This is the second volume of the new Official Cert Guide for CCIE R&S and it covers the remaining topics from the CCIE R&S Written exam blueprint.

The format is no different than what you would see in the first volume or in any other official cert guide.

CCNP Training – Resources (Intense)

DIKTA (Do I Know This Already?) is opening each chapter then you get the foundation topics section and at the end you get several pages with condensed information that makes the foundation summary.

Of course the book has the appendixes part and the final preparation part. The preparation part is not about how you should prepare for the exam or how you should prepare yourself for the last days before the exam. It’s just a reference to other tools that can help you to better prepare for the exam. These tools can be Practice Test Engine or memory tables.

Excluding these two parts aforementioned, the book has six parts that cover technologies and protocols that you need to know to pass the 400-101 CCIE Routing and Switching written exam.

These are the parts that I’m talking about:

  • Part I – IP BGP Routing – This part has two chapters and it is beginning with really basic concepts like Autonomous System, difference between Internal and External BGP, BGP message types and how BGP adjacencies are built. The interaction between BGP table and IP routing table is explained in the first chapter. Of course, route reflectors and confederations couldn’t be left out when we are talking about BGP. Multiprotocol BGP is covered as well. Path attributes and route selection process are covered in detail. The part contains examples of route filtering using different methods.
  • Part II – QoS – This part is a classic. In the first chapter of the part you will read about classification and marking, hence you will be no stranger to IP Precendence, DSCP, Autoqos and NBAR notions. Also Cisco Modular QoS CLI will be discussed in detail. Then congestion management and avoidance topics are touched and you are introduced to different queuing mechanisms such as LLQ, MDDR, CBWFQ. WRED (Weighted Random Early Detection) is discussed as a mechanism to avoid tail drop. The part ends with shaping and policing concepts with policing being covered thoroughly and with general QoS troubleshooting methods and commands.
  • Part III – Wide Area Network – This is pretty short and covers some basic stuff about HDLC, PPP, VPLS and Metro Ethernet. However, it’s enough for the exam.
  • Part IV – IP Multicast – This part has two chapters and the first one is focusing mostly on multicast concepts and on IGMP protocol. IGMPv2 is covered in more detail and there is a good comparison between IGMP v1, v2 and v3. The second chapter of the part is dealing with more advanced topics like multicast scoping, multicast routing protocols (in dense mode and sparse mode). Actually extensive coverage is provided to the dense and sparse mode protocols (PIM-DM and PIM-SM) and their functionalities. There is good information about source specific multicast and of course IPv6 multicast PIM couldn’t be missed here (with IPv6 RP static and BSR concepts being discussed). MLD is another IPv6 topic related to multicast that is being discussed.
  • Part V – Security – This part covers a lot of security features and concepts starting from basic CLI password protection to dot1X to DHCP snooping, Dynamic ARP Inspection and IP Source Guard. IPv6 First Hop security is discussed to help you understand some of the common security threats on IPv6 campus access. The last section of the security part deals with DMVPN concepts and configuration, IPv6 tunneling concepts, L2 VPN and its flavors. GET VPN is the last security feature discussed here.
  • Part VI – Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) – The title of this part is self explanatory. The goal of this part is to introduce MPLS VPNs. But before that MPLS unicast IP forwarding is discussed as it’s the foundation on which MPLS VPN will be built. Nice drawings will show you and help you to understand better MPLS operations with labels. Here you will learn about LDP as one of the label distribution protocol. Then the most important application of MPLS, MPLS VPN (Virtual Private Networks) is discussed in detail. And by detail I mean what you need to make sure you are covering the blueprint. There is another CCIE track where you will need to know a lot more about MPLS. VRF Lite is presented here with a nice use case as well.

The second volume is no different than the first volume with regards to the quality and accuracy of the information presented.

The topics covered in the second volume are somehow more complicated than the ones from the first volume and the authors did a great job breaking down the topics and explaining them in a way that is easy for the reader to assimilate.

As one that recently recertified his CCIE Routing and Switching by taking the new 400-101 exam, I wish I had these books (both volumes 1 and 2) to help me study for the exam. I wouldn’t have wasted time going to multiple sources to read about the new topics.

For one that is preparing for the CCIE R&S written exam, this book is a must and I’m even recommending it to everyone who needs a single source of information for networking topics at a more advanced level without going in much detail as you would by reading the Cisco documentation.