Exam Review: 210-451 CLDFND Understanding Cisco Cloud Fundamentals

That’s right – it is the first of two exams required for the exciting new Cisco CCNA Cloud Certification! Please note that I am writing this review on 11/5/2015, so please consider that if you are reading this post considerably after that date. Cisco has a tendency to change exam details and content periodically. Your mileage may vary 🙂


You are given 90 minutes for this exam and you can expect about 60 questions. You will have plenty of time to finish if you know your stuff. There are no sims or simlets of any kind to slow you down.

The required passing score is a but on the high side, so please, really know your stuff! You can expect a required passing score of about 890! That is higher than I can remember seeing in a long time.

Your score report, pass or fail, will show your performance in the following five areas:

  • Cloud Characteristics and Models
  • Cloud Deployment
  • Basic Knowledge of Cloud Compute
  • Basic Knowledge of Cloud Networking
  • Basic Knowledge of Cloud Storage

This exam is pretty fair. The only issue comes with some of the questions in the last three areas of compute, cloud networking, and cloud storage. You see,  they state it is a “basic” knowledge that you need. The problem becomes when some of the questions that slip in here are pretty advanced and detailed. The great news is, you can best guess these and have enough questions that are well within scope in order to afford these guesses. If you are a student of my CBT Nuggets course on this subject, you will find I cover all questions in my Nuggets and accompanying Flash Cards. If you are studying on your own, I highly recommend you make your own flash cards as you go through the materials.

Here are some tips:

  • Use the blueprint as you study – all questions do indeed tie back directly to specific bullets and sub-bullets of the blueprint
  • Know the many, many parts that make up the Cisco InterCloud Fabric very well
  • Know the Admin tab of the UCS Manager well – focus on RBAC capabilities there, for example
  • Really study up on the details of the Cisco 1000V, things like the VSM, VEM, and vPath technologies are really important
  • Know your storage options really well, this includes NAS (CIFS, NFS) and SAN (SCSI, iSCSI, FC, and FCoE (including FIP))

Exam Accuracy: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Exam Difficulty: 4 out of 5 stars (due to high cut score)

Time Pressure: Low

Have fun studying these super important, and super interesting topics!

20 thoughts on “Exam Review: 210-451 CLDFND Understanding Cisco Cloud Fundamentals

  1. Wow, the only other exam I can think of that has that high of a score requirement is CCNA Security (which I found to be disappointing with its emphasis on the nearly unused Cisco Configuration Professional).

    Thanks for the write-up.

    1. Yeah – I am looking forward to taking the NEW and hopefully improved CCNA Security. I will be sure to do a full write up of that exam as well.

  2. Really looking forward to this in 2016. Would you recommend focusing on the CCNA Data Center first before diving in to the CCNA Cloud?

    I’ve been looking into SDN material now for the past couple months and am trying to figure out a “plan of action” to begin my studies.

    Right now I’m focusing on Linux+ and trying to learn open source switching.

    Great post!

    1. I would recommend CCNA Cloud first – then CCNA Data Center. Cloud acts as a perfect primer! Keep up the awesome work Brian.

  3. Nice write-up Anthony. I’m sure anyone following your course will do great on the exam, like I did with CCNA DC.

    I’ll be looking out for your write up on CCNA Security exam. It’s on my list. The Cyber Security specialist exam is also on my list, but so far only the On-site training companies have courses for this

  4. I just failed the CLDFND. I think the test is unfair in that it goes much deeper then “fundamentals” on the syllabus… describe and identity… asking deeper lowerlevel questions that seem to come out of the blue that is not consistent with how the syllabus is presented. And its not clear where to get that detail that they pull out of the blue – its like a crap shoot. I am willing to spend the time studying and learn the material but at least present the material in the courses. I have been in networking for many years, listened to 7 hours Gustav’s videos 5 times over and thought i was prepared for the “fundamentals” when i saw the first question i was like – o boy. I don’t think the folks who wrote the test questions are the same folks that wrote the curriculum or course material. They pulled detail questions out of the blue. Very annoying and unfair in my book (cost me $250). And there is a $500 self paced course that looks like it will hit the same high level stuff i already have so leery to purchase it. I plan on listening to your nuggets as well but given the length of the modules i doubt it will hit the trivia questions…. Venting. I see your suggestions above and they are good advice.. any other magic ways to guess what trivia Cisco will pull out of the hat on a “wide breadth fundamental” course would be greatly appreciated. Going wide and deep is tough. The test writers need to read the syllabus and understand the intent and breadth of the “FUNDAMENTALS” course and delete the cheap shots. IMHO

    1. I tried to address the trivia with my flash cards and other NuggetLab file materials. I sure hope Cisco starts to correct their written exams, because many are starting to suffer this fate.

      1. Thanks for empathizing with my frustration. So where are the flash cards? I am a basic member of CBT Nuggets and have access to your video nuggets but where are the flash cards please. How do i get access to them or where are they located on cbtnuggets.com? Thanks man!!!

        1. Your basic membership gives you access! They are over to the right under my picture when you are on your course page. There is a link to download the zip.

    2. I had the same experience multiple times. There are questions that are out of the blue and NOWHERE in the blueprint. How are we supposed to pass tests if we don’t even know what to prepare for?

      1. I think the idea is – you know the stuff COLD they have us prepare. Then you get enough questions correct to pass and you can safely guess at the crazy stuff. There are ALWAYS weird questions. SIGH. This is why I NEVER score 100% on ICND1 even though I take it every year and know the material cold.

  5. I’ve failed the test twice now. I’ve read all I could between the actual: CCNA Cloud CLDFND 210-451.pdf(book) plus numerous prep-mock exams.

    These questions are CRAP. For example, one regarding “Snapmirror” is completely out of scope for this exam. That term isn’t in the pdf/book or defined.

    This entire test for 210-451 needs to be revamped. Does anyone have a link where we can provide feedback? Any news or updates found yet?

    1. Yeah – this track is a bit of a mess as it is still their version 1. I was so disappointed I did not even create the second course for CCNA Cloud at CBT Nuggets. This track is due for a refresh this year – I will be sure to ask around about it at Cisco Live this week and post on the blog anything that I learn.

      1. Thanks Anthony, I’m curious when they plan to release (update to 210-451) and how do we all get notice?

        The 210-455 (CLDADM) by far was easier than the 451, mainly due to staying on topic and within the material pdf/book. Yes I took them out of order. Kinda glad I did now.

  6. this exams questions are too vague and speculative and did not provide good enough information to make descisions they are seeking

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