Well i have A+ and N+. I mostly want to do network admin work with servers and workstations. I work for a major internet company in the UK doing tech support but i would like to get more into the setup side of servers and clusters etc.. The reason i looked into the CCNA is it seems to cover alot of the areas i am interested in. I was just wondering for anyone that does have a CCNA if it has helped them carrier wise etc.. Did you find that it has made you understand the whole area of networking more?
Your last question first - yes. However, most of the CCNA is specific to the Cisco IOS. However, it does make you understand subnetting throughly which is important for networking. Most server admins don't really understand subnetting ... so if a network engineer gives them a /26 subnet mask they just kind of glaze over and most network engineers soon learn to give them the default gateway, network mask, and IP address and when it doesn't work to always check that first.
However, since you say you want to do "network admin work with servers and workstations" I would point you in the direction of learning and getting certified on Network Operating Systems instead of CCNA. What I mean is Windows 2000 MCSE, xNix certification on some kind of Unix OS, or Novell.
If you go the MCSE route, you can pick up Workstation certification along the way.
While CCNA will be helpful to you in getting a grasp on the lower layers of networking - routing, how TCP/IP works, subnetting, etc., it won't really help you very much in pursuing a Network Administrator position which deals more with Servers and Server Operating Systems.
I agree with Psuedo.. I work for an ISP also in their NOC and my aspirations learn towards more system related work, however I have to get my CCNA for work (they are making it a requirement) I've learned alot in just a few short chapters, I think if you want to be well rounded and therefore more marketable a CCNA would be something worth working towards. If nothing else you gain some valuable experience with the lower layers as Psuedo mentioned which might help you track down crazy stuff on a solaris box some day who knows Besides I'm personally tired of the "network guys" giving me guff when I glaze over when I see a /26 hehe
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