A Complete Juniper Certification Guide
| training | certification paths - David Brown

A Complete Juniper Certification Guide

There are many benefits to earning an IT certification. It can help you advance your career as an IT professional. You will sharpen your skills and increase your knowledge as your prepare for exams. And you will have greater confidence in your ability to address real-world, on-the-job issues as they arise. Juniper certification is one of those IT credentials that will set you apart and improve your chances for advancement in the field.

Despite their reputation as an excellent telecom equipment manufacturer, Juniper Networks does not have the notoriety and recognition that their rival, Cisco Systems, enjoys. That does not mean Juniper is necessarily a lesser choice, or that it does not enjoy the trust of a great many large customers worldwide. Juniper has been around since 1996, and had a revenue of $5.02 billion in 2017.

Juniper certification is a valuable asset for network engineers looking to expand their skill set beyond those required to support market leader Cisco. This guide gives you helpful information about the Juniper Networks Certification Program (JNCP) framework, which includes 24 certifications across seven certification tracks and four skill levels.

If you’ve ever wondered how to get a Juniper certification, this guide will help you. Those interested in demonstrating their Juniper knowledge through testing can choose from these Juniper certification tracks:

  • Automation and DevOps
  • Cloud
  • Data Center
  • Design
  • Enterprise Routing and Switching
  • Junos Security
  • Service Provider Routing and Switching

Juniper Certification Tracks

Exactly which exams to take and how far you go with Juniper certification is up to you. Juniper Associate Certification is the entry point for Juniper certification. You can go for JNCIA-Junos, which is the standard choice for those interested in routing, switching, and data centers. Or you can focus on Automation and DevOps, Cloud, Design or Security.

Juniper Automation and DevOps Certification Track

This track will demonstrate your understanding of automation tools and frameworks, as well as concepts and practices related to DevOps. The streamlining of routine and repetitive tasks through automation increases value to the company in terms of both cost and efficiency.

Juniper offers two certifications in the Automation and DevOps track:

  • Juniper Networks Certified Associate: Automation and DevOps (JNCIA-DevOps)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Specialist: Automation and DevOps (JNCIS-DevOps)

Network engineers don’t have to be full-fledged programmers, but they should know enough to get the most out of the network platforms that they manage. In this track, candidates should be comfortable with Remote Procedure Calls (RPCs) and the syntax of scripting and programming using Python.

Juniper Networks Certified Associate: Automation and DevOps (JNCIA-DevOps)

The JNCIA: Automation and DevOps certification is designed for IT professionals who have some knowledge of automation and devops related to Juniper platforms. The JNCIA-DevOps validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Junos Automation Stack and DevOps Concepts
  • XML/NETCONF
  • Data Serialization
  • Ansible
  • Python or PyEZ
  • REST APIs

Required exam: Earning the JNCIA: Automation and DevOps certification requires passing one exam — JNCIA: Automation and DevOps (JN0-220).

Prerequisites: None.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIA: Automation and DevOps was designed for networking professionals with introductory-level knowledge of automation tools and best practices.

Juniper Networks Certified Specialist: Automation and DevOps (JNCIS-DevOps)

The JNCIS: Automation and DevOps certification is designed for IT professionals with intermediate-level knowledge of automation and devops related to Juniper platforms. The JNCIS-DevOps validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Platform Automation Overview
  • NETCONF/XML API
  • Data Serialization
  • Python/Ruby
  • Ansible
  • Junos Automation Scripts
  • YANG
  • Juniper Extension Toolkits

Required exam: Earning the JNCIS: DevOps certification requires passing one exam — JNCIS-Automation and DevOps (JN0-421).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIA: Automation and DevOps certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIA: DevOps was designed for networking professionals with intermediate knowledge of automation tools and best practices.

Juniper Cloud Certification Track

Understanding what the cloud is, what is does, and the various technologies that support it are the focus of the Juniper Cloud Certification track. Of particular interest are three network frameworks that help power the cloud: network functions virtualization (NFV), software-defined networking (SDN), and software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN).

