New English Training Site – Network Faculty

Networking Training CCNP, JNCIA, JNCIS, JNCIP

As announced a few months ago, we’ve have been working on a training site for some time now and after successful months with the Spanish version, we’re ready to release the English version of the site to the public.

Our offering follows these principles:

  1. Because we built each video in small chunks for specific topics, is easy to learn and to use them for later reference
  2. The “theory” and the vendor specific material is split
  3. The videos are not built around certifications (we build the courses with the videos created)
  4. Every video has its own section for questions/answers
  5. Multivendor

We strongly believe that the typical approach for IT learning is limited; a single method has to fit all the students of a class, if you have a doubt or question, most likely the class will have to go on without going into detail as time is usually very limited and it’s commonplace to go outside of the material to clarify details.

In Network Faculty, each subject is broken down to its fundamental parts and with this we accomplish our 3 main goals; easy comprehension, depth and independence (as in only watch the specific information you are looking for)

We are working to have a robust IT video library; today we are in the hundreds of videos but in a short time, we will have thousands. For now, our focus has been networking but in a short time we expect to be branching out to other areas such as coding and system administration.

The content is available 24/7 with unlimited views; you can pause/rewind/ take notes and each video has a dedicated section for comments and questions, you can interact with instructors and other members, this means that any doubts you might have for a specific video can be answered quickly and directly, saving you from having to go to another site or a search engine for an answer.

Our platform works with any modern browser and the typical mobile devices such as Ipads/Iphones/Android tablets and phones, meaning the content is available when you need it and you decide where and how much time you want to invest in the site.

All the structure of our materials is available without registration; in fact there are demos for all of our videos that you can watch without having an account on the site, or if you prefer to watch an entire video, we have released a few of them in our YouTube channel.

Now if you wish to join our site, you need to register and select one of our subscriptions to get immediate access to all of our materials. The access is simple, you can get a yearly (250 USD) subscription and it will give you access to all the current videos and future ones.

Just like we did for the Spanish site, for the readers of Initial Draft, we wish to offer a 2 year access for the price of one year. To redeem this offer simply register into the site and subscribe to the one year access plan and send me a email to:, telling me that you are a reader from the blog. This offer is valid starting today and ends on 23:59 GMT 31 of August 2013.
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Posted in Announcements CCIE RS by Daniel Rodriguez. 1 Comment

OSPF LSA5 Forwarding-Address Field (FA)

The Forwarding-Address (FA) field and how it’s processed to make a routing decision when dealing with type 5 LSA is something very interesting. In this post I will try to bring some light to this feature.

First of all, what’s the Forwarding-Address (FA) field? Well, it’s a field located in the type 5 and type 7 OSPF LSAs. In this post I will focus on LSA5, though this explanation also applies to LSA7.

The value of this field is an IP address, and it’s used to inform about which IP should be used to reach the external prefix that is announced in the LSA5. We know that LSA5’s are used to introduce in the OSPF domain information originated outside of the OSPF domain, i.e. redistributed information. When an OSPF router redistributes external info into the OSPF domain, that info is injected as an LSA5 (depending on the type of area, it could be injected as LAS7).



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Posted in CCIE RS CCIE SP Routing by Jose Miguel Huertas. 3 Comments

New Training Site – Network Faculty

Hi, everybody

We have been quiet for some time now. Our current schedule is not leaving us with too much free time to dedicate to the blog, but after this week, I think we are going to be able to get back into the normal post rate.

We have been working on an educational/training site these past months, and managed to finally put it in production a few days ago.

It’s called Network Faculty (, and is a streaming service with videos about IT. Right now is only networking (multi-vendor – not all in life is Cisco), but the plan is to expand to other topics such as Security, Programming and server stuff (virtualization, Linux, services, etc). As you know, we (the folks behind initial draft) are focused on networking and it was natural to come up with networking videos first. The philosophy behind the service is a “little” bit different of what other vendors are offering:

  1. We built each video in a small size factor, focusing on specific topics. For example: IS-IS timers, how to modify the DIS in IS-IS, SPF Timers in IS-IS, a video for OSPF LSA 1 and 2, and another for LSA 3, etc. (just to name a few). Just the videos of OSPF v2 are currently 35 and growing.
  2. Because we built each video in small chunks for specific topics, is easy to learn and to use them for reference later. Let’s say that you forgot (or wish to refresh) how the LSA 7 works, you don’t need to go through a large 2 hour video on OSPF to get to the part you need, you have a specific 22 min video that speaks only about the LSA7 and nothing more, with everything you need to know (LSA 7 to 5 translation, forward address, format of the LSA, etc) and another 21 min video for DB interpretation, configuration, verification, etc of the LSA 7 on Cisco IOS. Straight to the point and with no distractions!
  3. The “theory” and the vendor specific material is split in two, for example, you learn in one video how the LDP timers work in detail and then you get a specific video to verify, configure and troubleshoot them on IOS and another on Juniper JunOS.
  4. The videos are not built around certifications (we build the courses with the videos created). That way, if you have gone through the CCNP SPROUTE course and want to jump into JNCIP, you just need to see the videos that are specific to Juniper and move on (you don’t have to relearn IS-IS, OSPF, etc)
  5. All videos are divided into topics, so you can learn about a specific technology without having to go though specific certifications. For example, see all the videos about IPv6 or IS-IS. (
  6. Every video has its own section for the people to ask questions or leave general feedback (and instructors will reply) so you don’t have to go into other places looking for answers.
  7. Multivendor: We like to think that we are “networking guys”, not Cisco guy, in a few years Cisco might not be the dominant vendor ( Our take is that you need to know about technologies (not configuration) and how other vendors work. We have published the site with Cisco and Juniper materials, but we are going to start working on other vendors soon.

