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  1. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #1

    Cool Testing SY301 saturday 1/21

    Hey folks, I just wanted to take the time to thank you for the information I found here while doing some research on Sec+. I am self-studying with DG's SY301 book and have thoroughly enjoyed it so far. I in the past handful of years I have gained both work experience (helpdesk), education (CIS) and military training(cyber transport/networking) that are all IT/networking related. I want to pursue IT in the federal world so I need to start with my certs somewhere and this seemed like a good place to start. It helps that it is required for my current position in military status.

    I have to say that the book is very engaging for a "text book". It is so easy and enjoyable to read compared to other texts I have had my nose in. I even found myself chuckling at some of the quirky comparisons or statements. I am fairly confident this will be all the study material I need along with my personal experience to knock this out on my own. For $26, that is definitely bang for my buck. Some of my colleagues are pursuing brain dumps/answer keys. That's fine for them but I think it is great foundational knowledge that should have actual study time invested into it instead of just remembering answers. Speaking of Q&A, I like that if I get a question wrong, I can see why my choice was wrong. This has helped me learn what is being asked, what i should look for, and why. I think this will help with the test.

    I'm not nervous yet but I will be next friday/saturday!

    thanks again, i look forward to being a part of the community and pursuing more certs.
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    #2
    Ideally, learning it is what matters the most, even if you don't plan on taking the cert. I would do the brain dumps after the learning. Brain dumps sometimes help, because it makes you mentally focus on doing the questions in an actual exam.
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  4. Registered Member Darril's Avatar
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    #3
    Welcome to the forums. Great first post.

    Glad to hear you aren't using brain dumps. One of the worst things that can happen from them is that they have an incorrect answer selected and with no explanation, readers embed incorrect knowledge into their head without really knowing it.

    You'll find that having a Security+ cert is valuable in the "federal world" and often an unbendable requirement. You require it in your current militiry position and contractors require it for many other positions. I've know hiring managers on the contracting side for government jobs don't even look at a resume if it doesn't include Security+. Anyone can say "sure, I can get that cert" but actully having it is what they want. Also, if you pursue any other security certs, you'll find that the knowledge you gained by actually learning the Security+ knowledge will help you with them.

    Good luck. I look forward to reading your post next week celebrating your pass!

    Darril Gibson
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  5. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #4
    Darril, your passion for IT is really inspiring for people (beyond the scope of "i need a good job"). But what really sets you apart is your ability to take that passion and apply it in material for us to learn with. Making yourself available on a public forum and taking time to answer questions genuinely says alot about your character. I have swayed a handful of people on purchasing your Sec+ Guide in the past few days alone with complete confidence that they too will enjoy it. That's not easy to say when recommending a text book!

    I'm curious about your thoughts on the A+ and Net+ certs. Even with a few years of experience are these a worthwhile career investments for me at this time? Or should I pursue "higher" level certs after sec+?

    thanks
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  6. Registered Member Darril's Avatar
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    #5
    Thanks for the kind words and the recommendations.

    There really isn't a simple answer on whether you should pursue A+ and Network+. Here are a couple of threads addressing that question:
    DOes it make sense to get A+ certified
    Is A+ even still relevant in the IT field.

    I strongly believe that the A+ and Net+ knowledge is very important for IT pros to have as they move up the career ladder. Holes in their knowledge can hold them back and they often don't understand why. While you don't have to get the certifications to gain the knowledge, getting the certifications ensures that you truly have gained the knowledge. A story I've often shared is of students in MCSE/MCITP classes that think they have the knowledge, but they actually have gaping holes in their knowledge. The A+, Network+, Security+ certifications build on each other and provide a solid foundation for higher level certifications.

    Of course, others may have different opinions based on their experience.

    Darril Gibson
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  7. Happy Guy GeeLo's Avatar
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    #6
    The A+, Network+, Security+ certifications provide a solid foundation on there own without augmentation, in ones own respected field or line of IT work. Followed by "real world" experience, which one gains over time.
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  8. Senior Member whatthehell's Avatar
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    #7
    Best of luck and keep us posted on how you do!
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  9. Senior Member whatthehell's Avatar
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    #8
    BTW, I am using DG's Sec + 301 Kindle book, and have also gotten his Practice 301 Test questions for the Kindle and for my Android Phone. The latter two are highly recommended, so if you need more material to test on or study, I highly recommend them (going through some of them now, and need to schedule the test myself).
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  10. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #9
    thanks for the heads up, i have the kindle reader on my iphone so ill go check it out. i just finished chapter 9 a few minutes ago and plan to finish the last 2 chapters and test myself tonight. ill review throughout the week and see how I do on Saturday.

    im assuming it has fresh questions on it that are not in the book?
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  11. Senior Member whatthehell's Avatar
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Waltah View Post
    thanks for the heads up, i have the kindle reader on my iphone so ill go check it out. i just finished chapter 9 a few minutes ago and plan to finish the last 2 chapters and test myself tonight. ill review throughout the week and see how I do on Saturday.

    im assuming it has fresh questions on it that are not in the book?
    Yes I believe they are new, fresh questions. DG, can you definitely confirm this?
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  12. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #11
    pretty sure they are the same as in the book so far. the presentation is pretty disappointing as well. the answers are right below the questions so you have to try to cover them while reading the question.
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  13. Junior Member Registered Member
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    #12
    Good luck!
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  14. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #13
    finished the book tonight. took the pre-test and post test. Scored 92% and 90% respectively. need to re-study crypto and my port #'s

    other than that I feel pretty good. some mistakes were simply me being a dunce and missing what the question was asking.

    are there other quizzes online that i can practice on?
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  15. Registered Member Darril's Avatar
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    #14
    Quote Originally Posted by whatthehell View Post
    Yes I believe they are new, fresh questions. DG, can you definitely confirm this?
    Actually, the questions are largely the same content though the format is a little different to meet the desires of different people. I created them for people that have already studied the Security+ content but want questions that they can use to check their readiness for the live exam. Some readers that have the SY0-301 Study Guide have told me they used the SY0-301 Practice Test Questions book to focus on specific domain objectives.

