What are some good CCNP books

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Jan 2nd, 2008
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I'm just starting my path into the CCNP, and I see a much MUCH larger library of books out there for this test than there were for the CCNA. What books are recommended if you are coming from the CCNA into the CCNP? I see there are self-study guides and exam guides from Cisco, but which should I use? Any recommendation would be appreciated. I also may go down the CCIP route instead, but the first test is the same in each I figure. Thanks.

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Overall Rating: 5 (1 ratings)

Hi There

I am also studying for my CCNP having passed my CCNA last April.

In my opinion some good books to look at (and these are what I am now using myself) are

1. Routing TCP/IP by Jeff Doyle Vol 1 (2nd edition)

2. Routing TCP/IP by Jeff Doyle Vol 2 (2nd edition)

3. Internet Routing Architectures by Sam Halabi (2nd Edition)

4. CCIE Routing and Switching By Wendell Odom (3rd edition)

All four books are geared twoards the CCIE written exam, however I have heard from some people who have taken the CCIE written that a lot of the CCIE written topics are what they covered in the CCNP, just more detail. Also the CCIE written is a way of recertifying your CCNP.

I did start of with the BSCI self study guide and exam certification guide, however as these are specifically for the BSCI they only cover enough for the BSCI course. Now this might be enough for some people and they are certainly good books whcih have decent lab scenarios to practice if you have a home lab or rent rack time online.

Personally I fould that they would touch on something and then stop as going further was outside the scope of the BSCI. Well this really bugged me and I would end up on Google or Cisco's web site looking for further information. Since I started using the 4 titles listed above I don't have this problem so much. Another plus is that they are all extremely well written and easy to understand. I have never found reading them to be hard going.

In my opinion there is no such thing as having too much information when I sit my CCNP exams and hopefully this will put me in a good position when I am going for my number :)

Good luck with the studies.

Best Regards & Best wishes for 2008 and beyond,


dbeare Thu, 01/03/2008 - 08:03
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The books that you mention are mainly for the CCIE as far as I can tell. Should I be able to follow the concepts in them, or do they require studying at the CCNP level books before you jump into them? I'm probably going to go buy several tonight to get started, I plan on doing the BSCI stuff first since I enjoy the router side more than the switching side. Thanks for your recommendations.

Hi There

I find them quite easy to read and understand. I find that the cover the topics more completely that the CCNP books do.

I also think that having a more indept knowledge than strictly required for the CCNP will be a benifit on exam days, in the real world and in the future.

However if you are shopping for books and have time, spend some time looking through the books, read a couple of pages and see what you think. They are costly enough without finding when you get home that they don't really suit you.

Best Regards,


John Hobbs Fri, 01/04/2008 - 00:54
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Is the book described below the CCIE book you're recommending?

Have you noticed many errors in it?


CCIE Routing and Switching Exam Certification Guide (3rd Edition)

(Exam Certification Guide) (Hardcover)

by Wendell Odom (Author), Rus Healy (Author), Naren Mehta (Author)

Hardcover: 984 pages

Publisher: Cisco Press; 3 edition (November 9, 2007)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1587201968

ISBN-13: 978-1587201967

Hi There

Yep, this is the book which I purchased and recommended.

To be honest I have not gone through that much of it to notice errors. As I am currently studying for the BSCI, I am mostly using Jeff Doyles books and a little of Sam Halabis for BGP.

I bought the Wendell Odom book as it was recommended to me and the second edition seemed to be highly recommended by CCIE's who used it. I purchased the 3rd edition as it was the latest edition available and had just come out. Also Wendell Odom appears to be a well respected author of Cisco certification material.

Have you read somewhere that there are many errors in it??

Best Regards,


John Hobbs Sat, 01/12/2008 - 06:52
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Hey keeleyM.

I went ahead and bought the book. I checked the errata page at cisco press and there were about 3 errors noted there. I just started reading the book last night and didn't notice any errors - but I didn't get far - started reading after 11.

