I've been on the Microsoft train for years and now have been challenged by my supervisor to attain the CCNA. I'm a self-study, home-lab kind of person and obtained my MCSE that way. I have access to some older Cisco equipment but have a few questions that I hope someone can help me with.
1. What devices should I acquire for an adequate home lab to prepare for the CCNA? I'd prefer the real thing instead of simulators.
2. How can I obtain updated IOS software from Cisco without current contracts for any older equipment I obtain for a home lab? ie Cisco 1700 router.
Any info is appreciated.