here a post from CertificationTalk.com (IPExpert Forum):
LAB VISIT - Good Advice !!! (Part 1)
I recently visited RTP’s CCIE Lab. I strongly recommend making the visit before your first time at a test site. Knowing the route, the building and speaking with one of the proctors who answered many questions helps. This has been reviewed by someone at Cisco (so no fear of NDA violation) I hope this info is helpful.
How do I access the rack?
- RTP’s desks are located right next to the open rack. It’s reassuring to see physical layout & cabling, but DO NOT TOUCH. I wasn’t told this, but common sense that candidates keep hands off. If you think there's a problem with connections or the equipment, tell proctor immediately, and leave it to them. If there's a problem, they’ll work with you, but if you mess with the equipment?Just Don’t Touch.
- The PC can telnet to a comm sever (looked like 25xx) pre-configured to access your rack. A good thing about this: keep several telnet windows open (using Secure CRT) without need to 'CTRL-SHIFT-6, x' between sessions.
What version of the Doc CD is used?
- RTP has filtered access to online documentation site: http://www.cisco.com/univercd/home/home.htm
. The search page, HW & SW docs and any link that starts with http://www.cisco.com/univercd/
will work, but some of CCO (white papers & tech notes) are blocked.
What’s the desk like? (may vary by site)
- Desks are roughly 48”x30? with low cubicle wall on 3 sides.
- RTP uses 17?CRT’s with the res locked down (1280x1024, I think)
- Keyboards are std 104-key keyboards like this one: http://www.execgroup.net/images/IBMkey.jpg
- There’s no way to save files; if you use notepad for copy/paste, you can't save file.
- No printers, you can’t print configs or debug/show output to review or make notes on.
What materials are provided or allowed?
- White, ltr-size copy paper is provided; you’re started with 2 sheets, but proctor will provide as needed.
- Absolutely no outside items are permitted in the lab. Several pencils, of various colors, are provided. No pens, pencils, markers or highlights are allowed to be brought into the lab.
- No notebooks, pads, paper, Post-it notes or flags are allowed in the lab.
- There are no lockers to keep personal items during the exam, so leave everything home or in car.
What about the exam booklet?
- The exam is in a 3-ring binder, with diagrams and test enclosed in sheet protectors. You may take pages out of the binder, but are not permitted to remove the paper from the protector.
- Any writing directly on the sheet protector, or the paper itself will result in DISQUALIFICATION and one year ban from the test, (other violations provide for up to a lifetime ban http://www.cisco.com/en/US/learning/le3 ... violation_
Time / breaks
- Start time is practically written in stone. Don’t be late, a briefing is done as a group, everyone starts at the same time. If you arrive late, you will have less than 8 hours to finish the lab.
- There is a wall clock (matches PC’s clock) Based on time proctor started the exam, end time will be written on a white-board.
- The lunch break is 20-30 minutes, (proctor will give a 5 min warning) Lunch is from a local catering company, if you have food requirements, you may be best off bagging it. Beverages may be brought to the desk, but be careful.
- The proctor will provide a warning about 15 min before the end of the lab (helpful for those candidates who have completely zoned, and may have lost track of the time.)
- Provide comments and descriptions in the config at least where required by the exam. Additional remarks may be personally helpful, but if you are trying to explain why you chose one feature or command over any other, remember that scoring depends only on whether an objective was met, not how, so the comments will not sway the proctor’s scoring.
Good exam strategy:
- Review the entire test before doing any configurations
- Group questions by comfort level, and knock out the sections you know very well, followed by sections you think you know, then sections you need to refer to documentation for. This will help you get the more points up front, instead of missing out on them by running out of time.
- Save configurations often throughout the exam ?bugs and power glitches can spoil an exam (BTW - it’s a myth that the proctors start their grading by power cycling the rack, but why take the chance ?SAVE OFTEN!)