Master the CCIE Lab Exam: Expert Tips & Tricks

CCIE Exam Tips and Tricks

CCIE Exam Tips and Tricks

The CCIE Lab Exam is undoubtedly a formidable challenge. In this blog, I am excited to share a range of methodologies that proved effective for me in passing the CCIE Lab exams. I do think of myself as a bit of an expert here since I have passed 7 of them ;-).

Arrive Well-Rested and Prepared

Facing an 8-hour exam demands sharp focus and mental clarity. To stand your best chance, ensure you're well-rested. If your journey involves travel to the exam center, plan to arrive a couple of days in advance to acclimatize to any time zone shifts. Familiarize yourself with the location beforehand to avoid any last-minute stress on the exam day.

The Exam Format

The exam is divided into two modules: the Design Module and the Configuration Module. The Design Module spans 3 hours and consists of multiple-choice questions that evaluate your capacity to align technologies with customer requirements. The Configuration Module deals with actual device configurations. You are given 5 hours for the Module. Each section aligns with the CCIE Blueprint, subdivided into tasks.

Navigating the Design Module

In the Design Module, pay meticulous attention to customer requirements presented in varied formats, such as email exchanges. Your task is to propose fitting solutions. Always mirror the exact names of objects or configurations mentioned – discrepancies can prove costly. Even slight deviations might cause you to forfeit points.

Tackling the Configuration Element

In the Configuration Module, adopt a "one task at a time" mindset. Break down the tasks into manageable steps. By methodically focusing on individual tasks, the larger configuration objectives become surmountable.

Precise Configuration

Precision is paramount, as completing all requirements in a task ensures full points, while even a single omission results in zero points. For example, if they have mentioned the name of the EIGRP process to be “ABC”, you need to make sure that it is “ABC”; “abc” will be incorrect and you will lose all the points for the task. If they have mentioned the Sub-interface ID to be “E 0/0.11” either in the question document or on the Diagram, you need to make sure that the sub-interface ID is “E 0/0.11”.

Leverage Notepad for Efficiency

For configurations spanning multiple devices, employ the notepad application to draft your configurations. Once finalized, you can paste them onto the devices. This approach saves time and minimizes errors during repetitive configurations. This is especially helpful in VPN, BGP & MPLS configurations.

Command Aliases for Swift Execution

Boost your efficiency by creating command aliases for commonly used verification commands. Familiarize yourself with these aliases during your preparation to streamline their use during the exam.

  • SIR: sh ip route
  • SRR: sh run | section router
  • SIB: sh ip bgp
  • SV4: sh bgp vpnv4 unicast
  • SON: sh ip ospf neighbor
  • CIB: clear ip bgp * soft

Regular Configuration Backups

Develop a habit of frequently saving your configurations. A prudent approach is to save after successfully completing and verifying a task. Avoid interrupting your workflow by saving mid-task. Complete the task, ensure its alignment with requirements, and then save your work.

The Achievable Challenge

While the CCIE exam poses its challenges, rest assured it is conquerable. The sense of accomplishment from triumphing over such a rigorous test is immeasurable. This certification can significantly enhance your career prospects. I extend my best wishes for your success on this rewarding journey.


Remember, persistence, preparation, and precision are your allies in the quest for CCIE excellence. Best of luck!

Best of luck on your journey to CCIE excellence!