Introduction to Cisco Collaboration

Some time last year, Cisco revised their entire voice track and made it into a collaboration. It was announced that the last test date for Cisco Voice certification track would be September 17, 2015. Enter Cisco Collaboration!

This is a fusion of voice and video. As someone who has been involved in the deployment of voice and video solutions, I can say we all saw this coming. The world is moving to the point where almost all communication will be video- and voice-based. In this article, I will be writing on the certification topics and the certification requirements for CCNA Collaboration. If you are ready, let’s go!

Cisco formerly had CCNA Video and CCNA Voice exams/certifications. Now a candidate will get a single certification after taking the required exams. A candidate will get a certificate with CCNA Collaboration!

It comprisess two separate exams—one with a focus on unified communications solutions and one emphasizing the implementation and troubleshooting of video infrastructures.

Combined, these two courses provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to describe the characteristics and assess requirements for video solutions while also implementing and troubleshooting Cisco UC.

The exam normally takes about 75 minutes.

There are two required exams to take this exam

Exam Code
210-060 CICD Implementing Cisco Collaboration Devices (CICD)
210-065 CIVND Implementing Cisco Video Network Devices (CIVND)

210-060 CICD – Implementing Cisco Collaboration Devices (CICD)

Course Breakdown

This exam tests a candidate’s knowledge of Cisco Unified Communications (UC) solutions. A candidate learns the various components and workings of Cisco UC systems, including:

  • Administrative and end-user interface options
  • Call and media stream flows
  • Call signaling
  • Endpoint and end-user administration tasks
  • telephony and mobility features
  • User administration
  • Cisco UC solutions maintenance

Cisco has broken the topics down into small bits.

  1. Describe the Characteristics of a Cisco Unified Communications Solution
    1. Describe the Cisco Unified Communications components and their functions
    2. Describe call signaling and media flows
    3. Describe quality implications of a VoIP network
  2. Provision End Users and Associated Devices
    1. Describe user creation options for Cisco Unified Communications Manager and Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express
    2. Create or modify user accounts for Cisco Unified Communications Manager
    3. Create or modify user accounts for Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express using the GUI
    4. Create or modify endpoints for Cisco Unified Communications Manager
    5. Create or modify endpoints for Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express using the GUI
    6. Describe how calling privileges function and how they impact system features
    7. Create or modify directory numbers
    8. Enable user features and related calling privileges for extension mobility, call coverage, intercom, native presence, and unified mobility remote destination configuration
    9. Enable end users for Cisco Unified IM and Presence
    10. Verify that user features are operational
  3. Configure Voice Messaging and Presence
    1. Describe user creation options for voice messaging
    2. Create or modify user accounts for Cisco Unity Connection
    3. Describe Cisco Unified IM and Presence
    4. Configure Cisco Unified IM and Presence
  4. Maintain Cisco Unified Communications System
    1. Generate CDR and CMR reports
    2. Generate capacity reports
    3. Generate usage reports
    4. Generate RTMT reports to monitor system activities
    5. Monitor voicemail usage
    6. Remove unassigned directory numbers
    7. Perform manual system backup
  5. Provide End User Support
    1. Verify PSTN connectivity
    2. Define fault domains using information gathered from end user
    3. Troubleshoot endpoint issues
    4. Identify voicemail issues and resolve issues related to user mailboxes
    5. Describe causes and symptoms of call quality issues
    6. Reset single devices
    7. Describe how to use phone applications

The focus of this exam is now on becoming a well-rounded engineer, with knowledge in more than just CUCM and Call Manager Express (CME).

These are the major topics in the CCNA voice curriculum as such; anyone previously in the voice field should not have too many issues with the exam.

210-065 CIVND – Implementing Cisco Video Network Devices (CIVND)

This exam tests a candidate’s knowledge in aspects of deploying video conference solutions.

  1. Video Concepts
    1. Describe the functional components of video solutions
    2. 1.1.a Provisioning and scheduling management
    3. 1.1.b Video compositing
    4. 1.1.c Streaming video
    5. 1.1.d Recording and storage
    6. 1.1.e Media players
    7. 1.1.f Media convergence
    8. 1.1.g Media managements
    9. 1.1.h Video convergence
  2. Endpoint Configuration
    1. Describe video product models
      1. Mobile devices
      2. Desktop systems
      3. Multi-purpose systems
      4. Surveillance cameras and encoders
      5. Immersive systems
      6. Peripherals and add-ons
      7. Cabling connections
      8. Digital media players
    2. Describe environment recommendations
      1. Room lighting recommendations
      2. Room acoustics recommendations
      3. Room power recommendations
      4. Room HVAC recommendations
      5. Room materials (windows, floor material, wall material, etc.)
      6. Room size and background wall
      7. Viewing distance
      8. Physical security recommendations
    3. Implement desktop endpoints and surveillance cameras
      1. Network settings
      2. GUI interface and CLI
      3. Control plane
      4. Cables
      5. Test call
      6. User acceptance test
      7. Microphone calibration
      8. Camera calibration
      9. Media playback on PCs
    4. Describe features and functions
      1. Auto collaboration
      2. MCU capabilities versus Telepresence Server
      3. Audio add-in
      4. PIP
      5. FECC
      6. Resolution setting
      7. Multi way vs. multi-site
  3. Troubleshooting and Support
    1. Describe troubleshooting methodologies
    2. Identify endpoint issues
      1. Cabling
      2. Peripherals
      3. Network connectivity
      4. Registration
      5. Call setup
      6. Media quality
      7. Mid call feature issues
    3. 3.3 Collecting system information
      1. Logs
      2. Status
    4. Manage configuration
      1. Backups
      2. Restore
      3. Reset to defaults
      4. Password recovery
    5. Implement key CLI commands
    6. Monitor events and alerts
  4. Conferencing Concepts
    1. Describe multi-point control units
    2. Describe conferencing features
      1. Switching and layout options
      2. Cascading
      3. Conferencing add-ons
    3. Describe scheduling vs. ad hoc vs. on demand features

Wow! I know this might seem like a whole lot of topics, but trust me: In practice, you need all these skills. For someone who is not currently in collaboration (video and voice) deployment, I strongly recommend you go for training where you will get hands-on experience on the equipment.

With the focus here being solely on video and its integration with voice networks, candidates for the exam will gain a breadth of knowledge during the studying process that can be applied in many real-world scenarios.

I will be breaking down some of the topics in future articles. In closing, don’t let the number of topics scare you. Collaboration is really fun and enjoyable.