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  1. Junior Member
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    #1

    Default Juniper vs Cisco tracks

    Hey guys. I have been in the healthcare IT field but have been thinking about getting deeper into networking field. It seems the more I learn about networking the less I know. One aspect of that is choosing between Juniper vs Cisco tracks. With market share highly in Cisco's favor, would it be logical to assume that a high level of Juniper knowledge would be more advantageous as it has less ubiquity and less trained people? This forum is heavy CCNA but very little on Juniper as evidence of Cisco's pull. I guess my question is does anyone here prefer the road less travel with Juniper and has it helped there career progression? Also, any books or video training recommendations for tackling the JNCIA? I am currently studying Network+ material and then hope to specialize. Thanks.
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  3. Junior Member
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    #2
    I feel that too many people know about Cisco.

    It seems to be in every Educational Institution.

    Be prepared to study though.

    As far as what you can do on a Cisco device vs. what you can do on a Juniper device, Cisco is very deep, it never ends, Juniper I am finding is even MORE technical.
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  4. Junior Member
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    #3
    Quote Originally Posted by JoshGarmon47 View Post
    I feel that too many people know about Cisco.

    It seems to be in every Educational Institution.

    Be prepared to study though.



    As far as what you can do on a Cisco device vs. what you can do on a Juniper device, Cisco is very deep, it never ends, Juniper I am finding is even MORE technical.

    Thanks. They both seem to be legit tracks. I figure if I would go down one road I would explore both first before diving in. Riches are in the niches as I once heard that has stuck with me. I was just curious if that would hold true for Juniper vs Cisco.
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  5. Junior Member
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    #4
    Also, I just put in my name for the fast track program Juniper is releasing soon. I will update if I take the course. Seems to be related to JNCIA cert to start.
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  6. Senior Member
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    #5
    what will you be working with most? for me its cisco so im going down the cisco route (ccnp in progress), but will get jncia once ccnp is completed.

    And in regards to the more you know the more you realise you dont know. Your right, its like Alice in Wonderland looking through the looking glass. I like to think that my theoretical knowledge is pretty sound by now but i learn new things every day. Its the smaller things which youll keep learning all day every day
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  7. Senior Member
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    #6
    Juniper Pros:
    -Higher level of knowledge specific to Juniper than Cisco people.
    -Some technologies exist in both environments if you did have to switch.

    Cons:
    -Smaller pool of companies as Cisco dominates the market.

    -----

    Honestly it's not the end of the world if you go Juniper and have to switch, but especially early in a career I would rather have something that is a larger market share incase I happened to get fired/downsized. Once you have experience, it is much easier to find a new job but early on it can be quite challenging...and if you are very limited in the market you can get into you will have an even harder time.
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  8. Senior Member
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    #7
    Well, as someone who holds a JNCIE and a couple of CCIE's, and who has worked for both companies, I think I can offer some perspective here. (Disclaimer: I currently work for Cisco.) You are right that there are fewer people with Juniper experience. However, this does not necessarily mean more job opportunities for people with Juniper certifications. While the number of certification holders is lower, the number of jobs is proportionally lower. I think Juniper is struggling a bit and I would not invest a lot of time putting my eggs in the basket of a company with an uncertain future. In their defense, we've been seeing them win some deals here and there, but I still think they're a bit shaky. If you are looking for a non-Cisco certification you might consider a stronger competitor, such as Palo Alto (if you're into security.) I do get LinkedIn requests for Juniper jobs occasionally, but far less than requests for Cisco jobs. That said, if you are looking at investing your time in lower level (A-level) certifications, you can achieve JNCIA pretty quickly and it's not a bad addition to the resume. If you have to make a choice I would say Cisco.
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  9. Junior Member
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by ccie14023 View Post
    Well, as someone who holds a JNCIE and a couple of CCIE's, and who has worked for both companies, I think I can offer some perspective here. (Disclaimer: I currently work for Cisco.) You are right that there are fewer people with Juniper experience. However, this does not necessarily mean more job opportunities for people with Juniper certifications. While the number of certification holders is lower, the number of jobs is proportionally lower. I think Juniper is struggling a bit and I would not invest a lot of time putting my eggs in the basket of a company with an uncertain future. In their defense, we've been seeing them win some deals here and there, but I still think they're a bit shaky. If you are looking for a non-Cisco certification you might consider a stronger competitor, such as Palo Alto (if you're into security.) I do get LinkedIn requests for Juniper jobs occasionally, but far less than requests for Cisco jobs. That said, if you are looking at investing your time in lower level (A-level) certifications, you can achieve JNCIA pretty quickly and it's not a bad addition to the resume. If you have to make a choice I would say Cisco.
    Thank you for the information. I will look into Palo Alto as well. I just received an email from Juniper to go through their open learning modules with a chance to get a free crack at the JNCIA. I am not sure if I will even end up going too deep into networking. I am thinking security or healthcare based IT. What I appreciate is that a fundamental aspect common to all aspects of IT is networking. JNCIA, CCNA and Network+ all seem to fit that bill for me currently to provide a base level of knowledge.
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  10. Senior Member dontstop's Avatar
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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by ccie14023 View Post
    <snip>
    That's actually really interesting. I'm currently starting my JNCIA training as from what I've seen Juniper is really strong in Service Provider. Why have they started to run on hard times? Are currently Cisco product lines eating into their offerings? Another reason I want to get the JNCIA and other Juniper certs is to prove to myself that I'm able to learn another CLI if need be. I don't want to feel scared that I'll be a Cisco guy forever and always.
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  11. Member Nutsy's Avatar
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    #10
    Another thought is to look at the market you are in. Look at a couple job boards, meet people at meet up groups, or whatever. Figure out what is in demand, and also pay attention to whom. Juniper has a place in the market but, are the companies running Juniper in where ever you want to live?

    As a side note: a couple years back I got offered a job on a global backbone. No where on my resume does it say Juniper, or anything to that end. When I interviewed I said I would be excited to learn it, and work on it. The job was 100% Juniper all the time. Ultimately, the hiring manager said, "That's ok you haven't touched Juniper, we find good engineers can pick it up." Thus, if you "learn Cisco," learn the theory of the protocols. In the end you won't care what brand name is on the box, you'll figure out the CLI.
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  12. Senior Member
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    #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Nutsy View Post

    Thus, if you "learn Cisco," learn the theory of the protocols. In the end you won't care what brand name is on the box, you'll figure out the CLI.
    Great point!
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  13. Senior Member dontstop's Avatar
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    #12
    Cisco has better training material hands down, I would say that Juniper has good material too but it's not always targeted at novices, Juniper's training sometimes relies on having a Cisco background or previous experience. I think Cisco's biggest strength is the fact it's training material is what draws Engineers to use and recommend their equipment. It's a good idea to learn Cisco purely because it's so prevalent and there is so much equipment out in the wild. Even if you become a Juniper only Engineer you will one day have to interface with Cisco equipment. Depending on where your career takes you I'd say that knowing a little Juniper (or a lot if you go that way) will be beneficial because from my honest opinion knowing Junos OS and Cisco IOS pretty much has you covered for nearly the majority of CLIs in the market today.

    The Juniper mentality actually feels more like a CLI built by programmers/Linux system engineers so it's a real contrasting methodology.

    Edit: I also feel because Juniper is stronger in SP there is more of an emphasis in their training on this. Cisco seems to avoid depth in SP topics.
    Last edited by dontstop; 11-16-2017 at 10:07 PM.
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