Jump to content

My IT Certification/Continuing Education Saga


Recommended Posts

  • Replies 458
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • V.T. Eric Layton

    191

  • Temmu

    46

  • abarbarian

    45

  • amenditman

    43

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Please note my new sigline image...     I passed.

Yup. That alphabet soup needs to add up to $$$ for it to be worthwhile.   I already have A.S. (Associate of Science - Computer Engineering Technology), C.E.T. (International Society of Certified Ele

Aren't we all.

V.T. Eric Layton

Well, back to school today. I'm about 4 chapters ahead in my book. I'm also reading another CCNA study guide simultaneously as reenforcement. :yes:

 

My CompTIA Network+ Vol 2 showed up yesterday. My CompTIA A+ Vols 1 and 2 should be here later this week. Oh, boy! The A+ I can probably pass now. I just want to brush up a bit. The Network+ will be no tribbles at all after studying for CCNA. Weeeee! Now I just need to scrounge up some funds for the CompTIA tests. :yes:

 

Oh, I'm riding in with a fellow student who offered to swing on by and get me on his way to class. That will sure save me a bundle in gas $$$.

 

Off I go... :)

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

Carpooling was OK, but I'm so used to driving myself everywhere that it seems weird, and a bit distressing, to not be able to just walk out and get into my own vehicle and leave somewhere. We'll see how this goes. It's also a bit out-of-the-way for the fellow picking me up. I told him today that if he wanted to reconsider, I'd have no issue with driving myself again.

 

We're all starting to get a bit overwhelmed. The bottom line here is that they're trying to force-feed us an entire semester's worth of information in just 28 days or less. Less because they're also spending some days on resume prep, interviewing, and other presentations that do not have anything to do with this certification.

 

Another thing that we found out is that they're running us through this "boot camp" with the goal of passing the INCD1 exam, which is the first half of the two-part CCNA certification. The second half (ICND2) is paid for and will be administered to us, however, it looks like we'll be responsible for preparing for that test on our own.

 

They've promised all sorts of help and support to pass these tests, but the bottom line is that it's just not possible to cover in 28 days or less everything that one needs to know to pass these tests. Effort is required on the part of the individual. There are some students in this class who are just doing the class time and figuring that this is enough. They're just now realizing that this isn't going to work. I think that has them a bit nervous. We're all in desperation mode in this class. We're all long-term unemployed. We're all having major issues getting jobs in our previous career fields. This is do or die for all of us.

 

Personally, I'm not worried yet because I KNOW that I can STUDY, STUDY, STUDY my ascii off if I have to to pass these tests. I could have done this without the course. Signing up for the seminar and successfully being chosen out of 150+ people as a candidate most likely to succeed at this has motivated me to achieve this. The amount of material is overwhelming, but lights are starting to light up here and there. Things are starting to come together for me. I know this isn't the proverbial rocket science. I can do this... and I WILL.

 

Alrighty then... that's my self-motivational posting for this week.

 

I have to go read 4 chapters in the textbook now.

 

Later...

Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

I just spent an hour or so on my Cisco Learning Academy page. I took the first four assessment tests. I didn't do too badly... need to review routing protocol a bit, though.

 

Well, I'm off to go STUDY, STUDY, STUDY, sleep, STUDY, class, eat, STUDY, STUDY, STUDY... et cetera, et cetera.

Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

One thing I have going for me is that tests have never intimidated me. I don't freeze up or panic while taking tests. If I know the material, I can pass any test. Even if I just understand the basics, I can usually muddle through to a passing grade. I guess well. ;)

Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing I have going for me is that tests have never intimidated me. I don't freeze up or panic while taking tests. If I know the material, I can pass any test. Even if I just understand the basics, I can usually muddle through to a passing grade. I guess well. ;)

Guessing well is half the battle with most things isn't it?
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

Well, we're still trying to gobble up a semester+ worth of material in 26 four hour sessions. It's proving interesting. Some thing are beginning to gel. I'm getting more comfortable with the Cisco IOS command line.

 

The last 30 mins or so of class today, we answered (or tried to, anyway) about 15 or so sample ccna type test questions. A few of them were UGLY thinker type scenario questions... "If SW1 is connected to port 22 or Router4 and the default port setting is being used, what is the bla-bla-bla... and how does this affect level 2 frame size?" There were even a few of these the the instructor answered incorrectly. ;)

 

Well, guess what I'm going to be doing this weekend? Yup... STUDYING, STUDYING, STUDYING!

