Posts Tagged ‘graded-labs’


INE is happy to announce that we now have all 21 Modules of our new CCIE Voice Deep Dive completed –115 hours of recorded class-on-demand style video (no breaks or dead-air in the recordings – that’s 115 hours of actual learning!)– completed and ready for your consumption!

As we mentioned in a previous post, The author and poet Maya Angelou said “Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with deeper meaning.”. Well that is certainly what we have attempted to do with the CCIE Voice Deep Dive self-paced Class on Demand series – that is to bring the human instructional voice element to infuse deeper meaning to what is already fantastic Cisco Documentation. Anyone that has set out and determined to undertake the task of studying for and ultimately passing any CCIE Lab exam, knows that at some point during your studies, the words on paper (Cisco Docs, RFCs, books) – while a absolute phenomenal source of information – can at times seem to loose their impact. Perhaps you have been studying too long, read one too many docs, have the time pressure of your family and friends waiting for you to return to be a part of their life, or perhaps you are just starting out on your adventure and don’t know where to begin. Whatever stage you are at or whatever the case may be, it is certainly helpful to have a tutor and mentor there beside you at times, assisting you in understanding what each complex technology’s documentation is trying to teach you, in possibly a deeper and more insightful way than you can manage on your own.

For each complex topic we have held (or will soon hold) an online class where we dive down deep and explore all the concepts, practical application, and troubleshooting associated with each technology topic. The general format for each Class-on-Demand Deep Dive module spends between 4-7 hours on the given topic for that day, and during that time follows this outlined training methodology:

  • Collectively discuss and teach all concepts involved in the technology
  • Whiteboard concepts to further deepen every participant’s understanding
  • Define a specific set of tasks to be accomplished
  • Demonstrate how the tasks and concepts are implemented and properly configured
  • Test the configuration thoroughly
  • Vary the configuration to understand how different permutations effect the outcome
  • Debug and trace the working configuration to understand what should be seen
  • Break the configuration and troubleshoot with debugs and traces to contrast from the working set

Before we go on with the 21 module outline, here are a few demos of this Deep Dive series:

Demo 1: Module 10 :: Dial Plan :: Globalization Prezi – Theory and Reasons :: Runtime 1 hr

Demo 2: Module 10 :: Dial Plan :: Inbound Calling Party Localization :: Runtime 30 mins

Demo 3: Module 12 :: CUBE :: Conforming to ITSP Reqs: SIP Header Conversions :: Runtime 51 mins

Demo 4: Module 13 :: Unified Mobility :: Mobile Connect Access Lists and Exclusivity :: Runtime 20 mins

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A while back, Cisco began consolidating all of the CCIE lab equipment used by candidates when sitting to write their practical lab exam. Most of the lab hardware now resides in San Jose, California US, with only the Storage and Wireless awaiting movement. While most of the CCIE tracks’ practical lab examinations are able to be completely self-contained inside a single rack, the pesky Voice exam remains an abnormality with the need for hardware IP phones at the testing site where the candidate may sit for the exam.

Having the IP phones in a completely separate location — and therefore seemingly an entirely different L3 IP subnet — would seem to present a major challenge for candidates attempting to test certain configuration tasks such as Multicast Music on Hold, many QoS mechanisms, SRST, and even smaller things such as CDP discovery and DHCP. So how is Cisco able to get away with having phones at a remote location (5000 miles or more in some instances), and yet still allow candidates to configure and then properly test what they critically need to?

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Recently as most rack rental customers are aware of it’s not easy to find an available rack or mock lab session.  Our security rack rentals are running near 100% capacity, the SP racks are also near 100% capacity, voice is already near 75% capacity and R&S rack rentals are near 92.5% capacity.   Currently we are out of power and space at our two offices in the Reno Technology Center.  We have just signed a lease on a new 4200sqft hosting facility.  This will allow us to expand to over 400 CCIE racks.  We have already started purchasing the additional hardware for the new racks and they should start becoming available in November so watch for sessions that are currently sold out to become available.

Around the middle of November you will see the start times of the rack rentals and mock labs vary (every 3 hours a session will start).  This is designed to accommodate our customers in Europe, the Middle East and Asia.   Currently the sessions start at inconvenient times for customers in these locations.

The voice racks now support EZVPN and SSL VPN connections.  We have installed two VPN routers for redundancy and to allow for multiple connections.   This means you can now use your own phones and/or soft phones.  We are also adding additional 7960s to each rack.  After next week you will see one additional 7960 phone added to the HQ site bringing the total to three 7960s and one additional 7960 for the BR1 site bring the total to two 7960s.

We will have a voice bootcamp rental kit available for anyone running their own voice CCIE bootcamps.   Currently vendors that are renting out our voice racks for bootcamps need to provide their own IP phones and router/PIX/ASA for the VPN connection.  The new kit that is identical to the kit we will start using for the voice bootcamps includes (per student) three 7960 phones, an ATA 186 and an analog phone.  There is also one VG248, two 3550 24 port PoE switches, one 2811 and the necessary cables needed to connect everything up.

I would like to add that our voice rack rentals are only $15 per 5.5 hours.   In addition to our voice products and classes you should be able to do any vendor’s practice labs on our voice racks.  To view our topology click here.

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