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CCENT is really good cert for starters

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by LukeP, Jun 9, 2009.

  1. LukeP

    LukeP Gigabyte Poster

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    I would like to recommend CCENT as a really good cert for people trying to convert home computer hobby into a career. I haven't seen it before but in last two days (2 first days of my new job), I have used knowledge learned from Sybex book (this one) while preparing for CCENT.

    This book is also easy and fun to read. I would strongly recommend it to anyone who wants to get the bigger picture of networking in general. It makes corporate network infrastructure you will get to work on a lot easier to understand.

    -Luke
     
    WIP: Uhmm... not sure
  2. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    It's great for gaining knowledge... the problem is, companies aren't going to let someone without experience mess around with Cisco gear. In truth, the CCENT is NOT an entry-level certification, despite it's poorly chosen name. The Network+ is much, much more relevant for people who are just starting out in IT.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  3. LukeP

    LukeP Gigabyte Poster

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    If you skip Cisco parts of this book it's even better. It explains how devices communicate in general. Also by converting a computer hobby to a career I meant a person who knows this and that but hasn't worked in IT before (as in wasn't getting paid to do stuff)

    I personally found Mike Meyers All-in-One N+ book boring so much I gave up on N+ at all. Will do 70-290 instead.

    edit: Than again you can read the book and skip the cert. But cert is always a cert :D
     
    WIP: Uhmm... not sure
  4. danielno8

    danielno8 Gigabyte Poster

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    It seems entry level to me, not so much IT in general, but entry-level networking.
     
    Certifications: CCENT, CCNA
    WIP: CCNP
  5. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    "Entry-level networking" is making sure wire A is plugged into port B... basic IP addressing... stuff like that - all of which i s covered by Network+. The CCENT is what you do when you start working with Cisco gear... which is nowhere near entry level for 99.9% of the techs out there.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  6. danielno8

    danielno8 Gigabyte Poster

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    •Describe the purpose and functions of various network devices
    •Select the components required to meet a given network specification
    •Use the OSI and TCP/IP models and their associated protocols to explain how data flows in a network
    •Describe common networking applications including web applications
    •Describe the purpose and basic operation of the protocols in the OSI and TCP models
    •Describe the impact of applications (Voice Over IP and Video Over IP) on a network
    •Interpret network diagrams
    •Determine the path between two hosts across a network
    •Describe the components required for network and Internet communications
    •Identify and correct common network problems at layers 1, 2, 3 and 7 using a layered model approach
    •Differentiate between LAN/WAN operation and features


    Implement a small switched network
    •Select the appropriate media, cables, ports, and connectors to connect switches to other network devices and hosts
    •Explain the technology and media access control method for Ethernet technologies
    •Explain network segmentation and basic traffic management concepts
    •Explain the operation of Cisco switches and basic switching concepts
    •Perform, save and verify initial switch configuration tasks including remote access management
    •Verify network status and switch operation using basic utilities (including: ping, traceroute,telnet,SSH,arp, ipconfig), SHOW & DEBUG commands
    •Implement and verify basic security for a switch (port security, deactivate ports)
    •Identify, prescribe, and resolve common switched network media issues, configuration issues, autonegotiation, and switch hardware failures


    Implement an IP addressing scheme and IP services to meet network requirements for a small branch office

    •Describe the need and role of addressing in a network
    " Create and apply an addressing scheme to a network
    •Assign and verify valid IP addresses to hosts, servers, and networking devices in a LAN environment
    •Explain the basic uses and operation of NAT in a small network connecting to one ISP
    •Describe and verify DNS operation
    •Describe the operation and benefits of using private and public IP addressing
    •Enable NAT for a small network with a single ISP and connection using SDM and verify operation using CLI and ping
    •Configure, verify and troubleshoot DHCP and DNS operation on a router.(including: CLI/SDM)
    •Implement static and dynamic addressing services for hosts in a LAN environment
    •Identify and correct IP addressing issues



    Very little of that, which is around half the cert is focussed on Cisco though??
     
    Certifications: CCENT, CCNA
    WIP: CCNP
  7. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    And the portion that which ISN'T focused entirely on Cisco devices is covered by Network+. So why would an entry-level tech need the CCENT for an entry-level networking job??

    Sure, an entry-level tech MIGHT troubleshoot DHCP and DNS... but not as it relates to Cisco routers... or even as it relates to servers. At best, they'll troubleshoot DHCP and DNS problems that relate to client connectivity.

