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LAN Switching and Wireless: CCNA Exploration Companion Guide


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  • About
  • Description
  • Sample Content
  • Updates


The all-new and only authorized textbook for the new Cisco Networking Academy CCNA Exploration LAN Switching and Wireless course

  • A portable reference that supports the topics in the all-new Cisco Networking Academy CCNA Exploration LAN Switching and Wireless curriculum aligning 1:1 with course modules
  • Features improved readability, enhanced topic explanations, real-world examples, and all-new graphical presentations
  • Written and Edited by leading Academy Instructor

  • Copyright 2012
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 1-58713-273-7
  • ISBN-13: 978-1-58713-273-5

Each new purchase of an Exploration Companion guide comes with an exclusive coupon code that can be used to save 65% on these two additional study resources:

1.     CCENT/CCNA ICND1 640-822 Official Cert Guide, Premium Edition eBook and Practice Test (

2.     LAN Switching and Wireless Companion Guide eBook (


LAN Switching and Wireless, CCNA Exploration Companion Guide is the official supplemental textbook for the LAN Switching and Wireless course in the Cisco Networking Academy CCNA® Exploration curriculum version 4. This course provides a comprehensive approach to learning the technologies and protocols needed to design and implement a converged switched network. The Companion Guide, written and edited by a Networking Academy instructor, is designed as a portable desk reference to use anytime, anywhere. The book’s features reinforce the material in the course to help you focus on important concepts and organize your study time for exams.

New and improved features help you study and succeed in this course:

  • Chapter objectives: Review core concepts by answering the questions listed at the beginning of each chapter.
  • Key terms: Refer to the updated lists of networking vocabulary introduced and turn to the highlighted terms in context in each chapter.
  • Glossary: Consult the all-new comprehensive glossary with more than 190 terms.
  • Check Your Understanding questions and answer key: Evaluate your readiness with the updated end-of-chapter questions that match the style of questions you see on the online course quizzes. The answer key explains each answer.
  • Challenge questions and activities: Strive to ace more challenging review questions and activities designed to prepare you for the complex styles of questions you might see on the CCNA exam. The answer key explains each answer.

Wayne Lewis is the Cisco Academy Manager for the Pacific Center for Advanced Technology Training (PCATT), based at Honolulu Community College.

How To: Look for this icon to study the steps that you need to learn to perform certain tasks.

Packet Tracer Activities: Explore networking concepts in activities interspersed throughout some chapters using Packet Tracer v4.1 developed by Cisco. The files for these activities are on the accompanying CD-ROM.

Also available for the LAN Switching and Wireless course:

LAN Switching and Wireless, CCNA Exploration Labs and Study Guide

ISBN-10: 1-58713-202-8

ISBN-13: 978-1-58713-202-5

Companion CD-ROM

The CD-ROM provides many useful tools and information to support your education:

  • Packet Tracer Activity exercise files
  • A Guide to Using a Networker’s Journal booklet
  • Taking Notes: A .txt file of the chapter objectives
  • More IT Career Information
  • Tips on Lifelong Learning in Networking

This book is part of the Cisco Networking Academy Series from Cisco Press®. Books in this series support and complement the Cisco Networking online curriculum.

