Certified Optical Network Engineer (CONE) Training – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Certified Optical Network Engineer (CONE) Training – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


For individuals seeking to enhance their expertise to an advanced level in optical networking, FiberGuide provides the OTT CONE training. In the CONE training sessions, participants go far beyond the foundational CONA (Certified Optical Network Associate) course, where they investigate the transformative influence of coherent detection and digital signal processing in the field of optical communications. The curriculum is designed for higher data rates of 100Gb/s, 400Gb/s, 800Gb/s, and beyond. After the training, delegates are expected to understand the adjustments necessary for DWDM systems, as studied in CONA, to function at these advanced data rates. Attendees also acquire insights into the synergy between optical and electronic technologies, which plays a crucial role in overcoming constraints in high-performance optical networks. Furthermore, the program delves into the importance of Software-Defined Networking (SDN) and its implications for supporting open systems, encompassing open optical line systems, Open ROADMs, and white-box solutions.

Where and when is the course held?

CONE is offered by licensed affiliates of Optical Technology Training (OTT) globally. At FiberGuide, open enrollment classes are scheduled in Northern Virginia, primarily Arlington or McLean. For scheduled CONE classes from FiberGuide, please visit our optical networking course schedule page. For scheduled classes by other OTT licensees, we recommend visiting the official OTT website.

What if there are many of us needing to take the training, can you come to our location?

FiberGuide (and all other OTT affiliates) can offer closed classes exclusively for your organization. Classes can be scheduled at any company location for 8 or more delegates. Please contact us to arrange for CONE (or other OTT courses) training at your location.

Who is the target audience for this course?

CONE is designed for individuals aspiring to or currently working in optical communications with roles such as optical network engineer, optical transport engineer, optical transmission engineer, optical network architect, core network engineer, optical network planning engineer, data center network engineer, and other related positions.

What are the prerequisites for enrolling in this CONE course?

Passing the foundation CONA (Certified Optical Network Associate) is required for one to be enrolled in the advanced CONE course. For more information about CONA, please visit the CONA course page.

Is the CONE course offered online?

CONE is not offered online. The intense 5-day training program requires in-person training for more effective interaction with the instructor and training aids. 

Can I study for the course on my own and just pay for the certification?

No – delegates are required to take the course with an instructor and be evaluated immediately after the training. The CONE fees include the evaluation and certification.

Who is the instructor for the course, and what is their background in optical networking?

CONE is taught by competent OTT affiliates with strong backgrounds in optical communication. At FiberGuide, the trainer is Jabulani Dhliwayo, the company Technical Director. Jabulani has over 25 years of experience in the field with roles including technical trainer and consultant, R&D engineer in fiber optics and photonics, product line manager and market development manager. You can see more details on his LinkedIn profile.

Are there any required textbooks or recommended readings for the course?

There is no set text book but OTT offers a 600+ page manual to all delegates prior to starting the training. The manual is part of a comprehensive online course portal that is made accessible a week before the date of the training. The portal also includes review questions to help delegates revise. Delegates may download the manual for use during and after the training. Delegates also have access to the course portal for one year after the training.

What is the format of the assessments in this course?

Working in pairs, delegates are required to complete and pass two project assignments. In addition, they should also pass an exam in order to be certified as a CONE. 

Are there any laboratory sessions or practical components associated with the course?

By going through the assignment, you will be engaging in activities that closely resemble a laboratory scenario. Using the OTT Whizziekit, a virtual optical networking system, you will learn how to use networking cards, optical fiber and other components and modules to deploy a network.

How can students seek help or clarification on course-related topics outside of class?

Delegates can ask questions during and after the training and we will always be happy to address them. In addition, OTT maintains a LinkedIn group, “Certified by OTT”, that one can join to be able to ask questions to group members and instructors who are members of the group.

What software or tools will be used in the course, and how can students access them?

The only software used, especially during the assignments, is Excel and Powerpoint. Minimal skills in these software packages are necessary because OTT has already put together what you will need so that your focus will be on understanding optical networking and not be bogged down by software issues.

Is there a syllabus or course outline available that provides a detailed overview of the topics covered each week?

There is a comprehensive course outline available by email upon request.

Are there any specific computer or technical requirements for the course?

Other than the software discussed above, there are no other computer requirements.

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