Mar 062018, leading practice tests provider, released ComptiaⓇ A+ Exam Sim with Labsim for A+ certification preparation. The practice tests consist of 100s of up to date questions with answers and explanations, thus providing you with exam-like questions in a timed environment. Flashcards provide domain knowledge related to the question topic. The practice tests offer all standard features like bookmarking, wrong answers review, category scoring, learn/exam modes, and details stats.

The labsim is an addition to the practice exams, providing hands-on exposure to various labs. With the introduction of performance based questions by Comptia, hands-on experience has become essential for passing the exam. The labsim provides dozens of labs for attaining the practical experience. The virtual nature of labs enable users to practice without having to procure real hardware or crashing one’s own computer due to in-appropriate control panel settings.

You may download the Comptia A+ Practice Exams with Labsim and install the free version (limited to fewer questions). Full version may be purchased online using program interface with immediate online activation after subscription.

About Comptia A+ Certification: For those who are new to the A+ certification, it’s a leading vendor neutral certification in the area of computer hardware and operating systems, offered by Comptia organization. The certification is divided into two constituent exams, namely A+ Essentials exam, and A+ Practical Application exam. One needs to pass both the exams to attain A+ Certification, and it’s valid for 3 years. A certified pro is expected to renew the certification by the end of 3 years. The topics covered by the certification exam include computer hardware like processors, memory devices, interfaces & connectors, computer peripherals like printers and scanners, computer operating systems (primarily Windows is covered), and troubleshooting hardware and OS problems. The certification is available via Prometric/View testing centers worldwide.

About The website, a brand site of Anand Software and Training, is engaged in providing practice tests and lab simulators for various IT certs including Comptia A+, Network+, Security+, Cisco CCENT, CCNA, Juniper JNCIA, and others. Please visit the website for more information and available practice tests.

Disclaimer: is not associated or affiliated with ComptiaⓇ organization. Comptia A+Ⓡ, Comptia Network+Ⓡ. are the trademarks of ComptiaⓇ and duly acknowledged.

Jan 192018 has recently updated ComptiaA+ exam simulator with additional questions, and a few bug fixes. The practice tests provide first hand experience of what it might be when taking the actual certification exam. The software has two modes, Learn Mode and Exam Mode. For beginners, it is recommended to start with Learn Mode, and then work with Exam Mode.

A+ Certification is most widely known in the area of computer hardware and operating systems. One may obtain the certification, awarded by Comptia organization, by passing A+ Essentials and A+ Practical Application exams.

FAQ on A+ exam sim:

  1. How many questions are available with the practice tests?
    1. 500+ questions are available.
  2. What question types are supported?
    1. Similar to the actual exam environment MCQs, Drag-n-Drop, Hot Spot, Match-type questions are supported. Performance based questions are also provided.
  3. How long the certification is valid?
    1. CompTIA A+ certification are generally valid for three years from the date the candidate is certified. There are several ways to renew certification, including re-certification. Comptia has CE (short for Continuing Education) program that provides several paths for re-certification. Some of these include Completing CompTIA CertMaster CE, Passing a CompTIA recertification exam, earning a higher-level CompTIA certification or a non-CompTIA IT industry certification, or passing the latest release of your CompTIA exam. Please check with the Comptia website for complete and latest list of available options.
  4. Is it a dump of actual questions?
    1. No. The question bank is developed by authors having good industry experience with similar difficulty levels as that of the actual exam.
  5. Where do I get more information about the practice tests?
    1. Checkout the product home page:
  6. Do we get any labs for hands-on experience?
    1. Please check out our A+ Labsim for virtual lab environment, wherein you can practice dozens of labs.
  7. What other practice tests are available with you?
    1. Check out other exams: Network+ exam, Security+ exam, and Server+ exam.

Disclaimer: is not associated with ComptiaⓇ. Comptia a+, network+, and security+ are trademarks of ComptiaⓇ and duly acknowledged.

