Earlier this week, Wendell Odom wrote about a discussion he had at Cisco Live with Fred Weiller, the marketing director for Learning@Cisco. One of the issues they discussed was the possibility of Cisco licensing IOS for educational and/or lab testing purposes.
Before anyone gets his or her hopes up, I want to point out that nothing conclusive came from this discussion. From the article:
The question I asked Fred was something like this: "Would Cisco ever make some IOS images available, approved/licensed, for use on either/or real gear/Dynamips, for the purpose of exam prep?" The answer was a big wow: yes they MIGHT. Let me expound on the substance of Fred's answer:
- They have talked about it
- They continue to talk about it
- They understand the need for hands-on practice, and how making IOS available would help
- There are many considerations outside the realm of certifications that impact any such choice
- It's not ruled out
- It's not ruled in
- No such program is imminent
I'm not one who typically writes about non-news, but I've been a proponent of this idea for a long time and am happy to help generate more interest in it.
In the wake of Odom's article, Greg Ferro of Etherealmind has started a petition to better quantify the need for such a license throughout the networking community. It might never reach the right people at Cisco, but I encourage those who agree with its thesis to sign.