Juniper offers four certifications in the Cloud track:

  • Juniper Networks Certified Associate: Cloud (JNCIA-Cloud)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Specialist: Cloud (JNCIS-Cloud)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Professional: Cloud (JNCIP-Cloud)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Expert: Cloud (JNCIE-Cloud)

Juniper Networks Certified Associate: Cloud (JNCIA-Cloud)

The JNCIA: Cloud certification is designed for entry-level IT professionals working with Juniper Networks architecture. The JNCIA-Cloud validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Cloud Architectures
  • NFV
  • SDN
  • SDN WAN
  • Cloud Monitoring
  • Cloud Managed Services
  • Cloud Security

Required exam: Earning the JNCIA: Cloud certification requires passing one exam — JNCIA: Cloud (JN0-211).

Prerequisites: None.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIA: Cloud was designed for networking professionals with introductory-level knowledge of Juniper Networks cloud-based networking architectures, theory, and best practices.

Juniper Networks Certified Specialist: Cloud (JNCIS-Cloud)

The JNCIS: Cloud certification is designed for IT professionals working with OpenStack and Contrail, which are cloud networking stack architectures. The JNCIS-Cloud validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Understand SDN Theory and Applications
  • OpenStack
  • Contrail/Open Contrail
  • Contrail Service Chaining
  • Contrail Analytics
  • Troubleshooting Juniper Networks cloud products

Required exam: Earning the JNCIS: Cloud certification requires passing one exam — JNCIS: Cloud (JN0-412).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIA: Cloud certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIS: Cloud was designed for networking professionals with intermediate knowledge of software-defined networking, theory, and best practices.

Juniper Networks Certified Professional: Cloud (JNCIP-Cloud)

The JNCIS: Cloud certification is designed for IT professionals who regularly work with Contrail, AWS, Kubernetes, vCenter, and AWS and Azure Devops products. The JNCIP-Cloud validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Contrail enterprise multicloud concepts
  • Kubernetes integration with Contrail
  • OpenShift integration with Contrail
  • vCenter integration with Contrail
  • Azure networking concepts
  • AWS networking concepts
  • Service chaining

Required exam: Earning the JNCIS: Cloud certification requires passing one exam — JNCIP: Cloud (JN0-610).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIS: Cloud certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIP: Cloud was designed for networking professionals with advanced knowledge of cloud networking, theory, and best practices.

Juniper Networks Certified Expert: Cloud (JNCIE-Cloud)

The JNCIE: Cloud certification is designed for IT professionals who can build a cloud network consisting of multiple interconnected sites and services using cloud technologies. The JNCIE-Cloud validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Orchestration with OpenStack, VMware, and Kubernetes
  • Fabric automation using Contrail Command
  • Contrail networking practices and tools
  • Contrail security best practices
  • Monitoring analytics and telemetry with AppFormix

Required exam: Earning the JNCIS: Cloud certification requires traveling to a Juniper Networks testing center and passing a 6-hour lab exam — JNCIE: Cloud (JPR-911).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIP: Cloud certification.

Recommended experience: JNCIE: Cloud is a practical exam that validates a wide range of advanced cloud networking practices. It’s recommended that candidates have considerable hands-on experience with enterprise Juniper networks.

Juniper Data Center Certification Track

Junos is the software that runs Juniper Networks equipment. It is essentially the operating system (OS) for the routing, switching, security, and other devices made by the company. The definition is in the name: Jun-OS.

When people refer to Juniper Junos certification, they may be referring to the Associate-level exam that is the entry point for the Data Center, Enterprise Routing and Switching, and Service Provider Routing and Switching certification tracks. For someone starting out with Juniper, or an engineer who is only interested in taking one basic exam, the Juniper Junos certification (JNCIA-Junos) is probably the best choice.

Juniper offers four certifications in the Data Center track:

  • Juniper Certified Associate: Junos (JNCIA-Junos)
  • Juniper Certified Specialist: Enterprise Routing (JNCIS-ENT)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Professional: Data Center (JNCIP-DC)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Expert – Data Center (JNCIE-DC)

Juniper Certified Associate: Junos (JNCIA-Junos)

The JNCIA: Junos certification is designed for entry-level networking professionals. The JNCIA focuses on networking basics and routing fundamentals — similar to what you might find with Cisco’s CCNA. It also covers product-specific information, including the Junos device portfolio and maneuvering the Junos CLI.