Dec 222017 released a thorough update to their flagship software, Network Simulator with Designer for CCNA® , to include functionality for the following:

  • Site to Site VPN configuration between routers
  • FHRP configuration

VPN (Virtual Private Network) is widely used these days for security and confidentiality of communication between hosts. The two main types of VPN are Site-to-site VPN and Remote-to-Site VPN. In Site-to-site VPN, a secure tunnel is formed between two peers within the communication channel. An example configuration scenario is shown in the figure below:

Photo Courtesy:, a leading networking equipment manufacturer.

As may seen in the exhibit, the VPN is configured between two routers. A site-to-site VPN is also called router-to-router VPN. The hosts on LAN are unaware of the VPN between routers V1 and V2. However, all the communication between routers V1 and V2 moves securely over OpenVPN tunnel. You typically need a NAT (Network Address Translation) to translate internal IP address to external IP address and vice versa (for incoming traffic). The same thing is done at router V2 also. The word “tunnel” may be a bit misleading some times. Note that there is no route and bandwidth allocated between the routers when a tunnel is formed. A VPN typically secures the communication channel but not the route or bandwidth. A VPN connections use 1) Encapsulation 2) Authentication, and 3) Data encryption.

In Encapsulation, user data (i.e. TCP/IP packets) is wrapped around by using encapsulation protocol such as GRE, IPsec, L2F, PPTP,  or L2TP. The encapsulated data packets are again wrapped inside carrier protocol packet, and then routed across the public network.

For site-to-site VPNs, the encapsulating protocol is usually IPsec or GRE (Generic Routing Encapsulation).  For remote-access VPNs, tunneling normally takes place using PPP (Point-to-Point Protocol). PPP tunneling will use one of PPTP, L2TP or L2F.

When using site-to-site VPN, any user can access remote site from any of the computers inside the firewall (local network). For this purpose, one needs to configure AAA (Authentication, Authorization, and Accounting), so that one needs to authenticate to access any resources at the other end of the VPN tunnel to restrict user access.

Remote access VPN is typically used with home and mobile users to connect to the corporate office. For example, a mobile traveler can connect to the Corporate head quarters using his laptop computer securely using a public Wi-Fi connection. Please see the figure below:

Photo courtesy:, a leading networking equipment manufacturer.

As seen in the figure, a remote user communicates with the sever securely over VPN tunnel. All the user information, login credentials, etc. are encrypted when using VPN tunnel. In remote access VPN, usually, a client is installed on the remote user’s computer. Alternatively, the remote user uses SSL enabled browser session to communicate with the corporate network (shown as Private Network in the figure)

FHRP (First Hop Redundancy Protocol): Usually, when a subscriber connects to an ISP using Wi-Fi router, he will have single point of failure. i.e. if the router fails, the connection to the Internet fails. FHRP allows redundancy or a fail over mechanism, thus ensuring that there is no single point of failure for a subscriber to the Internet. There are several  protocol defined for FHRP, popular among these are: HSRP, VRRP, and GLBP.

HSRP, short for Hot Standby Router Protocol, is a Cisco proprietary protocol, and supported by most of the Cisco routers.

A simple HSRP configuration is shown in the figure. In HSRP, one router acts as an Active router and the other as Standby router. There can be more than two routers in HSRP configuration, however, only one router is put in Standby state using a selection criteria. HSRP routers may be assigned “Priority” so that a network admin can choose which router has be in HSRP Active state and which has to be in Standby state.

VRRP, short for Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol, is a standards based protocol. It is quite similar to HSRP in configuration and functionality.

GLBP, short for Gateway Load Balancing Protocol, is slightly advanced, in the sense, that it supports load balancing by default. Otherwise, it is similar to other two redundancy protocols. CCNA Netsim, offers a virtual networking environment, where in, one can create a network with Cisco(R) routers, switches, and other networking elements and experiment. The software has a GUI based designer that allows drag-n-drop functionality for designing one’s own network. Several labs on HSRP, and site-to-site VPN have been added for hands-on practice. The software is intended for learning purpose with limited set of commands support.

