Nominated Discussion: Palo Alto Certification Path

Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Please sign in to see details of an important advisory in our Customer Advisories area.
Community Team Member
No ratings

This Nominated Discussion Article is based on the post "Newcomer Seeking Advice: Palo Alto Certification Path" by @ABHIYADAV and answered by @Claw4609.


Hi everyone,


I'm excited to join the Palo Alto community! My name is Abhi, and I'm eager to learn and grow my career in cybersecurity with Palo Alto Networks.


I currently hold AWS certifications and have a good foundation in networking. However, I'm unsure which Palo Alto certification best fits my background and career aspirations.


I'd greatly appreciate any suggestions or guidance from this experienced community. Whether it's sharing personal experiences, recommending specific certifications, or offering general advice on navigating the Palo Alto security landscape, your insights would be invaluable.


Thank you for your time and support!

Looking forward to connecting and learning from all of you.



In addressing this question, the answer would vary based on the specific knowledge you seek. Are you primarily focused on Prisma, Cortex, or Strata products? Strata encompasses the physical firewalls and the central management platform Panorama, which is commonly referred to. Therefore, the discussion below will focus on Strata.


I personally have the PCSNA (Palo Alto Networks Certified Network Security Administrator) and PCNSE (Palo Alto Networks Certified Network Security Engineer) and would say the PCNSA focuses more on Palo Alto Networks products and a whole and more general how an enterprise firewall works, I would personally say this would be best suited for some in a sales role. The PCNSE would be more of the technical of specifically Palo Alto firewalls. If you're mainly working with Cortex or Prisma products, Palo has certs specific to those as well.


In terms of learning, Palo has the Beacon site, which has some courses and videos: Home : Beacon (


While working with firewalls you will regularly refer to the admin guide (this is the technical documentation): Getting Started (


I personally like this book as it goes over some more real world stuff then the certifications may: Mastering Palo Alto Networks - Second Edition: Build, configure, and deploy network solutions for yo...


The purpose of the following guides is to help you prepare for your PCNSA and PCNSE certification. You can read through these study guides from start to finish, or you may jump straight to topics you would like to study. Hyperlinked cross-references will help you locate important definitions and background information from earlier sections.


PCNSA Study Guide (

PCNSE Study Guide (


Happy learning and stay secure !

Rate this article:
Register or Sign-in
Article Dashboard
Version history
Last Updated:
‎03-21-2024 05:19 PM
Updated by: