This appendix is designed to assist you in your final preparation for the most widely sought after certification in the world today, CCIE (Routing and Switching).
Today, many published books describe how to achieve CCIE, but in reality, no matter how many books you purchase, it all comes down to your level of hands-on experience. The strict nondisclosure agreement policed by Cisco ensures that candidates do not share any information about the lab content. Therefore, you'll know little about the lab content before your first attempt. In fact, the FBI has been involved in recent cases in which individuals have been jailed for selling information directly related to CCIE lab examinations.
The CCIE team has approved a sample CCIE multiprotocol lab for inclusion in this book so that you can be aware of the level of difficulty you must prepare to encounter when attempting the CCIE lab. Solutions are not provided in this book per a request from Cisco's CCIE department, so you must research the various solutions on your own.
The end goal of any CCIE lab is a working network solution. You might be restricted in the way you provide a working solution, as you will discover in this sample CCIE lab.
Candidates who prepare for the CCIE lab often ask me how to best prepare for the lab. My answer to them is to practice and configure every feature available and then practice even more. Of course, not every feature is tested, and you are encouraged to read the most up-to-date information on the Web at www.cisco.com/warp/customer/625/ccie/.
You must be able to provide a working solution quickly and adhere to the guidelines stated in the lab. A good analogy is a driving test. Imagine you are asked to drive down a 100-mile length of perfectly straight road. Imagine every 100 feet, a sign indicates a possible action you must take. The exam designer does not necessarily ask about the best solution, and you must have a broad knowledge of all IOS features to configure challenging and difficult scenarios.
The CCIE lab changed dramatically in format in October 2001 from a two-day lab to a one-day lab. A CCIE candidate is no longer required to sit through a separate troubleshooting section but must configure a network in eight hours.
One of the most critical skills in the new CCIE lab format is time management. Therefore, in this guide, each section describes the time constraints within which you should complete that section. This lab is designed to be completed within eight hours. If a section has no time allocation, that section has already been completed for you in the real CCIE lab. For example, this sample lab asks you to physically cable the network. No time allocation is provided, because in the real CCIE lab, the physical cabling is already completed for you.
This sample lab incorporates many of the technologies and concepts covered in this guide, but often at an elevated level. Because this appendix covers a sample CCIE lab, the exercises presented in this lab require a broad perspective and knowledge base and experience that goes beyond even the practical examples presented earlier in this guide.
Figures D-1 and D-2 show the topology and assignments for this sample lab.
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