Archive for October, 2012

Oct
31

I’m in the process of finalizing new updates to the Service Provider CCIE racks and publishing the new hardware specification. I’m going to be using the new hardware specification for my London SPv3 Bootcamp in two weeks before releasing it to the public. I’ve already replaced the two CE 2600XMs with four 1841′s running IOS 15.1T for the CEs. This allows for additional IPv6 VRF support along with many other newer features on the CE devices. Also having 2 extra CE devices is nice.

For VPLS we now support large scale VPLS implementation by adding a four port OC3 POS card to each SDR. This is great for the bootcamps so that students can interconnect their racks. Also if someone wants rent two racks they will be able to interconnect them to test larger scale scenarios. As far as interconnections between the racks I’ve added in a backbone GigE connection between the racks so we can do BGP peering.

From my understanding we are the only training company that offers SPv3 rack rentals and workbooks much less VPLS support. Also I’m fairly sure we’re the only training company that’s offering a dedicated rack now for each SPv3 bootcamp student. I can’t verify this since I don’t have a rearview mirror but this is just what our customers are telling me ;-)

Below is the new POS interconnection diagram.

After my London SP bootcamp in three weeks I’ll publish the new hardware specification along with finalizing our new graded Service Provider Mock Labs. These new graded SP mock labs will use two full SP racks which means 4 IOS XR SDRs, 12 7200VXRs, 4 ME3400 switches, and 8 1841′s for CE devices. These labs will be fun!

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Oct
24

After talking with a few people within Cisco here in RTP there seems to be a growing demand for Wireless CCIE training. The problem they brought up is that there isn’t any real options on the market other than the offerings from FastLane. A couple companies have advertised support and taken orders for the new Wireless CCIE 2.0 but never actually delivered on the products.

If there is enough interest for Wireless CCIE workbooks, ATC style videos, rack rentals, etc then I’ll look into getting something released. Worst case we could put together a community based solution with INE providing Wireless CCIE racks at no charge for anyone supporting the community and very reasonably priced for others.

Here is a link to the Wireless CCIE Syllabus on Cisco’s site for those who are unfamiliar with the Wireless CCIE.

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Oct
21

I’m not sure if there is a market for them but would anyone be interested in renting racks that support the Cisco 360 topology? I use a slightly modified version of the Cisco 360 topology for my bootcamps so for weeks that I’m not running them I could open them up for rental.

I modified R3 so that it can act as a Frame Relay switch for R1, R2 and R6 since the real CCIE lab doesn’t have a dedicated Frame Relay switch anymore. All of the routers are ISRs and the switches are all 3560′s. R1 and R2 are 1841′s. R3, R4 and R5 are 2811′s and R6 is a 3825. SW1, SW2, SW3 and SW4 are 3560′s. Here is the physical topology:

Let me know here if there is interest. The pricing would be the same as our standard R&S racks.

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Oct
15

The second portion of our CCIE Data Center Live Online Bootcamps – Storage Networking – is now complete, and the videos are available for streaming and download. This class focuses on Fibre Channel Switching, IP Storage, and Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) on the Nexus 5500, Nexus 7000, and MDS series switches.

All Access Pass (AAP) subscribers can view the videos in streaming format for no additional fee and also purchase the download version at a discounted rate. If you are not an AAP subscriber you can purchase the standalone download version here. As usual, all of these videos have cross-platform support (desktop, iPhone/iPad, Android, Windows phone, etc.), and the download versions are DRM free. After you purchase them, they are yours to do with as you please.

The CCIE Data Center Live Online Bootcamp Series continues with Unified Computing the week of October 29th. All Access Pass subscribers can attend for free, in addition to anyone who purchased the download version.

Below is an excerpt from the Storage Networking class on how to configure Multihop FCoE on the Nexus 5000 and Nexus 7000:

CCIE Data Center :: Storage :: Multihop FCoE Configuration

The outline for the Storage Networking class is as follows:

