Friday, June 5, 2009

Narbik Kocharians CCIE Bootcamp Day 5 and more ...

Day 5. The final day. This is the day where Narbik shows you how mighty RIPv2 is. He will show you how to have RIPv2 advertisements never expire using Multicast RIP and RSPAN RIP. He will speak about RIPv2 updates, how do we optimize RIPv2, all the way to default-gateway and advance scenarios. Narbik will let us know that only prefix-lists will work with the 'gateway' command (not to be confused with the 'ip default-gateway' command) in RIPv2.

One great thing Narbik thought us about RIPv2 is that in RIPv2 authentication, it is found that a router with a higher key will allow incoming routes from a router with a lower key even though the keys do not match each other. This is of course not the case the other way around. Narbik has a lab on this and I will be eager to start work on this particular lab since this will enlighten my RIPv2 knowledge in a whole new perspective. As Ethan Banks of CCIE Candidate ( has told me earlier on Twitter, I will learn a few new things about RIPv2 from Narbik. Guess what? I did and again I was humbled by Narbik's teaching on RIPv2.

Narbik had us took a short break at around 1045hrs (this is the exact that Narbik usually have us take a break to prevent us from CCIE overburn ;-)) and then continued with his studying tips for the CCIE lab exam. I am not going to be a spoiler for those who have already committed to joining his bootcamp in the next few weeks/months but all I can say is that although his tips are simple and places importance on certain topics within the CCIE lab blueprint, the tips are VERY valid and plays a very important rule in a very structured way of studying for the CCIE exam.

Narbik ended today's class at around 1145hrs and if you have been reading my blog posts, you will notice that Narbik does not cover certain topics like ip services, security (access-lists) and redistribution. You CANNOT cover all the topics in the CCIE lab blueprint in 5 days with the depth of information and lab examples that Narbik has given us. If he had done the same amount of labs as those in his workbooks for each and every topic on the CCIE lab blueprint, it is almost impossible to finish it in 5 days unless he have us all turned to sleepless zombies working hard on his labs 24 hours per day for 5 days. That is probably a possibility but count me out man. I wouldn't want to be the first CCIE-certified zombie ;-). Narbik also does not touch on TCL scripting as to me, if you do TCL scripting, you may have to worry about not doing a correct TCL script. He however firmly suggest that we do what is most comfortable to us meaning if we are comfortable with TCL scripts, then we should continue using TCL scripts. We did not start the discussion on macros/aliases yet ;-).

After Narbik's class, we received our attendance certificate from TrainPro Academy ( Yap Chee Yuen whom I have been addressing as Yap (I should be calling the dude Mr. Yap since he's older than me), a person whom I really respect for never giving up until he has gotten his CCIE, who also happens to be the big boss of TrainPro Academy, prepared our attendance certificates and having Narbik handing them to us with our pictures taken at the same time. We also had a photo session whereby most of us had our pictures taken with Narbik individually. You see, the class intend to make Narbik feel like a superstar. We felt Narbik was pretty pissed with those little men with big ears in Cisco who screw things up especially when it came to multicasting AF calculation ;-).

After saying our goodbyes and well wishes, Narbik left us at around 12.15hrs. It will be another four more months before Narbik makes a possible return here to have another R&S bootcamp. I have told him that rest assured I will be there to attend. My immediate goal is not to pass the CCIE lab. That's my mid-term goal. We need to be realistic here based on my current knowledge and preparation ;-). My immediate goal is to understand what Narbik has taught me throughout the last 5 days. My immediate goal is to understand the technologies so well that the next time he is in town, he will say to himself "hey ... this guy improved a lot from the last time I saw him". Those are my immediate goals.

With that, thus ends my 5 days CCIE bootcamp journey with Narbik Kocharians. As he has said earlier in the bootcamp, my relationship with him begins. I will turn to him should I have any problems with his labs or do not understand a technology but not before I have exhausted every single possible option. Narbik, if ever you are reading this blog post man, thank you so much for coming down here to deliver a bootcamp. You have my deepest gratitude and thanks for spending so much effort and time to deliver what you have delivered to us in the last 5 days.