Table of Contents

&atext-align=left align=left>Chapter 1 LAN Design 1

Objectives 1

Key Terms 1

Switched LAN Architecture 2

    The Hierarchical Network Model 2

        Access Layer 2

        Distribution Layer 3

        Core Layer 3

        A Hierarchical Network in a Medium-Sized Business 4

        Benefits of a Hierarchical Network 4

        Principles of Hierarchical Network Design 6

        Network Diameter 7

        Bandwidth Aggregation 8

        Redundancy 9

    What Is a Converged Network? 10

        Legacy Equipment 10

        Advanced Technology 11

        New Options 12

        Separate Voice, Video, and Data Networks 13

Matching Switches to Specific LAN Functions 15

    Considerations for Hierarchical Network Switches 15

        Traffic Flow Analysis 15

        User Community Analysis 17

        Data Stores and Data Servers Analysis 19

        Topology Diagrams 20

        Switch Features 22

        Switch Form Factors 22

        Switch Performance 24

        Power over Ethernet and Layer 3 Functionality 26

        Switch Features in a Hierarchical Network 28

        Access Layer Switch Features 28

        Distribution Layer Switch Features 30

        Core Layer Switch Features 31

        Switches for Small and Medium Sized Business (SMB) 33

        Catalyst Express 500 33

        Catalyst 2960 34

        Catalyst 3560 35

        Catalyst 3750 36

        Catalyst 4500 36

        Catalyst 4900 37

        Catalyst 6500 38

        Comparing Switches 39

Summary 40

Labs 40

Check Your Understanding 41

Challenge Questions and Activities 44

Chapter 2 Basic Switch Concepts and Configuration 45

Objectives 45

Key Terms 45

Introduction to Ethernet/802.3 LANs 46

    Key Elements of Ethernet/802.3 Networks 46

        CSMA/CD 46

        Ethernet Communications 47

        Duplex Settings 49

        Switch Port Settings 50

        Switch MAC Address Table 51

Design Considerations for Ethernet/802.3 Networks 52

        Bandwidth and Throughput 52

        Collision Domains 53

        Broadcast Domains 54

        Network Latency 54

        Network Congestion 55

        LAN Segmentation 55

    LAN Design Considerations 56

Forwarding Frames Using a Switch 58

    Switch Forwarding Methods 59

    Symmetric and Asymmetric Switching 60

    Memory Buffering 60

    Layer 2 and Layer 3 Switching 62

Switch Management Configuration 63

    Navigating Command-Line Interface Modes 63

        GUI-Based Alternatives to the CLI 65

    Using the Help Facility 68

    Accessing the Command History 70

    Switch Boot Sequence 71

    Prepare to Configure the Switch 72

    Basic Switch Configuration 72

        Management Interface 73

        Default Gateway 74

        Duplex and Speed 75

        HTTP Access 76

        MAC Address Table Management 77

    Verifying Switch Configuration 78

    Basic Switch Management 80

        Backing Up and Restoring Switch Configuration Files 80

        Using a TFTP Server with Switch Configuration Files 82

        Clearing Switch Configuration Information 84

Configuring Switch Security 85

    Configuring Password Options 85

        Securing Console Access 85

        Securing Virtual Terminal Access 87

        Securing Privileged EXEC Access 88

        Encrypting Switch Passwords 89

        Password Recovery 90

    Login Banners 92

        Configure Telnet and SSH 93

        Configuring Telnet 93

        Configuring SSH 94

    Common Security Attacks 96

        MAC Address Flooding 96

        Spoofing Attacks 100

        CDP Attacks 101

        Telnet Attacks 102

    Security Tools 103

    Configuring Port Security 105

    Securing Unused Ports 110

Summary 111

Labs 111

Check Your Understanding 112

Challenge Questions and Activities 117

Chapter 3 VLANs 121

Objectives 121

Key Terms 121

Introducing VLANs 122

    Defining VLANs 122

    Benefits of VLANs 124

    VLAN ID Ranges 126

    Types of VLANs 126

    Voice VLANs 131

        Network Application Traffic Types 133

        Switch Port Membership Modes 136

    Controlling Broadcast Domains with VLANs 138

VLAN Trunking 143

    VLAN Trunks 144

        IEEE 802.1Q Frame Tagging 145

        Native VLANs 147

        Trunking Operation 148

        Trunking Modes 149

Configure VLANs and Trunks 151

    Configure a VLAN 152

    Managing VLANs 155

        Managing VLAN Memberships 158

        Configure a Trunk 160

Troubleshooting VLANs and Trunks 164

    Common Problems with Trunks 165

    A Common Problem with VLAN Configurations 171

Summary 173

Labs 173

Check Your Understanding 174

Challenge Questions and Activities 178

Chapter 4 VTP 181

Objectives 181

Key Terms 181

VTP Concepts 182

    What Is VTP? 182

        Benefits of VTP 184

        VTP Components 184

VTP Operation 186

    Default VTP Configuration 186

    VTP Domains 188

    VTP Advertising 190

        VTP Configuration Revision Number 192

        VTP Advertisement Types 193

    VTP Modes 197

        VTP Server-to-Client Behavior 198

        VTP Server-to-Transparent-to-Client Behavior 199

    VTP Pruning 201

        VTP Pruning in Action 202

Configure VTP 204

    Configuring VTP 204

