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[–] hwong 0 points 4 points (+4|-0) ago 

Get some machines and maybe an old cico router from CL and start playing around. Also start looking at getting some whitehat security under your belt. (everybody is looking for some real world security experience these days) Also start loading 'nix on a couple of boxes and get to know it well. Most server farms run some form of it. Windows servers run about 30, maybe 40% of a NOC the rest will be nix. Also learn VM in and out.

Usually the entry level NOC jobs are the late night shift. Doing tape backups, unbopxing and racking the new servers, maybe cloning the OS to the new servers LOTS of cable pulling. Pretty grunt work. The day shift is usually where the fun happens. Setting up/configing servers. Reviewing logs, tweeking the load balancers etc. I would suspect you would get on the late shift, then work your way up to the day ops shift. But the recs sound like maybe they are hiring a mid level engineer.

Good luck! its all good skills to know.

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[–] Represent601 [S] 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

Thanks for the reply! I'm receiving advice from some people outside voat that the Net+ cert might not be necessary. They are saying the CCENT or CCNA would teach me everything the Net+ would, just in greater detail. Do you know anything about that?

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[–] jdub01010101 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

CCNA would definitely be better than a Net+. I would still read through a Net+ book though just for the background. CCNA is only Cisco so it can be good to have a neutral perspective in case they use something like HP Procurve switches or Juniper routers.

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[–] 0g 0 points 2 points (+2|-0) ago 

Skip any + certs. Try to buy a few 1841s and 3560s on ebay/CL and watch CBTnuggets or similar videos. That will get you hands on experience with the devices, you'll get to know some IOS commands, and learn networking basics.

Go to the community college. Try to meet lots of people as they will come to you with job opportunities in the future. If it's a Cisco Network Academy, you'll get discount vouchers for certs; you can save a lot of money by waiting for that voucher.

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[–] zolty 0 points 2 points (+2|-0) ago 

It really depends on the job, generally you will work front line for 1-3 years. These jobs are largely customer service. Certificates and degrees are nice but they do not substitute for experience.

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[–] ItsSwiftty023 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

Agreed on that. I had no experience when i got hired on to the NOC i work in. one of my co workers has like 6 certs and cant do shit. i run circles around her now.

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[–] on_the_nightshift 0 points 2 points (+2|-0) ago 

Depends on what kind of NOC it is. The NOC where I work (mobile carrier) doesn't do anything with servers, etc. They are definitely more network centric. Getting an older switch and router for a home lab would be a good start, or renting some rack time. If you rent, you won't have to worry about "finding" the IOS to run on your own gear. You can get some decent CLI practice with GNS3 (free) for VIRL (not too expensive). Any of these would be a good option while studying and going through the books/lab exercises.

As far as NOC requirements, they are asking for those things because the market is such that they can right now. If you are technically competent though, most places won't care if you don't have a bachelor's (although some will, like Verizon Wireless).

For getting ready, finding a local CCNA/college networking study group could probably result in a person or two who would be willing to break things for you and give you a chance to troubleshoot, and vice versa.

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[–] septopus 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

Let me add... Chances are you are already prepared for many NOC situations. I base this on you being here in this sub. I assume you have some basic ip trouble shooting skills and have played around with various pieces of network gear. Investigate what is out there in your area. If your state has a robust unemployment services, check that out. And just start applying to random places where you'd like to work.

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[–] septopus 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

Hit http://www.gns3.com/. You may need to find a torrent of images. Diversify your skillset. Learn JunOS. Learn AdtranOS. Add some misc voice. You should at least know what a sip trace or idsn debug looks like. Familiarize yourself with mpls implementations, vlans, evcs, and such. Understand DNS. Understand the networking side of linux. Play with Kali. Install MTR. Learn some scripting. Know some of the physical layer. Know what ports are what. How to crimp or punch down etherweb cables. Familiarize yourself with various monitoring packages. Nagios, solarwinds, em7, openview (is that still a thing?) and so on.

NOC jobs come in all flavors. Some will be training grounds for noobs, or some will be baptism by fire. Some are looking for people in the know, others just people who appear to be diamonds in the rough. Some nocs are first tier, others are higher. Some places will really be impressed with certs and a bachelors, others will laugh at that and only look at actual experience. Some NOCs support only a corporate office and its satellites, others support customers either as a telco/isp or as some other service provider like a colo or generic tech support.

And make sure you hone your people skills. You will need to be able to pull the actual issue out of a user and play therapist from time to time. You will need to learn when to hold back information so that a customer does not latch on to some tidbit and think it applies forever making trouble shooting a pain for you and others.

Are 2600 meetings still a great place for networking with people? Find a place to meet others in the field. If such a thing does not exist perhaps start something at a local coffee house.

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[–] jimifrog 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

As a current network engineer that works with two separate NOCs (one network and one server) it is always beneficial to have a broad spectrum of knowledge to work any incident that comes down the pike. My recommendation is to get your CCENT in routing and switching then your CCNA and branch out from there in the direction you want to work in.... example: CCNA Collaboration (Voice/Video), Data Center, Security, etc... Also you will want to expand outside of just routing and switching by getting familiar with load balancing (F5 and NetScalers), firewalls (Cisco, Checkpoint, Fortinet) and virtualization. The more broad knowledge you have in the beginning will be a great stepping stone to ending up where you want to be in the future.

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[–] Feeling_my_goats 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago  (edited ago)

Somehow I got to trolling around and came across this post. I am not a computer person... But I have had to hire lots of people in my career.

We'll typically post that we want experience for a job if we are hiring. We post for the ideal candidate. That person often doesn't exist (and when they do they want more than we can pay.)

So if you see a job that you are interested in and you think you can do, apply.

Better yet, try to make friends that work in the types of jobs you want. The Internet is full of people and hiring managers can only review so many online applications. Most people on the internet are crazy, so often hiring managers put alot of trust in people recommended by trusted employees.