Certification Advice and Tools that Develop Real Cisco® Skills
Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The Simulator

What is a Router or Switch Simulator?

The term “simulator” means a lot of different things. Broadly, a simulator used for Cisco cert preparation is software that outwardly behaves like real Cisco routers and switches. A user can then interact with the software to learn how to configure and verify these devices. Simulator features vary significantly depending on the product. This site keeps the Simulator discussion focused on the CCNA 640-802 Network Simulator from Pearson; you’ll have to Google for the others.

What is the CCNA Network Simulator from Pearson?

  • Software that acts like Cisco routers and switches as connected in 8 different topologies
  • Simulator "show" commands display the current state based on the current config in the devices
  • 250 lab exercises designed to teach you every nuance of the most common CCNA configuration and exec commands.
  • The option to follow the lab exercise, or try any supported command you want
  • It’s from Pearson Education, parent of Cisco Press.
  • It’s from Wendell Odom, who designed most of the lab exercises, authored some of them, and edited the rest.
  • Pearson Technology Group's 2009 product of the year.
  • It’s 3 packages: a CCENT download, a CCNA download, and the CCNA product in a boxed set.

Advantages over Using Dynamips or Real Gear

  • Most productive option: download, install, and start learning in minutes
  • The lab exercises guide you to specific important CCENT and CCNA learning experiences
  • Typically cheaper than buying used real gear
  • Supports Cisco switch commands (Dynamips does not)


I Want the Simulator - Now What?

The process is simple - purchase, install the software, and start using it. All you have to do is make some basic choices:
  • Choose the CCENT Simulator (download only), or the CCNA Simulator.
  • If choosing the CCNA simulator, choose to buy it as: download, physical package, or as part of the CCNA Library + Simulator.  
See the CCNA Simulator product page for more info.

 Watch a Video


See a marketing video of the CCNA Simulator - follow the link, and click on "audio/video".



 Buy Simulators


CCENT Simulator



CCNA Simulator