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Training

Our training non-core activity programme (NCAP) was launched in its current format in 2000 to help address the critical shortage of skilled Internet engineers and technicians being experienced by ISPs.

The NCAP included an initiative to help universities and other educational institutions design and deliver Internet-related engineering courses which better meet the needs of the industry. It also heralded the launch of a new qualification - LINX Accredited Internet Technician (LAIT). The LAIT programme was initiated to help raise the skills of those involved in installing, operating and maintaining Internet hardware and software.

The highly successful LAIT course is now being delivered by our commercial partner Systems & Network Training and the project is therefore financially self sufficient. In the university sector, a number of institutions have adopted the suggestions for syllabus revisions which LINX has made.

LAIT

The course - consisting of three modules each lasting five days - is designed primarily for people who already have IT engineering skills but need additional training in Internet-specific technologies. The three modules cover everything from fundamental networking and routing skills through to advanced techniques such as border gateway protocol (BGP) and multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) and enable engineers to gain experience and expertise in the Internet arena, with the opportunity to achieve LINX certification. The programme has been designed around core skills (as identified by LINX members) required for Internet technicians, resulting in real world issues being covered rather than specific product features. Each stage leads to the appropriate LINX certification.

LAIT 1: IP and networking foundation

LAIT 2: Routing and OSPF

LAIT 3: BGP

Each course is five days in duration, with the appropriate exam being taken on the last day of the course. Further details can be found in the course FAQ or please email Systems & Network Training if you have any questions.

Certification

The exams have deservedly developed a reputation as being tough, not just testing facts but more importantly the application of knowledge to areas such as troubleshooting and design. The exams can be taken without attending the courses.

An important differentiation from other certifications is that exams allow for comments to be taken into consideration by the exam markers. This means, for example, that if you consider a question to be ambiguous you can state your assumptions, which will then be taken into consideration by the adjudicator. Further details can be found in the exam FAQ.

The new LAIT 4 examination is now also available. This is a practical exam lasting for a complete day. The key areas examined are IP addressing, basic routing, OSPF and BGP. Although Cisco routers and switches are used for the lab, the exam does not test Cisco skills. For example rather than asking .display the routing table. the student will be told to type .show ip route. and then asked questions about the meaning of the output of the command. Customised Cisco command references are also provided to the examinees.

Whilst LINX will continue to be involved in the evolution of the course as new technology and hardware comes into use, this activity no longer requires LINX funding and is therefore no longer a separate non-core activity programme. Instead it remains under the direction and guidance of LINX IT & training manager, Hugh Spencer.

With over 740 members connecting from over 73 different countries worldwide, LINX members have access to direct routes from a large number of diverse international peering partners.

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