List of available CCNA labs may be viewed by going to the product page. You may download the free demo version of the software by going to the product download page.

Disclaimer: is not associated nor affiliated with Cisco Systems, or Brocade. Cisco®, CCNA® are registered trademarks of Cisco Systems, and Brocade® is trademark of Brocade/Broadcom Limited and duly recognized.

First Hop Redundancy Protocols (FHRP) – A Primer

 Network Simulators  Comments Off on First Hop Redundancy Protocols (FHRP) – A Primer
Dec 082017

FHRP, short for First Hop Redundancy Protocol, is used at the customer premises for route redundancy.  Usually, you have a default gateway defined to your ISP (in case of connecting to the public Internet) or to your server (in the event you have an internal network). If the default gateway router fails, you will not be able to connect to the external resources unless a replacement is found and necessary configuration changes are made. First Hop Redundancy protocols will allow default gateway redundancy. With two or more default gateways defined using FHRP, in the event of a router failure there’s a backup router that will take place of the failed gateway, transparent to the user. The user’s host computer is configured with a virtual IP address and the switch between the redundant routers takes place without any user intervention. A typical configuration is shown in the figure below:

There are 3 types of FHRP protocols that are widely used:

  1. HSRP
  2. VRRP
  3. GLBP

Of the above three types of FHRPs, HSRP is Cisco proprietary protocol, where as VRRP is a standards based protocols. The two protocols HSRP (short for Hot Standby Router Protocol) is very similar to VRRP (Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol), except that VRRP is based on Open standards. When using HSRP, one router assumes the function of “Active” router and the other is known as “Standby” router. The routers communicate within themselves and when the active router fails, the standby router will kick-in. There can be more than two routers in a HSRP group.

GLBP, short for Gateway Load Balancing Protocol, is a bit different from HSRP and VRRP, in the sense, GLBP offers load balancing among the redundant gateways. However, note that HSRP and VRRP too offer load balancing using distinct “groups”, but load balancing is not native to HSRP and VRRP, where as GLBP, as the name implies, offers load balancing inherently.

FHRP is not to be confused with defining multiple gateway routers with a host’s network configuration file. A host computer may be defined with one or more default gateways, so that if one fails the other default gateway takes its position. In this case, the default gateways have different IP addresses, whereas in FHRP, the default gateway will have only one virtual IP address that is to be configured at the workstation.

Check out the router network simulator for practicing HSRP and VRRP labs.


FHRP or “First Hop Redundancy Protocols”

Figure courtesy:
HSRP – No longer for the weak of heart

Network Simulator w/Designer Update

 Network Simulators  Comments Off on Network Simulator w/Designer Update
Nov 292017

We are working on an update to NetSim for CCNA to include FHRP and VPN functionality. FHRP, short for First Hop Redundancy Protocol, is used to provide redundancy up to the ISP. There are several FHRP protocols, of which HSRP (Hot Standby Router Protocol),  GLBP (Gateway Load Balancing Protocol) and VRRP (Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol) are popular and being implemented in our NetSim.

Another addition would be VPN (short for Virtual Private Network) protocol that ensures encrypted tunnel between two end points. There are several types of VPN, of which Site-to-Site VPN and Site-to-Remote VPN are most widely used and being implemented. A Site-to-Site VPN is typically used between two offices (say head office and branch office) where as Remote-to-Site VPN is typically used by mobile commuters or smaller branch offices to connect to the head office.  A VPN, as you might be knowing, encrypts the communication between two end points as defined by the communicating hosts.

Check out for updates.

