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Best place to start?

Discussion in 'A+' started by JSH333, Sep 19, 2006.

  1. JSH333

    JSH333 Byte Poster

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    Hi all

    I was thinking of starting study for the MCDST but after looking around this forum a little more it seems most think A+ then N+ is the best place to start....

    If so, what books would you all suggest and how do i go about arranging an exam for A+?

    Cheers

    James
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCP, MCDST
    WIP: MCSA
  2. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    Mike Meyers book is always a good place to start, if you can also get CBT (either learnkey or CBT Nuggets) and for exam prep (mock exams) use either transcender and/or examcram2 material.

    To arrange to take an exam you have to register at www.prometric.com or www.vue.com. You can buy vouchers direct from them or get the vouchers from a 3rd party reseller like www.getcertifiedforless.com

    Hope this helps.

    -ken
     
    Certifications: CITP, PGCert, BSc, HNC, LCGI, PTLLS, MCT, MCITP, MCTS, MCSE, MCSA:M, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, MTA, MCAS, MOS (Master), A+, N+, S+, ACA, VCA, etc... & 2nd Degree Black Belt
    WIP: PGDip
  3. JSH333

    JSH333 Byte Poster

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    So is it worthwhile to take A+ first? i read about A+ being updated to be comparable to MCDST elsewhere in the forum. Any advice?

    Thanks
    James
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCP, MCDST
    WIP: MCSA
  4. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    To be honest the A+ & Network+ is about the same level as the MCDST. They both sit at "level 2". In my opinion it is down to you which one you you take. The question that you have to ask is what kind of environment do you work in. Both have good points and not so good points. MCDST is XP based and delves deeper into it while the A+ is non-specific (covers a whole range so doesn't delve that deep into any one OS) and covers software and hardware.

    The best advise in my opinion is to do all 3 A+, Network+ and the MCDST in either this order:

    A+, Network+ and the MCDST
    or this order:
    MCDST, A+ then Network+

    others will be around with their opinion soon.

    -Ken
     
    Certifications: CITP, PGCert, BSc, HNC, LCGI, PTLLS, MCT, MCITP, MCTS, MCSE, MCSA:M, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, MTA, MCAS, MOS (Master), A+, N+, S+, ACA, VCA, etc... & 2nd Degree Black Belt
    WIP: PGDip
  5. JSH333

    JSH333 Byte Poster

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    Thanks for the advice, it all makes more sence to me now :D

    Cheers

    James
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCP, MCDST
    WIP: MCSA
  6. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    Certifications: CITP, PGCert, BSc, HNC, LCGI, PTLLS, MCT, MCITP, MCTS, MCSE, MCSA:M, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, MTA, MCAS, MOS (Master), A+, N+, S+, ACA, VCA, etc... & 2nd Degree Black Belt
    WIP: PGDip
  7. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  8. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    Now that's a cool title, buy the book if only for that :biggrin
     
    Certifications: CITP, PGCert, BSc, HNC, LCGI, PTLLS, MCT, MCITP, MCTS, MCSE, MCSA:M, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, MTA, MCAS, MOS (Master), A+, N+, S+, ACA, VCA, etc... & 2nd Degree Black Belt
    WIP: PGDip
  9. r.h.lee

    r.h.lee Gigabyte Poster

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    JSH333,

    The first book that I would suggest is some blank notebook and start writing all of your experience with the physical PC box. If your only experience is as a user, and strange beeps may scare you, write that down. If you setup the computer out of the box by plugging in the power cord, keyboard, mouse, monitor, and other peripherals into your PC, write that down too. Have you ever taken any mechanical and/or electrical physics classes? Have you ever opened up the case of the computer?

    Another thing to write down is to determine the best way you learn. Some people learn great from the text of books. Some prefer both text and pictures. Some are visual so prefer mostly pictures and not much text. Some learn better through trial and error of opening a PC case, tinkering, and then learn something new from that experience. Some people may be better served by a physical teacher/instructure on front of them to learn better.

    As far as how to go about arranging an exam for the A+, WagnerK has already explained that in his post - http://www.certforums.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?p=105104#post105104 .

    JSH333, I look forward to be able to call you my "A+ brother." Good luck. :)
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCP+I, MCP, CCNA, A+
    WIP: CCDA
  10. JSH333

    JSH333 Byte Poster

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    Thanks for your advice r.h.lee

    I have AS Levels in Computing (mostly programing on Visual Basic) and Physics (covers electrics a little). Ive been building computers for the past 3 or 4 years, my current PC has various aftermarket heatsinks and fans as ive overclocked it. I've also set up a few basic wireless networks. I wouldn't say im a complete newbie but i havent taken any other relevent courses apart from those ive mentioned.

    I'm a little unsure as to what my best way of learning would be but the cheapest way sounds most promising as i wont be able to afford expensive classes or anything like that unfortunatly.:(

    Cheers

    James
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCP, MCDST
    WIP: MCSA
  11. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

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    Hi

    I first came across this site in July and since then I have started home learning for the A+. I've literally just got an old PC to take apart (that I don't mind getting damaged if need be) and the Mike Meyers A+ certification book, and I do a few hours study most evenings, and I've picked up so much I never knew in the past few weeks. I don't know what your time scale is, but if you are in no major hurry to get accredted, then I well recommend home study. No expensive classes, no annoying salespeople, just your own motivation is all thats needed. As for cost, the book is about £27 (probably cheaper on eBay or Amazon) and you cn probably pick up a dirt cheap PC on eBay too. The only real cost will be the exams.

    Cheers
     
    Certifications: None
    WIP: Trying to find my car keys
  12. JSH333

    JSH333 Byte Poster

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    Thats my kinda price range :D I do have two old pcs kicking around that i can experiment on if need be so thats not a problem. How much are the exams again? Also what kind of wait is there between booking, and actually taking the exam?

    Cheers

    James
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCP, MCDST
    WIP: MCSA

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