What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?

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I thought the Official CCNA Certification Guise was what I needed to
get going.

But it starts right out talking about frames and trunking, things I
don't know.

I had assumed the books were for a ground-up approach, but it seems
they're not.

What's the prerequisite?

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
Mitch@_._ wrote:
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Mitch you'll need to be a CCENT before you go for your CCNA.  I started
with this book.  Make sure you take full advantage of the CD that
contains the "binary game" and the exam engine that lets you download
exam questions.


Good luck.

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?

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Thanks!  Since posting this, I also came across someone who is sending
me their Lammle CCENT book.  She said it's pretty good, but not as
detailed as Cisco Press.  So I'll tackle both to fill in all the gaps.

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
By the way, will I be able to get a job with just the CCENT?
If so, what kind of salary could I expect?

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
I would like to know the answers to the questions in the previous post

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?

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The Official CCNA Certification Guide - is that, a guide to the
certification, as are all the certification guides. These are not books to
try to learn stuff from that you don't already know.

If you know nothing about networking at this level then start with something
like a Cisco Press Study Guide instead of a Cert Guide, or perhaps Gary
Donahue's "Network Warrior" (O'Reilly). If you are really serious you'll see
what courses a local college is offering - learning networking in a class
with a knowledgeable instructor and access to labs is much more motivating
(and fun too, if you don't enjoy learning about something why do it!).

As for what you'll earn with a CCENT, well that depends - What part of the
world do you plan to work in? What jobs requiring that entry level of
knowledge and skills are available? What can you actually do as a result of
achieving your CCENT? An employer just uses certs like any other
qualifications, to filter job applicants and as a benchmark, but it's up to
you to demonstrate your skills and knowledge.


Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?


Aubrey is right, although I've never used a study guide to get a cert,
they are certainly geared towards novices with little or no experience.
    Taking a class is better although more time consuming and costly.

I just bought the book, sat down and read it over a week, then sat the
exam and scored 987.  The (in my opinion) CCENT is a exam that covers
many topics from a very high level and is aimed at a very broad audience
from IT Sales to beginner IT Engineers.  It is an overall basic
knowledge of networking.  I wouldn't expect to get an engineering job
with a CCENT, but starting off on a helpdesk in an ISP would be more
like it.  Salary depends on where in the world you are.  In Australia I
wouldn't expect more than 40k base with no experience and only a CCENT.

I'd also suggest you hit ebay and look for some old "cheap" routers like
2500's and switches like 2950's.  Make sure they've got 16MB of flash
and DRAM and an IOS of 12.3 or later.  Build yourself a little lab that
you can play around with.  I can't stress enough how helpful the binary
game that Cisco provide on the CD is.  Master that game and you'll be in
such a better position to do well on the exams.

If you put in 8 hours a day reading, I would expect you'd be a CCENT in
no more than two weeks.  Then do the same with the CCNA...  and you're
off and running.  Do this before you start thinking about a security
course.  If you don't know about how a router works, binary math, IP
Addressing, ACLs, routing protocols, etc., you'll struggle with how to
secure a network.  You'll learn all that by the time you become a CCNA.

Good luck.

Aubrey Adams wrote:
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Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
On Sun, 22 Jun 2008 13:51:23 +0800, "Aubrey Adams"
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This course starts in August.

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
Try the library first so you can read for free - these books can get
expensive.  Cisco and networking books are around the 006 are of the Dewey
decimal system.  If you toss this advice and go buy it instead, that is your

Wendell Odom, CCIE #1624, wrote a thick Cisco press CCNA book.  It has
everything and provides configuration examples, example diagrams, straight
forward descriptions, and every topic you need to know.  I recommend Cisco
Press books for exam study and highly recommend Wendell's work.
CCNA Official Exam Certification Library (CCNA Exam 640-802), 3rd Edition
ISBN-10: 1-58720-183-6; ISBN-13: 978-1-58720-183-7; Published: Sep 4, 2007;
Copyright 2008; Dimensions 7-3/8x9-1/8; Pages: 1475; Edition: 3rd

For the CCNA exam, I suggest that you grasp the concept of everything you
hear about.  If you hear about QoS and do not know how to make it work, at
least read into it to understand what it is.  When you take the exam and the
multiple choice answer contains terminology and technology that you do not
know, you become tempted to answer with that.  Remember that the CCNA is
more about knowing about the concepts and the technologies and less about
direcly configuring the devices and the details.

Your books and study material may not be well written to cover things ground
up.  Still work with them but you will absolutely need to have an
understanding of the data on the wire, frames, and trunking.

