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Posted byCCNA R&S, CCNA Security, Network+, Security+, A+5 months ago

CCNA Security 210-260 Passed!

Whew! What a close call! 878 - needed 860 to pass. This was my first time taking it.

What I did, how I passed:

  • Read the OCG - it only covers about 40% of the exam, but what it does cover is good. Do all the terms and practice all the commands in the book. Lab out everything you can. Ignore the parts about CCP - but understand and lab the CLI version of anything mentioned in the CCP.

  • Read 31 Days. Then go online and do the 31 Days Online activity/versions. There are videos for each section, quizzes and practice Packet Tracer Labs. 31 Days was VERY helpful in my understanding of the finer points.

  • Read and lab the CCNA Security Portable Command Guide - I feel like this one gets left out a lot - but this little book is AWESOME for this test. It summarizes the points very well and offers some great pointers. Vachon did a great job compiling this one.

  • Yet another vouch for Boson! The Boson practice exams are amazing, and worth every cent. Read all of the explanations. If you come across anything that is just mentioned in passing - go look it up on Cisco's website. Read about it. Imagine you are writing the test. What questions would you ask about that topic? Now go look up the answers, do the research and then proceed! Take your time on this material - well worth it!

  • Pearson Practice Test - this one comes with the OCG Book. It's good at preparing you for the wording on the real exam. The vagueness and sentences that are open ended are very much like some of the questions I experienced on the exam. The Pearson test while lacking in some details is a good way to mentally prep your brain for thinking along the lines of how the test questions may be worded.

  • Get a Safari Books Online subscription. Watch all of the CCNA-Security Videos. Take notes. Lab it out.

  • Pay attention to Udemy sales. Get Chris Bryant's course. Watch all the videos. Take notes. Lab it out. Chris was especially helpful on the command lines finer points for things like ISAKMP, IPsec, CPPr/CoPP.

  • Pluralsight - Watch all the videos twice. Take notes on the second time through. Lab it out. This also came with practice tests that were "Transcender" but then about 1/2 way through my studies it switched to "Kaplan Learn". Same practice tests, just rebranded.

  • CBT Nuggets - Watch all the videos. Take notes. Review topics as needed when doing the practice tests. If you miss a question on the Boson or Pearson practice tests, look it up for where it is on the CBT Nuggets videos. Re-watch the video.

I studied for 10 weeks exactly. Put in about 2-3 hours per day. Maybe a bit more on the weekends.

I work with Routers and Switches and ASAs on a daily basis. Already had a firm grip on the ASDM software. This is key.

I also recently posted my short list of Acronyms. It's nowhere near complete - but if you study the acronyms, learn what the items do, and where to apply them - that can easily be ~20% of the test in my view. (If you know the acronyms, know the definitions, and know where the acronyms are applied - compare that to the test objectives - that's like ~20% of the "Describe" items.)

Anyway - very excited that I passed on my first go! If anyone else is looking to take CCNA-Sec - I encourage you to do it. Great foundation on how VPNs and Firewalls work!

96% Upvoted
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level 1

Congratz! Do you feel OCG Boson and Udemy's Chris Bryant's covers all the material in the exam?

level 2
CCNA R&S, CCNA Security, Network+, Security+, A+Original Poster5 points · 5 months ago

Combined they do cover the exam... but you should really try to get all the sources you can. I don't think I could have passed with just those unless you memorize everything word for word. Even then, it might be a bit short. Diversify your materials and get as many points of view and contexts that you can to really get the information down solid.

level 1

If you had tot study it again what would you do differently?

level 2
CCNA R&S, CCNA Security, Network+, Security+, A+Original Poster1 point · 5 months ago

More labs. More focus on ESA and Firepower.

level 1
Senior Content Developer, Boson Software2 points · 5 months ago

Congrats! Glad we were worth all the pennies. :)

level 2
CCNA R&S, CCNA Security, Network+, Security+, A+Original Poster1 point · 5 months ago

When are you coming out with a CCNA-Wireless practice test?

level 3
Senior Content Developer, Boson Software1 point · 5 months ago

We had one, once upon a time. There was very little demand for it, so we discontinued it when the exam was updated.

level 1
CCNA R&S2 points · 5 months ago

Congratulations! I'm just finishing up CCNA, testing icnd2 on Wednesday. If I may ask, how did you get to your current position working with Cisco routers, switches and ASAs in particular? Its something I've considered exploring but need to get my foot into networking first. 6 months in help desk now so hoping CCNA + some experience can get me closer to the equipment. Just wondering what your path was like.

level 2
CCNA R&S, CCNA Security, Network+, Security+, A+Original Poster1 point · 5 months ago

To get the current position? It's been a long road of helpdesk jobs and pitching in with Networking whenever and wherever I could. Applying to a ton of open network positions available, even if just for the interview experience, and a stoke of luck.

level 1

Congratulations! thanks for the resource comments

level 1
CCNP R&S CCNA Sec1 point · 5 months ago

Thanks for the information. Very helpful.

level 1
CCNA R&S/SEC1 point · 5 months ago


level 1


level 1

congratulations thanks for sharing your review!

level 1

How difficult is it compared to normal ccna?

level 2
CCNA R&S, CCNA Security, Network+, Security+, A+Original Poster1 point · 5 months ago

The CCNA R&S is very clear on the objectives. The CCNA Sec is a bit more open ended so it adds quite a bit of extra material and study time to get such a broad scope of items under your belt.

level 1
CCNA R&S, Security+, Network+, Project+, A+1 point · 5 months ago

Are you attending WGU by any chance? I'm working through ICND2 and will be taking this class after my Linux+ certification classes. Just wanted to know if you are taking it through WGU, if you thought the provided material was enough.

level 1
CSAE,CCNA/R&S,CCNA/S1 point · 5 months ago

Congrats on your victory! I'm hoping I can pass my 2nd attempt in a week. I will have to check out the portable command guide. Thanks for the tips.

level 1

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