Pursuing CCIE R&S and SP at the same time

Unanswered Question
Apr 28th, 2007


I'm currently waiting to take the R&S lab again {3rd time} but its almost impossible to get a reasonable date that's not two months plus away. So I'm wondering, while I'm in limbo, can I take my SP written. That way when either slot opens up I can take either the R&S or the SP lab exam.

By the way, I live in the U.S. and I'm scheduled for a Sept.07 R&S lab. I don't want to really travel to brussels, Brazil, Japan or any other country.

Thanks & Regards

I have this problem too.
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mikedavi1 Sat, 04/28/2007 - 15:08

A few thoughts...

The SP is booked full through December 13 in RTP. This may not be a big deal as, like you suggest, you may get lucky and get a dropped seat ~28 days out if someone drops or doesn't pay. So this is not likely a big deal.

The other concern, which may carry more weight, is that by passing the SP written prior to passing the RS lab, you lose the built-in recertification benefit. So, say you pass the SP written in May '07. Then you pass either the SP lab or R&S lab later in '07. You'll need to recert with another written by '09.

Conversely, if you pass the RS lab in '07, then subsequently pass the SP written, in '07, you'll not need to recertify until 2011.

Finally, having done both, I can tell you that if you have received any weak scores around your IGP, EGP, or multicast in your R&S attempts, or do not have strong MPLS experience, you will be wasting your time/money on the SP. The SP blueprint, though not as wide as the R&S, requires much greater depth of knowledge in each area covered. R&S knowledge, though necessary, will not carry you through the SP.

You'll have to make the call on this one based on your own skill assessment. If I had to do it over again, I'd focus on one at a time. YMMV, though.



dbdbtech001 Sat, 04/28/2007 - 19:51

Thanks mikedavi1

You touched on some relevant issues I didn't think of and they do make sense. I will go on the assumption that it is possible by your comments, but not advisable.

Misinterpretations was the cause of both my failures, not weaknesses in any one particular area. If you're taken the exam you know exactly what I'm talking about. I've spent the last month working on this issue and with the help of friends who are CCIE's and I think I've eliminated or at the very least minimized how much that will impact future outcomes. I work for an ISP and I'm very much accoustomed to specifics when I'm tasked to configure something at work. Breaking out of that mode for an exam has been the biggest challenge.

I do hope that cisco will reconize soon that two sites serving the striving expert level community in the USA just isn't enough. Maybe I'll just have to travel abroad to get a date sooner than the four months I'll have to wait.

In any case I will give your words some thought.

Thanks again & best regards

tperrier Sat, 04/28/2007 - 23:43

>Maybe I'll just have to travel abroad to get a date sooner than the four months I'll have to wait.

I just had a look out of curiosity: the earliest R/S seat available worlwide is early September in Tokyo... (except a single dropped seat in Dubai May 7th)

mikedavi1 Sun, 04/29/2007 - 08:27

I would hope you don't have to travel abroad to take the lab. Travel fatigue and language/logistics can potentially interfere with your concentration. Then too, it'll be more expensive to go abroad - weak dollar, VAT, airfare, etc.

Here's an approach to obtaining closer dates I've personally had good luck with:

It is not uncommon for folks to either drop voluntarily or for non-payment a month prior to their scheduled date. So keep your current date. Check the scheduling site many times each day until you find a closer date, then grab it. Keep doing this until you are happy with your date.

You will get lucky and pick up closer dates. Only caveat is that you may get a date that is less than 28 days away and you'll have to pay immediately.

etienne.basset Mon, 04/30/2007 - 00:09


i thought you have to pay at least 28 days before the lab date?

let's say someone drop a date 10 days away will cisco accept that i schedule this one although i didn't pay 28 before?



ps:it's boring to wait 5 months to have a SP lab...

pps: i imagine cisco won't let a free lab seat because $$$

tperrier Mon, 04/30/2007 - 00:33

If the date is less than 28 days away, you can schedule it but must pay immediately.


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