    Quote Originally Posted by Waltah View Post
    pretty sure they are the same as in the book so far. the presentation is pretty disappointing as well. the answers are right below the questions so you have to try to cover them while reading the question.
    Yes, you're correct, they are the same content.

    I'm wondering what I can do to improve the presentation on the Kindle. Currently, each chapter has a section with just questions (without the correct answer and explanation). Then, the next section provides the correct answer with the explanations. However, instead of providing the correct answer and explanation alone, I included the question again to put the explanation in context. I envisioned readers going through the questions first to test their understanding, and then later, going through the questions with the explanations. For the paper copy, this works perfectly. However, some people aren't using it this way on the Kindle.

    I have three ideas.

    1) In the answers section, show the question on one page, and then force a new page to show the answer. In other words, each question will be on a new page and each answer/explanation will be on the new page.

    2) In the answers section, show the question on one page, and then force a new page to repeat the question with the answer. In other words, each question will be on a new page and the next page will repeat the question with the answer/explanation. I'm not sure if this would be too confusing to some readers prompting complaints such as "Why is the quesion repeated again?"

    3) Abandon the $9.99 Kindle version and just publish it as a paperback.

    I'd welcome feedback from anyone on this.

    Darril Gibson
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  16. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #15
    Simply forcing the answers to a new page would make it great.
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  17. Registered Member Darril's Avatar
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    #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Waltah View Post
    Simply forcing the answers to a new page would make it great.
    I realize it's impossible to make everyone happy, but for now, I decided to try and make this "great" for Waltah.

    I was having problems updating the original Kindle book so created a new one, CompTIA Security+ SY0-301 Practice Test Questions (Get Certified Get Ahead) and formatted it specifically for Kindle forcing the answers to a new page. Additionally, I added several dozen flash cards using the same format.

    Darril Gibson
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  18. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #17
    Thanks darril, the sy0-301 sec+ app on the iphone is great as well. my total investment is just over $40. your book, your kindle app, and the iphone app.

    im starting to get nervous now that saturday is getting closer. i do great on all the practice tests, i just feel like the material should be harder. maybe im over thinking it?
    Last edited by Waltah; 01-19-2012 at 09:43 PM.
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  19. Registered Member Darril's Avatar
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    #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Waltah View Post
    Thanks darril, the sy0-301 sec+ app on the iphone is great as well. my total investment is just over $40. your book, your kindle app, and the iphone app.

    im starting to get nervous now that saturday is getting closer. i do great on all the practice tests, i just feel like the material should be harder. maybe im over thinking it?
    The biggest thing I like to stress is that you should be able to look at any of the questions and know why the wrong answers are wrong. This is important as knowing what the correct answer is (which is easy to memorize if you go through the questions a couple of times). If you can go through the questions and know why the incorrect answers are incorrect, you are ready. Of course, there are explanations for each of the questions in any of the materials.

    Darril Gibson

    PS I wonder what it would take to convince people that the Kindle ebook is not actually an application
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  20. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #19
    last minute reviews this morning and im off to test this afternoon. wish me luck.
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  21. Lost a treasure CodeBlox's Avatar
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    #20
    Good luck on the exam. You'll do well!
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  22. Senior Member
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    #21
    Good luck! Let us know how you did.
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  23. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #22
    Passed! 840/900, not that great but not bad for self studying in les than a week with only DG's material.

    I was surprised by the depth of the scenarios, they went much deeper than the book. However, if you read and understood your objectives/sections you can piece together that info to come to a good answer.

    my take...

    45% of the questions revolved around concepts right out of the book. Things you should absolutely know and be able to answer without so much as blinking assuming you read and studied the book.

    45% of the questions were scenario based but with a twist. The scenarios were deeper than the ones in the book AND the answers you had to select from weren't necessarily what you'd call "first choice" answers. So you needed to know what other options were available to you besides obvious answers. This was a bit scary/surprising. Applying what you studied in DG's book will get you where you need to be though.

    10% or less were "i have no idea what this thing is talking about/what is this, time to take an educated guess" and im assuming that is because I did not use any other source of media for studying. This is what I felt like for those couple of the questions...
    Last edited by Waltah; 01-21-2012 at 10:17 PM.
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  24. Senior Member
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    #23
    Congrats! You only studied for a week did I read that right.
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  25. Junior Member Waltah's Avatar
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    #24
    Quote Originally Posted by chappys4life View Post
    Congrats! You only studied for a week did I read that right.
    Yea, started when i posted this thread. is that uncommon? I thought I saw a couple others that did it in a week or two?

    keep in mind i have an IT background so that helped quite a bit.
    Last edited by Waltah; 01-22-2012 at 02:29 AM.
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  26. Senior Member
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    Thats cool I did not realize it could be done so quick. I just hit ch8 tonight and I started monday so I get it though.

    I am in the field to just starting with certs finally getting of my butt.
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