Apr
24

Last week we quietly snuck into the All Access Pass the recordings of the live UC on UCS and Nexus 1000v on UCS classes that I ran just a few weeks back. If you have never run Unified Communications in a virtual environment or have never worked with a distributed virtual switch in a VMware environment, these classes will certainly aid you in preparing for that first deployment. If you have worked with either product for a little while, these classes will deepen your understanding of what's needed and what's really going on behind the scenes. The Nexus 1000v class is also very useful for the Unified Communications engineer, as most deployments these days are virtual machines, and the Nexus 1000v is the recommended L2 switch to run them on, since the UCS can only match/mark at L2 CoS, whereas the Nexus 1000v allows you to match the L3 DSCP that the UC servers are natively sending and map them to a L2 CoS value, which is currently the only value seen and honored by any of your UCS or Nexus switches in your modern data centers.

I will be furthering this series with classes on the VSG with VNMC, the ASA 1000v, and later with the InterCloud 1000v as well as possibly more virtual devices in the weeks to come.

Jan
16

A number of people had indicated that they thought my CCNA-to-CCIE-in-a-Year program was a bit aggressive for those with both family and job life to consider, so I've revised the plan into an 18-month plan, and also added a downloadable XLS spreadsheet to assist you in your studies. Simply plug in your starting date, and the spreadsheet should keep you on task on a week-by-week basis. Here's the link to my previous blog post where you'll find the updated plan to download, as well as links to all of the products used in the plan: From CCNA Voice to CCIE Voice in One Year – A Detailed Study Plan – REVISED Dec 31, 2012

Apr
19

Just announced at the Cisco Partner Summit yesterday, Cisco is making Unified Presence, IM and it's Jabber client for Mac, PC, iPad, iPhone, Cisco Cius, Blackberry and all Android devices completely FREE. This probably has something to do with how badly they've been spanked in Presence server and client sales by Microsoft basically giving away the presence features of Lync (although MS does make you pay when you want to add Voice/Video features to those clients - just as Cisco will). At any rate and for whatever their reasons and motivations - I personally think it is a very, very smart move for Cisco. It's also one that makes complete sense seeing that UCM v9 is about to go into beta testing next week. Understanding that the Jabber client can interact with video from any IP phone or Telepresence unit, and the fact that Cisco announced that this free Jabber client and Presence support is not only for those with existing IP Phones, but for every member of any enterprise with a UCM server, this makes the announcement all that more powerful. This doesn't include Voice or Video, but those can be enabled later with a simple license upgrade. Still not bad at all - especially with the new Jabber client for Windows, and the fact that once installed it enables all MS Office apps to have native presence tied into them directly to Cisco Jabber. This was the entire reason that Cisco purchased Jabber.

Another thing that Cisco is making free (at least for some limited time) is their WebEx Meetings Beta offering - for up to 25 participants. This includes desktop sharing and VoIP as well. Sign up here.

Also of no small merit, Cisco just shipped its 50 millionth phone - that's 50,000,000 phones shipped. I still remember putting in my first Selsius Call Manager more than 13 years ago. Not bad Cisco, not bad at all.

Feb
18

I recently finished up recording a brand new CCNA Voice v8 online bootcamp, and it is available for both streaming and download. I also spent a number of hours today revising the extremely popular blog post outlining INE's "CCIE Voice in a Year" study plan.

We are still taking enrollment for our brand new CCNP Voice v8 live online bootcamp, so be sure to register if you haven't already.

 

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Dec
22

We have added some new US and International CCIE Voice bootcamps to our schedule!

With every 10-Day Bootcamp purchase, INE gives you your choice of either:

OR

 

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Jul
29

Updated with 18 Month Plan!

Not only have I updated the post below quite a bit, but I have also now put together a spreadsheet that you are free to download and customize to your liking. It includes both a 12-month plan that closely resembles what is listed below, but it also includes an 18-month plan on the 2nd tab that can be used by those who simply cannot devote as much time as I propose in the below post. Simply change the start date and the rest will cascade. Use this spreadsheet to be able to propose a very comprehensive plan to your boss if you are getting corporate-backing.

Download the 12 and 18-month plan spreadsheet

Introduction

I often get questions in class or via email that go something like "I am just beginning my studies for CCNA Voice - do I really need a two year AAP subscription?" or "How can I best utilize INE's products to attain the CCIE Voice exam", or simply "Where should I start?".