The JNCIA-Junos validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Networking Fundamentals
  • Junos OS Fundamentals
  • User Interfaces
  • Junos Configuration Basics
  • Operational Monitoring and Maintenance
  • Routing Fundamentals
  • Routing Policy and Firewall Filters

Required exam: Earning the JNCIA: Junos certification requires passing one exam — JNCIA: Junos (JN0-103).

Prerequisite: None.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIA: Juniper was designed for networking professionals with beginner-to-intermediate knowledge of networking.

Juniper Certified Specialist: Enterprise Routing (JNCIS-ENT)

The JNCIS: Enterprise Routing certification is designed for networking professionals pursuing a specialization in either the Data Center or Enterprise tracks at the Professional and Expert levels. The JNCIS-ENT validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Layer 2 Switching and VLANs
  • Spanning Tree
  • Layer 2 Security
  • Protocol Independent Routing
  • OSPF
  • IS-IS
  • BGP
  • Tunnels
  • High Availability

Required exam: Earning the JNCIS: Enterprise Routing certification requires passing one exam — JNCIS: Enterprise Routing (JN0-348).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIA: Cloud certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIS: Enterprise Routing was designed for experienced networking professionals with beginner to intermediate knowledge of routing and switching implementations in Junos.

Juniper Networks Certified Professional: Data Center (JNCIP-DC)

The JNCIP: Data Center certification is designed for networking professionals configuring, managing, and troubleshooting data centers. The JNCIP-DC validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Data Center Deployment or Management
  • Multichassis LAG
  • Layer 2 Fabrics
  • Layer 3 Fabrics
  • VXLAN
  • EVPN VXLAN Signaling
  • Data Center Interconnect
  • Data Center Architecture and Security

Required exam: Earning the JNCIP: Data Center certification requires passing one exam — JNCIP: Data Center (JN0-681).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIS: ENT.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIP: Data Center was designed for experienced data center networking professionals with advanced knowledge of the Juniper Networks Junos software and data center devices.

Juniper Networks Certified Expert – Data Center (JNCIE-DC)

The JNCIE: Data Center certification is designed for networking professionals working with advanced data center configuration, management, and troubleshooting. The JNCIE-DC validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Management
  • Layer 2 Underlay
  • Layer 3 Underlay
  • Controllerless Overlay
  • Data Center Interconnect (DCI)
  • Security
  • Class of Service (CoS)

Required exam: Earning the JNCIE: Data Center certification requires passing one exam — JNCIE: Data Center (JPR-980).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIP: Data Center certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIA: Cloud was designed to validate networking professionals’ ability to deploy, configure, manage, and troubleshoot Junos-based platforms. Because this is a largely hands-on exam, candidates are expected to have advanced skills in Juniper data center configuration and management.

Juniper Design Certification Track

While many network engineers work solely on the operational side of networking, design engineers are interested in creating and building networks from scratch. It requires a different mindset, one that looks into a future of possibilities, rather than the past history of an existing network architecture.

Juniper offers four certifications in the Design track:

  • Juniper Networks Certified Design Associate (JNCDA)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Design Specialist: Data Center (JNCDS-DC)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Design Specialist: Service Provider (JNCDS-SP)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Design Specialist: Security (JNCDS-SEC)

It takes a lot of ingenuity to make things work, so designers need to know a lot about the technologies and practices of network design before they start.

Juniper Networks Certified Design Associate (JNCDA)

The Juniper Networks Certified Design Associate certification is designed for IT professionals who create network architectures with Juniper platforms. The JNCDA validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Customer Network Design Requirements
  • Securing the Network
  • Business Continuity
  • Network Automation and Management
  • Network Design Architectures

Required exam: Earning the JNCDA certification requires passing one exam — Juniper Networks Certified Design Associate (JN0-1101).

