First and foremost, I think saying that taking the route and failing the first time should be actually fairly standard, unless you use brain dumps or study / lab from CCIE level material (and even then…).

That being said, lets get into my thoughts:

It has the same old Cisco gotchas, so always compare the output / commands shown to the question context, as they may be two completely different things. Along with that, there are the classic Cisco gotchas that you can’t hardly prepare for unless as said you brain dump / come from a STRONG routing background / study at a CCIE level for years.

Also the allotted time seems like so much at first you can cozy up in your first sim and take your time, and that is not the case – Gas pedal to the floor until your exam is being scored!! Seriously do not make this mistake, I had to skip an entire sim due to time because of this and this really set me back!


I was glad to see that got some of that terrible English sentences out of the exam, but they still find a way to make a question clearly tricky, or the answers themselves.

If you are finding it difficult to read output or answers separately, use your dry erase board to cover the lines below it, the exam room is no place to look cool.

I’ve said it before, but write done some sort of subnet shortcut you’ve learned on the dry erase board provided before beginning the exam, it helps a lot to have a quick reference when your staring at a lot of numbers you need to decipher quickly.

Verification commands are just as important to know, as these are how you find the source of an issue or a question, so be familiar with how to use them to immediately identify which router you need to look at for the answer / configuration.

Also, I’d say relax, I was so worked up and its just not as hard of an exam as you would think it to be. It’s just some questions you’ll see and mouth “wtf” at the screen, and that is why I say a first time Fail should almost be expected, and then a quick brush up on that miscellaneous knowledge they throw in there and round number two should be a Pass!

(I hope)

If you have any questions about the exam, my experience, or any pointers before you go in for your attempt please feel free to email me at my ‘about me’ page with (loopedback) in the subject line!

Exam # 2 scheduled for 6/9 in the afternoon, which is when I pass this beast and move onto the other two beasts, SWITCH and TSHOOT!