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7.31.2015

CCIE: Attempt #3

My day started off great. The troubleshooting section was up first and I quickly found my rhythm and started knocking off tickets. When I finished troubleshooting I still had a massive 4-pointer un-resolved, but it was the only ticket I didn't complete so I was happy. That will earn me a PASS!

Diagnostics (diag) was not straight forward this time. One ticket was simple and the second two were large. Very difficult to sift through all the configuration and topologies to solve them. Questions were not as straight forward as my previous attempts and were somewhat confusing. I worked on the last ticket until my 30 minutes expired. Diag left me nervous.

Configuration was familiar territory as well and went smooth. Nothing really tripped me up and everything was straight forward (for the CCIE). I botched one section which cost me a good hour to clean up but I was way ahead on time, so no big deal. With a little over an hour to spare I had finished all configuration sections with only one or two small sub-sections not working.

I ran through each section and verified functionality and double checked any show commands requested. I then spent a couple minutes working through those two issues but decided to leave them. I had already added up my points to be 85% and I didn't want to break something major this late in the game.

I quit my lab and left feeling good about the day. At the very worst I figured I got the dreaded pass/pass/pass FAIL (cut-score) results. I felt good overall.


Results came in around 9PM. FAIL...

I opened the results and almost couldn't believe what I was seeing. I passed troubleshooting but failed configuration. Failing configuration is an understatement. I bombed the hell out of configuration. Of the 5 sections I only scored above 50% in one, Network Services.

The longer I reviewed the results the more shock and confusion took over. I couldn't believe it. How could this be right? Are you sure this is my test? It wasn't until a day later I noticed I also failed diag. Just adding insult to injury now!

I have no clue what did this or how I could even complete that much and score this low. I didn't break any requirements and just like previous attempts everything was straight forward. Even the layer-2 section I scored below 45%. How is that possible and still have a fully functioning layer 3 and VPNs?

I'm really at a loss for what happened outside of maybe fat-fingering everything or devices crashing after I saved configuration. Killer is I scored so low that I don't have the option for a re-read.

This one stings a lot, but I need to focus on how to pick up the peaces and build a strategy for attempt #4. I don't know what to think right now.