 

Oh, and tomorrow we're not even covering any CCNA stuff. The resume/interview coach lady is coming in to teach us how to get a job. ;)

 

G'night all...

Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

Resume Lady was... well, she was... bubbly, informative, helpful, etc. :)

 

We're (the class) just not so sure how all this psycho-babbly, self-help, feel-good, hugs-all-round stuff is going to help get us a job. We'll see...

Link to post
Share on other sites
ross549

I've sat through one of those.... unfortunately, these folks giving the advice are the liberal arts/humanities majors who have no real experience in the field they are applying for. In your case, you have significant experience in a field that gives you skills absolutely vital to the field you are looking at.

 

The best advice I have is to tailor your resume to the job you are going for. Highlight the skills you have acquired both recently and in the past.

 

Example: You have experience in electronics repair. This makes you very methodical when troubleshooting problems using a precise analytical approach. On a resume for a networking company or IT department, highlight the problem solving skills you have acquired.

 

Also, I bet employers are looking for a resume that is simple and clear. No flowery language, and no "magic phrases." You have skills. Let those skills speak for themselves.

 

Adam

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

Yup. That's pretty much it, Adam. :yes:

 

=====

 

Anywho...

 

I just wanted to jump on here real quick-like and say howdy. I've been studying, studying, studying all weekend so far. Today's absolute must-do challenge was to learn how to subnet mask. I've almost got it, I think. I'm off to do a few more practice exercises.

 

Later all...

Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

I was studying ahead for this next week's CCNA class stuff this weekend. I was having a hard time wrapping my head around subnetting, though, so I set aside Sunday to conquer this topic. I was determined to learn this if it took all day. Subnetting questions are a BIG part of the CCNA test. Well, turns out it nearly did take the entire day. If you're interested in subnetting and subnet masking, here are the fruits of my labors from yesterday...

 

Subnet Masking Notes - Self Study Sunday 20 Jan 2013

 

This is a compilation of notes on subnet masking using Richard Deal's method, Wendell Odom's method, and my own hybrid method along with some practice examples.

 

1) Determine the network and host requirements

 

- determine the number of hosts needed for the largest subnet.

 

- determine the maximum segments (subnets) that you have in the network... how many subnets will be needed, in other words.

 

If dealing with an existing network, in depth analysis will be necessary to determine the above requirements.

 

If designing a new network, you will most likely already have mapped out your needs.

 

You will also need to know the network IP (ID) and determine the class of IP (A, B, C, etc.)

 

2) Satisfy host and network requirements

 

2 sub S = number of networks you need (S represents subnet bits)

 

2 sub H - 2 = number of useable hosts (two reserved for subnet and b-cast addresses) on your largest sedment (H represents host bits)

 

S + H = total number or host bits you have for a class of address*

 

*A = 24, B = 16, C = 8

 

3) Determine the subnet mask

 

Note: This section of Deal's method is confusing to me. Leaving blank for the moment. (see first exercise step 3 below for details on how to accomplish this step)

 

4) Determine the Network Addresses

 

Each network address increments above the zero subnet by a factor equal to the 2 sub S above. For instance, if the above was 2 sub 4, the increment between subnets would be 16. If 192.168.1.0 were the zero subnet, then the next subnet would be 192.168.1.16, next 192.168.1.32, next 192.168.1.48, etc.

 

5) Determine the Directed Broadcast Addresses (b-cast) of each Subnet

 

Simple subtract 1 from the next subnet to give you the b-cast of the current subnet. Using the subnets above in step 4, for example, you'd have subnet 192.168.1.16 --> b-cast = 192.168.1.31, subnet 192.168.1.32 --> b-cast = 192.168.1.47, etc.

 

6) Determine the Hosts Addresses

 

- the host address ranges would simply be the range between subnet and the broadcast IP. For instance, if the subnet was 192.168.1.0 and the b-cast was 192.168.1.15, the range of usable host address would be 192.168.1.1 to 192.168.1.14... and so on for each subnet.

 

Easy-peasy, right?

 

OK, here are some exercises to test how this works...

 

Exercise ONE:

 

Step 1

 

You have a Class C network (192.168.1.0). You need 4 segments (subnets) and 50 hosts/segment. Find the subnet mask, the subnets, the direct b-casts, and the host ranges.

