This is the bulk comprising the quick reference guides for the three exams that you need to pass to achieve the CCNP Routing and Switching certification: SWITCH 300-115, ROUTE 300-101 and TSHOOT 300-135.

These three books combined have just above 300 pages (TSHOOT is only 66 pages) and this is expected based on the purpose of these books.

CCNP Training – Resources (Intense)

The authors of these guides managed to compress the information found in official cert guides that have 600 to 700 pages, sometimes even more, in around 100 pages without omitting any important details.

You might be familiar with Command Quick Reference, which is different from these guides because the focus is on the commands that are related to the topics covered by the corresponding exam/certification.

In my opinion, these guides should be used in addition to the official certification guides or other official Cisco documentation that you might use for the CCNP certification exams. The purpose of these guides is to present the topics covered by an exam in a review style format in a succinct way.

Some of the more advanced topics have diagrams to help understand the concept and to correlate the commands shown to configure a feature with the feature concept.

So, let’s see what each of the three quick reference guides contain.

ROUTE 300-101 has the following chapters:

  • Networking Overview – basic information about IP, TCP and UDP.
  • IPv6 Overview – this is about IPv6 addressing, IPv6 routing and about IPv4 and IPv6 integration.
  • RIP – concepts and configuration of RIPv2 and RIPNG.
  • EIGRP – this is covering EIGRP for both IPv4 and IPv6. Common topics like DUAL algorithm, neighbor establishment and route selection are covered as well. Named EIGRP is discussed and a more than self explanatory example is provided on how named EIGRP is being used.
  • OSPF – critical information about OSPF like LSA types, area types, OSPF states, OSPF packets is discussed. OSPF and OSPFv3 (for IPv6) are both covered and basic configuration examples are provided.
  • Advanced Routing Techniques – this chapter is about controlling routing updates by using route maps, prefix lists, distribute lists and is about using multiple routing protocols with regards to route redistribution and about path control by using policy based routing and IP SLA.
  • BGP and Internet Connectivity – BGP message types and BGP path selection algorithms are discussed here. Also controlling BGP updates is discussed here with prefix lists and as path access lists as implementation mechanism. Multiprotocol BGP is also covered.
  • Infrastructure Security – the chapter covers ACLs, uRPF (Unicast Reverse Path Forwarding) and different tunnelling technologies (GRE, DMVPN and Easy VPN).
  • Infrastructure Services – all sorts of services that are not critical for network functioning but which can help in monitoring the network.

This is about SWITCH 300-115:

  • LAN Switching Basics – this is about basic L2 functionalities and concepts like MAC, frame forwarding. SPAN and RSPAN are exemplified here.
  • VLANs – pretty self explanatory; this is about VLANs and other concepts related to them: trunking and VTP.
  • EtherChannels – this chapter covers both channel negotiation protocols: LACP and PAGP. Configuration examples for L2 and L3 etherchannels are provided.
  • Spanning Tree Protocol – independent STP protocol concepts are discussed like bridge ID and root bridge election. Also specifics to RSTP or MSTP or PVST+ are discussed in more detail. Different features related to STP are described like root guard, portfast, UDLD, BPDU guard and BPDU filter.
  • First Hop Redundancy Protocols – VRRP, HSRP and GLBP are covered here with VRRP and HSRP in more detail than GLBP. Configuration examples are shown for each of them, except GLPB.
  • InterVLAN Routing – this is a short chapter where as you can figure out it’s about routing between VLANs. CEF switching is presented here as well.
  • Switch Security Features – different L2 protection mechanisms against attacks are presented here. Port security, ACLs on ports and VLANs, DHCP snooping, Dynamic ARP Inspection, and storm control are a few of them.
  • Campus Network Design – this discusses hierarchical network design, high availability and resiliency. SSO (Stateful Switchover), NSF (Non-stop Forwarding), VSS (Virtual Switch System) are introduced as a mechanism to provide them.

TSHOOT 300-135 has these chapters:

  • Tools and Methodologies of Troubleshooting – as there is not a specific troubleshooting process, this chapter focuses on showing a troubleshooting framework with a troubleshooting methodology and a structured troubleshooting best practice. Troubleshooting tools are introduced here as well.
  • Troubleshooting Switching Technologies – this covers troubleshooting STP, VLANs, intervlan routing and first hop redundancy protocols.
  • Troubleshooting IP Networking – This is about troubleshooting IP services like NTP, SNMP and NAT.
  • Troubleshooting Routing Technologies – Of course routing protocols troubleshooting couldn’t be left out and this is what this chapter is covering mostly: OSPF, EIGRP and BGP routing.

One drawback of the reference guides is that they are not available in hardcover format, only in electronic form. Although nowadays many have a tablet and there is no need to be in the front of the computer, there are still people that would like to have the possibility to read the book in the classical format.

Considering that you get a very condensed form of the official certification guides and in this case, the quality is very good, I found very useful these quick reference guides and they should be used as a final review before taking the exam.