A few days ago I wrote about attempting my first CCIE Collaboration Lab.
Its the night following my attempt and I’ll be honest, it did not go well. I was confident going in and I was confident for the first 3 or so hours. When we broke for our “speed lunch” I knew I was behind and as the hours,minutes and seconds ticked down in the afternoon I realized without much resistance that I was screwed.
That being said, my expectations were probably not properly metered. It was my first attempt and according to the most “recent” Cisco numbers that I have read, first time passing attempts are not common.
I also think that there are lessons to be learned, even in failure. I’ll list a few of them below.
- I was worried, going in, about things like the IOS and UCM Dial Plans, I’m pretty sure I nailed those.
- Unity Connection in either form i.e. SCCP or SIP is a relatively mindless process and I think I owned both of those sections as well.
- I do not know IOS switch QoS as well as I thought I did, that will have to change.
- Cisco Unity Express (CUE) is a bastard in any form and things that I assumed would work because they always have in my practices kicked my ass.
- Mobile Voice Access: This little gem was on my lab and none of the studying that I have done covered it in any way shape or form. I implemented it 5 or 6 years ago in a production environment but those brain cells were not present today. I guess I’ll be learning MVA.
- I didn’t read or see anything in the lab that honestly had me confused, I did however run out of time. I need to be faster, I must be faster.
Where does this leave me?
It leaves me with no CCIE number, it resets my written countdown clock but my goal is my CCIE number and without that this, even though I learned a lot, was a failure.
Tomorrow morning I’ll hop on a flight and head back to Denver. I’ll continue to study and work towards my goal.
I’ll be back Cisco, I’ll definitely be back.