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Posted in Announcements by Daniel Rodriguez. 7 Comments

InterAS VPN: Option 10A (Back to Back VRF)

There are 3 different ways to build an InterAS VPN. But, first of all, how can it happen to have the need of an InterAS VPN? Well, this is something that usually happens when two sites from the same customer are provided by different ISPs. In this case, both ISPs need to agree on a way to interconnect their VPNs in order to provide end-to-end connectivity  to the customer. Another typical situation is when an ISP is bought by a bigger one, and in their portfolio it presents the service of providing VPNs. In this case, although it’s the same ISP, it still has two different networks with two different ASNs. In order to provide VPN end-to-end, it needs a way to solve the InterAS VPN issues.

I said at the beginning that there are 3 different ways to provide for this connectivity, but in fact there are 4. The three firsts are the most common, and the last one is a mix. They take the name from the chapter that explains them in the RFC2547bis. These ways are:

  • Option 10A: Back to Back VRF
  • Option 10B: MP-eBGP between ASBRs
  • Option 10C: multihop MP-eBGP between Route-Reflectors
  • Option AB: an enhanced mix from options A and B and developed by Cisco

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Posted in CCIE RS CCIE SP Routing by Jose Miguel Huertas. 4 Comments

Initial Draft – Status Report

Hello everybody, vacation is over for us and we are back to start posting technical articles again.

Right now we are busier than ever with a project that is taking a lot of time from us, but we are going to push hard to keep updating the blog with new stuff on a regular basis. If you want to read more about a specific topic, just post it on the comment section and we will do our best to cover it.

We are also going to start rolling updates for the CCIE version of the flashcards to fix application issues and a lot of typos/spell errors in the next days. This will be done first for Android, and later we will update the iPhone version.

Right now I’m having problems with Apple, because they don’t like our app, they say that the interface is not good enough, and the iPhone CCNA version of the App was rejected. We are afraid that if we upload an update to the CCIE or CCNP version, they may reject it and pull out the application completely from the store. We know that our app does not have the best/pretty interface, but I think that is good enough to get the job done (show the flashcards). We are going to be very careful with every update we push for iOS, so this may delay a little bit the upgrade process compared to Android.

If you have the app and are enjoying it, please don’t forget to rate it on the Apple/Play Store this would help us a lot in the situations like I have described before. If we have good reviews on our apps we can use it as a tool with Apple application reviewers.

I’ll like to send a special THANK YOU, to the readers that downloaded all our applications, that is a nice gesture from all of you, and a clear sign of support.

We appreciate that. Also, I would like thank all the mails sent to us, reporting errors in the apps, issues in the flash cards or simply mentioning how cool you think our app is :)

Lastly, we have uploaded two new apps into the Android market for CCNA and CCNP in spanish. Spanish is our native language so it was a natural move. If interested grab it here:

CCNA en Español

CCNP en Español

Guys, summer is over, is now time to get back to work

Posted in Announcements by Daniel Rodriguez. No Comments

Review :: INE CCIE Routing / Switching 10-Day Bootcamp

A lot of people preparing for the CCIE don’t have a clear understanding of what a CCIE bootcamp looks like and if/when should they attend one, so to help out here is another review of the INE bootcamp. Daniel had the chance of attending this bootcamp on February and his experiences are here and here. I had a chance of going to the class recently (Aug 2012).

Before talking about the specifics of the INE bootcamp, lets talk about what’s a CCIE bootcamp? Like most networking/IT classes, it’s a course design to cover a vast amount of information in a very short time-frame (most cases 5 to 10 days), this means that the more prepared we are, the more we can get out of the class.

In terms of the CCIE, this equals a solid understanding of the core topics of the blueprint, having done extensive technology and full mock labs (most vendors will recommend that before attending a live class, the student has completed most, if not all, of their workbooks). This also means that probably the best time to attend one of these classes is near the actual lab date, since probably the maximum benefit possible will be to brush up on odd topics (EEM/ZBF/PfR anyone?) and corner cases.  It’s completely possible to go to a bootcamp at the beginning of the CCIE preparation, but the cost/benefit analysis probably won’t be great.


The class was held in central London at the Rydges Kensington Hotel, the location was convenient and had easy access from public transport, also there was a large selection of hotels nearby suitable for all price ranges. A typical class day started at 9:00 AM and lasted until 8/9 PM

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Posted in CCIE RS by Jose Leitao. 6 Comments

CCNA Flashcards

Hello, today is the turn to release the CCNA flashcard application. This is the third release of our app, and there is still one more to come :). The previous can be found here: CCNP flashcards and CCIE flashcards.

As we did wit the CCNP version, right now is only available the Android version, and the iPhone version is pending Apple for approval. I’ll let everyone know when they released to the iTunes store.

This app contains more than 530 flash cards for our fellow CCNA students, covering the full blueprint, with very detailed cards and massive answer descriptions.

The flash cards are divided in the following CCNA topics:

  • DHCP
  • Routing Concepts
  • Access Lists
  • Security
  • IPv6
  • IOS Basics
  • Wireless
  • NAT
  • Bridging and Switching
  • WAN / FR / PPP
  • TCP/IP
  • RIP
  • OSPF

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Posted in Announcements by Daniel Rodriguez. 10 Comments