2012. It was a big year in my life. On January 6th I jotted down some goals I would like to have achieved this year personally and professionally. I listed these on my blog to serve as motivation for me and to serve as a reminder. I am going to recap what has happened this yeah and how I went with each one. I want to also include some other information that at the time of writing, I didn’t know was in store.

  1. Finish CCNP and not let test engine crashes get the better of me
  2. My wedding and honeymoon – Croatia/Greece.
  3. Attempt CCIE Written 350-001
  4. Consider CCNA:Security
  5. Blog consistently

1. Finish the CCNP – Fail

All the best laid plans. I did not achieve the CCNP this year. It was over a year ago that i passed ROUTE and had a stumble on SWITCH. I ponied up again and SWITCH got me again. 781 was my mark with an alleged 790 to pass. I got zero on a lab which again crashed for me. Something every day too. I will be finishing this exam in the fullness of time and acquiring this certification.

2. My wedding and honeymoon – Success

My amazing wife.

On the 20th of January this year I got married to my long time sweetheart, Katrina. We had a great day and was a very celebratory. We were married on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria and everything was great. We then honeymooned not in Croatia and Greece, but in Australia. We went to Australia’s best resort Island. Lizard Island, (google it!) was absolutely mind blowing. Great week away.

3. Attempt CCIE written 350-001 – Fail

Albeit I announced intention to pursue the IE written I never attempted it. I am actively studying and working through the blueprint. I am posturing myself with a schedule ahead to give it a red hot go. My wife understands the commitment required to achieve this so having her on board is great.

4. Consider the CCNA Security exam – Fail

I considered and have acquired the material. Time was the issue here. I have had a massive year working on 5585-X and I should just have committed to exams. I have studied the blueprint to a point where I am happy with sitting the exam. Q1 2013 possibly!

5. Blog consistently – Pass

I think I have achieved this. This year I have reached dizzying heights. My blogging in the first quarter was small. I was getting 1000 hits per month if that. Very small. If I knew back then what my blog would have achieved for me now I would have laughed.

My stats this year show the traction Cisco Inferno has got. I thank you all sincerely for the views and support. All time hits in January was 3,000. By December I broke 50,000 hits with 15,000 per month in November.

Thank you.
Thank you.

Bonus and extras

New Job

This year was super crazy. I left my EDU job to move to Emergency Services serving over 8 million people. We are the single unified call for Police, Fire, Ambulance, and other services. It has taught me the importance of procedure, scale, and agility. I have learnt so much about DC networks, Firewalls, and good routing and switching principals. Albeit not certified, I have gained an incredible amount of information.


I attended a FIREWALL course by a Cisco PEC and it was superb. A substantial 5585-X SSP-10 deployment was undertaken and I’ve become the resident ASA guru. At this stage this is a good thing but others like to convince me it is a fate worse than death.

I also have had a massive exposure to a large Nexus environment. This has given me a baptism by fire of their OS code, architecture, deployment methods, and BAU activities.


In October I was honoured to be invited and attend Network Field Day 4. This event brought together some of the most talented minds in the industry to see what lays ahead. Some of my heroes were there. The host, Stephen Foskett, put on a superb week hosted by himself and vendors. From breakfast chats to dinner we talked tech. I met some super people who I look forward to maintaining a professional and friendly relationship with. I would like to thank everyone again. You are all an inspiration and added plenty of fuel to my careers fire.


My first step into a larger world.
My first step into a larger world.

In October I received a Juniper SRX-110H-VA from my mentor, Kurt Bales. He works for a Juniper Elite partner in Sydney and has slowly told me the “awesome-sauce” contained within. This has wound up with me playing with the device in the home lab. It gave me the confidence to pursue the JNCIA-Junos certification which I blogged about.  I achieved this on December 3rd. I passed with 95 percent. I am going to attempt JNCIS-Security in Q1 2013.

In review

Although my goals at the start of the year were not all completed, I feel I am happy with how I have come along. My skills as a network engineer have increased whilst my knowledge base has widened. I really have taken my new challenges on board and taken everything in my stride. I wonder where 2013 will take me?

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