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# 22429 28-May-2008 11:24
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So im trying to get the low down on doing MCP and cant really seem to find any straight answers.

I finished a BIT about 3 years ago now, i worked a year in the industry before leaving NZ and working in Japan and Korea, teaching english.

Im looking to be back in NZ early next year for a little while and would like to do MCP.

Question are
a: how much does it cost
b: can i do it in the bay of plenty, i.e Tauranga/the Mt/Papamoa
c: how long does it take to do
d: do i do it self study stlye, or do i do it through an education provider

Im hoping to go the the UK and would like something new to put in the CV thats relative....also wouldnt be bad to up skill my self again, been out of the game for a little while now.

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  # 133797 28-May-2008 11:38
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Derelict: So im trying to get the low down on doing MCP and cant really seem to find any straight answers.
I finished a BIT about 3 years ago now, i worked a year in the industry before leaving NZ and working in Japan and Korea, teaching english.
Im looking to be back in NZ early next year for a little while and would like to do MCP.

Question are
a: how much does it cost
b: can i do it in the bay of plenty, i.e Tauranga/the Mt/Papamoa
c: how long does it take to do
d: do i do it self study stlye, or do i do it through an education provider

Im hoping to go the the UK and would like something new to put in the CV thats relative....also wouldnt be bad to up skill my self again, been out of the game for a little while now.


To do an MCP I believe you only need to pass one Microsoft exam.  MCSE/A etc is a combination of several exams in your chosen topic, but as soon as you pass one I believe you get the MCP certification.

Most trainer led courses cost around $1250 for a 5 day course.  Though you can get better/worse deals depending on where you go.  Be sure to check whether your course includes exam fees or not, or whether you get practice tests, etc. 

You can do it the self-study way as well.  Last I checked the box set of MCSE training manuals cost around $350 but I could be wrong there.  That does not include your exam, however there are often redemption vouchers that give you $$ off exams (assuming they are not out of date).

Your best bet would be to make contact with some training facilities to see what they have on offer.  Such facilities that I know of are Ace Training - www.ace.co.nz and Auldhouse - www.auldhouse.co.nz.  I know both of these companies operate out of Auckland and Wellington, regional availability I'm unsure about.

Trainer led courses are "on-demand" type situations, that is, if there isn't enough demand for a particular course which is scheduled for a particular date, the course does not run.  Depends on the course really.  I had to wait 9 months for a particular course because I was the only one wanting to do it for a long time. 

Make contact with those companies, or do some googles for MCSE training in NZ and see what you come up with.  You should be able to get the answers you want from their sales representatives. 

I have a feeling you might need to do some travel to do the courses you want though, unless you do the self study.  The good thing about doing the courses is that some Microsoft Training manuals have inconsistent - or even flat out wrong information.  The trainers usually make you aware of these things so that you're learning something which is factually accurate :)

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  # 133967 28-May-2008 20:37
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The certification process has changed a lot recently. There is no more MCP certification - the entry level certification is now called MCTS or Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist. As the name suggests, you become a specialist in one or more technologies, by passing a single exam.

You can then move on to become an "MCITP: Server Administrator" This stands for Microsoft Certified IT Professional and the first level is Server Administrator. This is equivalent to the current MCSA (MS Certified System Administrator) and requires 3 exams.

The next level is equivalent to the old MCSE, and it's called "MCITP: Enterprise Administrator" - so you're a certified IT Professional at the Enterprise Administrator level (although most people at that level wouldn't like being called Administrators) This requires 5 exams to pass.

There are also other Microsoft Certifications available like the highly touted (nomination only) MCA - Architect cert, or various training certs as well as other certs that relate to specific areas of MS software (like Office or MS Business software.)

If you hold current MS certifications then there is an upgrade path although the upgrade path seems to get longer with each new server release. Upgrading your MCSE from NT4 to 2000 was 1 big exam; then from 2000 to 2003 it was 2 exams; now to get from MCSE 2003 to MCITP: EA, it's now 3 exams, while upgrading from MCSE 2003 to MCITP: SA is just two exams. If you're an MCSA 2003, you can upgrade to MCITP: SA with 2 exams, but to go from MCSA 2003 to MCITP: EA is 4 exams.

Here's the summary of old and new certifications:

MCP = MCTS (Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist)
MCSA = MCITP: SA (Microsoft Certified IT Professional: Server Administrator)
MCSE = MCITP: EA (Microsoft Certified IT Professional: Enterprise Administrator)

Hope all the new acronyms haven't scared you off!

I would recommend doing the Vista exam first (which would make you an MCTS) as if you're just starting to get back into the IT market you may need to get a desktop engineer role first. Exam link: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exams/70-620.mspx

Then I'd move on to the Network Infrastructure exam as it has a lot of practical and general content that relates to lots of different environments. Exam Link: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exams/70-642.mspx

With those two exams under your belt, you'll have a lot of good knowledge and then you can decide whether to continue onto the Server Administrator or Enterprise Administror certifications.

