Top 5 CCIE Myths Recording and Additional Q&A


Thank you so much to all that had fun in this Webinar. For those of you that missed it – here is the recording:

There was a bunch of questions that I could not get to at the end live in our time allowed (30 minutes). Here are those along with my answers as promised. If you have additional questions or concerns I can help with – use the comment area below this post! Cannot wait to meet you:

Speaking of the videos, do you have a timeline for when the last 2 series will be complete? Sure – I am finishing my EMC course on Jul 17. Then I am recording a very short course. Then starting both remaining CCIE courses (R&S). I will be focused solely on those so you will get new content each day. I will post a start date for course 5 here on the blog when I have it. I am certainly hoping to finish both CCIE courses by end of August.

Do you plan other Nuggets for CCIE R&S after the 6 courses? Keith Barker and I have actually been talking about that. There is certainly room for more Nuggets that would be focuses purely on the strategies of prep and the the exam parts!

Once you started your study program, did you ever have any setbacks and have to start back again? Oh yes indeed. Each time I failed the lab was a setback of course. Then there were personal things that always happen. I never let it sway me, however. That is the key – how you deal with setbacks and failures. Some let it crush them – others grow stronger.

i have a functioning GNS3 with IOU images. will this be enough to prep for the lab? I am glad you did not share your name – because you might be breaking the law. 🙂 I do not have such a setup, but I have heard from others that it does work for R&S lab prep with a few minor topics you cannot do. For those – I would recommend you rent gear.

How well do you handle recertifying every 2 years, especially when you have multiple CCIEs? Piece of cake for me – I love taking tests. So I am always hungry to go see a written exam. And I think when you have multiple – they all renew when you pass a single written. I hope to have that problem soon.

Should we use GNS3, cisco VIRL, or lab rentals for practice? There are pros and cons to each approach. You will have to examine and decide. For example, I love VIRL, but I have a $3,500 iMac that I run it on.

How do you retain all the knowledge that you have acquired? I forget a ton of R&S stuff, so I retain it by refreshing on it whenever possible. Of course, teaching every day really helps.

would you wait to gain 5+ years of experience before starting CCIE? No way. Start at least reading right now!

Has CBT Nuggets got videos on CCIE Security? No – but with the success of R&S – it is looking like we will consider it. Keith Barker has his CCIE Sec and I am getting it. 🙂

quick question for Anthony… any tips on equipment? Examine ALL the options and then decide what is best for you. Remember, no magic formula here.

is gns3 enough? I have heard yes – but I have not validated that myself. There is no way I want to go through the legal and other pains of trying to use IOU with that product. Not that it matters, but I think what GNS3 did to bring Layer 2 to their product is really pretty gross.

Anthony I have had 1 attempt at the CCIE and I want to try again (money depending) however work covers some many other topics should I try and study multiple subjects and just keep the CCIE in the background study or forgot the other topics and 100% CCIE study moving forward? Thoughts? Please clarify this for me in the comments below. I do not understand how you can trash the “other” topics if they are required for your work. Won’t you get fired? 🙂

Anthony, got a problem creating a balance between prepping for the CCIE and School. Got any recommendations ? Come up with a daily, weekly, and monthly plan. Sign off on it – and STICK TO IT!

What salary we can get after ccie security, if I just passed my graduation? I learned that in the USA – the salary you can expect would be between $60,000 and $173,000 with a CCIE. Since you would be a non-experience CCIE – I think you better plan on $40,000 to $60,000. I do need to make clear here that I am guessing based on my research. There are people out there that you can reach out to that specialize in job placement and they are the ones that can really answer this without guessing.

Anthony, Can you recommend a Simulator for Lab practice? I LOVE VIRL, but again, I have a powerhouse machine to run it.

What is your favorite area within networking? Security.

Hi Anthony, just curious, how long did it take for you to prepare for your first ccie? I wish I had tracked it better. Thinking back, I believe it took about 18 months.

31 thoughts on “Top 5 CCIE Myths Recording and Additional Q&A

  1. Hi Anthony,

    Sorry my question was confusing, what I was trying to say was I am currently studying for my CCIE (has been over 3 years) I have had 1 lab attempt but failed (and I know it is possible 🙂 but very HARD but that’s fine). However with in my job I don’t just do networking, I look after security, storage, VMWare, SQL, Servers and now Azure and 365. I use training a lot to help me like CBT nuggets to get me trained up as well as I can with lots of practice (labs) etc so I can do my job as best as I can. But I feel sometimes I should leave the CCIE study and study a bit more for example on the storage and get the Comptia Storage + Exam and get that under my belt as a bonus. For example I just passed my PCNSE6 exam as I am working a lot with Palo’s and have a new love for them so I had to pass the exam. But I do realize that my CCIE study is not as full on but is still on going but not as much as before I took my last lab? I wondered what your thoughts on this would be? Just stick to the CCIE training goal 100% or do other exams in between? Then go for the Lab again once ready which could be a long time away if I keep studying other subjects maybe?

    Any thoughts would be great 🙂

    Many thanks


    1. It sounds like you are 100% dedicated to passing your lab. If that is true, I would stop studying the other subjects you DO NOT have to right now. Focus on the goal you are 100% dedicated to. If you are not 100% sure that passing the lab is something you want or need to do, then I would definitely suggest you continue to study what really gets you passionate and can help you at your job. In the future, things might change and you can always jump back on the CCIE train!

  2. Hi Anthony,

    Thoughts on working at such a lofty goal with a young family (1 year old and one on the way!) ? I am currently starting my Data Center studies.

    Thank you friend!

