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Lost on the way to MCSA - help

Discussion in 'General Microsoft Certifications' started by skulkerboyo, Jun 11, 2008.

  1. skulkerboyo

    skulkerboyo Megabyte Poster

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    OK I'm lost:ohmy

    I'm halfway to my MCSA and have no idea what to do to fulfil the elective. Options I've considered are Network+(done the A+), MCDST and 70-624 (no materials yet). I'm trying to keep my elective relevant to my job but theres nothing that strikes me as the right choice.

    Bit of background on me. I'm in second line support. Most of our infrastructure is virtualised (vmware). We use domino. Very mixed bed of desktop technologies as our main line of business is publishing so alot of macs and odd little software relics still used in publishing (tek and dvi files, total commander). I want to keep my choices as relevant to my current role as possible. I do have an interest in security but will not have any exposure to ISA even if I ask. To be honest I'd like to get a Redhat cert or do some Virtualisation stuff but sadly thats not really gonna be mcsa relevant and I like to finish what I've started.

    Really its gonna come down to personal choice I guess but the problem is I need to choose soon. Not to keen on the idea of the network+. I read the book about two months ago and although interesting it had nothing in that was going to help me. I think reading it was enough to pick up the bits I was missing. I was also looking at the mcdst a while back and dont feel that its going to help me too much as its more geared towards first line

    Argh I'm soo bloody lost now:cussing

    291 is obviously next course of action but i want the elective out of the way while I build up more experience that will be useful to the 291. Maybe I'm missing something . . . . . . . clarity?

    Your thoughts most esteemed people
     
    Certifications: MCITP:SA, MCSA 03, MCSA 08, MCTS(680+648),A+,N+,ITILV3 Foundation, ITIL Intermediate: Operational Support and Analysis
    WIP: 70-417
  2. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    It's up to you but I would just get the N+ out of the way then because you have the A+ then that'l be the elective done.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  3. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    I agree with GBL on this, the Network+ will also cover alot of the basic's that the 70-291 will build on (and expect you to have).

    -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
  4. Stoney

    Stoney Megabyte Poster

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    Yes the N+ does make sense.

    If you don't want to do the N+ then I would suggest you consider the Exchange Server exam. Although it's a pig, virtually every company uses and relies upon email. Although it may not be relevant to your current role, when you come to move on and look for a new position you will almost certainly find that every company has an email system, and it will most likely be an Exchange System at that.
     
    Certifications: 25 + 50 metre front crawl
    WIP: MCSA - Exam 70-270
  5. skulkerboyo

    skulkerboyo Megabyte Poster

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    Hmm I suppose the N+ would be a more relaxing option. I do like the Exchange suggestion and have considered it but with no exposure and time to get to know it i might give it a miss.

    Be interesting to know what most MCSA's opt for as the elective
     
    Certifications: MCITP:SA, MCSA 03, MCSA 08, MCTS(680+648),A+,N+,ITILV3 Foundation, ITIL Intermediate: Operational Support and Analysis
    WIP: 70-417
  6. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    I did the A+ / N+ for mine. I have the MCDST as well, but I did that afterwards because I teach it at college. :)

    I would recommend the N+ as a few others have also. Will defo help you out when it comes to some aspects of the 291 as WagnerK already mentioned.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCP, MCDST, MCSA 2K3, MCTS, MOS, MTA, MCT, MCITP:EDST7, MCSA W7, Citrix CCA, ITIL Foundation
    WIP: Nada
  7. GiddyG

    GiddyG Terabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Yep... I'd agree with the N+; besides, you're already halfway there with the A+ under your belt.
     
  8. kevicho

    kevicho Gigabyte Poster

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    I did A+ and network+ options, as well as the 70-270/90/91 exams for my mcsa.

    I intend to do the AD and exchange exams in the next year or so, once ccna is done and dusted lol
     
    Certifications: A+, Net+, MCSA Server 2003, 2008, Windows XP & 7 , ITIL V3 Foundation
    WIP: CCNA Renewal
  9. skulkerboyo

    skulkerboyo Megabyte Poster

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    Looks pretty unanimous then

    So whats the current N+ exam number and best materials for the job boys8)

    Oh yeah and price. I know comptia can be a bit expensive.