    Sure, ping, traceroute, and arp are helpful to know... but entry-level techs aren't going to issue those commands on Cisco devices - and that's what the CCENT tests on... not client-based versions of those commands.

    Entry-level techs aren't generally going to need to mess with NAT. That's typically implemented at the server or network level.

    Entry-level techs aren't going to need to know how to configure routers or switches, upgrade firmware on a Cisco device, save configurations, or do any show or debug commands.

    By all means, continue to look at the objectives and state that entry-level techs need to know that info. But as someone who has taken the CCENT (as well as written 180 practice exam questions and explanations that cover what you need to know to pass it), I can definitively state that the overwhelming majority of questions on the CCENT exam relate to how those functions are used on Cisco devices... not how they relate to generic, entry-level, day-to-day network troubleshooting.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  8. LukeP

    LukeP Gigabyte Poster

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    I am familiar with N+ material and I think there's plenty of obsolete stuff which I belive I will never see again in production. CCENT is a lot smaller to pass and I belive is more spot on than N+. That's my personal opinion.

    CCENT explains how ping works and not only what it does.

    Don't want to argue, but I think I am entry-level tech and you're not. And I had the opportunity to show myself and do something. Material that came to mind was from CCENT despite I read N+ book after I passed CCENT.
    I just see it as more relevant material for corporate style networking despite it being a Cisco cert.

    I agree that N+ is better for people who had little or nothing to do with networks in general. I am an entry-level tech at the moment but I've been doing various thing using computers for ages. My post was addressed towards people who know what they do but they don't work in IT yet.

    I have also noticed relatively more IT Technician, Junior something and Trainee something jobs lately than usual 1st line helpdesk positions. In technician job you will probably be exposed to nearly all IT infrastructure of small company with little or no access to it. However it's handy to know how it works when you look at the server rack.
     
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  9. Sparky
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    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    I think this really depends on your job role to be honest. I had a call from a new customer today that needed help with their Windows NT server! Also a few weeks ago I migrated a network using IPX/SPX to TCP/IP.

    All very old technology but still in production environments today.
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  10. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Then you either have no idea of what's out there in other networks, or you aren't as familiar with the Network+ material as you think you are. It's quite relevant.

    Okay, fine; that's one question. How about the other 50-60-something?

    Yes, which is exactly why you ought to listen to 1) those who WERE entry-level techs, once upon a time, 2) those who have seen many entry-level techs get into the industry, and most importantly, 3) those who HIRE entry-level techs.

    Just sayin'. Or ignore us; doesn't matter to me. :) I've already got an established career; I'm trying to help you, not the other way around.

    As did I... I've been messing with computers since you were -3. Still, I got both the A+ and Network+. Why? The purpose of certifications isn't to learn new stuff; the purpose of certifications is to show an employer what you are capable of doing.

    As is mine; I'm directing them AWAY from the CCENT, because getting it can actually do more harm than good when pursuing an entry-level job. Bottom line is this: employers don't need people with Cisco certifications to do an entry-level job - they need an entry-level tech, not a Cisco tech. Keep in mind that I'm speaking from the employer's persepective - an employer is going to believe that a) you don't fit the description of what they need (because you overcertified for the job position), b) you are likely more expensive than a non-Cisco-certified guy (again, because you are overcertified for the job position), and/or c) you are more likely to leave the job when a REAL networking/Cisco job comes along... leaving the employer to find, hire, and train someone all over again. So you'll be overcertified for entry-level jobs, and underexperienced for anything beyond that. In short, you can make yourself unemployable.

    Yes, I realize you have just gotten your first IT job... but realize that being overcertified CAN and DOES make it more difficult for entry-level techs to get their start in IT. Disagree if you will... but I've seen it happen again and again and again... so much so that I feel quite justified in taking the time to warn entry-level folks away from more advanced certifications like the CCENT.

    Know why? Because people are flooding in from other fields to get into IT. The entry-level positions ALWAYS fill up first. The more advanced positions need people with experience... and people from other fields don't yet have that experience. But certifications don't equal experience... nor does knowledge. There's only one way to get experience, and that's by working in a real-world business IT environment.

    And, perhaps in a year or so, you'll understand what I mean.

    Sure, the knowledge is useful. But... most entry-level techs aren't allowed near the server rack.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  11. LukeP

    LukeP Gigabyte Poster

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    I'm not saying you're not right. I just think there is also other point of view on current job market. I would strongly advise people to not follow the mainstream and do something different to stand out from the crowd.

    Sybex book is a good read regardless.
     
