I passed TSHOOT last Thursday, completing my CCNP!

Here are some ideas about how to pass on the FIRST TRY (I did not!)

1.  Cisco provides the topology used for the TSHOOT exam on the learningnetwork web site

Study and then MEMORIZE this topology, including interfaces and addresses.

2.  Before the actual exam starts, there is a period when you are given 15 minutes to read all the legal  yada yada.  (Does NOT subtract from actual testing time.) USE this time to recreate your memorized topology on the white board material you are provided.  This way you have a diagram you can mark on with out having to click around multiple screens to see the topology while you are in the "heat of battle" doing your trouble shooting.  BE SURE to check the diagram you create against the L2 and L3 topology screens when the troubleshooting portion of the test begins to be sure you didn't make any mistakes. 

3.  Where ever addresses or any numbers are provided ( in trouble tickets, possible responses ) TAKE THE TIME to read them carefully.  It's easy when you feel pressed for time to make silly errors like reading 113 as 131 for example, expecially when multiple choice responses are crowded together closely on the screen.

4.  There is plenty of time if you know your stuff, but budget appropriately.  8 or 9 minutes per ticket at first, then if you do well go ahead and slow down.

5.  While you can not go back to a previous ticket once you finish it, YOU CAN go back and choose a different device or technology within the same ticket.  As in any network, there are usually multiple ways to solve a problem so if you get to a place where NONE of the reponses will definately solve the problem, GO BACK and look for another device or technology that could be a solution.

6.  I have real trouble juggling many multiple console screens on a small monitor.  IF you isolate a fault domain to two adjacent routers, put one console on the LEFT and the upstream device's console on the RIGHT, leaving the trouble ticket just peaking out above these two windows.  This makes it easy to do side-by-side comparison of configs and show outputs.

7.  If you can't ping a default gateway, try pinging the OTHER client or pinging FROM the other client.  You might be able to narrow down the fault domain.  Don't ignore what you might learn from the other CLIENT that is NOT part of the trouble ticket!!!


Hope these tips are useful.  I really thought the TSHOOT test was kind of COOL compared to the other legacy CCNP tests I took.  I JUST WISH there were some way to know which tickets I goofed up on!!!


Bob Crawford




  • Thank you so much for this awesome contribution to our community!

  • Great job , Bob !

    thank you for the tips and congratulations with your earned CCNP.

    I'm working on it to finish TSHOOT at the end of October to earn the CCNP title as well.





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