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MCSA question

Discussion in 'Windows Server 2003 / 2008 / 2012 Exams' started by James_Vallespin, Mar 26, 2010.

  1. James_Vallespin

    James_Vallespin New Member

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    Hi guys

    Im planning to get a MCSA certification. and the site of microsoft say this

    To earn the MCSA on Windows Server 2003 certification, you must pass four exams (in any order):
    Two exams on networking systems
    One exam on client operating systems
    One elective exam

    the two exams are required. then you need to choose exam on client operating system and elective exam.

    the question is which one? because there are many to choose of. and how much each exam cost?.

    thanks
     
    WIP: CCNA
  2. westernkings

    westernkings Gigabyte Poster

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    Exams are £88 I think.

    The 2 required have to be 290 and 291

    Client has to be 270/620/680 (Configuring Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7 respectively) *Choose the latter, 680*

    And the Elective can be any on the list. Easiest way is to do the MCSDT or something but most recommend doing something useful such as an Exchange exam or something.
     
    Certifications: MCITP:VA, MCITP:EA, MCDST, MCTS, MCITP:EST7, MCITP:SA, PRINCE2, ITILv3
  3. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Keep in mind that Microsoft recommends 6-12 months of experience administering servers in a multi-site, multi-server domain environment before pursuing the MCSA. Not just 6-12 months in IT... 6-12 months of actually doing server administration. If you've got that, then the MCSA is a worthwhile certification to pursue. If not, I'd recommend pursuing other certifications, such as the A+, Network+, and MCDST.
     
    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!
  4. Josiahb

    Josiahb Gigabyte Poster

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    ^this^

    If you have the relevant experience though, follow WKs advice :biggrin
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, MCDST, ACA – Mac Integration 10.10
  5. James_Vallespin

    James_Vallespin New Member

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    im a entry level, whats the cons if you pursue the MCSA without experience?.

    so i do have to pursue A+, Network+, and MCDST, instead of MCSA?
     
    WIP: CCNA
  6. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Employers with entry-level jobs will be more likely to pass you over because you are overcertified for your experience level, and employers with more advanced jobs will pass you over because you don't have enough experience. Not a good situation to be in...

    You don't HAVE to. You can do whatever you want to do. But I'd recommend doing the A+, Network+, and MCDST, because those certifications relate to entry-level jobs.

    The MCSA, on the other hand, relates to administering servers in a multi-site, multi-server domain environment. And if you're like 99% of the people out there, that's not something you start out doing in IT.
     
    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. NATARAKIATOY

    NATARAKIATOY Bit Poster

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    I agree with BosonMichael.
     
    Certifications: MCDST, MCP,MCSA
  8. Jonny70

    Jonny70 Bit Poster

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    Perhaps you can find an employer that will hire you in as entry level, but with the knowledge that you are working on your MCSA. Explain that you want to have experience to back it up, but that this is your plan and you would like them to perhaps advance you contingent on your gaining the certification?
     
  9. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    The thing is... certification doesn't automagically make you qualified to work on servers. The knowledge is great... but it's not experience.
     
    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!
  10. SuPaStA

    SuPaStA Nibble Poster

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    To me a MCP or even a MCSA are entry level certificates.Comptia exams are not really recognised in the work environment here in the UK and are pointless putting on your CV.I learned that lesson the hard way when I first came to the UK and now dont even mention I have them (not even sure if they expired or do expire).

    Advice I gave to a friend with no IT experience, is just keep working towards your MCSE and just take it one mcp at a time.Companies are not stupid to just look at your certificate and presume you have the experience, they can see what experience you have on your work history.

    My friend now contracts for a large bank in the city and the reason he could get that job?
    Outside of the interview they had a IT test which he easily passed due to studying towards his MCSE.Someone with a comptia qualification would have failed the exam.
     
    Certifications: CCNA,MCSE,ITIL,Server+,Security+,N+...
    WIP: CCNP
  11. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    In the case of the latter, you'd be wrong. Microsoft themselves recommend 6 months of server administration experience before starting the MCSA... not just 6 months in IT, but 6 months actually administering servers in a multi-site, multi-server domain environement... something that entry-level techs aren't typically allowed to do right after falling off the turnip truck.

    In any case, it doesn't matter what YOU believe the MCSA is... it matters what employers believe the MCSA is... and as someone who has sat on the employer's side of the interview table, I can tell you quite definitively that it is NOT perceived as an entry-level certification by employers.

    I hear people say that from time to time, but then I hear stories of people there in the UK knocking out the CompTIA exams and getting an entry-level job. So obviously it does SOME good. How much good is certainly up for debate, but you can't just say that they're "not really recognized" in the UK, because UK folks are using them to their advantage.

    So you don't know enough about CompTIA certifications to know whether they expire or not, but you think you know enough to come on an IT certification forum and blindly give advice about them? :rolleyes:

    You might mean well, but you're setting your friend up for failure. You can ask any of the seasoned IT vets on this very forum, and most of them will tell you that an MCSE + no experience = CV in the trash. Despite what you might think, being overcertified is NOT a good thing. Employers will believe that you either a) braindumped the exams because you lack the practical experience for them, b) are likely to require more money than an uncertified individual (in jobs where the certification is not required, which is ANY entry-level job), and/or c) are likely to bail at the first sniff of a server administration job... leaving the employer to find, hire, and train someone all over again. Basically, they'll look like too much of a risk to even interview.

