Some of you might already be familiar with my first book for Cisco Press, the CCNA Command Quick Reference, a guide written to assist Cisco Networking Academy Program students in their studies toward CCNA certification. Now you might be asking yourself why I would open up an introduction for this book with a reference to another book. The answer is really quite simple. During the writing of that first book, Cisco Press received comments from some of their other partners. These other groups had heard of a command reference text being written for the Networking Academy, and they wanted to know when the "Industry" version would become available. That "Industry" version is what you are holding in your hands right now.
I have long been a fan of what I call the "Engineering Journal"a small notebook that can be carried around and that contains little nuggets of informationcommands that you forget, the IP addressing scheme of some remote part of the network, little reminders about how to do something you only have to do once or twice a year but is vital to the integrity and maintenance of your network. This journal has been a constant companion by my side for the past six years; I only teach some of these concepts every second or third year, so I constantly need to refresh commands and concepts, as well as learn new commands and ideas as they are released by Cisco. My journals were the best way for me to review, as they were written in my own wordswords that I could understand. At least, I had better understand them, because if I didn't, I had only myself to blame.
The journals that I would create for my Networking Academy classes would always be different than the journals I would create when I was teaching from a different curriculum or if I was out in industry working on some production network. I could understand that the Networking Academy needed to split topics into smaller, more manageable chunks, but for me out in the real world, I needed these concepts to follow a different approachI needed all of the routing protocols together in one place in my journals, and not spread across some two-year outline of knowledge.
Therefore, this book is my "Industry" edition of the engineering journal. It contains a different logical flow to the topics, one more suited to someone working in the field. Like topics are grouped together: routing protocols, switches, troubleshooting. More complex examples are given. New topics have been added, such as EtherChannel, Route Summarization, and Sequence Numbers in Named ACLs to name a few. I even added an appendix that is nothing but blank pagesa place for you to add in your own commands that you need in your world. We all recognize the fact that no network administrator's job can be so easily pigeonholed as to being just working with CCNA topicsyou all have your own specific jobs and duties assigned to you. That is why you will find those blank pages at the end of the bookmake this book your own; personalize it with what you need to make it more effective. That way your journal will not look like mine.
In my first book I specifically wrote about two Networking Academy instructors that were instrumental in pushing me to publish my Networking Academy journals. This time I have to mention another colleague, Hans Roth of Red River College in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. At Networkers 2005, Hans knew I was about to start work on this book and that it would contain more information than the first book. As I began to write down what would and would not be in this book, that old feeling of nervousness began to creep into me. It was Hans who showed me something that would forever help me to relax and calm down; if ever I needed a break from the research or the writing or the editing, I just had to do what Hans showed mehow to juggle. Some of you may have seen me on the Friday of Networkers, at the end of the day, juggling in the Las Vegas Convention Center, waiting for Hans to finish his Techtorial. It was during that time that I was able to relax enough to know that I could finish this book, and now here it is for you to use and enjoy. Thank you Hans, for keeping me grounded. If you see me at any Networkers Conferences in the future, ask me and I may give you an impromptu speech on juggling as a means of relaxationI now carry my juggling balls with me everywhere.
One final thank you I have to make is to another coworkerColin Polanski of NAIT. Colin works with me in the Department of Telecommunications and is one of our wireless/satellite technology instructors. He is one of the smartest men I know. Recently he started taking my Cisco classes, in hopes of working towards his CCNA certification and getting a broader base of knowledge in the LAN wireless area. It was he who I constantly looked to when I needed someone to proof my journals. He was the perfect choice as a reviewersomeone with technical experience that was moving into this field and needed a bit of a reminder about commands and other CCNA topics. By his own words, his own journal has been written down three times: once after my lecture was done he wrote down commands, the second time after he tried the commands on the devices and he saw how they actually worked, and a third time to clean up the journal to make it something that he could easily use and follow. So to Colin I owe a big thanks and a copy of this book.