On the right track?

Discussion in 'MCSE' started by =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?=, Apr 12, 2004.

  1. Greetings

    I would like some advice from those that have been down the MCSE road. I have been working as an NT Sysadmin for several years and finally have some time to pursue the MCSE and CCNA track. I looked into boot camps, but from what I've read and heard, they basically train you on how to pass the exams. I want to gain some knowledge about the technology as well

    Since I have been working in an NT environment, I've had virtually no exposure to AD yet, although I believe I know enough about domain structure in general to be able to make the transition easier than someone with no experience. But I'm not going to assume anything. My thought however, was that I may as well leapfrog over Win2k and just go for Win2k3 certification at this point

    So after looking around I decided to compromise between the boot camp method and the book-only home-based study method, and went instead with a home-based video training method. I started with the 70-270 course, and went through all of the videos. I was familiar with much of the courseware, as I've been using XP for some time and have gotten used to where most of the tools and methods that I'm used to with NT are in XP. I did find the courseware well delivered and informative, and I was able to ace the course quizzes at the end of each lesson, which built my confidence. I have finished the 270 courseware, although I have not read the book (standard MSPress 70-270 training book) cover to cover. What I discovered however, when I tried one of the MeasureUp practice tests, was that I was definitely not prepared to consider taking the exam. There were many questions that I just wasn't prepared to answer, and many of them I couldn't even find answers to in the MS book. While I have a basic working knowledge of networking, the practice test (and some of the courseware for that matter) seems to presume a working knowledge of AD structure and a more than basic knowledge of networking, as some of the questions had to do with opening ports on firewalls, etc. I couldn't help but wonder how a novice that just wanted an MCP in WinXPPro would ever get through this. I'm no genius, but I do have some good experience under my belt

    So my question is, a) am I unjustly discouraged after just one practice exam, b) have I taken the wrong track and should start with Win2k, c) have I chosen the wrong courseware (not to be named)

    Thanks

    Bewildered Noreaste
     
    =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?=, Apr 12, 2004
    #1
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  2. =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?=

    Neil Guest

    =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?= <> wrote in
    news::

    > Greetings,
    >
    > I would like some advice from those that have been down the MCSE road.
    > I have been working as an NT Sysadmin for several years and finally
    > have some time to pursue the MCSE and CCNA track. I looked into boot
    > camps, but from what I've read and heard, they basically train you on
    > how to pass the exams. I want to gain some knowledge about the
    > technology as well.


    Good for you. Nice change from the wingnuts who usually post here.

    >
    > Since I have been working in an NT environment, I've had virtually no
    > exposure to AD yet, although I believe I know enough about domain
    > structure in general to be able to make the transition easier than
    > someone with no experience. But I'm not going to assume anything. My
    > thought however, was that I may as well leapfrog over Win2k and just
    > go for Win2k3 certification at this point.


    sup to you. since you aren't currently working on any cert...

    >
    > So after looking around I decided to compromise between the boot camp
    > method and the book-only home-based study method, and went instead
    > with a home-based video training method. I started with the 70-270
    > course, and went through all of the videos. I was familiar with much
    > of the courseware, as I've been using XP for some time and have gotten
    > used to where most of the tools and methods that I'm used to with NT
    > are in XP. I did find the courseware well delivered and informative,
    > and I was able to ace the course quizzes at the end of each lesson,
    > which built my confidence. I have finished the 270 courseware,
    > although I have not read the book (standard MSPress 70-270 training
    > book) cover to cover. What I discovered however, when I tried one of
    > the MeasureUp practice tests, was that I was definitely not prepared
    > to consider taking the exam. There were many questions that I just
    > wasn't prepared to answer, and many of them I couldn't even find
    > answers to in the MS book. While I have a basic working knowledge of
    > networking, the practice test (and some of the courseware for that
    > matter) seems to presume a working knowledge of AD structure and a
    > more than basic knowledge of networking, as some of the questions had
    > to do with opening ports on firewalls, etc. I couldn't help but wonder
    > how a novice that just wanted an MCP in WinXPPro would ever get
    > through this. I'm no genius, but I do have some good experience under
    > my belt.


    Take that for what it is. not suprisingly, there might be something you
    don't know.welcome to the club. it's a learning process. if you don't
    know the answer, find out. when you know the answers and start getting
    good scores on the prep exams, you will know you're ready (or getting
    there).

    >
    > So my question is, a) am I unjustly discouraged after just one
    > practice exam, b) have I taken the wrong track and should start with
    > Win2k, c) have I chosen the wrong courseware (not to be named)?
    >


    A) yes
    B) no, the XP exam is in both the 2k and 2k3 track (hosed either way)
    C) best corseware is really using the product. all the coursewaer in the
    world is useless unless you work with the product.

    > Thanks.
    >
    > Bewildered Noreaster
    >
    >


    have fun being bewildered. it will go on for ages in this industry <grin>

    --
    Neil
    "you'd do what, to who, for how many biscuits?"
     