Prerequisite: None.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCDA was designed for networking professionals and designers with beginner knowledge of network design, theory, and best practices.

Juniper Networks Certified Design Specialist: Data Center (JNCDS-DC)

The JNCDS: Data Center certification is designed for IT professionals with intermediate-level knowledge of network design related to data center implementations with Juniper platforms. The JNCDS-DC validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Data Center Design Considerations
  • Ethernet Fabric Architectures
  • IP Fabric Architecture
  • Data Center Interconnect
  • Data Center Security
  • Virtualization in the Data Center
  • Traffic Prioritization in the Data Center
  • High Availability in the Data Center

Required exam: Earning the JNCDS: Data Center certification requires passing one exam — JNCDS: Data Center (JN0-1301).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the Juniper Networks Certified Design Associate certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCDS: Data Center was designed for networking professionals and designers with intermediate knowledge of data center network design, theory, and best practices.

Juniper Networks Certified Design Specialist: Service Provider (JNCDS-SP)

The JNCDS: Service Provider certification is designed for IT professionals with intermediate-level knowledge of network design related to service provider implementations with Juniper platforms. The JNCDS-SP validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • WAN Connectivity
  • Network Availability and Traffic Prioritization
  • Service Provider Core WAN Design
  • Service Provider Edge WAN Design
  • Enterprise WAN
  • Data Center WAN
  • WAN Security
  • WAN Management
  • SDN in the WAN

Required exam: Earning the JNCDS: Service Provider certification requires passing one exam — JNCDS: Service Provider (JN0-1331).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the Juniper Networks Certified Design Associate certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCDS: Service Provider was designed for networking professionals and designers with intermediate knowledge of service provider design, theory, and best practices.

Juniper Networks Certified Design Specialist: Security (JNCDS-SEC)

The JNCDS: Security certification is designed for IT professionals with intermediate-level knowledge of network design related to security implementations with Juniper platforms. The JNCDS-SEC validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Fundamental Security Concepts
  • Advanced Security Concepts
  • Securing the Campus and Branch
  • Securing the Enterprise WAN
  • Securing the Service Provider WAN
  • Securing the Data Center
  • Securing Automation and Management
  • Securing Virtualization
  • High Availability

Required exam: Earning the JNCDS: Security certification requires passing one exam — JNCDS: Security (JN0-1361).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the Juniper Networks Certified Design Associate certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCDS: Security was designed for networking professionals and designers with intermediate knowledge of network security, theory, and best practices.

Juniper Enterprise Routing and Switching Certification Track

At the Specialist Level, the Juniper Enterprise Routing and Switching certification gets into advanced concepts like IP multicast, spanning tree, and class of service (CoS). The Expert exam is a hands-on test of the ability to handle a wide variety of network issues.

Juniper offers three certifications in the Enterprise Routing and Switching track:

  • Juniper Certified Specialist: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIS-ENT)
  • Juniper Certified Professional: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIP-ENT)
  • Juniper Certified Expert: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIE-ENT)
  • Juniper Certified Specialist: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIS-ENT)

The JNCIS: Enterprise Routing certification is designed for networking professionals pursuing a specialization in either the Data Center or Enterprise tracks at the Professional and Expert levels. The JNCIS-ENT validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Layer 2 Switching and VLANs
  • Spanning Tree
  • Layer 2 Security
  • Protocol Independent Routing
  • OSPF
  • IS-IS
  • BGP
  • Tunnels
  • High Availability

 

Required exam: Earning the JNCIS: Enterprise Routing and Switching certification requires passing one exam — JNCIS: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JN0-348).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIA: Junos certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIS: Enterprise Routing and Switching was designed for experienced networking professionals with beginner to intermediate knowledge of routing and switching implementations in Junos.

