CCIE Pursuit Blog

May 29, 2009

CCIE Routing and Switching ‘Ask the Expert’ Currently Active

Filed under: Cisco,Cisco Certification — cciepursuit @ 9:20 am
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As I mentioned earlier, Maurilio Gorito is hosting an “Ask The Expert” session on the CCIE Routing and Switching exam.  The session started on 26 May and will run until 05 June.  There are already quite a few good topics being discussed.  Here are some of the interesting bits [NOTE: the comments below are the result of my combining multiple answers (all by Maurilio) on specific topics]:

About CCIE 4.0 changes:
The main changes on the new CCIE R&S v4.0 certifications standards are:
1. The addition of MPLS/VPN, EIGRPv6 and the emphasis on troubleshooting.
2. The addition of a separated 2 hours troubleshooting section to the exam.

We did not remove any topics from the syllabus and we will cover the certification standards (aka blueprint) through 3 sections:
1. Open Ended Questions: up to 30 minutes.
2. Troubleshooting: up to 2 hours.
3. Configuration: up to 5 1/2 hours.

You can find more detailed information on the CCIE R&S v4.0 at

Yes, the v3.0 lab exam has about 36 to 40 questions.
The configuration section on v4.0 will have something around 25 to 30 questions on 5.5 hours.

About the new Troubleshooting section in the upcoming CCIE 4.0 lab:
The Troubleshooting section will be independent from the Configuration section, i.e., it will be presented on a different scenario.
Once you finish the Troubleshooting you will move to the Configuration section that will be presented on a new scenario or topology.

The Troubleshooting section will have a maximum of 2 hours. The candidate will be presented a series of questions or ‘trouble tickets’ for a given scenario or topology. The referred topology will pre-configured.
Based on the information provided such as IP addressing diagrams, IGP routing diagrams, and so on you will work to identify and fix the issues. You will be given points for working scenarios.

The Troubleshooting section will have a certain number of trouble tickets and points allocated to the section. You will receive credits for the points you get. Your score on this section will show as, 30%, or 50%, or 80%, and so on.
You will need to get a minimum of 80% on each section of the exam to pass on the CCIE lab exam.
Yes, we are planning to post a sample Troubleshooting questions/trouble ticket for study reference.

About the Core Knowledge Questions:
The only available tool during the Core Knowledge section is the Notepad. No calculator is available.

One good way to prepare for the Core Knowledge questions is along with your preparation to the lab exam where you will be applying the overall concepts during your hands-on practice studying.
During that section you will be asked concept questions about technologies that are listed on the lab exam blueprint so while you are preparing to take the lab exam you are implementing all those concepts and then you will be well prepared for that.
You may find questions the will have an output command and / or a topology for your interpretation, but not memorization questions such RFC numbers.

The candidate will be graded only at the end of the day so even if the candidate fails in one of the sections he or she still going through all three sections.
There will be a big concern on integrity of the exams as all three sections are totally independent, per example the scenario or topology presented on the Troubleshooting section will be different from the configuration section.

About the lab environment:
The SecureCRT we are using is v3.0 and there is no plan of upgrading or change it at the moment.

If you have a question concerning any aspect of the CCIE lab be sure to surf on over and post it for Maurilio to answer.


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