    Neil, Apr 12, 2004
    #2
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  3. =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?=

    Guest Guest

    "noreaster" wrote

    >Greetings,
    >


    Greetings to you. When posting from support.ms.com, please
    use the carriage
    return key from time to time.

    >I would like some advice from those that have been down

    the MCSE road.
    >I have been working as an NT Sysadmin for several years

    and finally have
    >some time to pursue the MCSE and CCNA track.I looked into

    boot camps, but
    >from what I've read and heard, they basically train you

    on how to pass the
    >exams. I want to gain some knowledge about the technology

    as well.
    >
    >Since I have been working in an NT environment, I've had

    virtually no
    >exposure to AD yet, although I believe I know enough

    about domain structure
    >in general to be able to make the transition easier than

    someone with no
    >experience. But I'm not going to assume anything. My

    thought however, was
    >that I may as well leapfrog over Win2k and just go for

    Win2k3 certification
    >at this point.
    >
    >So after looking around I decided to compromise between

    the boot camp method
    >and the book-only home-based study method, and went

    instead with a
    >home-based video training method.


    Book-only is bad m'kay. The phrase should be self-study or
    self-paced study.
    This is where you have a book (or books and white papers,
    KB articles etc.)
    AND a (usually small) test network.


    >I started with the 70-270 course, and went
    >through all of the videos. I was familiar with much of

    the courseware, as
    >I've been using XP for some time and have gotten used to

    where most of the
    >tools and methods that I'm used to with NT are in XP. I

    did find the
    >courseware well delivered and informative, and I was able

    to ace the course
    >quizzes at the end of each lesson, which built my

    confidence. I have
    >finished the 270 courseware, although I have not read the

    book (standard
    >MSPress 70-270 training book) cover to cover. What I

    discovered however,
    >when I tried one of the MeasureUp practice tests, was

    that I was definitely
    >not prepared to consider taking the exam. There were many

    questions that I
    >just wasn't prepared to answer, and many of them I

    couldn't even find
    >answers to in the MS book. While I have a basic working

    knowledge of
    >networking, the practice test (and some of the courseware

    for that matter)
    >seems to presume a working knowledge of AD structure and

    a more than basic
    >knowledge of networking, as some of the questions had to

    do with opening
    >ports on firewalls, etc. I couldn't help but wonder how a

    novice that just
    >wanted an MCP in WinXPPro would ever get through this.


    MCP isn't designed for novices. There is also a lot of
    detail in the books -
    that is why they are so big. Read them.

    >I'm no genius, but I do have some good experience under

    my belt.
    >
    >So my question is,
    >a) am I unjustly discouraged after just one practice

    exam,

    Yes. You shouldn't exepect to be able to mass an XP or
    2k/2k3 MCP exam based
    on (probably fairly limited) experience administering an
    NT network and
    watching a video. Workstation exams tend to be as much
    about what the
    workstation will be talking to as they are about the OS
    itself.
    Read the book, then try the practice exam.
    Ideally read a server (2k or 2k3) book as well. Set up a
    small test network.
    Run AD on it.

    >b) have I taken the wrong track and should start with

    Win2k,

    Are you likely to be staying with your current employer
    for the foreeable
    future? What are their upgrade plans?

    >c) have I chosen the wrong courseware (not to be named)?


    They say that there are no dumb questions - I think you've
    just demonstrated
    that. Did the courseware include the book you haven't
    read? If so, read the
    book before making any judgements. If after studying all
    the courseware, you
    are not prepared for the exam, either the courseware is
    inadequate or you are.
    I've (probably) never met you, and you have decided not to
    say which courseware
    you're using - so it's impossible to say for sure.
     
    Guest, Apr 12, 2004
    #3
  4. < clip >>> So my question is, a) am I unjustly discouraged after just on
    > practice exam, b) have I taken the wrong track and should start wit
    > Win2k, c) have I chosen the wrong courseware (not to be named)?
    >


    A) ye
    B) no, the XP exam is in both the 2k and 2k3 track (hosed either way
    C) best corseware is really using the product. all the coursewaer in the
    world is useless unless you work with the product

    I appreciate and am encouraged by your input. I do have a few networked systems at home that I can use to do some hands on stuff. My original plan was to learn this at work where I actually had some extra servers I could use as test labs. Unfortunately, thanks to the poor economy my position was eliminated in July and I've been out of work since. So I'm taking the time to get better positioned to get a job if/when things turn around

