Sunday, December 6, 2009

MPLS vs ATM vs legacy switching guys....

back when I started preparing for my ccip. the first exam and training I attended relevant to the certification was MPLS. it was an intense two week course and the instructor took almost a whole week on ATM/cell-mode/cell switching and generally telling us how important it was to fully understand ATM including popular hardware that supported it. Boy am I glad I paid attention, and that course is paying up big time.

Today I find myself in an interesting position. My employer is jumping headlong in the mpls bandwagon at the core (various departments run mpls for their own little' networks:-))...being a telco you can imagine the fear the 'old school' C7/ss7/ATM legacy type switching guys bring to our meetings. If any one there has gone through this transitions please tell me how you went about re-assuring them that apart from some added complexities:-) life moves on.....

either way Africa and some parts of Asia will probably be the last frontier for any vendor that hasn't managed to penetrate the US and european markets at the core. We have them all cisco,juniper,Huawei,alcatel,ECI etc etc to evaluate..some make it very easy to knock off...I can see at least 3 that will require a little bit of work..

Either way the traditional telco vendor's with their closed model of working centered around the operators is definately coming to an end. The focus is slowly turning to the customer/employee and their fun stuff...oh I also see a post on a similar issue over at

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

what next...

So after the lab, I had to come back to work, all my pending projects, any pending school work, my neglected girlfriend all had to be caught up with and told that it's not over yet.

The girlfriend and other friends were very understanding, my bank statement and employer tended to disagree. So im catching up on projects now till January.

Im in the middle of interesting/challenging projects. Some are fun like implementing a multivendor mpls core (Huawei/Cisco) first in a test environment and later on our main network. (I'll probably post a list of all relevant commands later). Huawei is becoming an interesting 'partner' for african networks. Im also in an interesting bet with a friend on the future of Wimax with LTE hot on its heels. Im making notes elsewhere but will share once i migrate to my own website some time in the future.

the guys at Internetwork expert have me covered on the training and in January the plan is to take a full bootcamp to sort out the the troubleshooting for the R&S ccie.

21st sept 2009....

So I went out to brussels took the lab and was immediately humbled by the experience. Everything was falling into place very well until the last 3 hours of the lab when I discovered a 'fatal' mistake made immediately after lunch. I have a few tips after that experience. All have been mentioned, Im just stressing their importance:

1: read the entire lab before you type a single command.
2: verify after each section. This turned out to be most important for me.
3: The OEQ's are a no brainer, at least for me I didn't see anything out of this world.

So its the troubleshooting section for the new format that has me a bit jittery.

I picked on the ones that really affected me. I currently feel like Gollum/Smeagol, we want my precious ring 'back':-) will take the 4.0 R&S (for everyone that i had told Im moving out CCIE SP, that will have to come after RS, i've invested too much on this to give up now:-)...

see you around....