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CCNA engineer job interview - FAIL

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Hi, this is my first post and I hope it is in an ok section of the forum.


I recently went for a job interview and was asked to perform a technical test. I have a background in Wintel environments and am pretty good on Windows servers etc but am looking to move in to networking.


I said up front that I have a CCNA but limited real world experience and that I didn't want to move on to CCNP level until I could get a job where I would be using it each day.


Anyway, the test was a two-fold scenario in which I had 1 hour to do the following:


Scenario 1: On a Cisco ASA 5505, set up an IPSEC VPN tunnel using settings they provided.


Scenario 2: Using 2 x 800 series routers, configure a VLAN setup such that two laptops could communicate. Each laptop would be plugged into its own 800 series router and would be on a different network, e.g. and and a cable would connect the two. DHCP must be configured on both routers.


I did miserably on both counts for lots of reasons, all of which will sound like excuses at this stage, but most importantly I would like to know where I went wrong so I can learn for the future.


Ok so scenario 1, I started trying to use the CLI for the IPSEC tunnel but having never done this on a Cisco I struggled and moved over to the ASDM. I found the section where I could configure a tunnel and inputted the settings as I thought were correct but the tunnel didn't build. I later heard that there is an easyVPN that I could have used. I saved the config and pinged a host on the destination subnet, but nothing. I only had an hour so I moved on.


Scenario 2, I named the routers so that I wouldn't confuse them, I setup the IP addresses and got DHCP working but I couldn't ping between the two. My mind went blank and then I figured it was a routing issue so I created a static route on each router, still nothing. Times up, the hour had flown by and couldn't get it working. On the way home I thought about it and figured I needed a trunk link between the two routers and perhaps to create a VTP domain.


I didn't get the job as they said I 'comprehensively' failed the technical tests, the word comprehensively has hit my ego like a sledgehammer as in the Windows world I am used to being an authority. I was surprised as I said up front I am weak on Cisco and keen to learn yet they still invited me to a 4 hour round trip and 3 hour interview.


An hour to do all that seemed really short but perhaps the time pressure was part of the test, I'm not sure...


Anyway, can anyone tell me how I should have set up both of these and speculate where I went wrong as they wouldn't go into detail with their feedback.


Thanks in advance.



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I should've said that the ports were switchports on the 800 routers so I assigned the IP address to the VLAN 1 interface.


I didn't modify or create any ACLs.


As well as telling me where I went wrong, any troubleshooting steps that people might have taken would be very helpful as well.





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