        Steps to Configuring VTP 206

        Troubleshooting VTP Configurations 212

        Incompatible VTP Versions 212

        VTP Password Issues 212

        Incorrect VTP Domain Name 213

        All Switches Set to VTP Client Mode 214

        VTP Troubleshooting Example 215

    Managing VLANs on a VTP Server 217

Summary 219

Labs 219

Check Your Understanding 220

Challenge Questions and Activities 224

Chapter 5 STP 227

Objectives 227

Key Terms 227

Redundant Layer 2 Topologies 229

    Redundancy 229

    Issues with Redundancy 234

        Broadcast Storms 238

        Duplicate Unicast Frames 240

        Real-World Redundancy Issues 241

        Loops in the Wiring Closet 242

        Loops in Cubicles 243

Introduction to STP 244

    Spanning-Tree Algorithm (STA) 244

        STP Topology 245

        Port Types in the Spanning-Tree Algorithm 247

        Root Bridge 248

        Best Paths 249

    STP BPDU 252

        BPDU Process 253

Bridge ID 258

        Configure and Verify the BID 261

    Port Roles 263

        Configure Port Priority 265

        Port Role Decisions 266

    STP Port States and BPDU Timers 268

        Cisco PortFast 271

STP Convergence 273

    Step 1. Elect a Root Bridge 273

        Verify Root Bridge Election 274

    Step 2. Elect Root Ports 276

        Verify Root Port Election 278

    Step 3. Elect Designated and Nondesignated Ports 279

        Verify Designated and Nondesignated Port Election 283

    STP Topology Change 285

PVST+, RSTP, and Rapid PVST+ 286

    Cisco and IEEE STP Variants 287

        Per-VLAN Spanning-Tree (PVST) Overview 287

        Per-VLAN Spanning-Tree Plus (PVST+) Overview 287

        Rapid Spanning-Tree Protocol (RSTP) Overview 288

        Multiple Spanning-Tree Protocol (MSTP) Overview 288

    PVST+ 288

        Configure PVST+ 291

    RSTP 294

        RSTP BPDU 295

    Edge Ports 296

    Link Types 297

    RSTP Port States and Port Roles 298

        RSTP Proposal and Agreement Process 301

    Configuring Rapid PVST+ 309

    Design STP for Trouble Avoidance 312

        Minimize the Number of Blocked Ports 313

        Use Layer 3 Switching 314

        Keep STP Even if It Is Unnecessary 316

        Keep Traffic off of the Management VLAN 316

    Troubleshoot STP Operation 316

        PortFast Configuration Error 317

        Network Diameter Issues 318

Summary 320

Labs 320

Check Your Understanding 321

Challenge Questions and Activities 327

Chapter 6 Inter-VLAN Routing 331

Objectives 331

Key Terms 331

Inter-VLAN Routing 332

    Introducing Inter-VLAN Routing 332

        One-Router-Interface-per-VLAN 332

        Router-on-a-Stick 334

        Layer 3 Switch 336

        Interfaces and Subinterfaces 337

        One-Router-Interface-per-VLAN 338

        Router-on-a-Stick 341

        Considerations for Inter-VLAN Routing Methods 345

Configuring Inter-VLAN Routing 347

    Configure Inter-VLAN Routing 347

    Configure Router-on-a-Stick Inter-VLAN Routing 351

Troubleshooting Inter-VLAN Routing 356

    Switch Configuration Issues 356

        Switch Cisco IOS Commands for Troubleshooting 359

    Router Configuration Issues 360

        Router Cisco IOS Commands for Troubleshooting 361

    IP Addressing Issues 362

        IP Addressing Cisco IOS Verification Commands 364

Summary 366

Labs 366

Check Your Understanding 367

Challenge Questions and Activities 373

Chapter 7 Basic Wireless Concepts and Configuration 377

Objectives 377

Key Terms 377

The Wireless LAN 379

    Why Use Wireless? 379

        Wireless LANs 380

        Comparing a WLAN to a LAN 381

        Wireless LAN Components 383

    Wireless LAN Standards 383

        Wi-Fi Certification 386

    Wireless Infrastructure Components 387

        Wireless NICs 387

        Wireless Access Points 388

        Wireless Routers 390

    Wireless Operation 391

        Configurable Wireless Parameters 391

        Wireless Topologies 393

        Wireless Association 396

    Planning the Wireless LAN 399

Wireless LAN Security 402

    Threats to Wireless Security 402

        Rogue Access Points 402

        Man-in-the-Middle Attacks 403

        Denial of Service 404

    Wireless Security Protocols 405

        Authenticating the Wireless LAN 407

        Wireless Encryption 408

        Controlling Access to the WLAN 409

Configure Wireless LAN Access 410

    Configuring the Wireless Access Point 410

        Configuring Basic Wireless Settings 413

        Configuring Wireless Security 415

        Configuring a Wireless NIC 418

        Scan for SSIDs 418

        Select the Wireless Security Protocol 420

        Verify Connectivity to the WLAN 423

Troubleshooting Simple WLAN Problems 424

    A Systematic Approach to WLAN Troubleshooting 424

    Solve Access Point Radio and Firmware Issues 426

    Channel Settings 426

    RF Interference 429

    Access Point Placement 431

    Authentication and Encryption 434

Summary 436

Labs 436

Check Your Understanding 437

Challenge Questions and Activities 441

Appendix Check Your Understanding and Challenge Questions

Answer Key 445

Glossary 461

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