Yogi Adityanath is the CM of UP (India)

 Network Simulators, Others  Comments Off on Yogi Adityanath is the CM of UP (India)
Mar 272017

UP, India: Yogi Adityanath has been elected as the CM of Utter Pradesh state after recent landslide win by the BJP in state assembly elections. Given below are the decisions made by the CM during the first few days of his taking the position:
1. Strict implementation of ban on illegal slaughter houses. – Checked unhygienic conditions in dense market places,
2. Police officials are putting in extra hours in the streets of UP – No eve-teasing and improved law and order situation in the state.
3. Installation of biometric attendance at government offices – Improved attendance.
4. Ban on use of pan masala at government offices – Improved cleanliness in government complexes.
5. State roads to be pot hole free by June 15 – yet to see the results
6. Installation of cctv cameras in government offices – improved attandence
7. Both male and female police officers to be present in every police station – Confidence in public particularly female.
8. Officials not to take any files home, should clear files only in office, during office hours – a drive towards anti corruption in the state.

The above are a few to mention, and surely the state is going in the right direction.

Very best to the CM and all. Netsim for CCNA Update

 Network Simulators  Comments Off on Netsim for CCNA Update
Mar 132017 updated netsim for ccna with the following:
1. Book marking of labs
2. Color coding labs so that a candidate would be able to identify labs that had been completed, under progress, and to be completed.
3. Progress indicator for a lab, which enables a user to view how much of the lab exercise has been completed and what is remaining.

Download the limited version of the netsim here:
CCNA Labsim

The labsim consists of dozens of exercises that provide handson experience in designing and configuring networks using Cisco routers and switches. Commands like ping, trace route and ipconfig are also supported.

Anand software and training releases update on CCNA NETSIM.

 Network Simulators  Comments Off on Anand software and training releases update on CCNA NETSIM.
Feb 212017

Anand software and training is releasing CCNA network simulator with designer with enhanced usability very shortly. The new features include the following :

  1. Ability to bookmark the labs so that a user would be able to return to the lab at a later time easily.
  2. Ability to mark the labs as 1) in progress,  2) yet to be completed,  and 3)Completed. A user would be able to readily identity the lab status by looking at the colour coding.
  3. In addition, a progress score has been implemented that indicates the extent of lab that has been completed.
  4. It is possible to save the configuration and return at a later time to complete the rest of the lab.

CCheck out the software here : Updates Juniper® NetSim for JNCIA®

 Network Simulators  Comments Off on Updates Juniper® NetSim for JNCIA®
Jan 222017 recently updated its Juniper Network Simulator with Designer for JUNOS(TM) to include the following features:

  1. It is now possible for the users to:
    1. Bookmark the labs for reviewing later
    2. Color coding completed lab exercises, labs under progress, and labs yet to be attempted
  2. Progress bar: A progress bar indicates the extent of lab that has been completed, and what’s remaining. It indicates when the lab is successfully completed.
  3. A few bugs have been fixed

Download the software here:

Disclamer: is not associated with Juniper Systems. Juniper, JUNOS are the trademarks of Juniper Systems and duly acknowledged. Releases Cisco® CCENT™ Practice Tests

 Network Simulators  Comments Off on Releases Cisco® CCENT™ Practice Tests
Oct 162016, examsims provider, released practice tests for Cisco CCENT™

The practice tests consists of 300+ most relevant questions with flash card explanation. The exam topics for CCENT are given below:

  1. Network Fundamentals 20% (weightage)
  2. LAN Switching Fundamentals 26%
  3. Routing Fundamentals 25%
  4. Infrastructure Services 15%
  5. Infrastructure Maintenance 14%

As it may be noted, the exam topics have been thoroughly revamped for the new CCENT exam. The exam code for CCENT is 100-105. CCENT, together with ICND2 contribute to CCNA certification. Alternatively, one can take CCNA certification exam directly by taking 200-125 exam.

Current exams:

Check out the website for the latest updates.

Disclaimer: is not associated with Cisco® Systems and CCENT™, CCNA™ are the trademarks of Cisco® and duly acknowledged.