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A+ / Microsoft dilemma

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by exonje, Sep 6, 2011.

  1. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    Hey guys. I'm currently working in a job i don't like and want to get into 1st line support. I have 7+ years experience of working as a computer technician. Now I'm not sure if A+ is necessary, it seems a little outdated? I had a look at several practice exams on CompTIA A+ Practice Questions and the questions seem very dated (unless the questions on proprofs are old ones?). Also I've been looking at jobs and none of them mention A+, only microsoft certs. Money is a bit tight and i don't want to be paying money for something I don't really need. I'm tempted to just start doing the windows 7 microsoft exam, but I am willing to pay for A+ if it really is needed?. Any help would be great, thanks guys.
     
  2. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    bump bump
     
  3. steve_p1981

    steve_p1981 Byte Poster

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    if you have 7 years as a computer tech then you might aswell start on the windows 7 exam. I was going to go straight for the windows one but i didn't know about pxe envorionments and how to boot from a network location but if you've been in the trade for 7 years you'll probably know all that and be ok with the test.
     
    Certifications: A+ 220-701 and 220-702
    WIP: none at current but poss 70-680 soon
  4. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    This forum isn't very active is it :(

    Steve, I have no idea what pxe environments are! I really don't mind doing A+/N+ if theres content I need to know and more importantly do EMPLOYERS value them? I ask this because every job I look for ask for MCPs, comptia certs are never mentioned. Can anyone please give me some advice?
     
  5. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

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    With seven years experience I wouldn't think the A+ is going to enhance your CV much. However there does appear to be gaps in your knowledge, so maybe getting hold of an A+ and Network+ book (second hand if money is tight) and reading through them might be worthwhile before progressing to either the 270 (XP) or 680 (Windows 7).
     
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job
  6. steve_p1981

    steve_p1981 Byte Poster

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    it turns out that a pxe environment is the screens you get when you have a fresh hdd and are in the process of installing the newer versions of windows (i believe that's it any ways) and if you're doing mutiple installs then you can create a script to automate the answers and save a lot of time. I think windows has some sort of scripting wizard that once you set up the area on the network to boot to to load the new OS that it talks you through and you tell it the answers it should automatically fill in. you will need to know this for the windows 7 book as it assumes you've been doing this stuff with older OSes. i bought that book to do the win 7 and after chapter 3 i was lost. Hence i have now done my a+.
     
    Certifications: A+ 220-701 and 220-702
    WIP: none at current but poss 70-680 soon
  7. systempsyche

    systempsyche Nibble Poster

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    just go for the microsoft windows 7 certs
     
    Certifications: A+, network+, server+, mcdst, mcp, ccent
    WIP: mac integration, ACSP, ACTC
  8. Boffy

    Boffy Megabyte Poster

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    I'd say do the A+, I've been working as an IT Techie for 3 years and I still find information from the A+ informative. If you know your stuff then it simply means you will pass it faster.

    Personally, I think the Windows 7 MS course (70-680) is quite a step up, how many first-Line support guys use and customize MDT? I know I have used it to deploy images, but setting up was done before I got involved. As such, its a lot of lab-work and just trying to remember.
     
    Certifications: BSc Computer Game Technology, A+
    WIP: MOS 2010
  9. Rob1234

    Rob1234 Megabyte Poster

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    If you want some knowledge go for the A+ if you want a cert that will look good on the cv and employers known about it forget A+.
     
    Certifications: A few.
  10. dazza_dog

    dazza_dog New Member

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    I agree

    Having been invloved in recruiting IT staff for over 15 years, I would take 7 years & a current MCP over 7 years & A+. This is mainly because I would expect the A+ to be taken after 2/3 years of experience and the MCP to have been taken in the last 18-24 months.
    There are plenty of books - my local library has the latest A+ and N+ books
     
  11. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    Thanks dazza, thanks everyone else too. Would ya mind having a look at my CV dazza? Giving me some pointers, if it's not too much trouble?
     
  12. ChrisH1979

    ChrisH1979 Byte Poster

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    PXE is to do with booting from the network card. You download a very limited 'OS' as it just runs in memory. You can PXE boot without a HD. The scenario you are referring is PXE booting a computer into something like WDS or Ghost and starting an install. This kind of method is a replacement for things like boot floppies/CDs which you used to have to use to connect a PC with no OS to a share or a Ghost imaging server etc. Some Thin Client distros such as Thinstation can be used with just the network card to pxe boot and no HD to turn a PC into a diskless thin client.
    Just a few things to help you out.
     
    Certifications: MCITP:SA, MCSA, MCTS:Win 7, Application Infrastructure
    WIP: MCITP:EA
  13. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

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    PXE just means pre-boot execution environment, it's not tied to NICs as you can boot into a PXE from floppies/CDs/DVDs/flash drives if your NIC isn't PXE-enabled, or even if you don't have a NIC installed. Basically it's a minimally featured OS (execution environment) that allows you to run certain tasks before/instead of booting to an OS (pre-boot).
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2011
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job
  14. DryPlate

    DryPlate Nibble Poster

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    I think it's worth mentioning that the Windows 7 EDST certification has a lot to do with the enterprise environment. There's only so much you can learn from studying so you may want to setup a lab. Two Windows 7 machines running in a virtual environment or one of them being a server OS. MSDN is only $99/year and you can download lots of OS and programs for evaluation and testing.

    A+ and MCP aren't comparable because they cover different things. One is hardware and general PC/software operation. The other is specific Microsoft operating systems and applications. A lot of support jobs focus less on hardware since the company has things under warranty and simply swaps out systems with spares if something physical doesn't work.
     
    Certifications: CompTIA A+, MCDST, Apple Certified Associate
    WIP: CompTIA Network+, MCITP: EDST 7

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