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CCNA Interview Questions and Answers

Looking for the CCNA interview Questions to prepare for the CCNA interview? Well, you have landed to the very right place. Cisco Certified Network Associate popularly known as CCNA is a certification exam that qualifies IT professionals to perform various entry-level tasks within the IT industry. The CCNA certification deals with validating the skill, ability and expertise of an individual to fix, configure and troubleshoot networks. 

In this blog we have listed the most frequently asked CCNA interview questions and answers to ace your interview with confidence.

CCNA Interview Questions - for Beginners

#1. What is routing?

Routing is the process of finding the right path for transferring data from the original source to the destination. Routing is carried by using a device known as a route, which is a network layer device.

Cisco configure static routing.

#2. How many layers are there in an OSI reference model? Name them.

There are 7 layers in an OSI (Open Systems Interconnection) reference model. They are:

  1. Physical layer
  2. Data link layer
  3. Network layer
  4. Transport layer
  5. Session layer
  6. Presentation layer
  7. Application layer
Explain the OSI Reference Model.

#3. Explain HDLC.

HDLC (High-Level Data Link Control) is a group of communication protocols that usually provides reliable delivery of data frames over communication or network link.  It is a proprietary protocol for CISCO and is the default encapsulation operated within CISCO routers. It also ensures the error-free transmission of data and can provide both connection-oriented and connectionless services. 

#4. What is CDP?

CDP, short for “Cisco Discovery Protocol,” is a layer 2 protocol that works on a Media Access Control (MAC) address. CDP may be used to identify port numbers, iOS details, router models, device IDs, and switch models.

#5. What is BootP?

BootP, short for “Boot Program,” is a protocol that is mostly used to boot diskless work areas that are connected to one network. A diskless workstation may also use BootP to determine its IP address and the IP address of the server PC.

#6. What is the purpose for the Data Link layer?

The data link layer of the OSI model (Layer 2), prepares network data for the physical network. The data link layer is responsible for network interface card (NIC) to network interface card communications. Along with this the data link layer serves the following purposes:


  • Enables upper layers to access the media. 
  • Accepts data, usually Layer 3 packets (i.e., IPv4 or IPv6), and encapsulates them into Layer 2 frames.
  • Controls how data is placed and received in the media.
  • Exchanges frames between endpoints over the network media.
  • Performs error detection and rejects any corrupt frame.

#7. What does the LLC sublayer do?

Logical Link Control (LLC) is a sublayer usually providing the logic for the data link as it controls the synchronization, multiplexing, flow control, and even error-checking functions of DLL (Data Link Layer). DLL is divided into two sublayers i.e. LLC sublayer and MAC (Medium Access Control) sublayer.

#8. What is MTU?

A maximum transmission unit also called MTU defines the largest size of the packet that can be transmitted as a single entity in a network connection. The size of the MTU defines the amount of data that can be transmitted in bytes over a network.

#9. What is the role of the LLC sublayer?

The LLC sublayer stands for Logical Link Control. It can provide optional services to an application developer. One option is to provide flow control to the Network layer by using stop/start codes. The LLC can also provide error correction.

#10. What is OSPF? Describe it.

OSPF stands for Open Shortest Path First. It uses the Dijkstra algorithm and is a link-state routing protocol that is used to connect to a large number of networks without having any limitation on the number of hops.

#11. What is subnetting?

What is subnetting?

Subnetting is when smaller networks are created from a larger parent network. Each subnet is given an identifier or certain parameters within the network to indicate its subnet number.

#12. Give some benefits of LAN switching.

– allows full-duplex data transmission and reception

– media rate adaption

– easy and efficient migration

#13. Define ARP.

The Address Resolution Protocol is a communication protocol used for discovering the link layer address, such as a MAC address, associated with a given internet layer address, typically an IPv4 address. This mapping is a critical function in the Internet protocol suite.

#14. What is Spanning Tree Protocol?

Spanning Tree Protocol (STP)

Spanning Tree Protocol (STP) is a protocol which prevents layer 2 loops. STP enables switches to become more aware of each other so that they can negotiate a Loop-free path through the network. It chooses a reference point (Route Bridge) in the network and calculates all the paths that are no longer useful (known as redundant links) to that reference point. Then it selects one path to forward frames and blocks other redundant paths. When blocking happens, loops are prevented.

#15. Define Network Congestion.

Network congestion refers to a reduction in quality of service (QOS) that causes packet loss, queueing delay, or the blocking of new connections. It occurs when the traffic flowing through a network exceeds its maximum capacity meaning when a link or network node is handling data in excess of its capacity.


Effects of network congestion :

  • Queueing delay
  • Packet Loss
  • Slow Network
  • Blocking of new connections
  • Low throughput

Ways to fix network congestion :

  1. Divide your network into subnets that can be resized to meet traffic.
  2. TCP/IP settings should be adjusted to balance packet send/request speeds.
  3. Upgrade your Internet plan to allow for more devices and increased bandwidth.

#16. What is the difference between User Mode and Privileged Mode?

User Mode is commonly utilized for performing regular tasks on a CISCO router. For example, User Mode may be used to connect to remote devices or check the status of a router. 

Privileged Mode is used to perform higher-level tasks on the router such as debugging and making configurations. Privileged Mode also includes all of the options that are available for use in User Mode.

#17.What is a MAC address?

A MAC address is the abbreviation for a Media Access Control address. This address is the identification used to depict a media access control layer in a network’s architecture. It’s most commonly stored in the ROM and is different for each device.

#18. What is EIGRP?

EIGRP stands for Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol; it is a routing protocol designed by Cisco Systems.  It is available on a router to share routes with other routers within the same autonomous system. Unlike other routers like RIP, EIGRP only sends incremental updates, decreasing the workload on the router and the amount of data that needs to be transferred.

EIGRP protocol consists of :

  • Bandwidth
  • Load
  • Delay
  • Reliability
  • MTU
  • Maximum Transmission Unit

#19. What are the different memories used in a CISCO router?

Different memories used  in a CISCO router are:

– NVRAM stores the startup configuration file.

– DRAM stores the configuration file that is being executed.

– Flash Memory – stores the Cisco IOS.

#20. What is the function of the Application Layer in networking?

The Application Layer supports the communication components of an application and provides network services to application processes that span beyond the OSI reference model specifications. It also synchronizes applications on the server and client.

CCNA Interview Questions - for Experts

Qus1:-What does cat stands for in networking?

 Ans :- Cat stands for “CATEGORY“. Which started from Cat1 (Category1) and now extend up to Cat7 (Category 7). Improved version/category of cable improve the quality of data transmission and make enhancement in bandwidth .provide more stability.

Cat 1 ? used for voice only

Cat 2 ? used for voice telephone & data communication, maximum?bandwidth?is 4?Mbit/s.?Cat?2 cable contains 4 pairs of wires, or 8 wires total.

Cat 3 – used for voice & data communication .Category?3 cable, commonly known as?Cat 3?or?station wire .carry data up to 10?Mbit/s.

Cat 4 – It is used in telephone networks which can transmit voice and data up to 16?Mbit/s

Cat 5 – The cable provides performance of up to 100?MHz and Cat?5 is also used to carry other signals such as?telephony and?video.Cat5 does not support exact 100 MHz . but Cat5e provide exact 100 MHz bandwidth.

Cat 6 ? It increase the performance of up to 250?MHz compared to 100?MHz for Cat?5 and Cat?5e.

Cat7– ?Ethernet cable is the newest cable category, operating at speeds of 10 Gb/s at 100 meters of cable and transmitting frequencies up to 600 Mhz.

cat stands for in networking

Qus2 :- What is APIPA

Ans :- Automatic Private IP addressing with this , A DHCP client can automatically configured an IP address & subnet mask when no DHCP server is available .

It was random address ranging of Class B from to . default subnet mask of

Qus3 :- Private IP Address Range of IPV4

Ans :- 3 group of Private IP addresses —-

Class A ? to

Class B ? to

Class C ? to

Qus3 :- Private IP Address Range of IPV4

Qus4 :- Broadcast Domain and Collision Domain

Ans :-

HUB? Single Broadcast Domain and Single Collision Domain

SWITCH? Single Broadcast Domain and Multiple Collision Domain. But can also separate Broadcast Domain by using VLAN’s

ROUTER? Multiple Broadcast and Multiple Collision Domain

Qus5:-What is cat stands for in networking?

Ans:-?A?collision domain?is a network segment with two or more devices sharing the same bandwidth (where there is a chance of collision)

A?broadcast domain?is a logical division of a computer network, in which all nodes can reach other by broadcast at the data link layer.

Qus6:- OSI and TCP/IP Model

Ans:- OSI stands for Open System Interconnection developed by International Standard Organization ISO . It is just a reference model.

Consist 7 layers which has bottom to top approach ?

  • Application Layer
  • Presentation Layer
  • Session Layer
  • Transport Layer
  • Network Layer
  • Data Link Layer
  • Physical Layer

TCP/IP came 10 years before then OSI Model and it actually works in real scenarios.

