Passed BSCI today!

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Apr 21st, 2008
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Second try was the charm! Passed with an 822. Not awesome, but it got the job done. Going for the BCMSN next. I'm hoping that will be a bit easier. Fortunately, this is where most of my experience lies.

Also, if anyone has successfully used Dynamips for BCMSN studies, let me know. I know you can use the switch NM and do some stuff with it, but I haven't played around with it much to see how much BCMSN stuff that you can do with it. Trying to figure out if I can get by without picking up some physical switches. Thanks!

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Overall Rating: 3 (1 ratings)
johnaceti Thu, 04/24/2008 - 09:39
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Congratulations on passing. That test is really woopin me. May I ask what you used for study materials?

jrensink78 Thu, 04/24/2008 - 10:09
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For books, I used the CiscoPress Self Study and Exam Prep guides. I also got the CiscoPress Lab Companion guide for hands-on practice scenarios. I definiteley recommend the Lab Companion. After going through each a lab a couple of times, the simluation questions on the test were actually pretty easy.

I used GNS3, which puts a nice GUI on Dynamips for my lab. I was able to do pretty much everything on that except for a few of the multicast labs.

The only practice test that I used was the one included in the Exam Prep book.

There are definitely a lot of topics covered in this test. Keeping all of the routing protocols straight can be tricky. The first time I took the test I failed by 2 points (ARG!). But the $150 was worth it since I was able to find out how close I really was, and the areas where I did poorly. After that, I studied my 2 worst areas hard and brushed up on the other areas to keep them fresh in my mind. Then I was able to pass.

Good luck with your attempts. Keep plugging away and you'll get there.

ccnp_seeker Thu, 04/24/2008 - 13:59
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I'm trying to set up a lab in GNS3. But when I load two pc's CPU goes to 100%. I tried defining the idle processes, but still can't make it work....I have an AMD processor og 1.86 GHz with 1GB RAM and 80GB of hard drive (about 50 GB free)

any advice for setting up the GNS3 to run with good performance???


mjostler01 Thu, 04/24/2008 - 16:46
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I passed the BSCI yesterday with a score 922 . I found that the study material that I used was the cisco press exam guides, CBT nuggets computer based training helps. If you can get your hands on real routers it will help. If you can't get a copy of boson netsim 7 which helped me out a lot. Nothing beats using the real equipment though.

sirdudesly Thu, 05/08/2008 - 22:25
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as mentioned before make sure you right click on the router (once done for the image of ios it never has to be done again if you use the same image for every router) and set the idle pc. For reasons unbeknowst to me this isn't expressly made clear when you start GNS3. IMO it should prompt you to calculate it after you've started IOS

mikeadams31 Fri, 04/25/2008 - 09:46
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I took the 642-812 4/24/08 and failed. Got a 514. I went to the Global Knowledge course, Cisco Press 4th addition, and Transcender. For over a month every night and weekends I studied. Really knew my stuff. When I started the test it felt as thought I was taking a different test.

I used real equipment to build the labs (did not have all the parts I needed). However I did have two 3750's, 2621, and 5 3524's. The test has 55 questions with 90 minutes to complete them. 5 of the question have 5-6 questions in one. Giving you a total of 70+ questions to complete in 90 minutes. All most impossible to complete seeing how most multiple questions have 6 to 7 options.

Does anyone know of any lad simulators for this test? I still need to pass the test. The Cisco Press book (Isbn-13: 978-1-58705-273-6) does not come with Prep test, CD, Labs nothing, a real waste of $65 dollars.

jrensink78 Fri, 04/25/2008 - 10:38
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Bummer about the test.

I have only just started studying for the BCMSN test, so I can't give much advise specific to this test from experience. But check out the Cisco Press Exam Certification guide (ISBN-13: 978-1-58720-171-4). The book that you have stems from the Cisco course curriculum, which is usually pretty good. The Exam Certification Guide is specificially written for test preparation. It is more concise and typically doesn't include any extraneous topics. It also comes with a CD containing practice test questions.

