CCDP acquired; now a short detour to Juniper

New Juniper branch routersI passed the CCDP today. I don’t feel like the content of the exam was balanced in the same manner as was represented in the FLG. For example, as I said in my previous post, about 1/4 of the content in the FLG dealt with security design, but the exam covered other topics much more heavily. In addition, there was one question in particular that had answers that were worded somewhat ambiguously — I had to be very careful in trying to decide the true meaning of the question. Hopefully I got it right 🙂

Unless my plans change, this should be my last Cisco exam before attempting the CCIE. I say that because my current intention is to pursue the Juniper JNCIA-Junos and JNCIS-SP exams, then work on getting my CCIE. I also say that because I will probably at least review some of the training materials for the other Cisco tracks, such as security (especially since at this point in time, I have not yet configured the ubiquitous ASA firewall). Upon reviewing the material, I may or may not decide to actually get certified on it.

I decided to pursue Juniper certifications because I want exposure to other vendors’ equipment. Since Juniper is pretty much #2 to Cisco, and since most of their equipment is geared toward the service provider environment, where I want to eventually land, it made sense to me to broaden my horizons a little bit before going after the CCIE. Juniper provides nice incentives with their Fast Track program, which includes free training for the JNCIA and JNCIS as well as 50% off their already less-expensive-than-Cisco exam prices. I’ve already passed their free web-based pre-test to receive the 50% discount code for the JNCIA. I am going to study on that for the next couple of weeks then take the JNCIA-Junos exam.

Briefly going over the curriculum for the JNCIS-SP exam, it looks like the material will transition nicely from the knowledge of CCNP to beginning to study for the CCIE.

Just two years ago, the CCNA seemed a little distant. It still sounds weird to me to say that I’m going to be studying for the CCIE soon. I’m very excited and looking forward to the weeks of reading and labbing. 🙂