Consist 4 layers —

  • Application Layer
  • Transport Layer
  • Internet layer
  • Network Interface layer/Link Layer /Network Link Layer
OSI and TCP/IP Model

Qus7:- Port numbers of TCP and UDP Protocole

Ans:- Server provide their services on the basis of port numbers .we have two types of connections ?

Transmission control protocol (TCP) & User datagram Protocol (UDP)

TCP ? Connection Oriented

  • File Transfer Protocol (FTP) ? 21
  • Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) — 80
  • Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS)– 443
  • Secure Shell -22
  • Telnet ? 23
  • Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP? 161/162
  • SMTP – 25
  • DNS-53
  • Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP)? 143
  • Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) — 179

UDP ? Connection Less

  • Domain Name System (DNS) ? 53
  • Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) ? 67/68
  • Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP) ? 69
  • Network Time Protocol (NTP) ? 123
  • Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) ? 161/162

Qus8:- What is Firewall ?

Ans : – Firewall is a network security device or network security systemwhich help to provide security to intranet (private Network) . So, that not any unauthorized user can enter into their area .we can also apply security on routers (networking device) as well but only for some extend. Routers provide very less security (Layer 3 device, work on Internet Layer).

Firewall separate the internal (private) & external (public) network.It establishes a barrier between a trusted internal network and untrusted external network.

Firewalls can be either hardware or software or combination of both.

Types of firewall —

network firewalls?or?host-based firewalls

list of some company who provide?Network Security Services&?Appliances

firewall networking

Qus9:- What is Router ?

Ans:- Router is L3 -Network Layer device . it basically use for routing purpose . every router has it’s own brain . they choose the best path from source to destination by checking the information/best suitable path in their routing information table(RIB).

Types of Routing ?

  • Static Routing
  • Default Routing
  • Dynamic routing
  • Interior gateway routing protocol
  • Distance vector routing


    Link state routing


    Advance Distance vector routing

    EIGRP (extended version of IGRP)

  • Exterior gateway routing protocol
  • BGP

Qus10:- Difference between OSPF multicast address and

Ans:- – AllSPFRouters: Used to send OSPF messages to all OSPF routers on the same network. The AllSPFRouters address is used for Hello packets. The DR and BDR use this address to send Link State Update and Link State Acknowledgment packets. – AllDRouters: Used to send OSPF messages to all OSPF DRs (the DR and the BDR) on the same network. All OSPF routers except the DR use this address when sending Link State Update and Link State Acknowledgment packets to the DR.

Qus11: - AD value of Dynamic Routing Protocols -- RIP, EIGRP &OSPF.

Ans :-Admistrative Distance (AD) Value of RIP is 120 with maximum of 15 hop count as linear .Broadcast address of RIPV1 is and it doesn’t carry the subnet mask value .Multicast address of RIPV2 is and it does support subnetting .RIP Timers are ? update timer ? 30 sec , invalid timer/hold down timer ? 180 sec and last one flush timer is 240 seconds .

AD value of EIGRP is 90 and multicast address is maintain the 3 tables ? Teighbor table , topology table and Routing table .

Packet types are ?

  • Hello pkt ? 5 sec
  • Update pkt ?15 sec
  • Query
  • Reply
  • Acknowledgment

It uses Reliable Transport Protocol with 88 protocol number

AD value of OSPF is 110 and multicast address is & .It maintain the 3 tables ? Neighbor table , Database table and Routing table .

Packet types are ?

  • Hello pkt
  • DBD (Data Base Description)
  • LSR (Link State Request)
  • LSU (Link State Update)
  • LSA (Link State Acknowledgment)

Less AD value is always reliable/preferable. 

AD value of Dynamic Routing Protocols -- RIP, EIGRP &OSPF.

Qus12:- How many States are there in OSPF ?

Ans:-OSPF has to go through 7 states in order to become neighbors. There are 8 states in OSPF.

  • DOWN
  • INIT
  • 2-WAY
  • FULL

Qus13:- Maximum HOP Count in RIP, EIGRP and OSPF

Ans:-RIP , EIGRP and OSPF all three are Dynamic Routing Protocol .

  • RIP Maximum hop count value is 15 as linear
  • EIGRP Maximum hop count value is 255
  • OSPF can use unlimited number of hop counts, but it is recommended to use
  • Maximum up to 100 hop count.

Qus14:- Which protocol support equal and unequal load balancing?

Ans : – EIGRP support Equal and Unequal load balancing , RIP and OSPF only support Equal load balancing .

Qus15:- Router-ID selection in OSPF

Ans :- the highest IP address of the active physical interface of the router is Router-ID .

If logical interface loopback is configured ,the highest IP address of the logical interface is Router-ID .

