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JDMurray's Blog at www.TechExams.Net

The Juniper JNCIA-Junos Exam Experience

Rating: 3 votes, 4.67 average.
by , 03-31-2013 at 05:28 PM (51419 Views)
The Juniper Network Certified Internet Associate JunOS (JNCIA-Junos) certification tests a candidate’s understanding of IP network routing technology and Juniper JunOS configuration and troubleshooting skills. I had an opportunity to take the JNCIA-Junos exam on fairly short notice and with little hands-on experience at using JunOS devices. Not the most optimal conditions to be sure, but my attempt was offered free of charge, so I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to see what a Juniper exam was like.

JNCIA-Junos is the first of a series of 16 certifications used to test the knowledge of hardware and software products from Juniper Networks. Juniper’s certifications are divided into three tracks: Enterprise Routing and Switching, Service Provider Routing and Switching and Junos Security for designing secure networks. For each of these certification tracks the JNCIA-Junos certification is a prerequisite. The JNCIA-Junos certification is valid for two years.

Study Materials for the JNCIA-Junos Exam

Juniper Network certification exams are designed to test how well a student has learned the material in a Juniper training course. It is also possible to self-study for Juniper certs using only materials that Juniper makes freely available at, and many people do just that.

The Juniper Networks Fast Track program provides free study materials the JNCIA-Junos, JNCIS-ENT and JNCIS-SEC certifications. To study for the JNCIA-Junos certification, you will want to use the following:

  1. A 5-hour, Flash-based networking fundamentals course. I highly recommend this course for anyone needing an understanding of basic computer networking for any certification. If you already have a significant networking cert, such as the CCNA, you can skip this course.
  2. The JNCIA-Junos Study Guides Parts 1 & 2. Available as two PDF documents. The information in the 2012 edition of this guide is based on JunOS Release 12.1R1.9, which is more than enough information to pass the JN0-101 exam based on JunOS Release 11.1 commands and functionality.
  3. Because the JNCIA-Junos exam (JN0-101) is based on JunOS 11.1, you will want to thumb through the JunOS 11.1 documentation as an extra source of study material.
  4. The JunOS CLI Explorer is an online reference and glossary of JunOS 12.x commands and statements. This is a handy reference for a quick lookup of JunOS commands.
  5. The JN0-101 JNCIA-JunOS pre-assessment exam. Actually, if you are already proficient at using JunOS and Juniper equipment, you might try the pre-assessment exam first to determine in what areas of understanding you are the weakest and study those first. Otherwise, wait to take this pre-assessment exam a week before your exam to pick up what topics you still need to study.

To access these free study resources, it will be necessary to register for an account at the Juniper Learning Portal at This is where you will learn more about the Juniper Network Certification Program (JNCP) and find all of the latest information on all Juniper certifications and certification tracks. You will specifically want to visit the Juniper Networks Certified Associate – JunOS certification track and check out how to get 50% discounted vouchers for Juniper certification exams.

Studying for the JNCIS-Junos Exam

The bulk of your studying will be using the two study guide PDFs along with the exam objectives, and hopefully a non-production JunOS device or two with which to experiment. There is a lot of information to digest, and I highly recommend learning the details about commands and features expressed in the two PDFs. Use the JNCIA-Junos exam objectives to determine what information to really concentrate on. You will especially want to know command line commands for configuration, firewall functionality, and how to interpret command output. Don’t skimp on knowing basic networking, routing protocols, and subnetting either. The JNCIA-Junos exam is not the CCNA exam, but don’t take it too lightly either.

Registering for Juniper Certification Exams

Juniper exams are administered at Pearson Vue testing centers. Registering for a Juniper certification exam requires a Juniper account at the Pearson Vue web site. Even if you already have a Pearson Vue web site account from previously taking an exam by another certification vendor, you will still need to create a separate Juniper Pearson Vue account just for your Juniper certification history.

If you have a Juniper exam voucher, you will need to activate the voucher first and then apply it when you sign up for your exam date on the Pearson Vue web site. You will typically have 90 days to take the exam once you have activated the voucher per the instructions included with the voucher. I didn’t quite get this detail and had to rush to take my exam or my activated voucher would have expired.

What’s on the Exam?

The JNCIA-Junos exam (JN0-101) is a typical computer-based certification exam with 65 questions to be completed in under 90 minutes. Passing is 66% and the score is available immediately upon completing the exam. There is no prerequisite to take the JNCIA-Junos exam.

Each exam item has four answer options and is either single or multiple choice. Some questions have an exhibit that must be examined to answer the question correctly. You can move forward and back and flag questions. At the end of the exam you are given the opportunity to review all of the questions and change any of your answers before you end the exam.

So how did I do?

Well, the JNCIA-Junos was the very first non-beta IT certification exam that I have ever failed. I needed 66% to pass and received a score of 63%. My worst sections were (not surprisingly) user interface options and routing policy/firewall filters, and (surprisingly) routing fundamentals. I’m not really surprised that I failed, because I do have very little hands-on JunOS configuration experience, and I really didn’t take studying the exam very seriously. Actually, I’m rather relieved that I failed because, had I only just squeaked by with a pass, I would not feel worthy of the certification. It’s also an eye-opener to me that I’m not as close to being ready to take Cisco’s ICND2 exam as I might have thought.

Will I take the JNCIA-Junos exam again? Yes, I probably will circle back to it after I finish off some Cisco exams that I’ve had on my TODO list for years now. I’ve got my eye on the Juniper JNCIA-IDP certification too.

For further information

If you have any questions, visit the Juniper Networks’s Training, Certification, and Career Topics discussion forum, or email Juniper directly at Of course, there a lot of excellent Juniper discussions concerning many Juniper certifications in the Juniper Certifications discussion forum here at


  1. Webmaster's Avatar
    Great read again JD. Now that you've taken a Cisco and a Juniper exam, any thoughts on how they compare in terms of difficulty?
  2. webgeek's Avatar
    Didn't know Juniper put all the info needed out there for free. Nice read!
  3. JDMurray's Avatar
    I forgot to mention the free Junos as a Second Language-WBT Flash-based course for exam candidates who already know Cisco IOS. Wish I has this on my test prep list.
    Updated 04-17-2013 at 08:15 PM by JDMurray
  4. JDMurray's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Webmaster
    Great read again JD. Now that you've taken a Cisco and a Juniper exam, any thoughts on how they compare in terms of difficulty?
    The CCENT was more difficult because of the simulations and the great breadth of knowledge. The JNCIA-Junos goes into CCNA-like depth on some topics, but overall it's easier. The trick is you've really got to know the JunOS-specific topics. You won't be able to bluff your way through it with only basic networking knowledge.
  5. Zartanasaurus's Avatar
    Great info here, thanks!
  6. chris707's Avatar
    I enjoyed the Juniper Exam, got a good pass to.
    I think Junos is the way forward and this is someone coming from a Cisco back ground.
    Does anybody else think this, I would like to hear comments.
  7. chrisjb's Avatar
    Thanks JD - your CISSP feedback was very helpful in preparing me for that test (passed in June), and now that I started working for Juniper, I need to get this cert right away. Thanks for posting
  8. H3||scr3am's Avatar
    Great writeup JD

    Another handy utility for studying is the JUNOS genius app: Junos Genius - Juniper Networks

    I'm considering taking this exam in the future as a position I'm looking at is utilizing Juniper based security.


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