    1. Schedule, schedule, schedule. You need to develop one and have your family agree to it and sign off on it!

  3. Anthony,

    Any way to build a serial interface on VIRL? I read that only Ethernet is available at the moment?


    1. Right – currently only Ethernet. But keep in mind – this covers almost everything we are concerned with – for what we miss – we could always supplement with a rack rental.

  4. Hi Anthony – I was watching your multicast videos on youtube (great stuff BTW and love your teaching style) and at the end of Part 6 of the video you said next video you will talk about BSR however I cannot find BSR videos. I would appreciate it if you can send me a link for BSR. Thanks a lot.

  5. Hi Anthony,
    ive being trying to figure out the best way to study for the ccie exam but not sure i have being able to strike a good balance. At the moment i watch the video/nugget and attempt the labs in the nugget/video after watching any of cbt nugget series. This seems rather time consuming as i also intend to read text books and get labs from random sources. This does not appear to offer steady progression.
    would you suggest i just read textbook, watch the video and possibly get labs to do thereafter? Also, whats option will you recommend for getting labs to be done, do you think its better one buys a lab-workbook or is there any particular site you could recommend. I would appreciate an advice on a study style that would offer steady progression

    1. I would watch the Nugget – then read, then lab. For labs – in the R&S space – there are a ton of options to discover in Google. Just make sure you get samples before you buy. When you complete the list of all topics and you feel ready to test where you are at – check out the graded labs at NetMasterClass. They even offer a pre-assessment so you can see where you are at now.

  6. So i was watching your video about libraries available in Windows 7, which i am still confused about. So i have following question,

    1.Since you said libraries are just virtual folders, so when you add
    folders/files to their corresponding library does it create
    copies of those files and take extra space of the hard drive or not
    or just create the link?

    1. No extra space. The library is just a convenient view of your stuff. So if you delete from there – you are indeed deleting the original.

  7. Hi Anthony, I’ve been studying for the CCIE R&S for a while. However, when I get to a technical interview, sometimes I sometimes have issues actually explaining and remembering the mechanisms of how the technologies work. Multicast, BGP RR and some other various topics and this is frustrating. What advice can you give me to overcome this problem. I am starting the read the books on specific technologies and to draw it out on paper to explain it.

    1. Yeah – there really is no substitute for constant review. And remember, for interview style it is not often going to get into the nitty gritty. You ca stay real high level as you describe.

      Don’t forget too, you can always ask for a little refresh in the interview on a specific technology or where it falls. Once your memory is jogged, you will probably be off and running in your explanation.

      Nuggets will continue to be targeted at 10 minutes in length. This means that you will have a very easy way (and efficient) in which to watch a Nugget from a review perspective.

    2. Hi Byron – this happens to some degree to all of us. I recommend the use of electronic flash cards that you can use to consistently refresh yourself. I use the Anki product. In fact – I am starting to make starter sets for my students in my various classes.

      Remember – it all starts to seem foundational after a while. For example, BGP. The CCIE R&S topics will seem like the foundation for you, it will be the advanced Service Provider features that you might need flash cards for after a while.

      Also – plan on reviewing Nuggets as much as you can. I know you have a subscription and that is great – you can use our site search to find Nuggets you need to quickly review.

      Let me know what I might be able to do to help.


  8. Hi Anthony, I just completed my CCNP R&S this week and I would like to start studying for the CCIE. The schools providing the CCIE training are so expensive that they even go up to 16,000$. Is it possible for me to use CBT nuggets to g=achieve my CCIE or I must attend the school trainings?

    1. You can use CBT Nuggets and hands on practice. You will need to decide what you want to do for Hands On – you can buy equipment, rent it, or emulate it.

      1. Hello Anthony, thanks a lot for the advise. I think I would prefer to emulate for now. Does CBT nuggets offer sim labs for ccie like Tshoot ?

          1. Hey Anthony just one question maybe out of CCIE certification. Which network monitoring tool can I use to measure the exact bandwidth am receiving from my ISP at my work place?

  9. Hey Anthony. I wonder if there is a solution we can use on cisco switches to completely block network scanning applications and sniffers like wireshark and My Lan Viewer from penetrating our LAN. They have become so many and have really turned out to be threats.

    1. Remember, the Cisco switch itself is a form of defense, since the user connected cannot intercept the packets of two other devices (man in the middle) for analysis. To stop these apps completely, we typically turn to host-based solutions.

      1. OK Anthony. Thanks let me try the host based solutions and see. By the way would Private vlans be effective to stop these kind of attacks?

        1. Hi Ian!

          Private VLANs further segment traffic in your environment, so technically yes. But it sounds like you want to ensure that Wireshark or something like it never runs on your hosts, and again, we typically handle this at the host. For example, with Windows 7, we could use a solution that locks down the installation of such tools. One such approach is AppLocker.

          1. Anthony in one of your cbt nuggets about multicast you used an access-list to block multicast traffic to a specific group and you used a wildcard mask of for an IP address range of i.e permit I would like to get more light on how you derived this wild card mask to start with 15.

          2. 224 in binary is 1110 0000 – here was are masking off the bits we do not care about 0 0000 – in decimal – this is 15. 0 + 1 + 2 + 4 + 8 = 15

          3. Hi Anthony,
            Am having a bit of trouble with unidirectional links. My organization is using static routing in a hub and spoke design. There are no access-lists, route-maps,prefix-lists or firewalls in between these WAN connects. But from time to time, the traffic to some of these remote sites that are stubs by design tends to be dropped out of the routing table of the hub router yet the remote routers can get to the hub router and even to the LAN of the hub router where the monitoring server is hosted. What could I do to solve this unidirectional link behavior for good?

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