 

Step 2

 

> 2 sub S = number of subnets

- in this case we need 4 subnets, so 2 sub 2 = 4

- S (network bits) = 2

 

> 2 sub H - 2 = number of hosts

- we need 50 hosts in this case, so 2 sub 6 = 64 hosts will work for us

- H (host bits) = 6

 

> S + H = Class host bits - in this case, Class C

- 2 + 6 = 8

 

Step 3

 

Using Deal's rather confusing method in step 3 of his book, I can determine that the subnet mask of this network ID (192.168.1.0) will be 255.255.255.192.

 

Here's how I broke down the mask:

 

| network bits = 24* | subnet bits (H) = 2 | host bits (S) = 6 |

 

*remember Class C

 

Add class address network bits to subnet bits: 24 + 2 = 26

 

Using DDN (dotted decimal notation) to create the mask, we know that Class C addresses have the the first three octets as the network address, so the first three octets of the mask are all 1s --> 255.255.255.?

 

Since we know used 6 host bits from our calculation in Step 2, we can determine that the host number in the mask will be the addition of the 6 least significant figures in that byte --> 32+16+8+4+2+1 = 63. Now subtract 63 from the full byte (255) and that comes to 192.

 

OR (easier method using binary)

 

First 24 network bits = 11111111.11111111.11111111.x

 

Remaining subnet bits = 11000000 = 192 decimal

 

So, the subnet mask for 192.168.1.0 is 255.255.255.192 or 192.168.1.0/26 (Prefix or CIDR - classless interdomain routing)

 

Steps 4, 5, and 6 in a charted format:

 

subnet hosts b-cast

192.168.1.0 192.168.1.1 to 192.168.1.62 192.168.1.63

192.168.1.64 192.168.1.65 to 192.168.1.126 192.168.1.127

192.168.1.128 192.168.1.129 to 192.168.1.190 192.168.1.191

192.168.1.192 192.168.1.193 to 192.168.1.254 192.168.1.255

 

Here's where I had problems...

 

Exercise TWO:

 

Step 1

 

You have a Class B network (172.16.0.0). You need 490 segments (subnets) and 112 hosts/segment. Find the subnet mask, subnets, direct b-casts, and host ranges.

 

Step 2

 

> 2 sub S = number of subnets

- in this case we need 490 subnets, so 2 sub 9 = 512

- S (network bits) = 9

 

> 2 sub H - 2 = number of hosts

- we need 112 hosts in this case, so 2 sub 7 = 128 hosts will work for us

- H (host bits) = 7

 

> S + H = Class host bits - in this case, Class B

- 9 + 7 = 16

 

Step 3

 

| network bits = 16 | subnet bits (S) = 9 | host bits (H) = 7 |

 

network + subnet bits = 25 --> /25 CIDR

 

First 16 network bits = 11111111.11111111.x.x

 

Remaining 9 subnet bits --> 11111111.1000000

 

Subnet mask for 172.16.0.0 - 255.255.255.128 or 172.16.0.0/25

 

Steps 4, 5, and 6 in charted format

 

subnet host b-cast

172.16.0.0 172.16.0.1 to 172.16.0.126 172.16.0.127

172.16.0.128 172.16.0.129 to 172.16.0.253 172.16.0.254.

172.16.1.0 172.16.1.1 to 172.16.1.126 172.16.1.127

172.16.1.128 172.16.2.129 to 172.16.1.253 172.16.1.255

 

and so on for 508 more subnets.

 

One last one...

 

Exercise THREE:

 

Step 1

 

You have a Class A network (10.0.0.0). You need 9000 segments (subnets) and 560 hosts/segment. Find the subnet mask, subnets, direct b-casts, and host ranges.

 

Step 2

 

> 2 sub S = number of subnets

- in this case we need 9000 subnets, so 2 sub 14 = 16,384

- S (network bits) = 9

 

> 2 sub H - 2 = number of hosts

- we need 560 hosts in this case, so 2 sub 10 = 1,024 hosts will work for us

- H (host bits) = 10

 

> S + H = Class host bits - in this case, Class A

- 14 + 10 = 24

 

Step 3

 

| network bits = 8 | subnet bits (H) = 14 | host bits (S) = 10 |

 

network + subnet bits = 22 --> /22 CIDR

 

First 8 network bits (Class A) = 1111111.x.x.x

 

Remaining 14 subnet bits - 1111111.11111100.0000000

 

Subnet mask = 10.0.0.0 - 255.255.252.0 or 10.0.0.0/22

 

This would give you 16,284 subnets (10.0.0.0, 10.0.4.0, 10.0.8.0, etc.) each with 1024 addresses of which 1022 are usable for host devices (0 and 255 reserved, as always).

