I.T. Certifications

HenroidHenroid Radio DemonInternet HellRegistered User regular
edited July 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
Despite the self-loathing I'm going through in deciding to go back to my very first long-term career idea (which crashed and burned years ago) I've decided to jump back on the computer hardware train.

The last time I did this I was already enrolled in a tech school spending thousands of dollars a month learning things at a relatively slow pace. This time, I want to accomplish this without the spending of so much money and the ability to learn things at whatever pace I can go at. So what I'm here to ask about is if there's any resources - free or books I can purchase - to get me rolling. I'm also here to ask what certifications people would recommend get pursued. I mostly want to focus on hardware and networking (as I did in school).

And there's a fee for taking the exams for these right? Anyone have a clue as to what they are currently?

Nobody likes me but that's okay. I'm used to it.
Henroid on

Posts

  • amateurhouramateurhour One day I'll be professionalhour The woods somewhere in TennesseeRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Henroid wrote: »
    Despite the self-loathing I'm going through in deciding to go back to my very first long-term career idea (which crashed and burned years ago) I've decided to jump back on the computer hardware train.

    The last time I did this I was already enrolled in a tech school spending thousands of dollars a month learning things at a relatively slow pace. This time, I want to accomplish this without the spending of so much money and the ability to learn things at whatever pace I can go at. So what I'm here to ask about is if there's any resources - free or books I can purchase - to get me rolling. I'm also here to ask what certifications people would recommend get pursued. I mostly want to focus on hardware and networking (as I did in school).

    And there's a fee for taking the exams for these right? Anyone have a clue as to what they are currently?

    Get the basics, A+ and Network+, you can usually bundle those come test time and take both tests for ~$400 with books and everything.

    After that, you can look into your Microsoft Certifications.

    edit: full disclosure though, I am a qualified systems administrator, with no degree in computer science and no certifications. I started out taking my state goverment's IT qualifier exam to get a job as desktop support.

    I did that for 2.5 years and then got a jr. sys admin job, did that for a year, and now I'm a sysadmin. My degree was in Criminology.

    amateurhour on

    Arch wrote: »

    I never expected this burn from captain bushmeat
  • HenroidHenroid Radio Demon Internet HellRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    $400, really? When I was going to the tech school we were offered a discount when taking the tests, which made it come out to $80. Goddamn.

    Henroid on
    Nobody likes me but that's okay. I'm used to it.
  • amateurhouramateurhour One day I'll be professionalhour The woods somewhere in TennesseeRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Henroid wrote: »
    $400, really? When I was going to the tech school we were offered a discount when taking the tests, which made it come out to $80. Goddamn.

    My prices could be way off. The discount you got sounds about right. I want to say that they are separately about ~$150 plus study books. So it might be closer to $300 if you get a bundle.

    amateurhour on

    Arch wrote: »

    I never expected this burn from captain bushmeat
  • HenroidHenroid Radio Demon Internet HellRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Let's talk about the books for a bit.

    Would schools be my only source for learning material or are there books people have put out privately I can pick up? Like I'm not exactly looking for "For Dummies" books.

    Henroid on
    Nobody likes me but that's okay. I'm used to it.
  • TomantaTomanta Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Certifications have tons of books published. Honestly if you have any sort of hardware knowledge you should be able to pick up A+/Network+ through self study and that's a good starting point. I did self study for those two (and am currently working on CCNA. slowly.)

    If you are still looking for work, I'd also try getting a tech support job with Suddenlink in Tyler. It sucks but is good experience.

    Tomanta on
  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Well you were paying $texas to those school for tuition and whatnot so they probably could've gotten sweet deals with the testing facilities (assuming they weren't the testing facility themselves).

    It's been about 9 years since I did a bunch of certification stuff, but most vendor-certification (Microsoft, Cisco, etc.) publish official courseware you can buy directly (or through Amazon I suppose). And there are definitely publishers that put out study materials for A+ and Network+ (and for whichever certification you're interested in).

    When I was doing lots of cert testing I found most courseware to be heavy on definitions and explanations of stuff (and the homework tosses rather softball questions) but rather thin on application and it was up to me to use simulation software or build a test lab to understand how the exam quesions worked. Not so much for the A+ or Microsoft client OS tests (where a memorize and brain dump can probably net you a pass), but for the higher level exams (where that strategy just won't work).

    Djeet on
  • HenroidHenroid Radio Demon Internet HellRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Tomanta wrote: »
    Certifications have tons of books published. Honestly if you have any sort of hardware knowledge you should be able to pick up A+/Network+ through self study and that's a good starting point. I did self study for those two (and am currently working on CCNA. slowly.)

    If you are still looking for work, I'd also try getting a tech support job with Suddenlink in Tyler. It sucks but is good experience.

    I expect the A+ and Network+ stuff to be a breeze.

    I found a job but it's a piece of shit. I know about Suddenlink here but goddamn it tech support phones are what I'm trying to avoid here. It's why I bailed out on the tech school I mentioned here; their "job placement program" was actually just a hiring program for various local companies for tech support lines.

    Henroid on
    Nobody likes me but that's okay. I'm used to it.
  • TomantaTomanta Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Unfortunately, everyone has to start at the bottom and certifications are fairly worthless without some experience to back them up.

    Tomanta on
  • HenroidHenroid Radio Demon Internet HellRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Telling people how to do something from a script and getting your hands on shit to work with it are two very different things. Fuck I hate how things in the world are structured. :?

    Edit - I have an anxiety problem with the phone. Working via a telephone is terrifying to me.

    Henroid on
    Nobody likes me but that's okay. I'm used to it.
  • Jimmy KingJimmy King Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    There is a lot of phone tech support that is still actual troubleshooting rather than just reading from a script. If you can get an internal corporate tech support job, a lot of times these days they have remote control so that you can take over and work with the software, see what's going on, and fix things yourself.

    Don't get me wrong, it's still miserable, but it's where most of us start and it at least lets you use your skills a little bit.

    Jimmy King on
  • TomantaTomanta Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Also, phone support is actually different than just talking on the phone. I hate talking on the phone normally (I I rarely use more than 10-20 minutes a month on my cell) but don't mind working at a call center at all. It takes a little getting used to but after 2-3 weeks it gets to be routine.

    Tomanta on
Sign In or Register to comment.