Your assignment is to download and install Ethereal/Wireshark.  It is a
trusted "sniffer" software and is free.  Have this software run brief packet
captures and then analyze the captured data.  Try different tasks like
releasing and renewing your IP address through DHCP, sending PING to various
devices, looking up web pages, and various other daily activities.  By
looking at the packets in this software, you will more quickly gain first
hand understanding of frames, packets, frame structure, and more about how
data networking works.  The bonus is that you will not have to read boring
text and will instead just use the books for reference to understand what
you are looking at.

Scott Perry
Indianapolis, IN

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Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?

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Thanks for the reply!
I've already purchased the Cisco Press CCNA books.  I got them for $37
new, seems like a good investment.  I also purchased the Sybax Lammle
CCENT for $22.  However, the cavalier discussion of collision domains
makes me realize I have to go back even further.

There's a CCNA cirriculum at a community college that's an hour away.
I don't mind the drive since it's only 2 days/week, but I don't have 2
years.  The course that I can start taking in August are:

# CIS 140 Networking Fundamentals (4)
# CIS 145 Cisco Networking I (4)

I think these will at the very least give me some foundation to
continue on with self-study.

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
On Wed, 25 Jun 2008 13:33:24 GMT, Mitch@_._ wrote:

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the only things to watch are that this version of the book may not
help next time you want to pass an exam - although they will be fine
as references for the stuff they cover.

If you go on to do CCNP / CCDP / CCIP, then passing those (and doing
the recerts every 2 or 3 years) covers you for CCNA as well.

but my experience in the last 3 recerts is that the curriculum had
changed so much by the time recert came around that i needed updated
books for study.
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And as regards the original Q - CCENT seems to have been shoe horned
in as a precursor exam for people with no real network experience at

If you can cope with IP on PCs, SOHO routers / switches and wireless,
Ethernet cables and broadband you probably should ignore it and try

We all got by without CCENT for 10 years or more so you have to wonder
if cisco invented it to let them get more income for entry level

stephen_hope@xyzworld.com - replace xyz with ntl

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?

Stephen et all,

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The CCENT exam is simply the ICND 1 exam.  In recent years Cisco, and
networking technologies, has suffered 'scope creep'.  When I took the
CCNA in '99 it covered only a few topics.  Now the CCNA has gotten to
the point where there is just too many topics to include them all on one

Here is the Table of Contents from the ICND1 (CCENT) book with W. Odom:

C1:  Intro to Computer Networking Concepts
C2:  The TCP/IP and OSI Networking Models
C3:  Fundamentals of LANs
C4:  Fundamentals of WANs
C5:  Fundamentals of IP Addressing and Routing
C6:  Fundamentals of TCP/IP Transport, Applications and Security
C7:  Ethernet LAN Switching
C8:  Operating Cisco LAN Switches
C9:  Ethernet Switch Configuration
C10: Ethernet Switch Troubleshooting
C11: Wireless LANs
C12: IP Addressing and Subnetting
C13: Operating Cisco Routers
C14: Routing Protocol Concepts and Configuration
C15: Troubleshooting IP Routing
C16: WAN Concepts
C17: WAN Configuration

To someone who's been around the block these seem simple but if you've
got no idea the above is a hell of a lot to grasp and learn to the point
of passing a Cisco certification exam.

The ICND 2 exam (with the ICND 1/CCENT exam make up the CCNA
certification) builds on the above 10 fold and includes VLANs, STP,
VLSM, ACLs, OSPF, EIGRP, Frame Relay, VPNs, NAT and IPv6.

If Cisco were to put all of these topics on one exam with the notion
that in order to pass the exam one must be able to define,
differentiate, configure and troubleshoot them the exam would be a 3
hour event that many novices would find too daunting to tackle.

The simple fact is, a CCENT now has more networking knowledge than a
CCNA did 5 years ago and a CCNA now would out perform any CCNP qualified
in the '90s.  That is why there are multiple exams in my opinion.

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
Wow...I found out the local community college DOES have a Cisco
program.  No idea why, but the words Cisco, CCENT, CCNA, etc.  are
nowhere in their catalog or website.  But they offer all these
networking courses.

So I emailed the professor, and he replied that, yes, they are a Cisco
academy.  So I'm enrolled for the first 2 courses beginning in August
that cover CCENT, and the next 2 cover CCNA.

And they're cheap!  Great!  Plus hands-on labs with real equipment.

I'm a pig in mud.

I'm still trying to decide about the Devry program in information

Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
This is great.  You are taking classes to start your Cisco study, you are
getting transferable college credit, and normal college loans can be used
with this acredited university.  Nice plan.

Scott Perry
Indianapolis, IN

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Re: What do I study BEFORE Cisco Press CCNA cert guide?
On Thu, 26 Jun 2008 15:21:53 -0400, "Scott Perry"

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Thanks!  I floundered for a while there, but finally got into focus.

I also enrolled in the Devry program...my first course," Principles of
Information Security" starts July 7th.

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