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Cisco certification changes focus on data center and analytics

Cisco certification changes, effective in January, mean trainees will need to focus more on data center and analytics topics.

Cisco certification changes are coming, with the vendor unveiling a new data analytics and training portfolio,...

as well as issuing major revisions to its Cisco Data Center certification track.

The new training initiatives, effective this week, come as companies begin to pay more attention to the value of analytics, especially as information flowing through data centers begins to skyrocket.

"[Four years ago, we focused on] bimodal IT. We were very good at embracing what is now viewed as the normal traditional infrastructure that all data centers are built on. Now, we need to go one step beyond," said Antonella Corno, manager of product strategy at Cisco.

The analytics track will focus on how to build databases and other analytics and information stores generated by Cisco's Unified Computing System infrastructure. Individuals will also use Cisco Information Server and Business Directory to construct data virtualization scenarios, Corno said.

Enterprises swimming through a flood of data

Being able to get actionable information from the data stored within data centers is becoming more critical for enterprises, as they wrestle with an expected flood of data flowing from internet-of-things devices and other sources.

Corno said, by 2020, IoT data will reach some 600 ZB a year, while big data requirements will encompass 247 EB, a tenfold increase in the amount of data companies analyzed in 2015, according to Cisco.

The goal of the Cisco certification changes is to help engineers understand how to access information and to pull value from information without requiring additional resources.

We were very good at embracing what is now viewed as the normal traditional infrastructure that all data centers are built on. Now, we need to go one step beyond.
Antonella Cornomanager of product strategy, Cisco

The Data Center certification track, meantime, has been completely revised, according to Tejas Vashi, Cisco's director of product strategy and marketing. Seven new courses -- encompassing such subjects as how to establish a policy-driven infrastructure across physical and virtual resources and how to implement unified computing -- will be added to existing Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA), Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert and Cisco Certified Network Professional certification curricula.

Cisco last tweaked its training programs in May 2016, when it made some major changes to its flagship CCNA Routing and Switching certification. Among other additions, it placed more emphasis on software-defined networking and network functions virtualization, reflecting the changing requirements of network administrators.

Next Steps

Cisco revises CCNP

Partners adapt to changing CCIE certification framework

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