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This book covers everything you need to know in order to become CCNA certified. However, taking the time to study and practice with routers or a router simulator is the real key to success. The information you will learn in this book, and need to know for the CCNA exam, is listed in the following bullet points:

Chapter 1 introduces you to internetworking. You will learn the basics of the Open Systems Interconnection the way Cisco wants you to learn it. Also, the Cisco three-layer hierarchical model will be discussed, along with how to choose Cisco equipment based on this model. Ethernet networking and standards are discussed in detail in this chapter as well.

Chapter 2 gives you a background on layer-2 switching and how switches perform address learning and make forwarding and filtering decisions. Network loops and how to avoid them with the SpanningTree Protocol (STP) will be discussed, as well as the different LAN switch types used by Cisco switches.

Chapter 3 provides you with the background necessary for success on the exam as well as in the real world by discussing TCP/IP. This in-depth chapter covers the very beginnings of the Internet Protocol stack and then goes all the way to IP addressing and subnetting. If you read this chapter carefully, you will be able to subnet a network in your head!

Chapter 4 introduces you to the Cisco Internetwork Operating System (IOS). In this chapter you will learn how to turn on a router and
xxxiv Introduction
configure the basics of the IOS, including setting passwords, banners, and more. IP configuration will be discussed and a hands-on lab will help you gain a firm grasp of the concepts taught in the chapter.

Chapter 5 teaches you about IP routing. This is a fun chapter, because you will begin to build your network, add IP addresses, and route data between routers. You will also learn about static, default, and dynamic routing in this chapter. Written and hands-on labs will help you understand IP routing to the fullest.

Chapter 6 covers Virtual LANs and how you can use them in your internetwork. This chapter also covers the nitty-gritty of VLANs and the different concepts and protocols used with VLANs. Written labs and review questions will reinforce the VLAN material.

Chapter 7 provides you with the management skills needed to run a Cisco ISO network. Backing up and restoring the IOS, as well as router configuration, is covered, as are troubleshooting tools necessary to keep a network up and running.

Chapter 8 introduces you to the wonderful world of Novell IPX. Since IPX is still around, Cisco thinks it is important to understand IPX routing. Actually, after IP routing, IPX is a breeze. Both written and hands-on labs, along with review questions, will give you the understanding of IPX you need to pass the CCNA exam.

Chapter 9 covers access lists, which are created on routers to filter the network. Both IP and IPX access lists are covered in detail. Written and hands-on labs, along with review questions, will help you study for the access-list portion of the CCNA exam.

Chapter 10 concentrates on Cisco Wide Area Network protocols. This chapter covers HDLC, PPP, Frame Relay, and ISDN in depth. You must be proficient in all these protocols to be successful on the CCNA exam.


Appendix A is a practice exam. If you think you are ready for the CCNA exam, see if you can get by my practice exam. A second practice exam is located on the CD as well. Appendix B discusses configuring a Catalyst 1900 switch. The CCNA exam is mostly theory on layer-2 switching; however, reading the appendix, working through the written and hands-on labs, and

answering the review questions should prepare you well for the CCNA exam.

Appendix C lists all the Cisco IOS commands used in this book. It is a great reference if you need to look up what a certain command does and is used for.

The Glossary is a handy resource for Cisco terms. This is a great tool for understanding some of the more obscure terms used in this book.

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