This document seeks to provide you with a detailed guideline to using each of the products that compliment INE's complete Voice training program. This program structure has been designed under the realistic assumption that you may be able to dedicate roughly 4 days a week, with approximately 4 hours a day (16 hours a week) to some form of study (be it watching our lecture and demo-based VoDs, reading Cisco documentation and books found in our Recommended Voice Reading Book List, or practicing on lab equipment), and be able to span a total duration of roughly 55 weeks from the start of studying for your CCNA Voice exam, and progressing through the CCNP Voice exam, and finally onto being ready to sit for your first CCIE Voice Lab exam attempt. This works out to just around one year of studying, with around 4 weeks off. This could (and probably will) vary, depending on your schedule, as you will undoubtedly need to custom tailor this program a bit to your life. All-in-all, you are going to spend almost 900 hours. I realize that this is a very committed study schedule, and I also wholeheartedly realize the sacrifice involved to commit fully to such an undertaking, however know now that these are hours that you, later in life, will look back on and attribute to some of the most beneficial that you have ever spent in your professional career. So buckle-up, and prepare yourself for the ride.

Note: It is assumed that before beginning this regiment, that the candidate has already studied for and obtained the necessary CCNA (Routing and Switching) exam. If you have not yet completed this Cisco-prerequisite exam yet, we strongly recommend that you take our CCNA Associate Course - 640-802 first, and pass that required exam.

Products Used in Study Plan

Before we start by referencing how to use the structured program, we will start by listing all of the products included, as well as links to those products on our site. We’ll reference these products as we progress through the guide, and we recommend you clicking on each of the product names below see samples of each, so that  you may get to know them and their layout a bit better for a more thorough understanding how and where they fit into this program as you continue reading this guide.

Detailed Structured Approach

Phase 1 - CCNA Voice :: Weeks 1 - 2 (32 hours)

Here in the first 2 week phase you will develop the basic skills and concepts that will stay with you for the rest of your Voice studies. It is very important that you take copious notes while you watch these videos, and review them often. By completion of this phase, you should be ready to take and pass your CCNA Voice exam.

  • We break the CCNA Voice Videos down into halves
    • Week 01 :: Watch 1st half of CCNA Voice videos and take notes
    • Week 02 :: Watch 2nd half of CCNA Voice videos and take notes, review notes and Bookmarks*, and take CCNA Voice exam
Phase 2 - CCNP Voice :: Weeks 3 - 10 (128 hours)

In this next 8 week phase you will upgrade your skills quite a bit more, focusing intensely on the technologies you were introduced to during the CCNA Voice study phase, to get the thorough understanding you will need to take and pass each of the five CCNP Voice exams. This phase will begin to solidify a strong technical acumen which is extremely important for the rest of your CCIE Voice studies. All of the lessons in this phase will be repeated. This is by design and completely necessary to fully comprehending these concepts at a true professional level. Also, while the CCNP Voice exams are not practical, hands-on lab-based exams, they do have some simulations in them that have to be solved by the candidate. That, along with the fact that we believe firmly that you learn best by doing, and have therefore included a number of hours set aside for you to simply experiment in any fashion you choose using either lab hardware of your own or else that which you rent from us. It is still very important that you take copious notes while you watch these videos as well as while you spend practice time on lab equipment, and again - review them often. By completion of this phase, you should be ready to take and pass all 5 of your CCNP Voice exams.

  • We begin by breaking down the CCNP Voice Videos down into thirds
    • Week 03 :: Watch 1st third of CCNP Voice videos and take notes
    • Week 04 :: Watch 2nd third of CCNP Voice videos and take notes
    • Week 05 :: Watch final third of CCNP Voice videos and take notes
  • We follow that up by breaking down the CCNP Videos down into fifths, and mixing in lab practice, along with exam taking
    • Week 06 :: Watch 1st fifth of CCNP Voice videos and take notes while practicing on lab equipment what you have learned here, and take the CVOICE exam
    • Week 07 :: Watch 2nd fifth of CCNP Voice videos and take notes while practicing on lab equipment what you have learned here, and take the CIPT1 exam
    • Week 08 :: Watch 3rd fifth of CCNP Voice videos and take notes while practicing on lab equipment what you have learned here, and take the CIPT2 exam
    • Week 09 :: Watch 4th fifth of CCNP Voice videos and take notes while practicing on lab equipment what you have learned here, and take the CAPPS exam
    • Week 10 :: Watch final fifth of CCNP Voice videos and review notes and Bookmarks* while practicing on lab equipment what you have learned here, and take the TVOICE exam

 
Take a single week of rest, possibly two, but no more, as you are already primed to move directly into CCIE Voice studies.
 

