Network+: Exam Details and Process

Introduction

There are many networking certs out there, with a lot of IT vendors providing first-class training to help you achieve the goal of passing the exam so that you can indeed get that prestigious certification. According to a recent survey, these are the top five networking certifications in terms of job demand and financial compensation:

  • The Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE), offered by Cisco Systems
  • The Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP), offered by Cisco Systems
  • The Juniper Networks Certified Enterprise Routing and Switching Expert (JNCIE-ENT), offered by Juniper Networks
  • The CompTIA Network+
  • The Wireshark Certified Network Analyst (WCNA), offered by Wireshark

In this article, we’ll focus primarily on the CompTIA Network+ cert.

Exam Overview – The Goals

It is important to keep in mind that the Network+ cert is really not considered to be an “advanced cert” per se; it is viewed more as a beginning-to-intermediate cert for a network engineer. Here are some of the key topics a student will learn as they study and practice for the Network+ cert:

1. Design the Various Network Topologies

In this aspect, the student will learn all about the various networking topologies, such as peer-peer networks, client-server networks, bus networks, ring networks, star networks, mesh networks, tree networks and hybrid networks. The latter can be a combination of any of these aforementioned network-based topologies.

2. Configure and Manage the Network Topologies

Once the student has learned how to design some of the abovementioned networks, their next task is to learn how to configure them according to the needs of the business or corporation.  Equally important is the management of these networks, where the student will also learn key optimization strategies to make sure that network traffic is flowing consistently and smoothly.

3. Learning How to Use the Various Networking Devices

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