all in one go.

All the training materials on our website are categorized into CCENT and CCNA for your convenience.

To begin your free trial of our online CCNA Success Bootcamp simply enter your name and email on our homepage.

Do I Need Equipment for CCNA Course?

While you could attempt to pass the CCNA exam without any practice configuring and troubleshooting labs, we do not advise it. The CCNA is not an easy exam, especially if you are unprepared.

The CCNA syllabus covers a lot of practical skills along side the theory behind it, and the exam is designed to test your knowledge of this.

There are different ways you can get this practical experience, and we've put together a video explaining your options.

The video is part of the free trial of our online CCNA Success Bootcamp. To begin your free trial simply submit your name and email on our homepage.

Do you Offer Training in my Area?

We often get asked the question "Do you offer classroom training in my area?"

Unfortunately we only offer online training courses. This helps keep our costs down and enables us to keep the training fees low for you.

Some people prefer working from home at their own pace, while other people like to study with other students and be have direct access to an instructor.

You should be able to find training companies offering CCNA training in your local area, but I guarantee they will be far more expensive than a distance learning course such as our online CCNA Bootcamp.

Decide what is best for you, and if you have any questions regarding our CCNA Bootcamp training, please contact us.

What Happens if I Fail my CCNA?

We recently received this email from one of our students after they failed their first attempt at the CCNA exam.

Hi Nik

unfortunately I failed my first attempt, though I purchased your cheat sheet.

but I'm not blaming anyone either than myself. I could not get my trouble shooting commands right and the time seemed to fly.

I will be very grateful  if you can assist me with my exam on the 19th july 2013



We wanted to share our advice to Anthony with our other CCNA students, because the CCNA is a hard exam and many people fail first time.

Hi Anthony,

I'm sorry to hear you didn't succeed at your first attempt, but don't worry because many people do, you are not alone.

Sadly just like the exams at school and college you need to learn how to take the test to some extent.

Even if you know all the theory and IOS commands etc you need to be familiar with the test format, and if you don't plan your time wisely you can quickly find yourself rushing to complete the test.

It sounds like you've already booked your next exam, this is excellent, if you don't do this quickly you'll start to forget all your training.

Remember the proverb:

"If at first you don't succeed, try, try again"

Take a piece of paper and write down all the areas of the exam you struggled in. Work on these topics continuously right up to your next exam. Try to turn these weaknesses into strengths.

Next time you sit the exam you'll be more relaxed, more self-confident and much more likely to pass the exam.

Good luck!


Note: The student who wrote this email wishes to remain anonymous so the names have been changed.

Failed CCNA because of Subnetting?

Occasionally we get an email at Internetwork Training HQ that reads something like this...

"I just failed my ccna exam today. I'm weak at subnetting and these questions cost me the exam! Can you help??"

Our advice is, don't walk into the CCNA exam without being prepared! Subnetting is a vital skill to the network engineer and you WILL be tested on it, so make sure you understand how to subnet before you take your CCNA exam.

You need to be able to solve subnetting problems quickly under test conditions, that means no calculators or subnetting tools!

If you are struggling with subnetting, we have a great subnetting eBook that you can purchase. It comes included with our popular CCNA cheat sheet, and has plenty of examples to help you learn.

Click here to purchase the CCNA cheat sheet and subnetting eBooks.

Why a Career in Networking?

Here at Internetwork Training HQ, We often get asked why students should pursue a career in networking?

If you are a technology-minded individual who enjoys using computers and the internet, you will probably find networking a rewarding career choice.

Networking is a vital tool in information technology, without it we would not be able to connect devices together to share and communicate, we also would not have the internet! This would be like computing was in the 1970's and 1980's!

There are many jobs you can do with a networking certification such as the Cisco CCNA, many of which may also lead to management or other senior roles in IT should you be interested later in your career.

Once you get into networking and have a few years experience you can then specialize in an area of networking, such as VoIP, security or wireless, this will give you more sought after skills that will earn you higher incomes in the marketplace.

To see the variety of jobs you can do with a CCNA certification, plus the kinds of salaries for jobs in your local area please check out our CCNA job board.

What is ICND?

What is ICND?

ICND is the acronym for "Interconnecting Cisco Network Devices" which refers to a set of IT exams issued by Cisco Systems.

There are two Cisco exams called ICND1 and ICND2 which are geared towards achieving the CCNA "Cisco Certified Network Associate" certification.

When you pass the ICND1 you become CCENT "Cisco Certified Entry Networking Technician" certified, this is Cisco's entry-level computer networking certification.

You then go on to study the ICND2 syllabus, which will earn you the CCNA cert when you pass the ICND2 exam.


You could study the whole CCNA syllabus and take one composite CCNA exam.

To help you decide which pathway is best for you read our blog post "CCNA or CCENT".

(Image courtesy of James Almond)