Phase 3 - CCIE Voice:: Weeks 12 - 55 (704 hours)

This 44 week phase is where you will obviously spend the bulk of your time practicing what you've learned over the past 10 weeks - over and over and over and over and over and over and over again - on lab gear. And that's no joke, either. If you thought it was tedious to read that word "over" repeated 7 times, just wait until you begin actually repeating what you've done more than that many times. And if you're one of those who didn't read that whole thing, and skipped to the end of it, maybe you need to re-think whether you're ready to commit to this undertaking of studying for this certification. Now while whether you actually read all seve 'overs' or not doesn't necessarily determine your readiness or ability to commit to such a repetitious regiment of study, I do believe that it demonstrates a point - namely that this phase is going to test your resolve. You will be repeating the same or similar tasks over and over in order to build both accuracy and speed -- finger 'muscle memory', really -- things that will be absolutely crucial to being able to take and pass the CCIE Voice lab exam. We recommend that even if we don't specifically list a given video or lab to be repeated in the syllabus, but you find yourself lacking a thorough and complete understanding in any single topic, that you self-police and choose to go back and re-watch that technology section in any of the video-based lecture-and-demo products, along with reading Cisco documentation on the topic, to gain proficiency before moving on. At the end of this phase, you will be ready to sit for your first attempt at the CCIE Voice lab exam at a Cisco facility.

  • We begin by working with the Deep Dive video series, and accompanying Deep Dive Technology-Focused Workbook (Volume I)
    • Week 12 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 1 :: Network Infrastructure and QoS
    • Week 13 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 2 & 3 :: CUOS & CLI and CUCM System & Phone Basics
    • Week 14 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 4 & 5 :: Users & LDAP and Phone & Calling Features
    • Week 15 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 6 :: Media Resources
    • Week 16 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 7 :: Gateways and Trunks
    • Week 17 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 8 :: Gatekeeper
    • Week 18 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 9 :: Dial Plan Part I (Basics)
    • Week 19 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 10 :: Dial Plan Part II (Globalization, Localization)
    • Week 20 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 11 :: Dial Plan Part III (More Practice)
    • Week 21 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 12 :: Dial Plan Part IV (CUBE)
    • Week 22 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 13 & 14 :: Unified, Device & Extension Mobility
    • Week 23 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 15 :: CUCM Express (CME) System and Phone Basics
    • Week 24 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 16 & 17 :: CME Dialplans, Class of Restrictions, & Media Resources and CME Advanced Call Features
    • Week 25 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 18 :: CME Call Coverage and CME-as-SRST
    • Week 26 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 19 :: Unified Contact Center Express & Scripting
    • Week 27 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 20 :: Unity Connection Mailboxes & AA Trees
    • Week 28 - Watch and Lab: Workbook Volume I :: Module 21 :: CUCM Presence & CUPS with CUPC & IPPM

 
Take a single week of rest, possibly two, but no more.
 

  • We follow that up with watching the Advanced Technologies Class (ATC) videos, broken up into thirds
    • Week 29 :: Watch 1st third of CCIE Voice ATC videos and take notes
    • Week 30 :: Watch 2nd third of CCIE Voice ATC videos and take notes
    • Week 31 :: Watch 3rd third of CCIE Voice ATC videos and take notes
  • Next it's time to move on to practicing heavily with Mock Labs! For this phase we will utilize the Mock Lab Workbook (Volume II)
  • This is also the perfect time to go ahead and schedule your CCIE Voice Lab Exam. This is to set a hard deadline for yourself, and to push you towards that goal. Schedule it for week 55.
    • Week 32 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 1 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 33 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 2 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 34 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 3 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 35 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 4 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 36 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 5 (repeat this lab during the week)

 
Take a single week of rest.
 