    To dig a little deeper on the track issue, where would you suggest I start, i.e. the overview of the course said to start with the core exam material, but it seemed to put me in the middle to some degree. When I talked to one of the course 'mentors' he suggested I start with the client OS to familiarize myself with the basic OS structure, since it closely resembles Win2k3 Server, less the added domain functionality. That sounded right to me at the time, but I'm now wondering if I need to learn about how AD works before figuring out how the client OS works with it, since most of the practice test questions started off with - "You're a xx administrator at xyz corporation...". I worked with Win2k Server at work in non-AD mode, played around with Win2k3 Server on a test box, and I run XP Pro on my home system so I'm not unfamiliar with any of these OS's, it's the AD and more advanced networking stuff that I'm green in. I just need some direction. Learning about how to do automated installs and change language settings isn't going to help me with questions that deal with UDP ports on firewalls and setting up network print devices with printer pooling or priority settings

    Case in point: I've been setting up network printers on NT domains for years, but in this courseware I've been reading about setting up 'print devices' and connecting 'printers' to them and have been scratching my head about what the heck a print device is. It wasn't until I blew up on the practice test and read the explanations that I discovered the difference between a 'print device' (actual printer) and a 'printer' (OS software pointing to the device) that the whole scope of what they were talking about occured to me. But I'd never done it in practice or at least had never heard it referred to that way. I keep asking myself if I should already know this stuff or is this the way I'm supposed to be learning it. So I've assumed, probably incorrectly that it was a new way of describing it since the advent of Win2k and AD. Am I wrong

    What are your thoughts on where to start

    Thanks

    Noreaste

    > Thanks
    >> Bewildered Noreaste
    >>


    have fun being bewildered. it will go on for ages in this industry <grin

    --
    Nei
    "you'd do what, to who, for how many biscuits?
     
    =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?=, Apr 12, 2004
    #4
  5. ----- wrote: ----


    > Greetings to you. When posting from support.ms.com, please
    > use the carriage
    > return key from time to time.


    Sorry about that. Didn't know I needed to revert back to typewriter messaging
    That would have made my long message even longer. But thanks for th
    heads-up

    > Book-only is bad m'kay. The phrase should be self-study or
    > self-paced study
    > This is where you have a book (or books and white papers,
    > KB articles etc.
    > AND a (usually small) test network.


    M'kay chief. Sorry to offend. Now that you're feeling better for chastizing me
    I'll read your 'constructive' comments

    > MCP isn't designed for novices. There is also a lot of
    > detail in the books -
    > that is why they are so big. Read them


    M'kay

    > Yes. You shouldn't exepect to be able to mass an XP or
    > 2k/2k3 MCP exam base
    > on (probably fairly limited) experience administering an
    > NT network and
    > watching a video. Workstation exams tend to be as much
    > about what the
    > workstation will be talking to as they are about the OS
    > itself
    > Read the book, then try the practice exam
    > Ideally read a server (2k or 2k3) book as well. Set up a
    > small test network
    > Run AD on it


    Whether my experience is limited in your opinion or not, doesn'
    really answer the question does it? I never expected to pass a
    exam by methods as simplified as you describe them. I simpl
    was looking for advice to make sure I was on the track that
    need to be on. But I'll take it from whence it comes, an
    appreciate it

    > Are you likely to be staying with your current employer
    > for the foreeabl
    > future? What are their upgrade plans?


    No longer with the company. They have no upgrade plans
    and that's why I am so far behind the technology eight ball

    > They say that there are no dumb questions - I think you've
    > just demonstrated
    > that. Did the courseware include the book you haven't
    > read? If so, read the
    > book before making any judgements


    There sure are dumb answers. Never said I didn't read the book
    and wasn't judging the courseware itself, just wondering if
    should have chosen the Win2k courseware or Win2k3. As far a
    the book, I just said I hadn't read it 'cover-to-cover'. You reall
    are arrogant

    > If after studying all
    > the courseware, you
    > are not prepared for the exam, either the courseware is
    > inadequate or you are.


    Thanks for the vote of confidence. Glad you weren't the firs
    one to answer my post, otherwise they may be finding m
    hanging from my shower rod. (Neil, you've saved my life!) ;-

    > I've (probably) never met you, and you have decided not to
    > say which courseware
    > you're using - so it's impossible to say for sure


    Hmm...are you sure we haven't met? You sure do sound like th
    same arrogant, condescending SOB that I used to work for

    Thanks for the advice - don't bother next time, m'kay

    ;-
     
    =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?=, Apr 12, 2004
    #5
  6. =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?=

    Neil Guest

    =?Utf-8?B?bm9yZWFzdGVy?= <> wrote in
    news::

    > (Neil, you've saved my life!) ;-)


    I assure you it was never my intent! :)

    phffffftttt, take it all for what it's worth. real experience will prepare
    you best for the test. grab some computers and play around. grab a copy of
    vmware (or VPC so M$ is not offended) to simulate multiple computers. Books
    will only teach you so much. get your hands on and build sumpin'. make a
    whole bunch 'o mistakes and learn from them.

    now back to my lifesaving skills...





    away............(swosh)
    and
    up
    up

    --
    Neil
    "you'd do what, to who, for how many biscuits?"
     
    Neil, Apr 12, 2004
    #6
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