 

=====

 

I've found that using the binary network+subnet bits method in Step 3 is the easiest way for me to determine that "interesting octet" (the non-255 octet), particularly on the class B and C exercises.

 

OK, I had to use a hybrid of Deal's and Odoms methods before I could wrap my head around how this works. Now I just need to practice, practice, practice!

 

=====

 

6 Steps for Determining IP Address Components

 

1. You know an IP and a subnet mask

 

- you want to determine if the IP is a network, host, or broadcast IP

 

- REMEMBER: network IPs are always even numbers (last octet), broadcast IPs are always odd numbers, host IPs can be either

 

2. Look at the subnet mask and find the "interesting octet"... the octet that is the border between the network and host.

 

- it will always be one of these - 0, 128, 192, 224, 240, 248, 252, and 254

 

- only when an octet contains one or more binary zeros is it a host component

 

3. Subtract the interesting octet from 256 -->

 

- 256 - interesting octet = increment number (magic number)

 

4. Create a subnet chart starting at "subnet zero" - xxx.xxx.xxx.0 - incrementing by your "magic number" and work your way up to just past the subnet that contains the IP from #1 above.

 

5. After you've created your partial chart for the subnets, add the b-casts to the chart.

 

- REMEMBER, b-cast address is always one less than the next subnet address --> b-cast = next subnet address - 1

 

6. Between your subnet addresses and the b-casts on your partial chart, fill in the hosts ranges for each subnet.

 

- the hosts range will be all available IPs between the subnet address and the b-cast address.

 

Let's do an exercise to see how this works. We'll "reverse engineer" one of our exercises above to illustrate better the processes involved.

 

Exercise ONE:

 

1. We know the IP is 192.168.1.134 and the subnet mask is 255.255.255.192 or 192.168.1.0/26.

 

So...

 

2. Determine the interesting octet, the boundary between network and host. In this case it's the last one on this mask - 192.

 

- REMEMBER, only octets that contain one or more binary zeros will have a host component --> 192 = 11000000 binary = host portion of mask

 

3. Using our formula for determining the magic (incremental) number --> 256 - interesting octet = magic number (subnet increment) -- 256 -192 =64, so we now know that our subnets on this network increment in steps of 64.

 

4. Now that we know our increment number and our subnet zero IP, we can begin to make our chart:

 

subnet

 

192.168.1.0

192.168.1.64

192.168.1.128

192.168.1.192

 

5. From the above subnet chart we can determine the b-cast addresses for each subnet:

 

- REMEMBER, b-cast addys are always 1 less than the next subnet addy

 

subnet hosts b-cast

 

192.168.1.0 192.168.1.63

192.168.1.64 192.168.1.127

192.168.1.128 192.168.1.191

192.168.1.192 192.168.1.255*

 

*you don't have another subnet to subtract the -1 from to determine this last b-cast, but you do know that 255 is the highest value you can have in a single byte (octet) of an IP. Also, incrementing the last subnet by 64 would give you 192.168.1.256, which tells you right there that this network only has 4 segments (subnets) total because 256 is not a valid value for that last octet.

 

6. You can now fill in your host ranges. For brevity's sake, I'm only going to show the range that contains the IP we are investigating:

 

subnet hosts b-cast

192.168.1.128 192.168.1.127 to 192.168.1.190 192.168.1.191

 

From the above you can see that our mystery IP of 192.168.1.134 belongs to the 192.168.1.128 subnet and it is indeed a host address.

 

Here's a tricky one...

 

Exercise TWO:

 

1. You have an IP of 172.16.5.0 with a subnet mask of 255.255.254.0

 

- first off, note that this is a Class B address

 

2. Find the interesting octet - the boundary between network and host

 

- this is a Class B address. REMEMBER, Class B addresses = network-16 bits (first two octets), host-16 bits (last two octets)

 

So, in this case our interesting octet is the third one - xxx.xxx.254.x

 

3. Using this, we can determine the increment number that the subnets will increase in this network by pluging the numbers into our formula --> 256 - interesting octet (254) = 2 --> the subnets will increment by 2 (in the THIRD OCTET - network host boudary in this Class B address)

 

4. Build your network chart:

 

subnets

 

172.16.0.0 (subnet zero)

172.16.2.0

172.16.4.0 --> we can already see that our mystery IP will be in this subnet somewhere

172.16.6.0

 

5. Add your b-cast addresses:

 

subnets b-casts

--- ---

--- ---

172.16.4.0 172.16.5.255*

172.16.6.0 172.16.7.255*

----

 

*b-cast always one less (-1) than next subnet

 

6. Add your host ranges:

 

subnets hosts b-casts

--- --- ---

--- --- ---

172.16.4.0 172.16.4.1 to 172.16.5.254 172.16.5.255

172.16.6.0 172.16.6.1 to 172.16.7.254 172.16.7.255

--- --- ---

 

At first glance of the mystery IP, one would almost think that it was a subnet address. This is what made this one tricky. 172.16.5.0 actually falls into the range of hosts addresses on the 172.16.4.0 subnet.