I like what I've seen so far - glancing through the entire book. The authors use a lot of CLI examples with comments added. I like that.

jorgenolla Thu, 01/03/2008 - 09:38
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Cisco Authorized Self-Study Guides for BSCI & BCMSN. These are much better than the Official study guides.

scott.hammond Fri, 01/04/2008 - 07:55
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whats the difference?

I have the 642-812 Official Exam Cert Guide, by David Hucaby and though its a decent book it has yet to prove its worth as a guide for the test.

I have read it cover to cover 3 times and seems to cover about 30% of the test.

So if there is something better I am all for making a purchase.

ccnp_seeker Fri, 01/04/2008 - 08:16
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Self study guides refer to the technologies and have more in dept information.

Usually people reccomend reading both, first the self study, so you get the theory and knwoledge about technologies covered in the exam and then the exam certificacion guide as a review.

By my experiencie with this exam, the exam certification guide is not enough. Complement by reading Configuration guides and make come searches in Cisco.com, specially on wireless clients :)

hope this helps....

jorgenolla Fri, 01/04/2008 - 17:34
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I went through CCNP with both the Official Examinations guides, and the Self-Study Series for CCNP. If you really want to learn the technologies, and fully understand the concepts, the Self-Study guides are hands down the best books around.

I'm currently studying for CCIE and have found the BCMSN it's by far the best switching book around! It also includes detail chapters in wireless, multicasting, multilayer switched network design, metro ethernet, Catalysts witching architecture, Performance and connectivity Tools, Best practices for deploying IP Telephony, and much more in-depth material that you will certainly not find on a book that is design to help you get ready for a test! Thought they help when getting ready to take the test; as a format for review only.

Best Regards

dbeare Fri, 01/04/2008 - 20:44
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I picked up the BSCI self-study guide today, I think it will help me get down the concepts to prepare for the BSCI test. It looks to have a lot of good information on EIGRP, OSPF, BGP, IS-IS and IPv6. I can't wait to get into the real meat of this stuff.

John Hobbs Sat, 01/12/2008 - 07:10
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jorgenolla wrote:

"...much more in-depth material that you will certainly not find on a book that is design to help you get ready for a test! Thought they help when getting ready to take the test; as a format for review only."


I agree with jorgenolla.

I know a lot of people who try to learn ONLY enough to pass an exam. I DID THIS WITH MY CCNA IN 2000 and it only served to HURT ME now! Don't do this! Take the time to learn MORE than you think you'll need to pass the exam. Take the time to really learn and understand the material.

Remember - even if you study only to pass the exam and do by chance pass the exam, the cert alone will not help you configure or troubleshoot in the real world with your boss breathing down your neck! So do it right!

Had I not got hands-on experience AFTER I passed the CCNA in 2000, I would be worthless today! Fortunately I had a very understanding boss who allowed me to learn a lot AFTER I passed the exam. If not for him, I would have been in bad shape!

I don't usually use all caps as I did above but this is so important. And I learned it from personal experience.

Good luck everyone!


jesusponce Wed, 02/20/2008 - 21:05
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I am very disappointed, I have already submitted 6 times the examn 642-901 bsci exam and i can not get pass, my score is above 750 but I fail to reach the minimum. I did The ccna in the second chance, I have already studied cbt nuggets, testking, pass4sure, ciscopress, & trainsignal without get pass. I begin to think that is imposible pass the new version. I do not what to do. I do not know what is the secret to get pass. I read selft study and exam guide 2 times each one.

dodgerfan78 Wed, 02/20/2008 - 21:30
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the best thing for the switching exam is the 3550 config guide. cisco press book and bryantadvantage are what i used and passed with high 800's, but they didn't cover everything and i felt slightly underprepared after the test.

But now going through the config guide (for ccie prep) it has a lot of good stuff. you should have the basics down if you passed ccna. also buy a 3550 switch and play with it.

for routing exam, i used dynamips and the bsci book was good, but those routing tcp/ip books are excellent prep.

for ont and iscw, i used cisco press book and cisco doc cd. plus a lot of labs on dynamips. these are not that hard, but i do a lot of qos and some aaa at work....so it was rather easy to pick up


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