Physical interface can down any time but logical not .

If we add one more loopback higher than, here will become your Router-ID

Qus16 :- EIGRP work on which algorithm and it's metric calculation

Ans:- EIGRP work on Defusing Update Algorithm (DUAL)

Metric Calculation formula —

  • 10^7/(Min Bandwidth)
  • Sum of delays/10
  • Metric =( Bandwidth + Delay)*256

Qus17:- Working of Switch

Switch is an interconnecting device with 16 or 24 ports in common. All other devices are connected to these ports. Whenever any machine sends packet to any other machine, source machine send packet to switch, switch then forwards it to destination machine. Each packet which comes to switch contains source and destination physical address in it, on basis of which switch forwards packet to other machine. Switch always sent packet based on destination MAC address. Its process is as follows:

(process also known as Switching)

1. When switch receives a packet from any device, it checks for its destination MAC address.

2. Then switch compares destination MAC address with its MAC Address Table for corresponding MAC address.

a. If MAC Address is found, packet is sent out to port against which MAC Address was matched.

b. If entry is not found, Unknown unicasts (when the switch doesn’t have a port mapping for a destination mac address in the frame) are treated like broadcasts by Layer Two devices, and are flooded out of all ports except the port on which the frame originated.

Now question comes, how does switch knows on which port destination machine is connected? — For this switch uses one table in its cache memory called MAC Address table or Forwarding Table in which switch stores that at which port which machine is connected by storing its physical address (MAC Address). So table contains two columns (Physical Address and Port Number) and rows equal to number of ports in switch.

When switch is turned ON, by default there is no entry in MAC address table, as communication starts, based on devices involved entries are created in table.

Working of Switch

Qus18:- Working of Address Resolution Protocol (ARP)

ARP is a layer 2 protocol, used for obtaining MAC address of any devices within a network. Host machines use ARP protocol to obtain MAC Address. ARP protocol in conjunction with Layer 3 IP Protocol addressing (IP Address).

Host machine uses ARP because when machine needs to send packet to another device, destination MAC address is needed to be written in packet sent, so host machine should know the MAC Address of destination machine. Operating Systems also maintain ARP Table (MAC Address Table).

To obtain MAC address, ARP performs following process: (ARP request by host machine)

1. Source machine generate ARP REQUEST packet with source MAC address (of this machine), source IP address (of this machine) and destination IP address and forwards this packet to switch.

2. Switch receives the incoming packet and reads the source MAC address and checks its MAC address table, if entry for packet at incoming port is found then it checks its MAC address with the source MAC address and updates it, if entry not found then switch add and entry for incoming port with MAC address.

3. All ARP REQUEST packets are broadcasted in network, so switch broadcast ARP REQUEST packet in network, because destination for ARP packet will be (Broadcast are those packets which are sent to everyone in network except the sender, only in network to which it belongs, it cannot span multiple networks)

4. All devices in network receives ARP packet and compare their own IP address with the destination IP address in that packet.

5. Only the machine which matches the both will reply with ARP reply packet. This packet will have source IP of this machine (which was destination machine in previous packet, as now its replying this machine will be the source machine) , source MAC address, destination MAC address (same as source MAC address in REQUEST packet) and destination IP address (same as source IP address in REQUEST packet).

6. Then switch reads the ARP reply message and add entry in its MAC Address Table for port number on which it has received packet by reading its source MAC address field and forwards that packet to destination machine (source machine in REQUEST packet) as its MAC is indestination MAC address.

7. Further host machine add destination machine entry into its ARP table. This using ARP resolution switch and other devices in network obtain MAC address of any other device in a network. Remember ARP works on broadcast, so it works only in single network.

Qus19:- Difference between access link and trunk link ?

Ans :-Access link ? access link carry only one VLAN information .It does not tag the frame . Mainly this link is established in between computer/PC/Node and Switch.

Trunk Link ? trunk link carry information of multiple VLAN’s. It tags the frame. So, that receiving switch would know which VLAN’s information it has carried and transfer/pass that information accordingly.Mainly this link is established in between the Switches.

Qus20 :- Native VLAN

Ans :- Native VLAN is the only VLAN which is not tagged in the trunk. Native VLAN frames are transmitted unchanged .by default VALN 1 is the NATIVE VLAN. if your switch receives a frame with no VLAN information , it assumes this frame belongs to the NATIVE VLAN .

Types of VLANs ?

  • Default VLAN

  • Native VLAN





Qus 21: – If on 2 switches different VLAN’s are configured and have access link between the switches. Can the PC’s ping each other?

