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Hello all - help needed

Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by JAM35, Jun 2, 2010.

  1. JAM35

    JAM35 New Member

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    Hello all, apologies for the long post but i had a look round the forum and its seems full of good advice so here goes.

    some background..

    After leaving school with no qualifications (and then wasting a few years after!) I was a late starter in terms of ambition. I started a very basic computer hardware course at college which led to a job in a computer shop building and reparing pc's where i stayed for a year. Since then i have over 2 years helpdesk experience mainly supporting epos systems in a microsoft enviroment. I am currently working for a software company supporting there own epos software. I have a basic working knowledge of networking but this is mainly trial and error not something i can confidently put on my c.v.

    Given the increasing competion for jobs these days i am very aware i am rocking around at the bottom of the pile with nothing to validate my experience. I would really like to move away from epos support into a desktop support role eventually moving into a sytems administrator position. I have been looking at MCTS going on to MCITP - Server administrator, perhaps starting with the 70-680 and 70-640 exams. I have to say the whole process is enough to make you dizzy with so many routes to choose from and ways of studying. I am coming to the conclusion that books and test exams are the way forward as most training providers i have looked into are either insanely expensive (£2500 for a+, N+) or have bad reviews for out of date materials.

    I am thinking that MCTS might be better to start with rather than A+ N+ as alot of jobs i look at now are asking for some kind of basic microsoft qualification. Given my experience and the route of progression i have in mind, what do you guys think? I work full time so it will have to be home learning but i am quite happy doing that from books and using the forums for help. Any advice people can give me on the best books would also be very helpful.

    Thanks in advance

    James
     
  2. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    I'd recommend the A+, Network+, and MCDST, but that's just my opinion.

    Welcome to the forums!
     
    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!
  3. JAM35

    JAM35 New Member

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    Thanks, seems like a good forum!

    I was told by the national IT Learning centre that MCDST was based on Win xp and server 2003 which has been replaced by MCITP? I had the feeling he was just trying to sell to me though.
     
  4. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    The MCDST is based on Windows XP, which is still the predominant workstation OS in use by businesses. The MCSA and MCSE (which are certifications that you shouldn't pursue until you've been doing server administration for a few months) are based on Windows Server 2003, which is the predominant server OS currently in use.

    The MCTS and MCITP certifications cover newer OSes, such as Vista, Windows 7, and Server 2008. However, there is, and will continue to be, a need for techs who know how to support XP and Server 2003. So why not certify on the older, predominant technologies now, and upgrade to the newer certifications later? Then you'll have BOTH!
     
    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!
  5. JAM35

    JAM35 New Member

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    Fair point and one i made myself to him. Ok so starting with A+, N+ as a foundation, I heard the meyers book is the best along with practice exams? I am fairly confident about the A+ but the N+ could be a bit more of a challenge.
     
  6. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Yeah, see, most of these sales reps don't really understand the IT industry... they just know what they've been told to feed people. If you want *good* advice, you go to a forum filled with people who work in the industry... like CertForums. :)

    Yep, I recommend Meyers' All-in-One books, and if you need labs, I recommend PC Technician Street Smarts 2nd Ed. by Pyles.

    My opinion of practice exams is obviously quite biased towards one particular employer... I mean, vendor. ;)

    If you're confident with the A+, it should just take you a bit of skimming through the book to pick up bits and pieces of info you might lack. Afterwards, you should be able to pass a high-quality practice exam the first time through (with a batch of previously unseen questions).
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2010
    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. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    double post - bleh
     
    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!
  8. JAM35

    JAM35 New Member

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    Thanks for your help. I am going to take the advice and get the A+, N+ done. I have found both meyers books for under £50 on amazon which is a saving of £2450 i could have wasted on a certain company so a couple of extra books and practice exams is a drop in the ocean.

    +1
     

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