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What You Should Know About Cisco CCDE Certification


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Before taking the test, Cisco recommends that you have five to seven years of experience in developing complex networks. 

What is CCDE exactly?

CCDE is the certification for network designers who are experts. The CCDE is very similar to the Cisco Certified Network Expert (CCIE), in that it requires you to pass a computerised test lasting two hours and a hands-on, full-day lab/practical examination at a Cisco testing center. You must first pass the computerized test before scheduling the lab examination. You must also be familiar with the design of advanced networks, as it is covered in the CCDE ADVDESIGN written exam. 

The exam blueprint states that the two-hour test covers everything you need to know about complex networks. You will receive a re-certification for your CCDA, CCNA, and CCIE Cisco certificates if you pass the CCDE Written Exam. A few Cisco offices allow you to book your lab test after passing the computerised exam. Cisco must still provide the exact locations or times of the practical exam.

The CCDE practical test will consist of an eight-hour scenario based test. It “tests you ability to identify and manage advanced infrastructure design solutions in large-scale networks.” The CCIE practical test will be very similar. I have taken several CCIE practical hands-on exams and am confident that the CCDE will be equally challenging.

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Why isn’t there a CCIE in network design?

Candidates for the CCDE receive a unique number as well as other benefits. So why didn’t Cisco develop a CCIE certification for network design? Cisco considered it but ultimately decided against because the topics were different. The CCIE is interchangeable with the CCDE now that they are “peer qualifications”. The CCDE will only gain the same fame and acclaim if it is given time. Recruiters and managers often use the terms CCNA or CCIE.

For example, “we currently have two NAs and five IEs.” Can the “DE” have the same success as the CCNA and CCIE? Other Cisco certifications such as the CCNET, CCVP, CCSP, CCIP, and even CCDP needed some help in order to gain popularity over the CCNA & CCIE. Even though they may not be the most popular credentials, network administrators will still choose the best-known credentials to help them land the next big job.

Consider the CCDE for four reasons:

You should also consider getting the new CCDE Certification. Consider these four things:

  • Unlike CCNP, CCDP or MCSE certifications the CCDE does not require you to pass multiple tests. There is only one written and one practical test.
  • If you are like me and prefer to create complex networks than to fix complicated network routing or security, the CCDE is for you.
  • Cisco has done a great job of promoting, improving, and representing the CCIE. The CCDE is likely to gain wide recognition just as the CCIE has.
  • The CCDE demonstrates that you are able to build some of today’s most complex and sophisticated networks. This ability can really help you in your career.
  • Salary for a CCDE candidate is higher than that of any other profession.

You should take your time, however. Make sure you have experience in designing large networks and prepare for challenging exams. Be prepared to spend more time and money than other certifications.

The conclusion of the article is:

The CCDE is a brand new Cisco certification that offers expert-level Cisco Design Certification. It is identical to the CCIE. Cisco’s CCDE site is the only place to find study materials and information about tests, as this certification is new.

The CCDE is the pinnacle of Cisco’s knowledge in advanced network design. Cisco’s network design experts requested this certification for years, but only time will tell if it is well liked.

Try these for more information on CCDE.

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