Also, I found the Lab Companion book for the BSCI test to be a big help in my hands-on practice. I have the one for the BCMSN test as well, but I have yet to go through it. I assume it should be equally as helpful. Basically the hands-on practce that I got from the BSCI lab companion book made the simulation exam questions pretty quick and easy.

It sounds like your lab is pretty good. If you're layer 2 switches aren't allowing you to try everything, you may want to pickup one or two 2950s.

Hopefully you can find what works for you. Keep plugging away and you'll get there.

Eric Hansen Thu, 05/08/2008 - 19:49
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this might be a bit after the fact....

To the original post concerning Switches and Dynamips.

I use a 3660 with a NM-16ESW in all my BSCI labs when I need a switch. It works great and the setup is very similar to how you do normal router.

for example in your net file:

image = *location of your image/bin file*

ram = 128

slot1 = NM-16ESW

model = 3660

f1/1 = R1 f0/0

f1/2 = R2 f0/0

f1/3 = SW2 f1/0

When you add the 16esw the fastethernet ports start in slot 1, but you can put them in slot 2 also. (f2/1 etc..)

I did find a few hiccups with router switches in dynampis. When you cycle the dynampis server your vlan data will vanish. And also on a few occasions i had to put the router into a switch mode by entering "no ip routing"(thanks to marshal) in order to get ip default gateway to work. Other then that works great.

jrensink78 Fri, 05/09/2008 - 04:58
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Thanks for your reply.

I ended up biting the bullet and picked up a couple of 3550s and 2950s. I figured it would just make things a lot easier for my BCMSN studies.

moles3144 Fri, 05/09/2008 - 10:54
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I passed the BSCI with a 966 but when I took it the first time I pulled a 750. Point being is the Exam Cert Book is a shame. Probably the worst book I have ever used to try and study for a cert. Go get the CCNP Prep learning guide that seemed to explain/cover what was actually on the test. I know there are post on this same exact topic but I have passed BCMSN, BSCI and now the ONT and out of those 3 BCMSN and ONT were decent study material but the BSCI book which cover the hardest in my opinon material was a JOKE!

Eric Hansen Fri, 05/09/2008 - 10:56
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what was the ISDN of the book that you didnt like and the ISDN of the one you did? If you happen to have them. thanks.


moles3144 Fri, 05/09/2008 - 10:59
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This was the CCNP Learning book which is the good book

ISBN-13: 9781587052231

This book is a POS and unfortunately this comes with the CCNP Book Kit

ISBN-13: 9781587201479

Eric Hansen Fri, 05/09/2008 - 11:05
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Darn, thats the POS book I have. :( And I was just thinking last week that I thought the BGP and Multicast chapters were lacking.

Ive been studying out of the "Routing TCP/IP" vol 1 and 2 primarily.


David Parker Fri, 05/16/2008 - 18:58
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Just took the 642-812 exam and passed with a 988 on the 1st try. Took two months of studying in my "spare time" (nights & weekends). Primarily used the Cisco Press CCNP BCMSN Official Exam Certification Guide Fourth Edition by David Huckaby. Also used the CCNP Portable Command Guide Library. This is a must have for quick review of CLI. I currently manage our network so I have many years of practical experience but certainly would have failed miserably without studying.

I did have enough spare gear to setup a lab consisting of a 2509 (great termminal sever) a couple of 1700 routers, 3750 w/EMI, 2950 and 2 3500XLs.

Strategy, 1st, read the book, cover to cover taking pre and post assessment tests. Practice configurations in my lab. Went back to re-read areas I felt weakest. Loaded practice tests, taking all of them multiple times. The tests have links to relevant material when you miss questions. Re-read sections I felt weak in.

I carried the Portable Command Reference around to study commands when I was in a situation where I had to wait on something or somebody. 15 to 20 minutes here and there really added up.

Side note, my boss paid a years subscription to all of Skillsoft Cisco classes (formerly Netg) but it seemed off a bit so I stuck with the Cisco Press material. Also, didn't really care much for the audio portion, seemed inefficient.


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