15 September 2008

8 Things To Help You Pass CCNA Exam

Many CCNA candidates don't have any clue how to prepare on the CCNA exam, and many have failed because they didn't prepare enough.
Nervous when the exam date come and failed miserably due to minor mistakes.

This is my way to prepare for the exam, in my point of view, candidates may or may not agree to me, but I passed the exam in one shot and had pretty good score (i forgot the score), I only got one false answer I think.

I don't mean to show off, but my point is anyone can get this score if you prepare properly, so here is my 6 things to help me pass CCNA exam:

It is natural to get as many resource about the exam, but too many information can seriously damage your brain. The key is to get the right resource to learn from.


Personally I like the work of Todd Lammle, he explains the topics in CCNA exam with easy ways for newbies to understand.
The problem with books is that your eyes can get tired reading them all day long, so I figure I need some other resources.


My recommendation for video tutorial is from CBT Nuggets, especially the author Jeremy Ciaora, great video series.
Sure the video is quite expensive US$ 399.00 for the CCNA Certification Package, but I'm telling you its worth the money.
In the video you can watch configuration of true Cisco devices along with the explanation, for me Jeremy Ciaora did a great job in explaining the topics.
The video is great but sometimes it doesn't cover everything about the exam, that's why you also need the books.


Browse the net, find free exam questions that you can try answering, find out how everyone did the exam, how they succeed, how they failed, this can be a very valuable lessons for you.
Visit my blog often kenyit.


You can get many free or paid Cisco Network Simulator from the internet:

Dynamips - free router simulator using command line interface (no GUI)
GNS3 - GUI version of Dynamips
Boson NetSim - paid simulator complete with labs samples
Cisco Packet - free simulator from Cisco

It is very important to get your hands on one of these simulators, you need to get yourself a hands on experience with cisco devices.
If you have more budget, build your own Cisco home lab.


As one of the readers commented on this post (thank you Robert Williams), I realized that using braindump softwares are illegal, I decided to empty the following two points:





I can't stress you enough about this, but you have to invest your time seriously to take the exam. The CCNA exam is not the kind of exam where you can cram yourself to study in the weekend and hope to pass in the following Monday.

When I talk about time, it also means that you have to practice yourself in answering questions as quick as possible, remember you have a very limited time and you can't go back to previous questions you've answered.


The d-day has come, you're nervous as hell, you can't bring anything to the exam class except for pens or pencils.
You'd be given a scrap of paper to calculate subnets or something else.

This is a good news, you do allowed to take notes on the paper when taking the exam. Before you get even more nervous, you can write down the keypoints in calculating subnets, for example 8th bit = 128, 7th bit = 64, 5th bit = 32, and so on.

This will speed your time in calculating subnets.
But remember don't write down any configuration commands because they might think you're cheating.

Why only subnets? I have to remind you that CCNA exam will test you heavily on subnetting, and in my opinion it will be the topic that is taking most of your time in the exam.

That's all I got to say right now I hope the above things can help you out. If you have any other suggestions, please kindly comment on this post.