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  1. Member Techie19's Avatar
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    #1

    Default Take current 401 or wait for new 501 to be released?

    Hello all. So I just passed my network+ exam yesterday and I'm already thinking and planning to take the Security+. I am torn between studying for and taking the current 401 version by the end of this year. The normal grace period which overlaps the exam versions would make it available to take until December 31, 2017. This is normally the trend with the Security.+.

    Or waiting for the new version 501 to be released in October. Problem I am seeing is that there's not much if any 501 study materia available yet. Almost all study guides for it on Amazon are to be released later this year, after August. If I get the book as soon as released, let's say I'm August, that would give me roughly about 3-4 months to prepare for the exam and take it by 12/31.

    I want to wait for and take the 501 because in my eyes it'll be the newest version of the exam and will have the most up to date information and tested on such. The 401 being released 3 years ago, I feel that I'll be taking an "outdated" exam in a way.

    No disrespect to those taking the 401 currently and that have passed it. I understand passing one or the other makes no difference to becoming certified, at the end of the day, passing either exam makes the person become recognized as Security+ certified and not 401 or 501 certified. Also, employers will only see that you are certified, not which exam you actually took.

    I guess with me wanting to wait for the 501 exam to be released is more of a personal preference. Regardless, I would like the opinion of all of you out there.

    Would you take the current 401, or wait for new 501 to be released? And why?

    Thank you all. God bless.
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  3. Senior Member 636-555-3226's Avatar
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    Lots of security certifications, yet the more I learn, the further I have to go...
    #2
    It all looks the same on the resume, so that doesn't matter. InfoSec doesn't change all that much (same rules from the 70s & 80s still apply to everything going on today, for example, even WannaCry), so "new" topics don't matter. There won't be any books for the new materials for awhile, so that does matter. I'd take the 401 now since more things are in its favor than 501s, in my opinion
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  4. Level 99 Wizard Skyliinez92's Avatar
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    #3
    The SY0-501 exam will launch in October 2017. You will be able to still take the SY0-401 exam until July 2018.

    I would personally take the 401 now. There's not much difference between each release and would only take you a month to complete. Either way, if you do the 401 or 501 this year, they will both last until 2020. Plus, an employer will see that you've done the Security+. I doubt any company really focus' on the exam number.

    Also, the 401 currently has a lot more resources available, so you may not even take the 501 until early 2018. You could have done a few extra certs in that time that you sat around waiting for the 501.
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  5. Senior Member
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    #4
    As Professor Messer says, never wait to get certified.

    I did this mistake since leaving college and I've only just gained my first two IT exams when I could of achieved them more earlier.
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  6. They are watching you NetworkNewb's Avatar
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Techie19 View Post
    I guess with me wanting to wait for the 501 exam to be released is more of a personal preference. Regardless, I would like the opinion of all of you out there.

    Would you take the current 401, or wait for new 501 to be released? And why?
    If you want to take the 501 because it is your personal preference that is your preference. It just won't have any greater ROI or help you at all by holding off longer. If you're worried bout the content being out of date you could just study the material you wanted to learn in your own time. I don't see anything to gain and only time to lose by waiting.
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  7. Senior Member stryder144's Avatar
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    #6
    As has been stated, don't wait. There are not only far more resources available, but personal experience with the exam from fellow TE members will provide you with additional insights.
    The easiest thing to be in the world is you. The most difficult thing to be is what other people want you to be. Don't let them put you in that position. ~ Leo Buscaglia

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  8. Senior Member scaredoftests's Avatar
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    #7
    Do it now..
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
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  9. Senior Member
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    #8
    You might as well just wait for the 601, since the 401 and 501 will be outdated soon enough.
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  10. Member Techie19's Avatar
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    #9
    Thank you all for your feedback. You all make this site that much better.

    I have come to realize that you are all 100% correct and I will begin studying for the 401 and hopefully sit for the exam before year's end.

    I will be moving to Florida at the end of next month and have a lot going on right now with preparing for the move. Once settled in Florida I will get serious about studying for the exam.

    Another quick question, what would you all recommend as being the best book for this exam? I've come across CompTIA Security+: Get Certified Get Ahead: SY0-401 Study Guide by Darryl Gibson being mentioned a lot here in the forum. Would this be the top choice? Also the Exam Cram one.

    I like to use multiple resources when preparing for an exam. It has proven very good for me for the exams I've taken and passed so far. Also eyeing the Mike Meyers course on Udemy. I used his network+ course which was very helpful as well.

    Thank you all again.
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  11. Senior Member
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    #10
    Apparently there's not much difference between the updates of the exams so even if you do miss the deadline for 401, you will know most of the content by the time 501 comes out anyway.
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    #11
    My advice...when ready, schedule your exam 1-2 months out, read books, go through practice exams (for better understanding the material), print out exam objectives, make flashcards and get to the point where you can explain the meaning and purpose of each topic from memory, skim book(s) again and hit on weak areas (use google if needed as well), show up on exam day and pass the exam, walk out like a boss, go home and plan for the next cert...

