Anuj Dewangan, CCIE #36868
After thousands of hours of reading and lab-ing, I passed my CCIE R&S in October, 2012 with #36868. I am very grateful to a lot of entities after achieving this milestone. Foremost, I would like to thank God for giving me the time, resources and strength to commit to and be successful in this endeavor. Equally I extend my gratitude towards my wife (who herself completed her CCIE R&S a few months ago) for her unwavering support. I am also grateful to my manager and lead for supporting my efforts. I started preparing for CCIE lab immediately after completing my written and choosing INE was a no-brainer, given that I already used to follow the INE blogs during my written days. The blogs have been a constant technical resource on the very complicated topics starting from core topics like OSPF superbackbones, EIGRP SOO, MSTP , to advanced topics like OER, PPPoE, DMVPN etc. I started with WB-1 and followed Petr's study plan to complete the core aspects of WB-1 first. WB-1 was great in re-enforcing core concepts and also teaching advanced aspects of core technologies. I followed this up with WB-2 labs. As I wanted to accelerate, I had my own way to covering WB-2 labs, which ranged from starting with the toughest lab and mixing up the labs based on topics. One thing I did well was create notes after each lab, and revisit the notes periodically. I focused on the core topics really well during this phase. I also supplemented this work, with additional 25 labs available to us internally in the company through another program. The advanced topics on the INE labs were really good as they made us experts at security/mgmt/services aspects. After completing close to 45 labs + WB-1, I felt that technically I am prepared for the exam, but lack in speed and troubleshooting skills. This is where WB-3/4 were very useful. I found that WB-4 was very helpful and helped me big in tshoot preparation. Overall, I think INE play a huge role in preparing me to pass the exam.