Home Lab For New CCNP?

Unanswered Question
Jun 19th, 2010

Hey guys,

I'm in the middle of CCNA, and I will be launching into the new CCNP (ROUTE, SWITCH, TSHOOT) straight afterwards.

There is lots on info on building home labs for the old curriculum, but not the new one.

I'm thinking of building a home lab for the new CCNP with the following hardware:

-3550 x2

-2950 x4

-2620 x4

-3610 x1

-2621XM x1

--2511 x1

Could somebody kindly tell me if this setup is adequate for the new CCNP? I would appreciate it very much!

Have a great day,


I have this problem too.
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Overall Rating: 5 (6 ratings)
jeremyneedle Sun, 06/20/2010 - 16:32

Hello. I am a CCNP, and here are my thoughts

I don't think you'd need 6 switches. I personally used 2x3550 and 2x2950. That should be plenty on the switching end to test inter-vlan routing and all the complexities of Spanning Tree, as well as VTP

For your routers, the 2620xm is fine, and instead of the 2511 you can get a 2520, which can act as a Frame Relay switch since it has 4 serial ports.

I also think you should get yourself 2 x 871's.

1. They're cheap [check out ebay]

2. They support EIGRP/OSPF

3. They also support cooler features like GRE/DMVPN, IPS, CBAC & zone-based firewall, enterprise NBAR, and Web gateway/clientless webvpn. These may not be on the new CCNP, but you really do need them in the real world

4. Also, it supports the Cisco SDM. The advantage of this is you can use the SDM gui to configure your router, then sort of reverse-engineer the CLI commands.Esp for more complex things like DMVPN, WebVPN, and zone-based firewalls

The exact setup I used was this

2 x 3640 each w/ 1 x 4 serial port NM, and 2FE2Wic NM

2 x 871 running advanced-security

2 x 3550

2 x 2950

Also, check out Cisco's lab manuals for Routing & Switching. They may be for the old 901 and 812, but the labs are EXTREMELY good.

CCNP Building Multilayer Switched Networks (BCMSN 642-812) Lab Portfolio


CCNP Building Scalable Internetworks (BSCI 642-901) Lab Portfolio


As far as the lab equipment TWO BIG SUGGESTIONS

#1 check out ciscokits.com [much more reliable than ebay]

#2 consider becoming a cisco Select partner. You pass two tests [not difficult ones, AND can be taken @ home rather than at a vue testing site], and THEN you qualify for an Not For Resale discount of 70%

rob.huffman Tue, 06/22/2010 - 06:22

Hey Kev,

I thought I might add this to the great tips you have received from Jeremy (+5 Jeremy!)

The recommendations from Cisco Master Wendell Odom's Blog are very good;

CCNP Lab Part 1 - Overview and Budget Survey

CCNP Lab Part 2 How Badly Do You Need an L3 Switch?

CCNP Lab Part 3 - Which L2 Switch?

CCNP Lab Part 4 - Where's the Beef in ONT?

CCNP Lab Part 5 - CCNP Wireless Config (Poll)

CCNP Lab Part 6 - ISCW Features and Feature sets

CCNP Lab Part 7 - Routers for ISCW

CCNP Lab Part 8 - Some Cheap Options for BSCI

CCNP Lab Part 9 - ISCW and MPLS

CCNP Wrap-up I: Picking Switches

CCNP Wrap-up II: Picking Routers

CCNP Wrap-up III: Build List for $800 Budget

CCNP Wrap-up IV: Build List for $1200 Budget

CCNP Wrap-up V: Build List for $1600 Budget



Please support CSC Helps Haiti



burleyman Tue, 06/22/2010 - 06:28

Rob and Jeremy,

Great posts.... +5 for each.

Those will come in handy and I go for my CCNP.


rob.huffman Wed, 06/30/2010 - 06:32

Hey Mike,

Hope your summer is going great!! Doing any tree cutting (hahahahaha

Best of luck with your studies and path towards the CCNP cert!



burleyman Wed, 06/30/2010 - 07:54

No tree cutting for me.....

I am hoping to sit for my 642-813 Switch exam sometime in August. Fingers crossed.


nitin mohan Mon, 03/05/2012 - 09:25

Hi All,

i am also new to CCNP ..cleared my route exam using GNS3

Please can you specify which 3550 i should be SMI or EMI ?


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