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  1. urs
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    Default Question and looking for advice

    Hi everyone,

    I'm starting to start focusing on getting at least 70-290 by the end of the year, I work for a small company that deals mostly with Electronics Cash registers,Scales and POS Systems, but we have a few clients running Windows Server 2000 Standard, Windows Server 2003 SBS and Standard Editions as well as SQL Server 2000 Standard, 2005 Express and 2008 Express, until now my boss have never asked me to get any certification because he knows what I'm capable of, and the knows my experience working on this environment but as of late he mentioned a few times that i should get 70-680 done.

    Well by reading this forums i came to understand that studying for one certification is pretty much the same as studying for my MCSA.

    This bring me to the following question, is MCSA/MCSE Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-291) Windows Server 2003 any different from MCSA/MCSE Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-290) Windows Server 2003, Second Edition??

    I'm asking this because i order MCSA/MCSE Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-290) Windows Server 2003 Environment, Second Edition, but i found a copy of the 70-291 and i was about to start reading this while i wait for my copy to come on the mail.

    I also have access to VTC website where the have videos for MCSA and im starting to get all the materials i need to set up a lab in my house (of course running VMWare, cant have all the computers i want) and have access to one of the Partners Action Packs from Microsoft (have all Windows Servers since 2000 to 2011 SBS,Standard,Started,Enterprise,Web, and all software offer by Microsoft's to partners)

    With all this i can probably get 70-290 by the end of the year (I'm not good at studying). Other than that what else will you guys recommend me on trying to get?? i have some knowledge on configuring Windows 2003 BUT not alot when it comes to AD or DC (worked on one but i didn't set it up) any advice will be really appreciate it.
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  3. VCDX in 2017 Essendon's Avatar
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    #2
    First off, welcome to the forums. You have pretty much all of what is required to pass these exams. I think VTC do good videos, one of our members, Daniel333, always recommends them. The alternative to VTC are the CBT Nuggets, which are good but pricey. In addition to the books that you've ordered, I strongly recommend you read up on www.technet.microsoft.com as much as possible. It's the best, most exhaustive resource out there for just about everything Microsoft. It's from Microsoft themselves and best of all, it's completely free.

    Seems like you've got VMware, the OS's, the books and everything else needed to pass these exams. Just lab the material as much as you can. You have some Server experience, the 290 shouldnt be too hard for ya. Good luck!
    VCDX: DCV - Round 2 rescheduled (by VMware) for December 2017.

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  4. Senior Member Devilsbane's Avatar
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    #3
    Quote Originally Posted by urs View Post
    Hi everyone,

    This bring me to the following question, is MCSA/MCSE Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-291) Windows Server 2003 any different from MCSA/MCSE Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-290) Windows Server 2003, Second Edition??
    Yes, the 70-290 and the 70-291 are different tests with vastly different objectives. Of course there will be some similarities, but there have been MANY people around here who have failed the 291 after passing the 290 and doing focused study on the 291.

    It sounds like you already have some good experience under your belt, and passing the 70-290 before the end of the year wouldn't be very difficult. It isn't uncommon to see people knocking these down every month or two, but that depends on how much you study and how familiar you are with the technology.

    Out of curiosity, is there a reason that you are picking the 2003 exams over the 2008 or are you just not aware that there is a difference?

    Welcome to the forums and good luck with whichever path you end up choosing!
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  5. urs
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    Quote Originally Posted by Devilsbane View Post
    Out of curiosity, is there a reason that you are picking the 2003 exams over the 2008 or are you just not aware that there is a difference?

    Welcome to the forums and good luck with whichever path you end up choosing!
    Thanks for the welcome

    There is actually, most of the clients we have with Windows SBS and Standard Edition dont want to upgrade to 2008, they are small businesses that dont use all the features Windows Server 2003 have to offer. Also i havent really work with WS2008, we are thinking on replacing our server to 2008 but we dont have a set date for that.

