CCIE-Wireless Lab: What Did I Learn?

As you may or may not know I recently attempted the CCIE Wireless Lab in San Jose. I wish I could say as a result of that I gained those numbers everyone wants, but I did not.

What did I learn from my experience in taking the exam?

  • Practice, practice, practice. Speed is key, learning everything by heart without looking up on the Doc site is important. Just because you think you know how to do something doesn’t mean you can do it when the pressure is on, so practice everything!
  • Study with distractions. The room is not completely quiet, and if you are taking the wireless lab at San Jose you sit right next to the racks. If you are the type of person that needs an absolutely quiet environment make sure you have some constant hums of fans running.
  • Read the entire lab book. By reading the entire lab book I was able to layout all my tasks ahead of me in an organized way. You should be able to group your tasks together by what needs to be done. If there is a setting that requires the radios to be off then group those together. If a setting requires a reboot that needs to be priority one if possible.
  • WCS is your best friend! According to the blueprint you have multiple WLCs, how do you manage the SSID settings across all of those efficiently? By using WCS templates.
  • Learn your route/switch components and even some voice QoS components.
  • All answers are found in the design guides and configuration guides. Make sure you read those. Afterall, if you fail the OEQs you fail the lab regardless of your score on the lab.
  • All tasks requested were very straightforward and reasonable, you have plenty of time to finish.
  • Find people online to study with, there are a few of us on Twitter (@blakekrone, @revolutionwifi, @jenniferlucille, @the_wifi_guy) that are attempting the lab.
  • And last but not least, just go for it. I knew it was going to be hard but I gave it my best shot just to get the experience of taking the lab. Very few pass on their first attempt. You may have to take the lab more than once but it only takes ONE time to pass!

I’ve booked my next attempt for February 15th in San Jose, hoping to pass! Until then, I will be reading my CCNP to brush up on my route/switch and will be learning QoS more.

And before you leave a comment and ask, I will not break NDA rules and tell you everything that was on the exam!


  1. Jennifer September 23, 2010 at 11:36 pm

    Glad to see you’re able to look on the bright side of round 1! Knowing the odds are stacked so heavily against you on the first try makes it easier to go in and see what it is all about. It is almost *fun* even – not many get brave enough to actually pony up the cash and take a stab at it. You’ll be back, I will too. 🙂

  2. Tunde September 24, 2010 at 2:17 am

    What is required is that first attempt and you will be pretty good for the second and hopefully the passing attempt.
    I also will be going back for the second and hopefully passing attempt soon now that I’ve seen all that is required!!!

  3. larry September 24, 2010 at 7:49 am

    Just post the screenshots – we won’t ask…

    1. blake September 24, 2010 at 10:12 am

      What screenshots?

  4. Jeff September 24, 2010 at 8:15 am

    The first attempt at the lab is always an eye-opener, I remember my first attempt. The key to passing is not giving up or getting discouraged. I have always said, Cisco has your number – they are just waiting for you to come and get it.

    Keep up the good work and positive attitude, you will pass.

    1. blake September 24, 2010 at 10:10 am

      I actually prefer the noise, I would go insane with silence.

  5. Chris November 17, 2010 at 10:58 am

    I agree with all your comments except:

    *All tasks requested were very straightforward and reasonable, you have plenty of time to finish.*

    There are a lot of tasks to be done in 8 hours and they don’t word many of the questions clearly.

    1. blake November 18, 2010 at 10:00 pm

      I heard the lab was designed to be completed in 4 hours. How much prep did you do before hand?

  6. ghassan January 29, 2011 at 3:29 am

    are there some persons know what is the best company for CCIE Wireless lab Boot Camp

    1. blake January 31, 2011 at 3:53 pm

      CC Boot Camp has one as does IP Expert, I’m not sure who is the best as it is still a new exam with new materials.

  7. Shahid February 24, 2011 at 5:01 am

    Did you pass?

    1. blake March 2, 2011 at 8:56 pm

      Not yet, still working towards it!

  8. Amjad August 26, 2012 at 3:58 am

    Well, finally you are CCIE Wireless Blake. 🙂
    I hope that I will follow you. Wish me luck.
    I’ll consider all your points. Thank you.

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