  • Now you should be ready to attend a 10 Day CCIE Voice Bootcamp. We highly encourage the live classes, however if you cannot manage one, then substitute for the recorded version of Week 1
    • Week 37 & 38 - Attend: CCIE Voice 10-Day Bootcamp (Live Class)
  • Now it is time to go back home, and begin practicing harder on the labs you've already been through, but with the newfound knowledege of your recently-discovered weak areas.
    • Week 42 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 5 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 43 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 4 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 44 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 3 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 45 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 2 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 46 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 5 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 47 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 1 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 48 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 3 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 49 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 4 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 50 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 5 (repeat this lab during the week)
    • Week 51 - Labs: Workbook Volume II :: Lab 3 (repeat this lab during the week)

 
Take a single week of rest.
 

  • Finally it is time to see what you are made of!
    • Week 52 - Take your first CCIE Voice Lab Attempt

 
*Transcripts and Bookmarks only available through All Access Pass streaming playlists, not available via downloaded videos.
 

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Jul
28

We're pleased to announce that our recently announced, highly anticipated CCNP Voice course is available for both streaming and download from our global CDN. Containing everything you need to take and pass the five latest Cisco CCNP Voice exams (642-427 TVOICE v8, 642-437 CVOICE v8, 642-447 CIPT1 v8, 642-457 CIPT2 v8, and 642-467 CAPPS v8), this new course consists of 130 videos totaling over 85 hours of hands down the best CCNP Voice training on the market today. As an All Access Pass subscriber the online streaming version is included at no additional charge. You may also download it now for just $299 or as an All Access Pass subscriber you can download it for only $149.

Each of the 130 videos can be individually downloaded without the need to download the whole class. This will enable you to selectively load them onto any computer or mobile device and watch them at your leisure. Although we do not place any DRM on the files themselves we do limit each purchase to two downloads per video.

Check back often, as we will be adding new labs to our CCIE Voice Volume II Workbook in the upcoming weeks. Also, you may now purchase and schedule your Graded Mock Lab for a proper CCIE Voice assessment of your skills before actually sitting for the actual lab exam.

Jul
22

We're pleased to announce that our recently announced, highly anticipated CCNA Voice course is available for both streaming and download from our global CDN. Containing everything you need to take and pass the CCNA Voice exam (640-461 ICOMM v8), this new course consists of 124 videos totaling over 70 hours of hands down the best CCNA Voice training on the market today.  As an All Access Pass subscriber the online streaming version is included at no additional charge. You may also download it now for just $199 or as an All Access Pass subscriber you can download it for only $99.

Each of the 124 videos can be individually downloaded without the need to download the whole class. This will enable you to selectively load them onto any computer or mobile device and watch them at your leisure. Although we do not place any DRM on the files themselves we do limit each purchase to two downloads per video.

We hope to release our CCNP Voice course sometime early next week - complete with 130 additional videos, and over 85 additional hours of mostly hands-on demonstration along of course with some lecture, so check back often!

Dec
13

Just wanted to throw out a quick reminder to all of you involved day-to-day with Cisco Unified Communications in some fashion. Tomorrow I will host a free vSeminar on configuring and utilizing Active Directory as a source of LDAP user synchronization and authentication with the Cisco UC architecture servers.

If you still haven't registered, you can do so right up until the webinar begins. To do so, simply click here and fill in your requested information at the bottom of the page.

In case you missed any previous vSeminars, be sure to check out the recent updates here.

Hope to see you tomorrow!

Nov
18

Hi all, after a lot of studying and dedication i passed the Voice lab yesterday on my second attempt!!!! I want to thank a lot to Mark Snow for coaching me during the 2 week bootcamp. He made me feel very confident that I could pass, while also answering all of my questions and always providing clear explanations of all the topics. I also would like to to say that his Deep Dives videos are the best and were a fundamental part of my study and success in passing. I fully recommend the Deep Dive modules and the 2 week bootcamp. Again, thank you a lot for all Mark!!!!

Eduardo Elizondo, CCIE Voice #27511

Congratulations Eduardo!! Share in Eduardo's Success! Get all 17 current Deep Dive modules for FREE (a $1495 value) when you purchase any upcoming 10-Day CCIE Voice Bootcamp by using discount code 27511 at checkout! Be sure to act on this generous offer fast as it will only be available until November 26!!

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