    WIP: Uhmm... not sure
  12. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Unfortunately, ill-informed advice like that - particularly in this job market! - causes people to get frustrated at their lack of being offered their first IT job... and so they give up, wondering what the hell happened. After all, they got certified... why aren't employers interested? There is a reason, my friend...

    But don't take my word for it. Ask just about anyone on this forum who has been in IT for the last couple of years. Just about every one of us has heard multiple stories about people grabbing advanced certifications, thinking they were the holy grail to getting into IT and completely buying into what the training schools offer as advice... only to find out that they've made themselves LESS attractive to employers. Some managed to find this fine forum after the fact, taken our advice, and hidden their advanced certifications... only to find that doing so helped their employment situation considerably.

    The studying they did for those advanced certifications didn't just "go to waste" - it made them a more knowledgeable tech in the long run. Again, that's the difference between "certifications" and "knowledge". Use each tool as it is designed to be used, and you'll likely do well.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  13. danielno8

    danielno8 Gigabyte Poster

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    So is it because CCENT is geared toward Cisco or because it is an advanced certification that you don't recommend doing it? (which i don't actually agree with because there is so much entry-level information in it)
     
    Certifications: CCENT, CCNA
    WIP: CCNP
  14. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    What is this ? Beat up the new guy ? :D

    Personally I think N+ is probably a better bet for most simply because :-

    "CCENT certifications are valid for three years."

    Otherwise for people with a good foundation and an interest in a network career it looks like a good bet, seems little different to me than people taking other networking courses.

    Personally I think entry level certs are to provide a training path not just to validate exisiting experience, which I agree is in marked contrast to advanced certs.

    So then it really comes down to where on the scale you put the CCENT, sure its not for total beginners but its not for experts either.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  15. -Mercury-

    -Mercury- Byte Poster

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    Excellent advice from BosonMichael, nicely explained. :D

    I'd also recommend studying for your Network+ first, gaining some more experience and then thinking about Cisco certs.

    Good luck.

    Mercury
     
    Certifications: MCSA|MCDST|A+|Net+
    WIP: CCENT
  16. danielno8

    danielno8 Gigabyte Poster

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    good point about the 3 years. If you don't have plans to progress in Cisco then it would be silly to take a cert which will eventually expire.
     
    Certifications: CCENT, CCNA
    WIP: CCNP
  17. Josiahb

    Josiahb Gigabyte Poster

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    Talking as someone whos job involves working with every part of the network from client machines through to servers and everything in between (my official title is IT Technical Support) in a small IT department for a company with 40 odd employees.

    This is my first job, I have no Cisco certifications and they would be of no more benefit to me than the likes of the Network+, I come into contact with no cisco kit so learning commands specific to Cisco on top of networking fundamentals would mean I'd end up with knowledge I'm not using and would therefore forget very quickly and a certification which would expire before I could put its specialist knowledge to use.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, MCDST, ACA – Mac Integration 10.10
  18. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Both. The CCENT is an "advanced certification", not because it is difficult, but because it relates to networking with Cisco gear. Entry-level techs do not typically work with Cisco gear... so the CCENT is not very relevant to entry-level techs.

    Can someone learning the CCENT learn basic networking while studying for it? Certainly! But that's not the point. The objectives tested on by the certification - networking with Cisco gear - are not relevant to what an entry-level tech does. By contrast, the Network+ is much more relevant, as it covers all of those things that an entry-level tech DOES do and leaves out all the stuff an entry-level tech DOESN'T do.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  19. LukeP

    LukeP Gigabyte Poster

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    To be honest for me these 2 certs are totally different. N+ focuses on networking in various operating system while CCENT covers the low-level part of it. N+ won't explain how IP addresses are assigned to router interfaces and importance of subnetting while doing it. I see N+ as a cert for someone who has very little absolutely no idea about networking while CCENT seems to introduce people to corporate netwoking basics.

    CCENT looks like more how stuff works cert instead of how to do stuff.
     
    WIP: Uhmm... not sure
  20. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    ...nor will an entry-level tech assign IP addresses to router interfaces.

    Nonsense. The Network+ covers exactly that.

    Right... the CCENT *does* introduce people to corporate networking basics... for people who are starting to work with Cisco gear.

    That is incorrect. The CCENT is much more related to practical application as it relates to Cisco routers.

    Look, my friend, we can debate this all day long, but at the end of the day, only one of us writes training products related to helping people pass the CCENT. I know what's on the exam and what's not on the exam.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!

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