Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Palo Alto ACE & PCNSE testing

I took the ACE  ( Accredited Configuration Engineer   ) exam a few days back and it was interesting. The exam has  50 self-paced questions that requires a 80% pass rate. I took it as a prelude to the PCNSE6.

You get a Polo Shirt from PaloAlto when you pass the exam and have submitted the details to PaloAlto.  After you have completed this action, PaloAlto sends you a notice after a successful passing score for the ACE exam.

The ACE  was a good means to see where you stand at and is the prelude to the CNSE. The CNSE exam  was very interesting & challenges your inside knowledge from management to security/nat policies. It's not a easy exam to pass and they don't provide any summary on your strong and weakness.

Palo Alto also lack any commercial study guide or materials. So  if you don't take a Palo Alto  training course, it's all on you.


Palo Alto is pushing this level of certification due to a need to have qualified  &  certified engineers in the security market. I'm glad to be part of that & to have passed my 1st attempt.

Ken Felix
NSE ( network security expert) and Route/Switching Engineer
kfelix  -----a----t---- socpuppets ---dot---com

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  1. that is awesome bro.. may i know what is your study material for the CNSE?

  2. Thanks

    Hasrul, no study material was used for preparations. I just used my previous Palo experience and knowledge gained over the last 4-5 years. I will try to start posting some PA tips/tricks that I have picked up in hopes of helping others gain the CNSE. Take the precursor ACE exam & if you can pass that one then you should be able to pass the PCNSE exam.

    PAlO has no real literature books or any publicpress which make preparations very hard if not right out difficult. Most CNSE have complained about this also.

    So now I have PCNSE out of the way, I can get back on track for my next attempt at CCIE/RS.

  3. Kenneth,

    I also passed the PCNSE6 exam today... its a tough exam, best way to pass is to have a good understanding of the PA hardware, regardless of the model... just have a clear understanding of all PA security features.. lots of documentation is available on the Paloalto website.

    Just like you Kenneth, am now preping for CCIE R$S. Cheers.


  4. Hi
    My Experience with Palo Alto is brand new , I have taken the courses Essential 1 and ACE exam was challenging. And I have to take the exam PCNSE next month. you think practicing more the ACE exam is a good idea to gain knowledge ?

  5. Hi, I'm looking to take PCNSE7 exam and What is the Pass % for PCNSE 7 ? Please Let me know.


  6. I think it's 80%for all exams. The problem as I see it; PALOALTO doesn't really list a score or % result so you have zero ideal.

    All I can say, make sue you study things you don't do on a regular basis. if you work on PA firewall or panorama on a regular basis and very comfortable , you should pass with some deep study and preparations. Follow the blueprint for PCNSE 6 and 7 and take a stab at it.