Any MCSE's out there?

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Old 02-09-06, 07:10 AM
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Any MCSE's out there?

I'm thinking of getting certified, and I'm wondering what the best way to go about it would be. Online... classroom... self study? If anyone out there has their certification, and can offer some advice, I would appreciate it.
 
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Old 02-09-06, 07:21 AM
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hi
I did mine self study kit
Now you need to setup network at home to be able to test
Not cheap i paid 2000 for my course study with the cd
and you have to select at least 3 core and each exam is 120.
and the passing grade is 70
when you take your test it tell you pass or fail not the percentage
and what was wrong :-(

good luck
 
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Old 02-09-06, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by air biscuit
I'm thinking of getting certified, and I'm wondering what the best way to go about it would be. Online... classroom... self study? If anyone out there has their certification, and can offer some advice, I would appreciate it.
This is a big question that seems to often come up.

I'd ask two questions that you don't need to answer here but at least ask them of yourself.

1-One, how much time do you have? How soon do you want or need a job in the field.

2-How much money do you have to spend on this endeavor?

If you have time to go at a slower pace or you are always playing with computers and just need the cert then by all means then go for the self study. As pgtek mentions, the books and study materials may not be free but will be less then taking the whole MCSE course.

If you have some money to spend on the classes then unless you are already in the field and familiar with networking to some degree then the instructor lead classes can be much faster and you’ll be able to do some job networking while you attend.

(There are some good online course offerings to that might be somewhere in the middle cost and time wise.)

Having said this however, I’ll mention that I have never hired anyone for a computer/networking position just because they had their MCSE. The MCSE classes/self study are nice and they can help you pass the test but they don’t always prove anything. What I would do if you have the time, take some basic computer science classes somewhere even if it’s at your local community college. Do this while you self study for the MCSE and you will get a little better exposure to computers in general because you’ll get some basic router instruction and some simple programming exposure as well. This little bit of extra help that is not simply “Microsoft flavored” can go a long way in an interview.

Good Luck!
 

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Old 02-09-06, 10:59 PM
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i've been in the computer field for 14 years now, the only cert I have is A+. Only reason I have that is the company I worked for at the time paid for it. Takes a couple of minutes to write and so easy to pass. I have no intention of getting MCSE, I don't need it, nobody ever asks for it. And besides, there's no replacement for experience, mcse or not.

I went self employed a few years ago and am happy for it. The money's great, the rewards are awesome, have a list of references a mile long of happy customers. I do it all from pc repair, small to medium networks and servers (windows, linux and novell) installations, every kind of router and firewall you can think of, the list goes on and on. I love it.

If you're serious about certification, read and get some experience. I've had students approach me and ask if they can volunteer their time to work with me. I allow them to do alot of the installation/configurations on the servers and entire network and there's no better experience than just doing it. I've given some of these people glowing references for their interviews, and a few others a handshake and a kick in the arse.

There are so many online resources for microsoft products. Don't know if i'm allowed to post this but www.tek-tips.com is a wealth of information. Get on it and read, these are the real world questions about the higher end of the field and covers just about every base you can think of.

Good luck with your endeavors
 
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Old 02-10-06, 06:39 PM
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I took the quick route, I went an 8 hour class per test. The catch was the school thought I wouldn't pass because of the 'fast' pace but I did.

Now what did it get me: well it got my foot in the door at a place where I just took off and don't need it at all, although I do use the skills.

Take it for what it is worth.

Joe
 
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Old 02-11-06, 02:47 AM
bf140-Albert
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Originally Posted by JoeVB
I took the quick route, I went an 8 hour class per test. The catch was the school thought I wouldn't pass because of the 'fast' pace but I did.

Now what did it get me: well it got my foot in the door at a place where I just took off and don't need it at all, although I do use the skills.

Take it for what it is worth.

Joe
I think he's making a good point. Microsoft always adjusts its recognized certification materials to be in sync with its current product line. Obsolete features and methods in older supported versions may or may not be covered depending on the discretion and experience of the instructor. As soon as the successor to Windows XP comes out, revised materials will come out with it. The Windows XP courses will be replaced with newer ones.

Many businesses still run Windows 2000 servers and workstations. Some run Windows 9x workstation systems. I'm sure everyone has heard the expression, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it!" Many businesses feel that there is no point in buying replacement software just because it is new. It's expensive, and in these days of cost-cutting, there has to be a pretty good benefit in making the change.

Joe's experience is probably not all that unusual. You're considering making an investment in your future. It will pay off if it gets you into an IT organization someplace. That's all it has to do. You'll learn the things you really need to know once you get on board.

Incidentally, I live in a technology corridor in the Los Angeles area. IT was still hot here for about a year after the Y2K conversion. Then it cooled off - a lot. The .com collapse dumped many capable people on the job market. Companies like Wellpoint have outsourced much of their IT development overseas, and signed contracts with IT providers like IBM and GTE to support their in-house equipment so they don't have to hire IT support people of their own. A local city recently got close to a hundred applicants for an entry level IT support position. I heard companies complain that certificate programs do not guarantee that graduates have any practical skills with computers. Some said that they feel better off hiring someone with a little actual IT experience instead of a recent MCSE graduate with no experience.

A local pharmaceutical manufacturer hires IT people as consultants so they can be evaluated on the job before offering them a permanent position. An agency advertises jobs and prescreens candidates before presenting them to the company as possible resources to fill available positions. This company uses IT people in a wide variety of ways.

I would not consider a MCSE program for home use because much of the material covers equipment and systems homeowners would never understand or buy. Few home users can use Active Directory. Not many can afford to run things like SQL Server or Exchange Server either. Enterprise systems training is an expensive novelty for small installations.
 

Last edited by bf140-Albert; 02-11-06 at 03:31 AM.
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Old 02-11-06, 06:45 AM
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Thanks to everyone for their responses.

Originally Posted by JoeVB
I took the quick route, I went an 8 hour class per test. The catch was the school thought I wouldn't pass because of the 'fast' pace but I did.

Now what did it get me: well it got my foot in the door at a place where I just took off and don't need it at all, although I do use the skills.

Take it for what it is worth.

Joe
Joe, where did you go to find classes like this? Was it a local thing, or did you find it on the web?

Just to establish some background - I'm not a college student, I'm already established in a career, which I'm becoming disenchanted with. I've pretty much hit the ceiling on how far I can progress in my current line of work.

My current career doesn't involve computer hardware or networking (I'm an electronics tech), however, I've been taking apart and building computers for almost 20 years now. I can pick up anything computer related relatively easily. I have a lot of faith in my ability to sell myself at job interviews. I like to think I'm an above average interviewee, so I'm willing to possibly forgo extensive MCSE training classes in favor of something a little more concise.
 
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Old 02-11-06, 12:32 PM
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I went to a school that was local to the area I was living in at the time. The school is now closed.

In my current job I was able to get in and it was a big step up for me, was a bit of a challenge but I managed. In my opinion, I would suggest some sort of web/database development of some kind. I see a lot of C# developers out there because C++ has been so popular and powerful for so long. As far as Active Directory goes, that is a great technology but there are too many tools out there that will, basically, manage it for you. The company I work for is in development of one and when that is added to our existing product there really won't be much work in AD that needs to be done.

Anyway, computers are easy to build, as you have found out and although there will always be a need that need is diminishing as I see it. Network Administration is growing but the skills needed are high to beat out the next guy and companies are doing more with less (not trying to plug Windows with using their slogan).

I could go on and on but would rather not...hope this little insight helps. Keep in mind, I could be totally off but we cater to Fortune 500 companies.

Joe
 
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