Ans :- They both can ping each other.The issue is that the switch interlink are both access ports. An access port will not send or accept tagged traffic. Hence when SW1 sends PC1’s traffic over the link, the tag is removed. When that packet comes into SW2’s fa0/8 interface, that interface is part of vlan 20. SW2 will allow that frame to flow to PC2. The same happens vice-versa.

Qus22: - Trunking protocols

Ans : – There are two trunking protocols ?

ISL and IEEE DOT1Q/802.1Q

ISL ? Inter Switch Link is Cisco proprietary protocol. That is 30 bytes in length. It add 30 bytes info in it’s frame that obviously increase the size of frame. Even cisco also recommend to use IEEE 802.IQ for encapsulation.

IEEE DOT1Q/802.1Q ? It is open standard .defined by IEEE . All vendor support this .it add 4 byte tag to the original frame .it doesn’t tag frames that belong to native VLAN.

Trunking protocols

Qus23 :- Why VTP is needed ? Their modes and which mode use extended vlan ?

Ans :- Virtual Trunking Protocol use for propagate VLAN Database . Database creates in Vlan.dat file and store in flash memory.

VTP Modes ?

Client Mode ? can not use extended vlan .

Server Mode ?can not use extended vlan , by default VTP is in server mode

Transparent Mode ? can use extended vlan ranges from <1006-4096>

Off Mode ? VTP Off

Qus24 :- DHCP

Ans :- DHCP stands for Dynamic host configuration protocol , It assign IP addresses to node/computer/PC automatically .It work on Discover offer request acknowledgment DORA process. It is a UDP connectionless and support port number 67/68 .

Qus25:- PC/Computer/Node doesn't not have an IP address how it will contact DHCP server?

Ans :- PC/Computer/node will send request to all the connected devices via broadcast but only the DHCP server will accept this request and assign IP address from pool to the system . It works on “DISCOVER OFFER REQUEST ACKNOWLEDGMENT (DORA) “Process.

Qus26:- What is NAT?

Ans :- “ Network Address Translation It is a process where a network device , usually a firewall , assign a public address to a computer (or group of computers )inside a public network (intranet).

The main use of NAT is to limit the no. of public addresses an organization or company must use for both economy and security purpose.

It allow multiple private IP addresses to represent into by a smaller number of public IP addresses.

Types of NAT

  • Static NAT
  • Dynamic NAT
  • Port Address Translation PAT

Qus27:- In Ether Channel /Port Channel /Link Aggregation, two switches are connected. On one switch lacP is running and on another switch pagP is running. Will they be able to establish communication?

Ans :-
“NO” all ports in an ether channel must use the same protocol , you can not use two protocols on two ends . In other words pagP and lacP are not compatible so , both ends of a channel must use the same protocol .

Qus28:- Main difference between Standard and Extended Access- list? How packet filtering is done?

Ans :- Access-List provide L3 security. There are of 2 types ACL’s

  1. Numbered
  2. Named
  • Numbered Standard Access list range is from 1-99
  • It blocks a network, host and subnet.
  • All services are blocked
  • Implement closest to the destination
  • Packet filtering is based on only source IP address.
  • Numbered Extended Access list range is from 100-99.
  • Can block a network, host, subnet and services.
  • Can block any specific service as per requirement
  • Implement closest to the source
  • Packet filtering is based on source, destination address and protocol and port number.

“Named Access-List mainly preferable because it has editing feature”

Qus29:- IPV4 and IPV6 address types

Ans : – IPV4 —

  • Broadcast
  • Multicast
  • Unicast

IPV6 ?

  • Multicast
  • Unicast
  • Anycast ? Good feature in IPV6

“IPV6 is 128 bit long , having 8 octets/blocks . Each block contain 16 bits . It got implemented to reduce address shortage in IPV4” IP address is given to every device in the network and it is used to identify the device with in the network.

Qus30:- STP States and how Root Bridge, Root port and Designated Port got select?

Ans : – Spanning Tree Protocol is a loop prevention technique defined by IEEE 82.1d .Switches run STP by default , Switches use spanning tree algorithm STA to decide which port should be shut down.

STP States ?

  • Disable
  • Blocking
  • Listening
  • Learning
  • Forwarding

The selection of Root Bridge is based on Bridge_ID , Bridge_ID consist bridge priority and MAC address .by default priority is 32768. If all switches have same priority then root bridge selection will be based on MAC address. Bridge_ID go in BPDU packet. Every switch share Bridge protocol data unit (BPDU) after 2 seconds.

All ports of Root Bridge are designated ports

The ports that are connected directly with Root Bridge become root port.

Convergence time of STP is 32 seconds

Basics of networking

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