Passing CCNP BSCI

I recently passed the BSCI test on the CCNP track. I have been meaning to write my observations, so here they are. Where I have the Cisco Document ID I will provide it, otherwise I will just provide the document title.

Cisco Press Books:
Official Exam Certification Guide
Fourth Edition, by Stewart and Gough

My thoughts: I read this book from cover to cover and continue to use it as a reference book. The topic coverage is more appropriate for someone who has some hands on experience with most of the protocols. I felt like it hit the meat of each topic but did not cover them as in depth as I wanted. It comes with a CD-Rom and book on PDF which is nice, because I keep a copy on my computer at work for reference.

Authorized Self-Study Guide
Building Scalable Cisco Internetworks (BSCI)
Third Edition, by Teare and Paquet

My thoughts: I read this book from cover to cover but do not use it much in my daily work, it takes too much time to explain a topic. This is the best book if you do not have hands on experience with all of the protocols. For instance at work we use OSPF so I had a good basic understanding of the protocol but I had no experience with BGP, EIGRP or IS-IS. I felt this book brought me up to speed on those topics better than the Certification Guide. It tried to recreate the class scenario in written form and does a good job of doing that with diagrams that would normally be seen in class. There are no pre-chapter questions and the end of chapter questions are open ended. My book did not come with a CD.

CCNP Building Scalabe Internetworks
(BSCI 642-901)
Lab Portfolio by Kotfile, Moorhouse and Wolfson

My thoughts: I am torn. I would not recommend this book if you have a good set of labs already or are extremely familiar with GNS3. Nearly half of the book is taken up with ping output to prove connectivity. I don’t need that in a book, I can see full reachability on my own lab equipment.

I also don’t like the set up of the lab book. Rather than give you a scenario and an assignment, then give the answer separately, the labs are step-by-step. So you cannot fumble around if you follow the the book. I would prefer a diagram with the assignment. Let me turn the page to see the answer or the step-by-step how to complete the lab.

I did at least a couple of labs from each section until I felt comfortable designing my own labs in GNS3. At that point I only looked at this book if I was stuck somewhere.

My web readings from cisco.com:

IPv6:
Doc ID: 25156, Tunneling IPv6 through an IPv4 Network
6Bone Connection Using 6to4 Tunnels for IPv6
Implementing IPv6 Addressing and Basic Connectivity
Interconnecting IPv6 Domains Using Tunnels
Implementing OSPF for IPv6

BGP:
Doc ID: 13762, Load Sharing with BGP in Single and Multihomed Environments.
Doc ID: 26634, BGP Case Studies
Doc ID: 5816, BGP FAQ

OSPF:
Doc ID: 9237, OSPF Frequently Asked Questions
Doc ID: 16563, Configuring and Troubleshooting Frame Relay
Internetworking Technologies Handbook, Chapter 46, OSPF
Network Protocols Configuration Guide, Part 1, Configuring OSPF

EIGRP:
Doc ID: 16406, EIGRP
Doc ID: 13681, EIGRP FAQ
Doc ID: 21324, Troubleshooting EIGRP
Configuring EIGRP
Internetworking Technologies Handbook, Chapter 40, EIGRP

Misc.
Multicast Q&A
Route-Maps for IP Routing Protocol Redistribution Configuration

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