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Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by WMSheep, Sep 29, 2007.

  1. WMSheep

    WMSheep Bit Poster

    Hi all

    OK, so yesterday I lost my job within Environmental Health; not so bad but it`s the 3rd time I`ve been laid off from within the industry in 18 months!!! (I was in a fairly specialised but vastly over populated industry sector that has a falling amount of work).

    I`m 43 and I want to change my career path.

    I`d like to get into computing somehow, but I dont know where to start, what options are available to me career wise, or which qualifications I should go for.

    As for pc experience; I`ve used Windoze since about `87, progressing through just about every version up to and including XP. About 8 years ago I developed an interest in *nix and have tried many, many different distros, finally (ie currently) using PCLinux. Most of my PC`s have been hand built by my good self since about 1990.

    So, where should I go from here?

    Is it too late to enrol at the local college for a full/part time course during the day, or should I look at doing something at an evening class?

    Help me please.


    WIP: CompTIA A+
  2. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

    Hi Mark.

    Sorry about the job, but welcome to CF.

    The general consensus on CF is go for entry level certs to begin with, such as CompTIA A+ and Network +, followed by the MS certs such as MCDST and MCSA, assuming that you want to get into the Heldpesk support/Admin type roles to begin with.

    Another recommendation is for self-study, rather than throwing thousands of pounds at 'CertMeQuick' type courses, which give you the certs but no experience. I, like many others on the forum, am self-studying A+ and Network + using the Mike Meyers books and the PC Technician Street Smarts book.

    Another good recommendation is to keep looking for entry level positions, as on the job experience will assist greatly in helping you get those certs.

    Oh, and Google is a brilliant tool, as is this forum.

    All the best.

  3. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

    Welcome to CF!

    I agree with John's post. Also you are never too old to start a career in IT. If you work hard you will be successful.
    Certifications: A+ | CCA | CCAA | Network+ | MCDST | MCSA | MCP (270, 271, 272, 290, 291) | MCTS (70-662, 70-663) | MCITP:EMA | VCA-DCV/Cloud/WM | VTSP | VCP5-DT | VCP5-DCV
  4. WMSheep

    WMSheep Bit Poster

    Ta for that advice John.

    I think I WILL have a good hard look at CompTIA A+ and Network +, going the self-study route (actually looked at doing things through Computeach earlier this year - £4500 it would have cost !!!(if I remember correctly))

    As for entering at the base of the career structure - well we all have to do it I suppose (tho I`d really like to be able to walk into a £20 000 job on day one, I cant see it happening somehow).

    Just out of interest, are people here doing the CompTIA A+ and Network + simultaneously, or is it a case of get one done then start on the next; how many hours a week are you spending on things, and how long do you reckon the courses will take you?

    Once again, Ta for the Advice John

    WIP: CompTIA A+
  5. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

    I am concentrating on A + but, to take the occasional break from it, I am also looking at my Network + books from time to time.

    I am reckoning on taking the A+ in November, which means I will have been studying for about 3 months, spending about 2 hours per night most nights. That sounds a lot, but it all depends on what other priorities you have in life that need to be fitted in.

    Everyone is different. We study in different ways... for example, some of the guys n gals like listening to music while studying, some like to have a break during it. Others may plough on thorugh for the full study time without a break.

    The main thing is being able to discipline yourself to get down and do the studying. One thing I have found is that I do get down from time to time, when I can't get to grips with some of the subject matter. Asking questions on CF, or merely reading other people's posts on their own study issues, or even being able to answer some, does help pull you through.
  6. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster


    Another vote for self-study - get the Meyers A+ All-in-One Exam Guide Sixth Edition and Pyles PC Technician Street Smarts and you'll be on your way to getting the A+.
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  7. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

    Hi and welcome to CF :)

    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
  8. wizard

    wizard Petabyte Poster

    Hi there and welcome 8)
    Certifications: SIA DS Licence
    WIP: A+ 2009
  9. nXPLOSi

    nXPLOSi Terabyte Poster

    Welcome to CF, best of luck with the career change! :)
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA 2003 (270, 290, 291), MCTS (640, 642), MCSA 2008
    WIP: MCSA 2012
  10. WMSheep

    WMSheep Bit Poster


    For better or worse, I`ve taken the plunge and ordered the A+ course books from amazon.

    They should be here in about 12 days, so hopefully that will give me and Mrs Wmsheep plenty of time to get me a small office type setup sorted in the spare room. I have enough PC`s (3 plus enough bits for a 4th) in the house so I should be ok on that front (the only other thing I really need is a colour printer).

    After that, it`ll be all down to me I suppose.

    WIP: CompTIA A+
  11. Mr.Cheeks

    Mr.Cheeks 1st ever Gold Member! Gold Member

    Welcome to CF....


    If you dont mind me asking, what OS's are you running on your PC's and whatsspecs are they, also are they networked?

    These will be a tremoundous help in A+ especially if you have one to rip apart!
  12. WMSheep

    WMSheep Bit Poster

    lets see;

    pc 1= p4 system (3000 processor, 2 gig ram, 500+ gig hd space) dual boot XP(home) + PCLinux (tho`might go and install something a little more techy like Slackware (or even gentoo if I can figure it out) too at some point)
    pc 2= AMD athlon 2900, 1 gig ram, 80 gig hdd - XP(home)
    pc 3= IBM thinkpad T42 - XP(home)

    and enough bits`n`bobs to build another 1.6 amd machine with about 256mb of Ram (maybe use as server?) - not sure as to OS yet (open to suggestions).

    I WILL be networking things (not wireless) at some point.

    If anything I`ll be ripping apart pc#1 as it`s got a bit of a problem at the moment (just get a pretty randomly coloured screen as soon as I try to boot up - think it`s a problem with the power supply going to the graphics card)
    WIP: CompTIA A+
  13. eternalangel

    eternalangel Banned

    hello mate
  14. WMSheep

    WMSheep Bit Poster

    Well, 2 out of the 3 books arrived from Amazon this morning - looks like my online poker days are over for the time being!!

    Time to change my profile a bit I think

    WIP: CompTIA A+

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