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  1. Junior Member
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    #1

    Default Anyone with loads of experience take the 70-680 exam recently?

    Hi Everyone,

    So, I've been out of the MS exam arena for awhile, but not new to the testing experience overall. Last time I took a MS test was for the MCSE 2003 track, so yeah, been around the block. Been focusing on the VMware area, storage, etc. I was planning on never having to deal with a MS test again!

    Well, things change and to get ahead in the company I work for, I've got to get a degree. Argh! No biggie, it's just another bunch of tests.

    Anyways, as part of all this I'm forced to renew certs that were lifetime and the last MS certs I did don't count for anything since they were more than 5 years ago.

    - Now, I'm probably going to sound like an ass here, and I sincerely apologize for that as that is not the intent at all -

    I have been poking around various forums for info relating to the test experience and the recurring theme that the 70-680 is a doozy, difficult, bear, etc. What I have also gathered from the research is that for a lot of folks, the 70-680 was the first MS cert a lot of folks have obtained and they may be pretty green (not a dig - been there and love helping out folks new to the field!!!). Which, in that case, makes total sense. I recall the NT 4 test being daunting.

    I was hoping to equate the win7 exam to something along the lines of XP, just updated to include the virtualization bits, powershell, deployment, etc. Which from what I've seen through review and practice exams, pretty much is the case.

    Is there anyone around here that has been an SA for sometime (5-10+ years maybe) and/or dealt with win7 in an enterprise environment that can give an opinion regarding the exam?

    Please don't take anything above as douchbaggery, it's certainly not the intent. Just looking for info and opinions from others who've been in the game for awhile.
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  3. Level 99 Wizard Skyliinez92's Avatar
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    #2

    Default My 70-680 Experience

    I was a SA for 3 years in my last role. I'm 24 and currently in a Security role now. I was very fortunate to land a SA role at the time as I thought I was too young. I remember I attempted the 70-680 just before starting this role and failed, mainly because I didn't have the experience at the time and had no idea how hard the exam would be. I took a break from MS then and just spent 3 years learning the enterprise environment I was in. I also did my Net + and Sec+ which I felt did benefit my experience.

    Decided to have another crack at the 70-680 and passed with around 800 (700 is the pass mark). Boy it was hard. All I remember was studying my ass off for 6 weeks solid with lots and lots of Labs. I made my own environments on VMWare and played around with each one for different tasks. I used Professor Messer as a guide through the whole course (you will see his name a lot on here). He was very detailed and really helped me through my exam.

    What I can say about the exam is that if you have had any kind of SA exposure, it will definitely help. You need a good understanding of domains, AD and deployments via MDT, SCCM and WDS. Even with that experience, you still need to use labs. Personalise your own mini enterprise and follow Professor Messers course step by step. A lot of people suggest following the MS Virtual Labs. I can't personally recommend it as I never used it but it sounds like it helps a few people. I also used MeasureUps for practice exams towards the end of my training. I got the cert bundle from MS which came with a key. I found MeasureUps extremely helpful as you can customise it however you want and gives you explanations why the answer is what it is and why the others aren't. Don't use it excessively as you only have a certain amount of questions, so use it wisely. You may start getting repeat questions and have the answer memorised.

    I'm now studying for my 70-686 to get my MCITP which I can hopefully upgrade to the MCSA Server 2012 cert. Downside to the 686 is that Professor Messer doesn't have any videos for it but I've found alternate sources.

    Good luck with your studies!

    Professor Messer's Free Microsoft 70-680 Certification Training | Professor Messer IT Certification Training Courses
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    Currently working at: MCSA: Windows 10 (70-698, 70-697)
    2018/2019 Goals: MCSE: Mobility, MCSA: Windows Server 2012, RHCSA

    "There are 10 types of people in this world; those who understand binary and those who don't." - Anon
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  4. Woohoo! It's over 1000!
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    #3
    I can't speak to the 70-680 specifically, but my experience is that for technologies where you have a lot of experience, the exam is much easier. Doing something like the 70-680 without enterprise experience of Windows 7, is going to be challenging. The exam is based on the assumption that candidates have that experience. If you significantly exceed that experience, then you probably can do the "read a book on the weekend, did the exam on Monday" scenario.

    I've been in both situation with exams, coming in with nearly no experience and just lots of study and finding it hard, and coming in with lots of experience, some study and being surprised at how easy it is. I've read opinions here and elsewhere of the same exams, and experience does seem to make a big difference.

    The other thing I would mention is that MS exams do tend to emphasise the new features in a release. So anything (and likely everything) that was new in Windows 7 is a good chance to be asked on the exam.
    2017 Goals - MCSA 2008, CISSP, CCNP:R+S, Agile PM
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  5. Junior Member
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    #4
    I just got back from taking this and can confirm that if you've got a few years in an enterprise environment, you're in good shape. Just bone up on stuff you don't use in your environment.

    I over prepared in some areas and slacked off in others (because I don't and never will use the features). Either way, got an 877 on it and glad to have this out of the way and one step closer to the degree.

    Thanks for the insight and advice y'all.
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  6. Level 99 Wizard Skyliinez92's Avatar
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    #5
    Congrats on the pass! How did you find the exam? What's your next step?
    Currently working at: MCSA: Windows 10 (70-698, 70-697)
    2018/2019 Goals: MCSE: Mobility, MCSA: Windows Server 2012, RHCSA

    "There are 10 types of people in this world; those who understand binary and those who don't." - Anon
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  7. Junior Member
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    #6
    The exam format was a certainly different from the ones I've taken in the past. There were several that really irked me - along the lines of "here's 15 answers to the question we just asked you, pick the two that are correct". Not cool MS, not at all. I understand why they did it, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.

    That and they changed my existing MCP number. Grr.

    Next up will be the server 2012 lot - 70-410, 70-411, 70-412. Since I have a MCSE for the 2003 track, going to see if I can just do the 70-417 instead and get credit for what would be 3 classes and 3 tests in one fell swoop.
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  8. Level 99 Wizard Skyliinez92's Avatar
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    #7
    Yep that's Microsoft for you, don't expect it to be easy .

    I plan on doing my 70-417 once I have my 70-686, need to reach the MCITP stage as I currently don't have an existing MCSE. But its only 2 exams away instead of doing 4, plus I'll get an extra cert from it.
    Currently working at: MCSA: Windows 10 (70-698, 70-697)
    2018/2019 Goals: MCSE: Mobility, MCSA: Windows Server 2012, RHCSA

    "There are 10 types of people in this world; those who understand binary and those who don't." - Anon
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