To those who followed my blog and is considering joining Narbik's bootcamp, this is my take. If I had only USD $2,500.00 will I spend it on Narbik's bootcamp? The answer is YES. No matter how many times you ask me, I'll still say the answer is YES. If I don't have USD $2,500.00 but am willing to keep saving until I do, will I spend it all on Narbik's bootcamp. Again my answer is YES and again no matter how many times you ask me, the answer is still YES. I don't usually advocate a person but his bootcamp now sits on top of my list of CCIE bootcamp recommendations. Sit through one and you tell me whether I am just a Narbik-fanboy or whether what I wrote here is the pure truth. Just don't let Narbik drink scottish whisky...

Just in case you are wondering, Narbik did not force me nor did he gave me some kind of incentive to write nice stuff about him (Narbik again if you are reading this ... a quarter million US dollars sounds nice *grins*).

For those of you who are in Malaysia or have friends in Malaysia that wants to join a CCIE bootcamp or maybe even go for other Cisco certifications, I would strongly recommend TrainPro Academy. They are an authorized Pearson VUE centre so you can take your Cisco exams here including the CCIE written. What impresses me is the way they have organized Narbik to travel to Malaysian soil for his bootcamp up to taking care of our daily snacks (yes we have excellent snacks during the last 5 days people). I am giving them two thumbs up (I only have two thumbs so go figure ;-)) for this commitment and dedication. They can be located at and if you are lazy to surf the web, give them a call at +603 2287 5009 / 6009. Just tell them you came across Nickelby's blog and they might give you a free notepad when you register for a course ;-).

Last but not least, here are the must-have pics of the day with comments of course.
TrainPro Academy (, the training centre that Narbik held his Malaysia bootcamp. TrainPro is the only centre that is partnering with Narbik to deliver his bootcamp in the South East Asia region as far as I know.
Narbik teaching us about last minute study strategies for the CCIE exam. Moments ago, he was teaching us on RIPv2 and if you see the whiteboard behind him, he has some pretty mad arse CCIE skills. I am going to start calling him the CCIE-nator ;-)
Yap Chee Yuen, the owner of TrainPro Academy. Yap is a CCIE himself and it's thanks to him that I had the opportunity to participate and attend Narbik's bootcamp. Once again, thanks a lot Yap for believing that I am a good choice to attend Narbik's bootcamp.
Khaled (the dude with the beard) flew all the way from Saudi Arabia to attend Narbik's bootcamp even though there will be one in Dubai sometime soon. That tells you how good Narbik's bootcamp is that some people could not wait but instead fly down to a faraway place just for the bootcamp. Khaled is taking his lab in August 2009. Beside him is Sai, a Mynmarese who currently works in Singapore. He spent quite a sum to just come and attend Narbik's bootcamp. Another testimony of Narbik's bootcamp's superb quality. Besides Sai is of course me. Yes I notice I am getting fatter and have messy hair (I had a hair cut today after the missus complained a lot ;-)).
Narbik and Yap. They might not be the twin towers of the NBA or NFL or NBL for the record but they are probably the best team combination to offer CCIE bootcamp classes in Malaysia.
Narbik signing all the attendance certificates for those who are new to his bootcamp.
Narbik handing me my CCIE bootcamp attendance certificate. I know it would be nice if the cert would instead be a CCIE certification in Routing and Switching ;-)
The CCIE June 2009 (June 1 to June 5 2009) bootcamp students. Some are reattendees, some are lecturers and some or rather one is a nice Japanese-food loving dude. Guess who.

That's it for now. The next time that I will blog about Narbik and his bootcamp would have to be in October 2009 where he plans to return back here to give us a R&S/SP bootcamp and also to gobble "hot and spicy food" as much as he can.


johnny vietnam said...

Thanks! your blog gave me that extra push I need to stay motivated on ccie study! good luck


CCIE Summit said...

Spot on dude about Narbik's class. I sat it back in March and will again in August. I can't wait to see the ver 2 workbooks. Just don't lose the intensity and hit the lab books as much as you can. The more time rolls on the more the class seems like a distant memory. Hopefully you took good notes and things will keep coming back to you long after the class is over.

Nickelby said...

Thanks guys and good luck in your lab preparations :-)

ccieat21 said...

"" He will show you how to have RIPv2 advertisements never expire on the 16th hop ""

Im really curious to know this thing
Hope you can shed some light on this in your next post.

Nickelby said...

I did a little bit of correction over there after Narbik has been in touch with me over the post.

There is a sly way if a question like that really pops up though. Think of redistribution. You have a router at the end to convert RIP traffic into let's say into OSPF then from OSPF to RIP again. That way, the 15th hop quota of RIP is never filled.