    Now on the books i mention before, i was asking about the difference because i have a pdf copy of the 70-291 self kit but i ordered 70-290 self kit and it will arrive next week (hopefully) but i wanted to start reading something but i dont know if what i will read on the 70-290 is similar to the 70-291 i have right now, at least the starting part of the book.
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  6. Senior Member Devilsbane's Avatar
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by urs View Post
    Thanks for the welcome

    There is actually, most of the clients we have with Windows SBS and Standard Edition dont want to upgrade to 2008, they are small businesses that dont use all the features Windows Server 2003 have to offer. Also i havent really work with WS2008, we are thinking on replacing our server to 2008 but we dont have a set date for that.

    Now on the books i mention before, i was asking about the difference because i have a pdf copy of the 70-291 self kit but i ordered 70-290 self kit and it will arrive next week (hopefully) but i wanted to start reading something but i dont know if what i will read on the 70-290 is similar to the 70-291 i have right now, at least the starting part of the book.
    I've never used SBS before, so I'm not the best source on this. But the exams are intended with Server 2003 Standard and Enterprise/Data Center editions in mind. To my understanding SBS is just Standard edition with some locked down features, but don't quote me on that.

    If the book isn't there, starting the 291 won't hurt your studies. Especially at the beginning it should be some basic information that might apply to the 290 anyway. I was reading the 70-294 (Active Directory) book for a class I was taking while personally studying for the 70-290. I'd advise against reading the multiple books at once, but it doesn't hurt to start reading while you wait.

    I've linked the objectives for each test. You can put them side by side and look through them if you are curious about what is going to be on the exam.

    290 Managing and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Environment
    291 Implementing, Managing, and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Network Infrastructure
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  7. urs
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    Yes SBS have a lot of limitations thats why im setting up a lab at home with enterprise edition, ill read and compare both objectives, im not planning on reading both books, i like to focus on 1 thing at the time, 70-290 right now is my main goal after that probably 70-270 or 70-680 it will all depend on how good i do on 70-290.

    thanks for the advice, ill probably will ask more questions once i start reading and doing the labs.
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    I would not recommend studying for the 70-291 until you have the 70-290 out of the way. The 70-290 is also more geared towards what you yourself have admitted to be somewhat lacking in ("i have some knowledge on configuring Windows 2003 BUT not alot when it comes to AD or DC").

    I found the topics to be easier to grasp (although if I'm honest I found the 70-290 exam to be more difficult than the 70-291, much to my surprise). You really need to be sure you understand Permissions for the 70-290.

    SBS is great for (no surprises) small business, as a very affordable solution which includes Exchange Server (and SQL Server for a certain edition). From my experience, I have to say the only "limitation" that I had with it is that it is too many products rolled into one (DC and mail server on the same machine I don't think is a good idea), although nothing that cannot be overcome.

    I would definitely recommend you go for the MCSA, as it is amazing what you will learn new along the way - you can then move on to the 2008 path. As you said, a lot of small businesses will make do with 2003 for a while yet.
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  9. Senior Member Devilsbane's Avatar
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by KenC View Post
    As you said, a lot of small businesses will make do with 2003 for a while yet.
    Some are still making due with 2000, so I agree with your statement here. Even larger corporations still have 2000 servers as file servers. They still work so why toss them?
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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Devilsbane View Post
    Some are still making due with 2000, so I agree with your statement here. Even larger corporations still have 2000 servers as file servers. They still work so why toss them?
    I got called out to work on a SBS 2000 machine about two months ago, the interface was a bit strange at first.

    Do we as "the IT guy" not have a duty to report to the powers that be that this OS is no longer supported (i.e. security updates/patches are not released anymore as I understand it) and should be upgraded?

    (I made sure I put this recommendation in writing, am now wondering should I be a little more assertive or leave it at that - appreciate any advice on this).
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  11. Senior Member Devilsbane's Avatar
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    #10
    You can give advice until you are blue in the face, but if the money isn't there to upgrade then it isn't going to happen. You as a professional need to be accepting of that. Know that you have given your advice and that they declined. The written format is a nice touch because now if something does happen down the line you can kind of pat yourself on the back and say I told you so and more importantly adheres to the CYA principal and moves the blame to whoever read your request and ignored it.
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