Two new certifications… and….. aspirations for another JNCIE!

Over the last month or so, I have been quietly working away at a couple more JNCIS certifications – JNCIS-QF (QFabric) and JNCIS-SEC (Security).

For those of you who have not done any Juniper certifications before – a JNCIS is roughly equivalent to a CCNP level certification. I’ve come off the back of fairly intensive study for my JNCIE-ENT, for which I was invited to sit the beta of some new test forms in February – so rather than doing 6+ an hour per night, I slowed this down to an hour or two per week. It’s actually been quite odd re-figuring out what to do with all this “free time” – so doing these certifications was a good thing to do to keep my brain occupied and learning something new!

I’m pleased to say that I passed both, getting my JNCIS-QF on 14 March, and my JNCIS-SEC on 8 April. I thought both did a really good job of establishing that the candidate had a reasonable knowledge of the subject areas covered, and would feel confident setting up either a QFabric system or a Juniper SRX in a live deployment (which I guess is the point, right?).

I’ve also decided that I am in fact going to work towards a third JNCIE – the JNCIE-SEC. In many ways, this is going to be far more interesting than the other two, given the fact that I have far less experience in the area of Network Security than I have in Service Provider or Enterprise (as I have spent most of my career working for large service providers!). I’m really looking forward to learning a bunch of new and different technologies – something which is always very enjoyable!

I do however plan to take this one significantly slower than the other two. Essentially I did all the study for my last two JNCIEs in one year – and while I am glad I did it, as I wanted to prove to myself that I could; I would not do it again as I had no life at all while I was doing it. My plan is to slowly work towards this with the aim of doing the JNCIE-SEC exam sometime in the next year. Over the next couple of months I plan to sit the JNCIP-SEC and the JNCSP-SEC – though I will be doing plenty of labbing for the JNCIE as I study for these two written exams. From there I’ll make a week-by-week study plan of what I want to learn and work out a pace to approach it, and only book the exam when I’m sure that I am entirely ready.

As I do this, I’ll be blogging regularly on some of the new technologies and concepts I will be learning – and would appreciate any feedback/corrections; much of this stuff will be very new and different for me!

I also am hoping to hear back on my JNCIE-ENT result in the next few weeks – and will post this as soon as I get it!

Thanks!