Juniper Certified Professional: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIP-ENT)

The JNCIP: Enterprise Routing and Switching certification is designed for IT professionals who configure, manage, and troubleshoot enterprise networks. The JNCIP-ENT validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Layer 2 Switching and VLANs
  • Interior Gateway Protocols (IGPs)
  • BGP
  • IP Multicast
  • Ethernet Switching and Spanning Tree
  • Layer 2 Authentication and Access Control
  • IP Telephony Features
  • Class of Service (CoS)

Required exam: Earning the JNCIP: Enterprise Routing and Switching certification requires passing one exam — JNCIP: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JN0-648).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIS: Enterprise Routing and Switching certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIP: Enterprise Routing and Switching was designed for experienced networking professionals with beginner to intermediate knowledge of routing and switching implementations in Junos.

Juniper Certified Expert: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIE-ENT)

The JNCIE: Enterprise Routing and Switching certification is designed for IT experts who configure, manage, and troubleshoot enterprise networks. The JNCIE-ENT validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • System Services and Security
  • Interfaces
  • Ethernet Switching
  • IGPs
  • BGP
  • Protocol-Independent Routing
  • Multicast
  • Class of Service (CoS)

Required exam: Earning the JNCIE: Enterprise Routing and Switching certification requires passing one exam — JNCIE: Enterprise Routing and Switching (JPR-944).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIP: Enterprise Routing and Switching certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIE: Enterprise Routing and Switching was designed to validate networking professionals’ ability to deploy, configure, manage and troubleshoot Junos-based enterprise routing and switching platforms. Those taking this hands-on exam are expected to have advanced skills in Juniper enterprise routing and switching configuration and management.

Juniper Junos Security Certification Track

No one should underestimate the value of a robust network security implementation. Candidates in the Juniper Junos Security Certification track demonstrate their ability to understand a host of concepts and practices related to security.

Juniper offers four certifications in the Security track:

  • Juniper Networks Certified Associate: Security (JNCIA-SEC)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Specialist: Security (JNCIS-SEC)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Professional: Security (JNCIP-SEC)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Expert: Security (JNCIE-SEC)

A glance at the exam objectives below will show that there is a lot to cover here. An integral part of the material is Juniper SRX Series, a product family of high-performance network security solutions.

Juniper Networks Certified Associate: Security (JNCIA-SEC)

The JNCIA: Security certification is designed for entry-level IT professionals interested in a security career with Juniper platforms. The JNCIA-SEC validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • SRX Series Devices
  • Junos Security Objects
  • Security Policies
  • Sky Advanced Threat Prevention
  • Network Address Translation
  • IPSec
  • United Threat Management
  • Monitoring/Reporting

Required exam: Earning the JNCIA: Security certification requires passing one exam — JNCIA: Security (JN0-230).

Prerequisites: None.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIA: Security was designed for networking professionals with beginner to intermediate knowledge of the Juniper Networks Junos OS for SRX Series devices.

Juniper Networks Certified Specialist: Security (JNCIS-SEC)

The JNCIS: Security certification is designed for IT professionals with some knowledge and experience in security related to Juniper platforms. The JNCIS-SEC validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Junos Security Overview
  • Zones
  • Security Policies
  • NAT
  • IPsec VPNs
  • High Availability (HA) Clustering
  • Virtual SRX

Required exam: Earning the JNCIS: Security certification requires passing one exam — JNCIS: Security (JN0-334).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIA: Security certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIS: Security was designed for experienced networking professionals with intermediate knowledge of the Juniper Networks Junos OS for SRX Series devices.

Juniper Networks Certified Professional: Security (JNCIP-SEC)

The JNCIP: Security certification is designed for IT professionals with advanced knowledge and experience in security related to Juniper platforms. The JNCIP-SEC validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Application-Aware Security Services
  • Security Director Logging and Reporting
  • Sky ATP
  • United Threat Management (UTM)
  • Intrusion Prevention System (IPS)
  • Software Defined Secure Networks (SDSN)
  • User Firewall
  • Layer 2 Security

Required exam: Earning the JNCIP: Security certification requires passing one exam — JNCIP: Security (JN0-634).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIS: Security certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIP: Security was designed for experienced networking professionals with advanced knowledge of the Juniper Networks Junos OS for SRX Series devices.