    And can i book through pearson or prometric or both

    ? ? ? ?

    Hi Ho off to google I go
     
    Certifications: MCITP:SA, MCSA 03, MCSA 08, MCTS(680+648),A+,N+,ITILV3 Foundation, ITIL Intermediate: Operational Support and Analysis
    WIP: 70-417
  10. nugget
    Honorary Member

    nugget Junior toady

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    Well, I would do the N+ and then also the 291 after it.

    It also depends on if you want to go further towards the MCSE as to what you should choose as your elective. If you don't plan to go further then by all means use the A+/N+ combination for it, but if you are going further then you can't do this.

    You could take the 350 for your elective (ISA 2004) even though you wont get any live experience with it but you will get the MCSA+Security if you do take it.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP (270,271,272,290,620) | MCDST | MCTS:Vista
    WIP: MCSA, 70-622,680,685
  11. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    I think he would need 2 security exams to get the Security rating on his MCSA Nugget.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCP, MCDST, MCSA 2K3, MCTS, MOS, MTA, MCT, MCITP:EDST7, MCSA W7, Citrix CCA, ITIL Foundation
    WIP: Nada
  12. skulkerboyo

    skulkerboyo Megabyte Poster

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    Will probably be holding off on the MCSE. Cant see myself gettin in a postition where I'd need such advanced knowledge for a couple of years. I am second line but still very new to this.

    By then I may be looking at the new range of certs anyways. Who knows? As I said earlier I'm interested in doing some study outside of MS certs and will probably do that once I've kicked the MCSA's arse.
    Comptia and MS exams got me into this but now I'm developing interests in other areas besides the core technologys.

    N+ it is for the meantime

    Drafting the "oi pay for me to do this" email to my boss as we speak:twisted:
     
    Certifications: MCITP:SA, MCSA 03, MCSA 08, MCTS(680+648),A+,N+,ITILV3 Foundation, ITIL Intermediate: Operational Support and Analysis
    WIP: 70-417
  13. skulkerboyo

    skulkerboyo Megabyte Poster

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    Books ordered

    sybex and exam cram
     
    Certifications: MCITP:SA, MCSA 03, MCSA 08, MCTS(680+648),A+,N+,ITILV3 Foundation, ITIL Intermediate: Operational Support and Analysis
    WIP: 70-417
  14. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Regarding Network+ and the MCDST... certification isn't primarily so you can learn new concepts... it's to show that you already know the concepts. As a result, BOTH of them would be useful to you. I'd be surprised if you said you do *no* desktop support as a second-line tech... I helped with desktop support even as a senior network admin.

    Ultimately, the choice is yours. Either... or both... would be worthwhile. :)
     
    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!
  15. skulkerboyo

    skulkerboyo Megabyte Poster

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    This is a good point and something I may have forgotten having spent so much time learning to get to this stage.:study
     
    Certifications: MCITP:SA, MCSA 03, MCSA 08, MCTS(680+648),A+,N+,ITILV3 Foundation, ITIL Intermediate: Operational Support and Analysis
    WIP: 70-417
  16. nugget
    Honorary Member

    nugget Junior toady

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    You're right Modey. I stand corrected. You can find the info here if anyone's interested.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP (270,271,272,290,620) | MCDST | MCTS:Vista
    WIP: MCSA, 70-622,680,685
  17. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    Heh, well I looked it up because I'm about to do an ISA cert myself and thought I might get the Security designation on my MCSA, but I would need something like Security+ also.

    That would fit in well though I think, as the Security+ can be used as an elective for the MCSE, so if I ever decide to go for that it would come in handy. I hear the Security+ is a bit of a slog to learn though.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCP, MCDST, MCSA 2K3, MCTS, MOS, MTA, MCT, MCITP:EDST7, MCSA W7, Citrix CCA, ITIL Foundation
    WIP: Nada

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