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CCNA 200-301 Deep Dive: NAT and NTP

Prepare for the new CCNA 200-301 through lecture and hands-on labs

Topic: System Administration
Wendell Odom

The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) certification creates a de facto standard defining the essential knowledge required for anyone working with computer networks. Cisco completely revamped its entire certification program for 2020, with CCNA taking an even more critical role. Cisco places CCNA as the one starting point for all other Cisco certifications. Anyone pursuing a career in networking should be prepared to work with Cisco, and that process begins with CCNA.

This course uses a series of short, targeted lectures followed by lab exercises that you do in class using the (free) Cisco Packet Tracer simulator. New to Cisco? Anyone can do the labs, with one lab exercise version created for those with little background knowledge, and another for those with appropriate prerequisite skills. The flow works through a series of paired lectures and labs and closes with a short topic of advice about how to learn more and complete your exam preparation for this course’s topics.

You must have Version 7.3 (or later ) of Cisco Packet Tracer installed and confirmed to be working before class begins. Earlier versions do not work for the in-class labs. Refer to the instructions at this page for more detail.

The CCNA 200-301 exam topics include a wide variety of security and IP services topics. Some of those topics require you to learn only knowledge, while others require you to develop configuration and verification skills. This course focuses on a few of the topics that require more in-depth hands-on skills: NAT and NTP. The course works through the details NAT in the first half of the course, in part due to its greater complexity and the number of ways you can make configuration mistakes. The course then takes a similar approach to discuss NTP, using labs that focus on the different verification commands.

What you'll learn-and how you can apply it

  • The fundamentals of NAT as implemented with static NAT on a Cisco router.
  • The need for IPv4 address conservation and how the NAT Port Address Translation (PAT) feature meets that need.
  • How to configure both static NAT and PAT on Cisco routers, including how to verify NAT operations.
  • The core NTP concepts of a master clock source and how a Cisco device in client/server mode acts as both an NTP client and server.
  • How to configure a Cisco router or switch as an NTP master or client/server
  • How to verify clock source information about the local device and its clock source

This training course is for you because...

You want to achieve Cisco CCNA certification - You want to learn networking basics, specifically NAT and NTP, for your job and the exam - You want to pursue one of the Cisco CCNP certifications, and you need to know CCNA topics as a prerequisite - You prefer lab-centric learning


  • An understanding of IP Version 4 (IPv4) addressing and subnetting, which can be learned from Chapters 11 through 14 of the CCNA 200-301 Official Cert Guide, Volume 1. However, you do not need to be ready to do subnetting math without a calculator.
  • A basic understanding of IP routing, both of which can be learned from the first half of Chapter 16 of the CCNA 200-301 Official Cert Guide, Volume 1.

Additionally, you can learn in this course without the following skills, but coming to course with these skills can increase how much you learn:

  • Have Cisco device CLI navigation skills. You can learn these skills in the course “CCNA 200-301 Deep Dive: Cisco CLI and Cisco Packet Tracer”, or by reading Chapter 4 of the CCNA 200-301 Official Cert Guide, Volume 1. Both are available at O’Reilly Online Learning.

Materials, downloads, or Supplemental Content needed in advance

  • The CCNA Deep Dive courses here at O’Reilly require you to use Cisco Packet Tracer, specifically version 7.3. The in-class labs do not work with earlier versions of Cisco Packet Tracer. Follow this link for the specifics to find, install, and test your Packet Tracer installation.

Recommended Follow-up

  • Complete your learning about the concept-only topics in Chapters 9 through 12 of the CCNA 200-301 Official Cert Guide, Volume 2 (available on O’Reilly Online)
  • Attend the O’Reilly Online course “CCNA 200-301 Deep Dive: Controller-Based Networking, JSON, and REST”.
  • Attend the CCNA 200-301 Deep Dive courses about Network Automation here at O’Reilly Online.

About your instructor

  • Wendell Odom, CCIE No. 1624, creates many of the best-selling Cisco certification products of their types, particular in the routing and switching space. He has pioneered the authorized Cisco Certification Guide series at Cisco Press and has written every edition of the leading CCENT and CCNA Certification Guides. He has written over 30 editions of networking books, video, and software products, ranging in depth from introductory level to CCIE. Wendell has worked as an instructor, course developer, network engineer, and consultant. Find links to more study tools and resources (including his blogs) at www.certskills.com.


The timeframes are only estimates and may vary according to how the class is progressing

Section 1: Introduction (10 Minutes)

  • CCNA 200-301 Exam Overview and Exam Topics in this Course
  • Verify Packet Tracer Installation
  • Deep Dive Course Series

Section 2: NAT Basics and Static NAT (60 Minutes)

  • Public IP Networks
  • Private IP Networks and the Need for NAT
  • CIDR Blocks
  • Static NAT Configuration
  • Lab 1: Configuring Static NAT

Section 3: NAT with Port Address Translation (PAT) (100 Minutes)

  • Understanding TCP and UDP Port Numbers
  • IPv4 Scalability and the Need for PAT
  • Dynamic NAT/PAT Configuration


  • Lab 2: Implementing Dynamic NAT/PAT with Interfaces
  • Lab 3: Implementing Dynamic NAT/PAT with Pools

Section 4: Network Time Protocol (60 Minutes)

  • NTP Fundamentals: NTP Master and Client/Server
  • Implementing NTP
  • Lab 4: Implementing NTP

Section 5: Exam Advice and Final Q&A (10 Minutes)

  • What and Where to Learn More about NAT and NTP
  • Exam Advice about Today’s Topics