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Thread: 70-680, 70-686

  1. Junior Member Registered Member
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    Default 70-680, 70-686

    I took a Global Knowledge bootcamp (5 days/lectures and tests). It was basically a "free" class for me meaning I needed to take a class for work and it really didn't matter what it was or if I passed an exam.

    I came in to the tests with very basic knowledge of the topics, some concepts I have used, some I have heard of and some I never heard before (Branchcache, for example). I took the lectures and practice tests (transcender) seriously and studied each night.

    I took the 680 on Wednesday of the class and failed with a 592. I went in to the test with a realistic attitude - it was going to take a minor miracle to pass. I figured I'd be in the 600's. I took the 686 on Friday of the class and failed with a 497 (ouch!). I went in to the 686 feeling pretty confident but figured I would be in the 650-750 range.

    The 680 was about what I expected. I knew there were topics I didn't know and I would have a tough time passing. The 686 was supposed to the easier of the 2. It wasn't. The 686 had far more ADDS scenarios than I had expected. The transcender practice tests for the 686 were no where near what thew actual test was.

    I have free retakes for both. I think I will retake the 680 first. I feel like I just don't have enough real world experience to understand the concepts. I was pounding in the information without anything tangible to tie it to. I am wondering what my best bet is? I can grab an old server at work and put some VMs on it and work on some of the concepts in my off hours.

    With the 592 I got on the 680 I felt like if I got a 600+ on the 686 I had something to build on. But going backwards that much really caught me for a loop...
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  3. Senior Member Jander1023's Avatar
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    #2
    The 686 is definitely the harder of the two. In fact, it's the hardest exam I've taken so far. I failed it twice, although by only 1 question on the first try and 2 questions on the 2nd try. Keep in mind, I've already passed the 640 and 642. Even with that, the 686 was difficult.

    IMO, a person should have completed the 640 and 642 before attempting to take the 686. Or have their MCSA/MCSE in 2003 and have working knowledge of Server 2008 R2.

    How long are the retake's good for? Through the end of the year? If so, at a minimum I'd recommend you read the 640 and 642 books at a minimum; plus the free 2008 R2 book.

    Many people have decided to also get the 640 and 642 completed first, then tackle the 680. I advise that for you before retaking both the 680 and 686; unless the retake requires you to take them soon. Yes, this will take much longer but you will be better off in the longer run.
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  4. Junior Member Registered Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jander1023 View Post
    The 686 is definitely the harder of the two. In fact, it's the hardest exam I've taken so far. I failed it twice, although by only 1 question on the first try and 2 questions on the 2nd try. Keep in mind, I've already passed the 640 and 642. Even with that, the 686 was difficult.

    IMO, a person should have completed the 640 and 642 before attempting to take the 686. Or have their MCSA/MCSE in 2003 and have working knowledge of Server 2008 R2.

    How long are the retake's good for? Through the end of the year? If so, at a minimum I'd recommend you read the 640 and 642 books at a minimum; plus the free 2008 R2 book.

    Many people have decided to also get the 640 and 642 completed first, then tackle the 680. I advise that for you before retaking both the 680 and 686; unless the retake requires you to take them soon. Yes, this will take much longer but you will be better off in the longer run.
    Thanks for the info. I think the retakes are good until 10/31. I can definitely see where the 640 and 642 would come in handy. With what you say I had no business even thinking I had a chance to pass either the 680 or 686 (which doesn't make it hurt as much).

    I am supposed to take the 450 and 423 (both SQL) in late August but I may want to put those off - I can take them in November instead.

    What would you recommend would be a reasonable amount of study time to prepare for the exam?
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  5. Senior Member Jander1023's Avatar
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    #4
    It really depends on how much previous server experience you have and how much time each week you have to dedicate to study. As a minimum, I would expect to spend 80-120 hours studying for each. As such, that makes completing both the 640 and 642 within 3 months an obtainable goal.

    Realize that means spending 20 hours a week studying. Read the books, do the labs, take notes while reading the books and use legitimate practice questions.

    That would put you are Sept 30th for completion of 640 and 642. That would leave you with a month to restudy for the 680 and 686. A bit tight but not impossible. Personally, I find when I study intensely that I get immersed in the material and retain the knowledge better.

    Good luck and keep us updated!
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