Juniper Networks Certified Expert: Security (JNCIE-SEC)

The JNCIE: Security certification is designed for IT professionals with practical skills and advanced knowledge in security related to Juniper platforms. The JNCIE-SEC validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Security Infrastructure
  • Security Management
  • Advanced Security

Required exam: Earning the JNCIE: Security certification requires passing one exam — JNCIE: Security (JPR-933).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIP: Security certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIE: Security was designed to validate the networking professional’s ability to deploy, configure, manage, and troubleshoot Junos-based security platforms. Those taking this hands-on exam are expected to have advanced skills in Juniper security.

Juniper Service Provider Routing and Switching Certification Track

Refer to the Juniper Data Center Certification section for more information on the JNCIA-Junos exam. The same knowledge that helps engineers in the administration of data centers is helpful to those who support Enterprise or Service Provider Routing and Switching technologies. The first two exams are the same for both Enterprise and Service Provider Routing and Switching.

Juniper offers three certifications in the Service Provider Routing and Switching track:

  • Juniper Networks Certified Specialist: Service Provider (JNCIS-SP)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Professional: Service Provider (JNCIP-SP)
  • Juniper Networks Certified Expert: Service Provider (JNCIE-SP)

The difference between the Enterprise and Service Provider tracks is one of emphasis. Many of the same technologies and platforms come into play, but enterprise network engineers will work with more big connections requiring BGP, MPLS, and other skills. Enterprise engineers deal with smaller connections, users, and campus-based implementations.

Juniper Networks Certified Specialist: Service Provider (JNCIS-SP)

The JNCIS: Service Provider certification is designed for IT professionals with some knowledge of service provider configuration and management. The JNCIS-SP validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Protocol-Independent Routing
  • Open Shortest Path First (OSPF)
  • Intermediate System to Intermediate System (IS-IS)
  • Border Gateway Protocol (BGP)
  • Layer 2 Bridging and VLANs
  • Spanning-Tree Protocols
  • Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS)
  • IPv6
  • Tunnels
  • High Availability

Required exam: Earning the JNCIS: Service Provider certification requires passing one exam — JNCIS: Service Provider (JN0-362).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIA: Junos certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIS: Service Provider was designed for experienced networking professionals with beginner to intermediate knowledge of routing and switching implementations in Junos.

Juniper Networks Certified Professional: Service Provider (JNCIP-SP)

The JNCIP: Service Provider certification is designed for IT professionals with advanced knowledge of service provider configuration and management. The JNCIP-SP validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • OSPF
  • IS-IS
  • BGP
  • Class of Service (CoS)
  • IP Multicast
  • Layer 3 VPNs
  • Layer 2 VPNs

Required exam: Earning the JNCIP: Service Provider certification requires passing one exam — JNCIP: Service Provider (JN0-662).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIS: Service Provider certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIP: Service Provider was designed for experienced networking professionals with advanced knowledge of the Juniper Networks Junos OS.

Juniper Networks Certified Expert: Service Provider (JNCIE-SP)

The JNCIE: Service Provider certification is designed for IT professionals with practical skills and advanced knowledge of service provider configuration and management. The JNCIE-SP validates a candidate’s understanding of these topics and skills:

  • Device Infrastructure
  • IGP
  • MPLS
  • BGP
  • VPNs
  • Multicast
  • CoS

Required exam: Earning the JNCIE: Service Provider certification requires passing one exam — JNCIE: Service Provider (JPR-960).

Prerequisites: Prior to attempting this certification, candidates must earn the JNCIP: Service Provider certification.

Recommended experience: While Juniper does not specify qualifications for this certification, JNCIE: Service Provider was designed to validate the networking professional’s ability to implement, troubleshoot and maintain Juniper Networks service provider networks. Those taking this hands-on exam are expected to have advanced skills in Juniper security.

How Much Do Juniper Exams Cost?

Juniper has largely standardized their exam prices: Associate exams cost $200, Specialist exams $300, and Professional exams $400. Here are the most popular Juniper exams and their prices (in USD).

