Like I said, I’m going to try and keep this page as up to date as possible with anything and everything that crosses my mind through my studies.
I managed to complete the first couple sections of my CCNP ROUTE book which covered Planning, EIGRP and OSPF more in depth than anything I’d seen in my CCNA studies. I truly understand how and why the industry is hurting for people who really do know how to plan and execute and maintain a proper network these days. There are many, many factors to be taken into account while planning and designing a network. Let alone the actual configuration and deployment! I haven’t had to ability to work on some of the systems discussed in the book, but I can truly see the power behind the protocols of today’s networks.
I did know a little bit about the variance command previous to reading and playing around with it on my lab equipment, but to bring up a 128kbps and 256kbps WAN link between two routers and issue a multiplier of 2, and actually watch the load balance happen in real time was quite the eye opener. +1 to EIGRP over OSPF for that definitely. Now if we could just do something about the draw-back of being a proprietary protocol!
Aside from that, learning about the different LSA Types being advertised in OSPF LSU’s was also interesting in and of itself. LSA Type 1 including all of the directly connected interfaces on that router and all other known routes for that area, really brought a deep understanding of how OSPF maps the topology of a single area in OSPF. Leading to the Type 3 LSA’s being advertised to other areas through the ABR and summarized(manually of course) for efficiency. Again, something I put together in my lab and brought a deeper understanding of the protocol.
Over all, I am enjoying my studies for CCNP. I plan to, time allowing, put together diagrams of everything I work on as I go. Whether is be on my personal rack of equipment or using GNS3 – though my computer doesn’t really handle it very well as it’s a bit lacking in the processor department!
I am working on giving my blog a little eye candy for the few readers that I have. You’ll notice the new theme. A freely provided theme from WordPress, as I spend too much money on lab equipment to drop the cash on a Premium template.
As a side note, at work, we actually use Alcatel-Lucent products for all of our networking needs, and all of my experiences with Cisco equipment helped me to get up to speed on what Alcatel refers to as AOS – the IOS of their equipment. I will bring more on that later, and the difficulties I can endure while studying one platform and working in a live environment on another. I find myself mish-mashing commands between the platforms, which makes for quite the show when I’m smashing my keyboard and yelling out loud – “Why is this command not working?!” – and ending up realizing I’m typing a command for the other platform.
Feel free to leave some feedback, especially those who have taken and passed the CCNP as I am open to any and all constructive criticism that can help me better myself.
Thanks for reading!