Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert or CCIE is one of the many IT professional certifications provided by the Cisco systems. CCIE provides certification in specific set of skills in the field of networking. It is divided into different paths or tracks. The different CCIE tracks are Routing & Switching, Design, Network Security, Service Provider Operations, Storage Networking, Voice, and Wireless. After being certified as an expert in the different tracks the expert focuses on the aspects needed to provide better and managed services.
The Cisco CCIE Service Provider (CCIE SP) is one of the eight tracks provided by the CCIE. An expert in this area is certified of his skills and expertise in the area of IP fundamentals and technologies. A CCIE SP also possesses advanced skills related to packet architecture and technologies important to service providers such as service provisioning, MPLS, VPNs, service level agreements and basic security. The CCIE SP performs large-scale maintenance, troubleshoot implementation, and manage support of applications to build extensible service provider network infrastructure so as to deliver managed services.
Like any other tracks of the CCIE, the CCIE SP also requires some prerequisites to be met. The first prerequisite is to clear the written examination. After clearing the written examination the second prerequisite is to clear the corresponding hands-on lab exam.
First prerequisite: Written examination
The written exam lasts for two hours consisting of a combination of multiples choice and more complex, interactive items that assess technical knowledge and covering concepts and equipment commands related to packet-based networking infrastructure,. The exam is conducted at any Cisco authorized Pearson VUE testing center. The written exam tests your knowledge of implementing, troubleshooting, and optimizing features and technologies, such as Packet over SONET, IP over DWDM, GE/10GE, BGP, IGP Routing, LDP, MPLS and MPLS TE, Multicast, HA, QoS, and Layer 2 and 3 VPNs. The written exam is to be cleared before scheduling the lab exam.
Second prerequisite: Lab examination
The CCIE Service Provider lab exam lasts for about eight-hours hands on exam. It is far more difficult requirement administered by Cisco. During the lab exam the candidates are expected to configure and troubleshoot a series of complex networks in a limited amount of time. Thus, knowledge of troubleshooting is an important skill is diagnosed and solves issues during the lab exam. The results of the written exam are available immediately while that of the lab exam are available within 48 hours.
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CCIE Service Provider