  • Introduction
  • Storage Networking Hardware Architecture
  • Fibre Channel Switching Overview
  • Fibre Channel Switching Verification
  • Nexus 5500UP Initialization & FC Interface Configuration
  • SAN Port Channels
  • Virtual SANs (VSANs)
  • FC Fabric Services :: FC Domain
  • FC Fabric Services :: FSPF
  • FC Fabric Services :: FLOGI & FCNS
  • FC Fabric Services :: Basic Zoning
  • FC Fabric Services :: Enhanced Zoning & Aliases
  • FC Fabric Services :: Q&A
  • iSCSI :: Part 1
  • iSCSI :: Part 2
  • FCIP
  • NPV & NPIV
  • FCoE Overview
  • FCoE Configuration :: Part 1
  • FCoE Configuration :: Part 2
  • FCoE Q&A
  • Multihop FCoE Overview
  • Multihop FCoE Configuration
  • FCoE NPV
  • Data Center Network Manager (DCNM)

Questions and comments are welcome. Technical discussion can also be found on the Data Center Technical forum of INE’s Online Community at http://www.IEOC.com.

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Oct
04

As many of you already know, the launch date for the CCIE Data Center Lab Exam is approaching soon. The CCIE Data Center Written Exam is now live, and lab scheduling will come online in the coming weeks. At INE, we’ve completed two out of our three planned online classes for CCIE DC – CCIE Data Center Nexus Switching and CCIE Data Center Storage Networking. Videos from the Nexus class are currently available for download and streaming, and Storage is currently in post-processing and will be available next week. More information on the Storage Networking class, as well as samples, will be posted early next week. The final portion of our online classes – CCIE Data Center Unified Computing – will be held at the end of this month, the week of October 29th. Seats in the online class are still available for purchase, which includes the downloadable videos after class – All Access Pass members can attend this class live online for free. This brings us to the most anticipated and requested product of the CCIE Data Center line: INE’s CCIE Data Center Workbook and Rack Rentals.

Like our online Bootcamps, INE’s CCIE Data Center Workbooks will take a three-part approach to the topic scope: Nexus Switching, Storage Networking, and Unified Computing. Unlike our previous workbook products, however, the delivery of the Data Center Workbooks will be enhanced. The Data Center Workbook series will be delivered as online content. It will still include diagrams, technology scenarios, configurations, and verifications, but it will also include embedded streaming video content that delves deep into technology breakdowns, verification, and troubleshooting. By delivering the content in an online format as opposed to print-formatted PDFs, we will be able to shorten the time to market for the labs through incremental releases, and we will be able to ensure that everyone always has the most updated version of content without the need for a complicated sub-versioning system. Furthermore, the embedded video breakdown content will take this product above and beyond the incredibly high quality bar that you, our customers, are already accustomed to with INE.

The time frame for content release of the CCIE Data Center Workbooks is as follows:

  • Nexus Switching: Mid to Late November 2012
  • Storage Networking: Mid to Late December 2012
  • Unified Computing: Mid to Late December 2012
  • Full Scale Labs: Mid to Late January 2013

What about rack rentals? We plan to release access to rack rentals in tandem with the release of the workbook content. Rack rentals will be offered in multiple ways. First we will offer smaller subsets of the overall complete hardware topology that is used to complete specific technology labs. For example, a lab on vPC on Nexus 5000 may consist of 2 x Nexus 5548UPs and an end host. Likewise, as you progressively work through the labs, the topologies will get more complex, ultimately culminating in full-scale multi-protocol labs that require the entire overall hardware topology.

The full hardware topology used in the workbooks will consist of:

  • Nexus 7000s with both M1 and F1 modules
  • Nexus 5500UPs
  • Nexus 2000 1GigE & 10GigE Fabric Extenders
  • MDS 9200i Fibre Channel & IP Storage Switches
  • UCS C Series Rackmount Servers
  • UCS B Series Blade Servers
  • UCS Fabric Interconnects
  • Additional 1GigE & 10GigE attached end servers
  • Fibre Channel attached Storage Arrays

Further details, such as pricing for the workbooks and rack rentals and the availability of the rack schedule, will be solidified within the next few weeks. As always, questions and comments are welcome, and I hope to see many of you in the upcoming CCIE Data Center – Unified Computing class at the end of the month!

 

 

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Oct
01

Below are the links to the INE CCIE R&S TS Lab 1 GNS3 files. If you are familiar with GNS3 it shouldn’t be too hard to get up and working. The IOS image needs to be referenced and the idle PC values set for your machine. I would also highly recommend tuning up any protocol timers to their max values as this eases the load on GNS3 with such a big topology.

Note that in the ticket 4 isn’t an issue for the GNS3 topology.

Download Link

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