  • JN0-103: Junos, Associate (JNCIA-Junos): $200
  • JN0-1101: Design, Associate (JNCDA): $200
  • JN0-348: Enterprise Routing and Switching, Specialist (JNCIS-ENT): $300
  • JN0-648: Enterprise Routing and Switching, Professional (JNCIP-ENT): $400
  • JN0-362: Service Provider Routing and Switching, Specialist (JNCIS-SP): $300
  • JN0-662: Service Provider Routing and Switching, Professional (JNCIP-SP): $400

These prices are dependent on location. They’re listed to give you a general idea of the exam costs. However, what you pay will depend on where you live and other factors.

It’s good to have certifications like Juniper on your resume, but potential employers may want proof to back up your claim. You can get Juniper certification verification through CertManager. According to the Juniper FAQ, CertManager allows you to privately publish credentials for third-party verification and post digital credentials to social media sites.

Preparing for a Juniper certification exam is not something that can be done overnight. The scope of the material is both broad and deep. An intensive course by qualified instructors coupled with focused self-study is the best way to learn the material. Consider it an investment in your future.

Juniper Certification Recertification and Renewal

Juniper certifications are valid for three years and will expire unless recertification action is taken. Recertification can be accomplished through examination or class attendance.

Certification holders can complete either an exam on the same level or an exam on a higher level within the same track to renew their certification. Those who elect to recertify through course attendance should take an appropriate course in the same track as prescribed by Juniper in the Certificate Recertification page on their website.

Taking an advanced exam or passing a higher-level course will automatically renew all lower-level certifications in the same track for three more years.

Juniper Certification Salary and Career Information

According to Payscale.com, the average for a JNCIA Network Engineer is $79,095, while a Senior Network Engineer with this certification can make $102,794. The average JNCIA salary is $83,000. A JNCIS can make a bit more: $80,668 as a Network Engineer and $111,758 for a Senior Network Engineer. The average JNCIS salary is $98,000.

An entry-level Juniper-certified engineer might make about 10% more than his Cisco-trained colleague. But that advantage shrinks to about 5% at the senior level. What is noteworthy is that both Juniper and Cisco engineers take in a pretty good salary at the Associate level. And the real kicker is experience, which can result in more than 70% additional income over time.

A “JNCIA” search on Monster.com yielded only 151 jobs, while a search on the keyword “CCNA” yielded 4,290 results. While it’s true that there are a lot more Cisco opportunities out there, job seekers are also competing with a much larger pool of qualified candidates. A Juniper certification will set you apart in the marketplace.

It may be apples and oranges trying to compare the two IT certifications in terms of financial possibilities. Good engineers tend to gravitate to good contracts with whatever credentials they have managed to muster. What’s clear is that getting certified can not only increase your knowledge and skills, it may very well tip the scales in your favor when your resume is on the table.

Juniper once offered a Juniper Certification Fast Track, but that now appears to be discontinued. There are some remnants of discussion about it on the internet, but references to it on the company’s website seem to have disappeared.

Juniper Certification Training

CBT Nuggets offers a variety of Juniper trainings. In addition to quality, entertaining video training created by expert-level trainers, CBT Nuggets provides everything a learner needs to study for Juniper certification exams — virtual labs, supplemental files, practice exams, and access to a robust Learner Community.

All CBT Nuggets Juniper training either provides learners with custom virtual labs or supplemental files to learn technical concepts alongside the video training. Virtual labs were designed by experts to help learners gain hands-on experience in a sandbox environment. NuggetLab supplemental files include practice IOS commands, configuration files, and network diagrams — everything a learner needs to study for a Juniper certification exam.

CBT Nuggets learners should also take advantage of the Kaplan® IT Training Practice Exams included with a subscription to CBT Nuggets. Practice exams, taken timed or untimed, provide a good baseline for learners to test their knowledge. Additionally, Kaplan® IT Training Practice Exams evaluate a learner’s strengths and weaknesses, so they know where to focus their attention while studying.

Being successful taking Juniper certification exams requires quality instruction, hands-on experience, and practice with the exam itself. CBT Nuggets provides every element a learner needs to pass a Juniper certification exam.

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Ultimate Networking Cert Guide

A 97-page guide to every Cisco, Juniper, F5, and NetApp certification, and how they fit into your career.

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