The CCNP: Routing and Switching is an intermediate-level certification that builds the knowledge and skills you gained on the CCNA: Routing and Switching.
Directed at network and system administrators planning and implementing Cisco’s high-end network solutions, the CCNP provides a more in-depth understanding of WAN/LAN and how they work. Achieve the CCNP and you could be on track for an average contractor salary of £96,400 according to CW Jobs.
To get the CCNP: Routing and Switching certification, you’ll need to pass three exams:
- 300-115 SWITCH Implementing Cisco IP Switched Networks (SWITCH)
- 300-101 ROUTE Implementing Cisco IP Routing (ROUTE)
- 300-135 TSHOOT Troubleshooting and Maintaining Cisco IP Networks (TSHOOT)
To help you pass your CCNP exam, we've worked with Dave Petts, Firebrand's Senior Cisco Instructor, to compile this list of the best CCNP books for 2018:
- CCNP Routing and Switching ROUTE 300-101 Official Cert Guide Premium Edition eBook and Practice Test
- CCNP Routing and Switching SWITCH 300-115 Official Cert Guide (2015)
- CCNP Routing and Switching Foundation Learning Guide Library: (ROUTE 300- 101, SWITCH 300-115, TSHOOT 300-135) (2015)
- CCNP Routing and Switching v2.0 Official Cert Guide Library
- Implementing Cisco IP Routing (ROUTE) Foundation Learning Guide
Read on for an in-depth overview of the top 5 CCNP books.
1. CCNP Routing and Switching ROUTE 300-101 Official Cert Guide Premium Edition eBook and Practice Test
- More than 400 practice exam questions and enhanced practice test features
- PDF and EPUB formats of the CCNP from Cisco Press, which are accessible via your PC, tablet, and smartphone
How good is it?
Although Amazon rates the toolbook as a mere 3.6, it should be remembered that this guide only came out in December 2018, and therefore is the most updated advice on how best to study for the CCNP certification available.
2. CCNP Routing and Switching SWITCH 300-115 Official Cert Guide (2015)
This official guide comprehensively explains a wide range of networking topics; from configuring features on Cisco Switches to determining whether they’re working effectively.
As this is an Official Cert Guide, you’ll also get access to:
- Pearson IT Certification Practice Test software, which includes hundreds of practice exam questions
- More than 60 minutes of personal video mentoring from David Hucaby
- Suggested study plans and templates designed to help you organize and optimize your study time for the CCNP exam
How good is it?
Hucaby is especially skilled at explaining complex topics concisely, which makes studying for the SWITCH 300-115 exam easier.
Despite its rave reviews on Amazon, some people feel that this Official Cisco Cert Guide doesn’t cover all the concepts in enough detail to pass the exam using the book alone. However, it’s great for re-certification or as a supplemental learning tool to use alongside an official online or classroom CCNP course
If you’re planning to only use this book for your SWITCH 300-115 exam revision, make sure to check the errata page on the Cisco Official Library and be aware that the following concepts aren’t covered in enough detail in the book:
- VTP version 3
- Symptoms of misconfigured SDM templates
- EIGRP routing
- Pruning with regards for Private VLANS
- Preventing a DHCP database from snooping
3. CCNP Routing and Switching Foundation Learning Guide Library: (ROUTE 300-101, SWITCH 300-115, TSHOOT 300-135) (2015)Published by Cisco Press, these books from the Foundation Learning Guide, which covers broad aspects of all three CCNP Routing and Switching exams: ROUTE, SWITCH, and TSHOOT.
Every guide also provides real-world case studies to help you understand how concepts and techniques can be applied in real-life situations.
How good is it?
This book covers a wide breadth of topics but doesn’t dive into detail. Don’t expect to pass the CCNP certification by solely using these guides.
Although not the most thorough books on the market, the Foundation learning guides are ideal tools for a CCNP re-certification.
4. CCNP Routing and Switching Portable Command GuideIf you like to revise until the last minute, this little pocket book is the ideal guide to reviewing important commands before you enter the exam room.
Published by Cisco Press and updated for the latest version of the CCNP exam, this guide develops your command knowledge from the Official Cert Guides.
It focuses on the commands you’ll need to know for the CCNP exams and includes tips such as feature/protocol inter-compatibility, common issues and how to implement the commands in real-world scenarios.
Once you’ve achieved your CCNP certification, this command book remains a useful tool to keep on your desk to refer to.
How good is it?
Ultimately, this easy–to-read guide is a great way to ensure that you’re familiar with all the current CCNP commands before your exams. However, it is not designed to teach you CCNP theory and should be used in tandem with an Official Cert Guide. Although it covers nearly all the commands, the book is missing key details in the DMVPN and GRE commands.
5. CCNP Routing and Switching v2.0 Official Cert Guide Library
The latest edition of the bestselling CCNP Official Cert Guide Library comes as well regarded as the previous bundle. This bundle was published to align with the new CCNP exam objectives, updated in 2015, and includes three guides, covering all three exams:
- CCNP Routing and Switching ROUTE 300-101 Official Cert Guide
- CCNP Routing and Switching SWITCH 300-115 Official Cert Guide
- CCNP Routing and Switching TSHOOT 300-135 Official Cert Guide
This bundle also contains exam questions and lab exercises designed to provide you with the skills you need to excel in your CCNP exams.
You’ll also get access to in-depth, expert explanations of the various protocols, commands, and technologies that you may be tested on.
Exclusive to this bundle, each book also provides a review chapter of knowledge and skills you gained in your CCNA: Routing and Switching exams.
How good is it?
The reviews for these guides are divided. While most topics are covered in enough detail, the book is littered with technical errors, making complex topics harder to understand. If you do choose to buy this bundle, check the errata as you go along.
We have yet to receive any official confirmation from Cisco, the CCNP: Routing and Switching Certification is due for a refresh sometime in the near future, as Cisco courses and certifications tend to run for 3 years.