Unanswered Question
May 29th, 2007

ok. now I'm upset. I cannot get passed this exam. My planning and designing/Technology are my lowest (55%). My Troubleshooting at 75%. My Technology at 85%. what gives--cause I'm about to! what the heck am I doing wrong here.....I seem to get stuck on the sims---and waste too much time on them--so I have to rush to finish the rest...argh....a frustrated wannabe CCNA.

I have this problem too.
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dgoodridge Wed, 05/30/2007 - 00:37

Commiserations, you'll do it next time I'm sure.

Here's a couple of little tips:

1) Don't waste too much time on the labs. You don't know how weighted these are and some people I know have even skipped them completely and still passed. (Not that I'd recommand that!!!)

2) It sounds simple but most people fail on the things they know they are going to fail on. For example people usually know their weak points and try to avoid them; hoping they just won't show up in the exam.

Sit and write down each of the technologies/areas covered in the exam (maybe around 10-12 for CCNA) then write down a confidence level out of 10 next to each one. If you've done this 100% honestly that should tell you what you need to revise.

Never rely on the "Well I'm sure I won't be asked much about that" tactic.

Hope that helps.


bwgray Wed, 05/30/2007 - 05:00

Well it sure can be frustrating to fail it. I failed CCNA my first go round and it was a hard pill to swallow, as I had gone through MCSE without ever failing a single one.

That said after I failed I took a couple of weeks break, and then started going through the materials all over again, and sure enough I picked up some points I had missed.

So if I were you, and you had problems with the Sims, I would 1st ask myself, what did I struggle with? Was it what they were asking me to configure? I'm sure you can basically remember the scenario - and no don't post here - but perhaps go and review similar scenarios before going to write it again. I would guess that the sims would be an important part of the exam, and not to be taken lightly.

But hey lick your wounds, hit the books and get back in there champ. Nothing worth doing is ever easy... :)

alexwillsher Thu, 05/31/2007 - 02:49

Do Intro and ICND separately. The problem with the CCNA can be trying to remember everything you've learnt and hoping the things you know best come up in the exam.

When you do the two exams you have a clearer idea of what you can expect in each and can concentrate on a smaller group of subjects for each exam.

tduplantis Thu, 05/31/2007 - 06:39

On the contrary, I believe the labs are weighed very heavily. I breezed through the questions and had two labs. One lab I botched completely and I failed.

jlhainy Fri, 06/22/2007 - 11:03

Here is a link that is very interesting and may lift your spirits. Instead of going for CCNA all at once, try the new CCENT, which is basically just the ICND exam. It seems to me that the is the hardest of the two. Once that is done, you will have a new cert and then be an easier test away from CCNA.

erickdelcastillo Thu, 05/31/2007 - 11:01

Hi David,

In my personal experience I haven't done any simulation, now I'm doing my CCVP, in GWGK test I've found a simulation and lost nearly 30 minutes trying to make it work, not for a lack of knowledge instead the simulation software doesn't work at all, by the way try to focus in areas where you aren't feeling confortable, CCNA is a longer test, but keep the faith, you'll do it the next time.

dianhongluo Thu, 05/31/2007 - 17:32

I agree with your opinion.Today I tried my second time of CCNA test and so sad, I still stuck on the simulation. So many simulations took much time that I couldn't finish other questions in 90 minutes. I believe I have strong technology, planning design and basic troubleshooting skills. But CCNA requires too much hands-on experience in cisco proprietary.

delatobanoah Tue, 06/05/2007 - 20:39

Just learn your commands. As long as you know the basic router and switch commands the sims are actually pretty simple on the ccna. Good luck in the future!

stephenneville Thu, 06/07/2007 - 06:28

"But CCNA requires too much hands-on experience in cisco proprietary."

Its a cisco exam so learn it the cisco way

smothuku Thu, 06/14/2007 - 01:25

Hi ,

why don't you try boson simulaotr for CCNA for preparing simlation questions...

Practice makes man perfect...

best of luck :)



dubselig1 Wed, 06/20/2007 - 11:51

If you or someone you know are graduates of a Cisco NetAcadamy login and use their PacketTracer. Great tool for working on all your commands.

jrensink78 Tue, 06/19/2007 - 13:00

The only way to get faster at the simulations is practice. The books that I bought to study for the test had simulation software included. Before I took the test, I spent a good amount of time just practicing simulation questions. Once you do them all 5-7 times each, you start getting pretty proficient at them. It's not just knowing how to do them, it's being able to get them done quickly as to not limit your time for the other questions.

You may only get a handful of simulation questions during the exam. But if you think that they are tripping you up, then take the time to practice until they become second nature. I bet if you spent 10 hours practicing simulations, you'd have them down pretty good for what you need on the CCNA.

nicklehmen Tue, 06/19/2007 - 03:33

I also have found that the CCNA Pocket Command Guide book is an excellent reference. That combined with the Boson Net Sim, I feel, have prepared me to tackle the sims when I take the vendor exam. My skill remains to be seen, as I won't be taking the exam for another 2 weeks. Good luck!

suelange Wed, 06/20/2007 - 10:24

I too failed ICND 1st time. Skip Boson that was a waste of my money. It's all spoon fed and has so many bugs that it doesn't perform correctly in most situations.

Let me suggest you try two things. If you want real hands on, check with You can get 3 days pod rental that you can access over internet. He had good labs that you could work then, you could branch out and try the off the wall stuff too. It was great.

Also, consider a test engine like pass4sure. They have very life-like questions that make you think.

What I found was that knowing the material wasn't the same as applying it. There is a huge difference in asking "what is the default timeout for RIP" vs. showing you a table and asking you "what can you tell by looking at this table?" (answer: a route has timed out). Get a good test engine so you can get used to how the questions are formated.

2pparish Wed, 06/20/2007 - 13:19

The ICND can be difficult, even moreso then the CCNA exam.

Go the CCNA prep center and take those free exam questions along with the simulations.

Make sure you can setup a router with basic stuff like routing protocols and be able to ping and check connectivity.

With all those resources you should be good to go.


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