    You got this...don't delay more than you have to.
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  13. Burn Baby Burn! Cisco Inferno's Avatar
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    #12
    Use Darril's book and Professor Messer I think 95% of people here used this combo with terrific results. I know I have.

    I'll fill you in on something.
    When 401 came out, Darril was a little late on updating his 301 book. Guess what people KEPT using until then?
    There will always be incremental additions with barely much removed for most exams. Don't wait. IT certs just keep adding and adding.
    You'll be caught up in a few days with just some web articles really. No need to freak out.
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  14. Senior Member stryder144's Avatar
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    #13
    As Cisco Inferno stated, things don't change much, typically, between exams. Maybe 10% on average. If you read through the objectives and make sure you know what each objective expects, you will be covered. I know of a couple of people who pulled out the objectives, did online research into what each objective covered, and passed the test.
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  15. Member Techie19's Avatar
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    #14
    Thank you all again for the great feedback and tips. I will order Darril's book from Amazon. Found it for $29.

    I will start looking through it and watching Professor Messer's videos on YouTube. I won't be able to "fully" study for the exam until I move and I'm settled in Florida. Too much going on right now.

    I will plan to take the exam by October. This should give me enough time to move, be settled in new house and new job. Then I can get on a studying schedule like I did for A+ and Network+.
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  16. Level 99 Wizard Skyliinez92's Avatar
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    #15
    Good luck!
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  17. Senior Member adrenaline19's Avatar
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    #16
    Do it now.
    Better the devil you know, right?
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  18. Member Techie19's Avatar
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    #17
    Hello all. Been some time since I last posted. Since my last post I moved to Florida in July 2017. Within a month found a job as a Systems Support Specialist for the county I live in. So far its been good. I didn't take the Security+ at the end of 2017 as originally planned. Been super busy with work and family duties. But with the 401 exam expiring 7/31, I've been thinking if I should give it a try or just start preparing for the 501. Since the move I've studied for the 401 on and off. Not as much as I would like though. With the cost of the exam being $300+, I would hate to sit for the 401 and not pass it. While studying and taking practice tests, I've found that a lot of the content is not too bad and I can relate to it from work experience. But still don't fell 100% confident that I will pass with less than 2 months of available time to fully be ready.

    What do you all think? Have any of you passed the 401 with such short time to study?
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  19. Senior Member PCTechLinc's Avatar
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    #18
    I had to pass the 401 within two weeks of being offered employment at my current job. The only two things that helped me get it that quick was CBTNuggets and my Masters Degree I had just obtained. I thought the 401 was pretty difficult for being an "entry-level" cert.
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  20. Senior Member scaredoftests's Avatar
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    #19
    All depends how motivated you are to study. PLUS, obtain Darril Gibson's book and online resources, that will help a lot.
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
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  21. Member TheComputerPlumber's Avatar
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    #20
    If you plan to take the 401 buy the deluxe bundle with the re-take included that what I bought $409. I haven’t take it yet plan to soon. I’m using mostly Darril Gibson book online content and app that has been my primary source of studies for the and a quick blast through the CompTIA CertMaster that was included in the bundle. But honestly im only using mostly Gibson’s products because I hear a lot of great reviews on here about his products. I figure if I failed like I once did same exam back in dec 2015 I still have the retake before it expires next month. I just want to complete the CompTIA NSA triad (A+, Net+, and Sec+)! Good luck to you!
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  22. Senior Member Spiegel's Avatar
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    #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Techie19 View Post
    Hello all. Been some time since I last posted. Since my last post I moved to Florida in July 2017. Within a month found a job as a Systems Support Specialist for the county I live in. So far its been good. I didn't take the Security+ at the end of 2017 as originally planned. Been super busy with work and family duties. But with the 401 exam expiring 7/31, I've been thinking if I should give it a try or just start preparing for the 501. Since the move I've studied for the 401 on and off. Not as much as I would like though. With the cost of the exam being $300+, I would hate to sit for the 401 and not pass it. While studying and taking practice tests, I've found that a lot of the content is not too bad and I can relate to it from work experience. But still don't fell 100% confident that I will pass with less than 2 months of available time to fully be ready.

    What do you all think? Have any of you passed the 401 with such short time to study?
    I studied for the Security+ and took the exam in two months and change. Now, I didn't study for the full two months, it was on and off with work, family and personal obligations getting in the way. If you're able to maximize the amount of time you have and can dedicate a solid 15 - 20 hours weekly I think it's doable. It sounds like you have some experience so you may be able to get away with it. It's all about staying focused and grinding if you really want to take the 401 version. Otherwise, you can take the 501 and study at a more relaxed pace.

    Side note: Really manage your study time. I barely managed to pass. I could have done better if had I another solid month of just reading and practicing. If you're not super prepared this test can be a beast. lol
    Last edited by Spiegel; 06-07-2018 at 12:15 PM.
    Degree: B.S. Information Technology - Security [In-Progress]
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  23. Junior Member Registered Member
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    #22
    I think just do it now...

    I you need help with that, you can take a look of Offensive Security webiste, they have great online courses for penetration testing and security certification

    Check them out
    https://www.offensive-security.com/
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