Configure TE Tunnels

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Dave Smith
Nugget trainer since 2021
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Advanced MPLS Tutorial for Cisco Network Engineers FAQs: Cost, Training, Value

What is MPLS and what does it do?

MPLS stands for Multiprotocol Label Switching, it's a networking technique that helps speed up and shape the flow of traffic across a network. Normally, network traffic is directed according to the information contained in the header of each packet – this is highly accurate, but can easily be inefficient. MPLS instead directs traffic to predetermined paths through a network with labels, avoiding the need to analyze and direct each individual packet.

How does MPLS work?

Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) works by adding labels to data packets, directing the traffic to predetermined routes through a network. Labels are assigned to packets at what is called the ingress router, and routers behind the ingress router forward traffic based entirely on the label. Since routers don't have to open up and analyze each packet they come across, MPLS enhances network efficiency, enables traffic engineering, and facilitates features like QoS.

Who should take this advanced MPLS tutorial?

Cisco network engineers or networking professionals who want to eventually work as a Cisco network engineer can dramatically enhance their networking expertise by taking this course. Network administrators, network engineers and network architects who need to deepen their familiarity with MPLS technology, especially when used in a Cisco environment, can benefit from this course. Anyone who hopes to eventually earn a CCNP should also take this MPLS course.

Is managing and implementing MPLS considered an entry-level skill?

No, implementing MPLS is not an entry-level skill for networking professionals. Using and managing MPLS takes a solid understanding of networking fundamentals, routing protocols, packet switching and network architectures. Without experience customizing those aspects of network behavior or extensive experience configuring network devices, it would be very difficult to even begin learning MPLS. You may encounter MPLS in your work as an entry-level network administrator, but it's an intermediate skill.

Is this advanced MPLS tutorial associated with any Cisco certifications?

Yes, what you learn on this MPLS tutorial is helpful for earning the CCNP Service Provider. The CCNP Service Provider core exam (350-501 SPCOR) has an entire section on MPLS and segment routing, worth 20% of the overall grade. Additionally, you'll have to take an additional concentration exam (out of four) to earn the CCNP Service Provider – MPLS is worth 25% of the grade for the 300-510 SPRI concentration exam.
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