 

Note: for test-taking purposes, you don't have to build the entire chart. Just zero in on the subnet that you know contains the address you're investigating. Figure out where that address fits into that subnet... is it the subnet address, a host, or a b-cast addy? REMEMBER, subnets = even number (last octet), hosts can be either even or odd, b-cast = odd number.

 

So, there you have it.

 

=====

 

End today's notes.

 

Looks like fun stuff, huh? ;)

Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

OK, studied bunches and bunches the past three days. I've built my confidence level back up a bit. Sadly, as I shove new stuff in, I think some of the older learned stuff is leaking out. I did worse on some assessment exams tonight than I did originally a week or so ago. RUH-ROH! Brain reaching capacity? Buffers overloaded? Oh noes....

 

Time to take a break. I finally (Saturday) was able to pick up Inspector Lewis Season 2 that I had reserved at the library months ago. Figures it would come in now that I'm too busy to watch them. I'm going to go watch a couple right now, though. I need some pleasant distraction from all this studying. I'm starting to dream about this stuff.

 

Off I go...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Inspector Lewis - cool! Do you like Morse as well? I love most of the English cop shows like that, especially Midsomer Murders, also Waking The Dead and Spooks.

 

BTW, was your previous post written in Klingon? It was all Greek to me. :D

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest LilBambi

Good one sunrat!

 

Yes, time to air out the brain with some well deserved entertainment. And don't forget some exercise. They say the real brain clearer is exercise. Bet you haven't had time to ride your bicycle.

Edited by LilBambi
Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

Inspector Lewis - cool! Do you like Morse as well?

 

Morse is my absolute favorite! I really like Lewis and Hathaway, but Morse was DA' MAN!

 

I also LOVE the Barrington Pheloung theme song for Morse...

 

 

 

BTW, was your previous post written in Klingon? It was all Greek to me. :D

 

Uh... it's Network-speak. ;)

Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

Good one sunrat!

 

Yes, time to air out the brain with some well deserved entertainment. And don't forget some exercise. They say the real brain clearer is exercise. Bet you haven't had time to ride your bicycle.

 

I'm working out every morning with two 35 lbs dumb bells that I inherited from my nephew Jason who passed away in 2009. My goal is to have Pauly Sr. arms by this summer.

 

Paul-Sr.jpg

 

Without the tattoos, though. For those who don't know... Pauly Sr. is founder/owner of Orange County Choppers.

 

I haven't had the chance to walk or ride my bike much this past three weeks. :(

Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

Our class for today is meeting at the Dale Mabry campus so we can tour the networking room over there. This campus is literally walking distance from my house... about 1 mile. However, I don't feel like carrying the 10 lb text book and my 25 lb laptop bag that far, so I'll drive over there. ;)

Link to post
Share on other sites
amenditman

BTW, was your previous post written in Klingon? It was all Greek to me. :D

That was ancient Geek, similar to Greek, but more difficult to decipher.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
amenditman

Our class for today is meeting at the Dale Mabry campus so we can tour the networking room over there. This campus is literally walking distance from my house... about 1 mile. However, I don't feel like carrying the 10 lb text book and my 25 lb laptop bag that far, so I'll drive over there. ;)

I always miss you when you are around. I am on that campus every Monday and Wednesday. You go on a field trip on Tuesday. Figures!

I could have bought you a salad.

Edited by amenditman
Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

I had a cup of some nasty dark roast coffee in the cafeteria over there today. Man! There is some nice scenery on that campus.... young, though. :yes:

Link to post
Share on other sites
amenditman

Even the older students in my classes (around 30) make me realize how young, idealistic, and unrealistic they are.

 

There are a few of us who qualify as experienced and gaining wisdom, but we are few.

Link to post
Share on other sites
V.T. Eric Layton

My 8 fellow classmates range in age from early to mid 40s all the way to mid-60s. We're all old farts. ;)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...