    Again, if you disbelieve, ask the guys on here who are responsible for the hiring process at their companies, weeding through CVs and interviewing candidates, who ultimately bear the burden of cleaning up behind techs who think they know more than they do.

    Okay... but that doesn't mean that everyone else will be as lucky as your friend. Take a look through these forums... you'll see plenty of people who complain about getting (over)certified and not being able to get a job.

    Sorry, Supa... in my opinion, you're giving advice that can absolutely be detrimental to someone starting out in IT.
     
    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!
  12. Jonny70

    Jonny70 Bit Poster

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    I agree this is absolutely true. I was just thinking that having a certification as a goal may help getting a leg up into a tech job that is interested in finding long term employees that they can grow. This was certainly true at my last company. Getting certifications was often part of what we asked of new hires...
     
  13. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    The thing is... as an employer, I don't care what you want to be doing... I care about what you can do for me RIGHT NOW. After all, I have a particular role I need to fill. Plus, anyone can SAY they have plans to do such-and-such. Show me what you've got - that's what matters.

    Sure, it's good to find people who are motivated to want to succeed. And certainly I'll ask a candidate. But if they've already got certifications that are relatively recent, it's a fair guess that they'll continue to do so.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 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!
  14. SuPaStA

    SuPaStA Nibble Poster

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    I hold 4 Comptia qualifications so yes I have enough experience to have an opinion on them, as they were the main reason my CV kept on being over-looked when I tried to get a job in the UK (I had 4 years IT experience).

    I work for one of the largest companies in the UK, the IT staff alone are 500+ so as you can imagine I work with people in a lot of different IT disciplines.

    Not one person that I have spoken to be it a contractor/full-time in this company has ever bothered taking a Comptia exam.Today I was having a chat with the other network engineers and joked that I did Network+ years ago, the ones that knew what the exam was laughed but the others gave me a blank stare as they were not even aware what the exam is.These are CCSP/CCNP/CCIE, people at the highest end of the IT spectrum when it comes to pay/experience and have never started with a Compita exam when they got into IT....

    I interview network engineer contractors for the company and till now I still havn't seen a engineer's CV passed to us with a Comptia qualification listed on the CV.Though I wish I did as it would give me a good laugh before moving on to the next CV.


    Edit:
    Only one Comptia exam came in usefull and it was not to get a job.Security+ as it allowed me to use it as an MCSE elective, saving me one less exam to complete my MCSE.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2010
    Certifications: CCNA,MCSE,ITIL,Server+,Security+,N+...
    WIP: CCNP
  15. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    If you had 4 years IT experience, then you're beyond (or should be beyond) several of the CompTIA certifications, anyway. Once you've got that much experience, you don't need entry-level certifications. :rolleyes:

    Nor do they likely need them if they've got experience. The OP of this thread is NOT one of the people in your organization; he has no experience. Thus, your advice isn't well suited for someone of HIS experience level.

    And again, those people have experience. They work with Cisco technologies. They don't need Network+.

    Again, if you believe that someone without experience should be shooting for advanced certifications such as the MCSA, MCSE, or Cisco certs, I suggest you solicit the opinions of the other fine members on this forum.

    Network engineer != entry-level.

    At some point, I'd think you'd hear what I'm saying...
     
    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!
  16. SuPaStA

    SuPaStA Nibble Poster

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    You missing the point, at some time in their career they had to start out in IT.If Comptia exam is the answer to a entry level position why have they never bothered to ever do the exam and most have not even heard about Comptia qualifications.

    When Agencies search thorugh CVs/sites they do it on a keyword basis example cisco/mcse/mcp etc.Most dont have a clue about IT jargon and hence see these as good indicators that a person is good for the job.Hence even though my experience showed x amount of years, the next guy with 4 years experience and a "real" qualification is chosen for a interview spot.

    To give you an idea of how much a comptia qualification is respected in the UK, I did a search in jobserve (lists 1000s of jobs) for "comptia" under keyword.I got 1 job that wasnt for a trainer......

    If a network engineer is "entry level" then the £700 pd we paying is pretty good for a entry level job.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2010
    Certifications: CCNA,MCSE,ITIL,Server+,Security+,N+...
    WIP: CCNP
  17. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    My point is that you don't HAVE to get ANY certification. But getting upper-level certifications as you suggest is NOT the answer.

    This argument has been done to death. You can say all you like that they're not respected, but there are several UK people on this very forum who believe that their CompTIA certifications DID help them get employed. Thus, by definition, they're useful. You can continue to disbelieve if you wish; that's your prerogative.

    I didn't say it was. Note, I said !=, which means "NOT equal to".
     
    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!
  18. SuPaStA

    SuPaStA Nibble Poster

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    At the end of the day the OP has gotten both views on the subject now.

    Hopefully he can also go and do a bit of research himself and come to the correct conclusion (which hopefully lands him a job!).
     
    Certifications: CCNA,MCSE,ITIL,Server+,Security+,N+...
    WIP: CCNP

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