We’ve heard you loud and clear, and we understand that gaining access to Nexus 7000s, Nexus 5000s, UCS and Storage for hands-on practice is probably one of the more difficult parts of studying for the CCNA/CCNP and CCIE Data Center certifications. That’s why we’re happy to announce that we have just added 5 new DC racks available for rental immediately.

Enjoy – and remember to lab responsibly this holiday season.

About Mark Snow, CCIE #14073:

Mark Snow has been actively working with data and traditional telephony as a Network Consulting Engineer since 1995, and has been working with Cisco Call Manager and voice-over technology since 1998. Mark has been actively teaching and developing content for the CCIE Voice track since 2005, and the Security track since 2007. Mark's story with both data and voice technology started out quite young, as he began learning around the age of five from his father who was a patented inventor and a research scientist at AT&T Bell Laboratories. Mark started out on Unix System V and basic analog telephony, and went on from there to large data networking projects with technologies such as Banyan Vines, IPX and of course IP, and large phone systems such as Nortel 61c, Tadiran Coral, Avaya Definity and of course Cisco Unified Communications Manager in both enterprise and 911 PSAP environments across the US and internationally. Mark is also an accomplished pilot and punched his ticket in 2001. When Mark isn't learning, labing, consulting or teaching, he can be found either piloting or possibly jumping out of a perfectly good airplane, hanging off a rock somewhere or else skiing out west. He also might just be enjoying a quiet day at the beach with his wife and two wonderful young kids, Ryleigh and Judah.

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12 Responses to “Happy Holidays! Five More Data Center Racks – Now Rentable”

  1. Venkata Madhu P R Kambala says:

    You guys are Awesome! What a perfect time :)

  2. Ricardo Rodriguez says:

    Best gift for IT xMas.

    Thank you INE.

  3. russell says:

    Seems to be a cap on the number of sessions in a month? Was hoping to burn down the remainder of my token balance through January.

    Would be nice if there was a stiff penalty for cancellations also. Might cut down on folks canceling at the last minute.

    • Hi Russell,

      Yes, we had to implement a fair-queuing system to prevent what was happening before – where some people would book a rack for the entire month, and not use half of the sessions. The cancellations will certainly occur since people want to get the most out of the max sessions they can use per month, and so those will be great opportunities to grab a spot that opens up quickly.

      • Eric says:

        Sorry if this was answered elsewhere, but what is the max sessions/time per month that can be booked?


      • russell says:

        On the flip side I think I’ll be able to burn through about 1300ish of my 1500 tokens in the next couple of months so I should be good. Glad to see some measures being taken.

        Regarding workbook difficulty, how does the difficulty with the “full scale” INE labs compare with the real deal? i.e. if I can make it through both of the INE full scale labs without any trouble would that be an appropriate metric to say I’m ready to do the real thing with a reasonable chance for success?

        Any pending updates to the workbooks in the next few weeks? Will I be able to configure OTV anytime soon/fiddle with the default VDC/create more?

        • Considering we wrote the full-scale labs with a single N7K with Sup1 in mind (4 VDCs), I would say that Lab 1 is probably a 7 out of 10 (10 being lab level), and Lab 2 probably being a 8 of 10.
          You can practice OTV now. Simply rent a rack, configure OTV on the 2 N7Ks connected directly together, and then setup SVIs on the N5Ks and try to ping across. You can also ping directly from the VMs if you put them on the same VLAN and extend it.
          Access to default VDC (we use a true default) is not possible at this time, so neither would be interface allocation or new VDC creation.

  4. Eddy says:

    Wohoooo, for a guy who is preparing his lab exam, this is just like a christmas present for me. thanks INE.

  5. sb.ccie says:

    Hi Mark,

    A “per month per customer” limit is a good thing in order to avoid abusive behavior.
    But as INE’s did add new racks recently, wouldn’t it be possible to increase this limit a little bit, for example 100 hours “per month per customer” instead of 85 hours ?

    For example, somebody who – in final rush ! – needs to lab three times per week with 8 hour sessions would need 96 hours per month (with 4 weeks per month : 4x3x8 = 96)…

    Best regards,

  6. Nizami says:

    when physical topology with port numbering be available?
    i’ve scheduled and got rack 7. Workbook only shows topology for racks 1-4.
    should i assume that rack 7 has the same numbering as rack 3?


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