My Certification Journey
Share and learn from real life stories of those who are on the path to become Juniper Certified
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JNCIA Journey of a Young Mind

by on ‎05-20-2013 06:13 PM

In my two years of major in College, we were taught Cisco IOS. After graduation, I landed a job that was different from the environment that I was used to. The company that offered me an opportunity is actually a Juniper Networks Partner who does not offer the equipment of the network vendor that I learned in school. 


JNCIE-SEC: How I Mastered Junos Security

by Trusted Contributor ‎07-19-2012 10:02 AM - edited ‎07-19-2012 10:22 AM

After studying Computer Systems Engineering at university and starting my career with a small Microsoft partner, I decided I wanted to build on the advanced networks and information security courses I studied at university and specialise in network security. Since then I’ve worked at COMPUTERLINKS for five years, working primarily with Juniper Networks and also another vendor in the ADN space.  Although I’m employed as a support engineer, I work across our support, presales and consulting teams as a subject matter expert for these two vendors.


I’ve been working with SRX services gateways and also EX switches since they were released, and used a mix of self-study and the instructor-led JIR and AJSEC courses at COMPUTERLINKS’ London-based training centre to prepare for the pre-requisite exams for my JNCIE certification. I passed my JNCIP-SEC certification at the first attempt on the 31st October 2011 and more or less immediately decided I wanted to pursue the JNCIE-SEC certification and to take my knowledge of Junos Security to the next level. I booked my exam for the 23rd January 2012 to give me a target to work towards.


I am often asked this question by Juniper customers, partners and employees.  What value will a technical certification have for me and for my company? My response to this question can be a little biased – I have managed technical certifications for almost 20 years in four different IT companies so technical certification is a bit of a passion for me. However, you don’t really want a biased response from the company sponsoring the certification. You want to know what your peers think!


To get that unbiased answer we surveyed over 7,000 network professionals that have gone through the process of earning a Juniper Networks certification. This survey was completed in November 2011 and included Juniper customers, partners and employees as well as students and people currently seeking employment.   Individuals were from all parts of the globe – 43% in APAC, 32% in EMEA and 25% in Americas.  An executive summary will be posted on J-Net in the next few weeks – but I wanted to give you a short preview of our key findings.


Hi, my name is David Roy; I have been working for Orange for the past four years in the Network Support team for the Domestic Backbone. Here’s a short story of my Juniper Networks certification journey, which took me just under two years to complete.


My Juniper certification journey started back in 2010 with the M/T track, which was the closest certification related to my job. At the time the books from Harry Reynolds were available and constituted most of my learning for this certification track, I found these to be awesome books, which helped me a lot. I would recommend that you try to get hold of these books if you can, you might have to try the second hand market on ebay. Next up was the JNCIS-M/T; to be honest I didn’t find this track so difficult. After that, I then prepared for the JNCIP-M/T Lab (actually, the P level of the old track was an eight hour lab exam.) To prepare myself for this exam I used a Junos emulation (called Olive), with ten logical systems. All topics for the P level are well implemented in Olive. The first lab was so impressive after two hours I passed, so to configure my topology and playing with several interfaces I was a little more relaxed and I finished the final exam in eight hours (no more, no less). The preparation of my JNCIE-M/T was done by using Olive again for the IGP/BGP/VPN configurations. Nevertheless, I used a real MX960 to prepare the L2VPN part (not well supported by Olive). The E level was much more difficult, the IGP topology was quite unstable. I was so stressed and I spent a lot of time debugging it, and unfortunately I didn't have time to finish the entire exam (so I lost critical points) a little disappointing at the time. Needless to say I didn't pass the JNCIE the first time. However, second time round for JNCIE I was much better prepared for the troubleshooting part as I had created more scenarios in my own lab, which I think armed me with a better understanding and knowledge going into the exam, I finished the exam on time and I passed the JNCIE-M/T in December 2010.


In 2005, when I was 18 years old, I finished high school I already knew what I wanted to do. I wanted to start a career in IT! The only thing I didn’t know was in what direction I wanted to go. So, I did a little bit of everything. The first important decision I took was to only finish high school and start working without going to university. I figured that, with enough dedication and focus, 4-5 years of work experience added with the right technical certifications would get me further in the IT world than a degree would get me. After 6 years I think I can say that it definitely worked for me! 


For years I was an active member on the ScreenOS forum, a forum for Netscreen before J-NET, some of you may remember me as “frac” in this community. I also spent a lot of time with the local Juniper Networks team and worked on some very interesting projects.


In 2008 and 2011 I was rewarded by Juniper with the title “Master of System Engineering of Juniper Networks”, which was a major accomplishment in my career.


Transitioning from CCNA to JNCIA

by mountainrescuer ‎10-05-2011 09:33 AM - edited ‎10-05-2011 09:48 AM

My first true networking role was a familiar one to many; configuring and supporting Cisco routers as part of a managed service. Working in a Cisco house, I was encouraged to embrace the Cisco way of doing things and in turn, became certified as – CCNA, CCDA, BSCI, BCMSN etc.


I later found myself managing a network based around Foundry Networks switches and within this role I made a pivotal decision for my career – deploy new switches for the network. The existing switches were ageing and performance was quite poor. So, I evaluated what was on offer from other vendors including Foundry (now Brocade), Cisco and Juniper Networks, then picked the best for our scenario, which was Juniper Networks. The EX platform brought the benefits of the virtual chassis technology, enabling ease of management, redundant power supplies and the carrier class background in terms of reliability and support.


Juniper Networks Technical Books