You should be able to do the Vista exam yourself by just buying the book and working your way through it, but the Network Infrastructure exam would require a bit more hands on work. If you can afford a training course then go for it, although I can't recommend any in your area as I'm based in Wellington - although I would assume that Tauranga would be your best bet. The length of time it takes to get your certs is based on your knowledge and experience. I wouldn't be tempted into rushing it.

Hope that helps...
(this turned into a long post, so can't be bothered re-reading it - hope there's no mistakes!)

 
 
 
 


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  # 134066 29-May-2008 09:36
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Argh Im just getting my head around MCSA and MCSE and now they change everything LOL.......

Ive currently got Comptia A+ (Core/OS) and am studying for Network+ (hate it tho, too much theory :-p), but eyeing up MCDST (then MCSE/SA)....  am I best to get Network+ before going for the MCDST or dosent really matter ?




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  # 134075 29-May-2008 10:27
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I don't know much about the Comptia exams. I know they are well respected around the world so if you've already started studying towards the Network+ exam then I'd go ahead and get that finished.

My personal opinion on Microsoft certification is that all engineers should be working towards MCSE or the new Enterprise Administrator certification. I can't see much benefit in doing the MCDST unless you're planning on making a career out of desktop support. I've worked for several vendors in Wellington and most vendors aren't interested in desktop engineers - they need someone who also knows their way around a server. Bigger companies that have internal IT departments (and government departments) are a bit different in that the desktop engineers won't have any access to the servers at all. So I guess it depends on your goals and who you would like to work for - if it's a vendor then skip the MCDST and just start working towards MCITP: EA. The first exam required is the Vista exam which is one of the required exams for the MCDST cert anway. But once you have this exam you can start looking at doing some server exams that can count towards either the MCITP: SA cert or the EA cert. The Network Infrastructure exam is a good one, but this only counts towards the SA cert.

One other point I'll make about the type of certification to get... Most vendors require a certain number of certified engineers to help keep their MS Partner status up to scratch, so most vendors would be more interested in Microsoft certifications than Comptia exams. Also, when putting in RFPs or other proposals, vendors sometimes like to list the number of certified engineers they have, so that's another reason why certification is needed for vendors. (of course that can stretch too far sometimes, and I've seen some vendors who are more interested in just getting their staff certified for financial reasons rather than for the technical knowledge it provides.)

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  # 134123 29-May-2008 12:17
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And just in case nothing I've said makes sense, this link will explain more: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/newgen/default.mspx




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  # 134347 30-May-2008 08:59
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Typical Microsoft, as if the MCSE training path wasn't complicated enough!  I am very glad to be getting out of engineering at the end of this year!



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  # 134393 30-May-2008 11:17
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quick question,

What kind of job oppertunities does this open up, im guessing mainly
dekstop support
network engineer
network design

Hands on hardware kinda stuff right? or support......anything else that im missing?

 
 
 
 


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  # 135149 3-Jun-2008 12:17
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I think a MSFT cert is one of the best things you can do when applying for an IT job.

Be sure to check out the special offers on the MSFT website located here: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/offers/default.mspx
Plus this cupon: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/hero/default.mspx (if you are interested that is)


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  # 135991 6-Jun-2008 14:33
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Derelict: quick question,

What kind of job oppertunities does this open up, im guessing mainly
dekstop support
network engineer
network design

Hands on hardware kinda stuff right? or support......anything else that im missing?


I guess the natural career progression would be: telephone support -> desktop support -> server admin -> consultant. And as your experience is gets better, you generally aim to work in bigger and more challenging environments to learn as much as possible.

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  # 135992 6-Jun-2008 14:40
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Ping:

I think a MSFT cert is one of the best things you can do when applying for an IT job.



I think you're right, but sometimes it's for the wrong reasons. As I mentioned earlier in this thread, some vendors would require certifications not because of the knowledge they bring, but because it helps with MS Partner status, or makes them look better when bidding for RFPs.

My advice for anyone doing Microsoft certs is to not be tempted into using exam crams or other cheat sheets. Instead, read the official MS books, work with the products and try to learn as much as possible. Microsoft also offers lots of free online training through their eLearning website. Some of the courses cost money, but have a look at the Server 2008 section, there's a bunch of free stuff there.

E-learning: https://www.microsoftelearning.com/
E-learning special offers: https://www.microsoftelearning.com/specialoffers/

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  # 142136 2-Jul-2008 09:42
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amanzi: The certification process has changed a lot recently. There is no more MCP certification - the entry level certification is now called MCTS or Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist. As the name suggests, you become a specialist in one or more technologies, by passing a single exam.


Not true, one of my coworkers became an MCP last friday.

MCP, MCDST, MCSA, MCSE etc are all still valid qualifications based around Windows XP & Server 2003. You can still sit them, I'm halfway through my MCSA at the moment, most recent exam was the 26th of June 2008. Heck MS only retired the exams for Server 2000 in march this year, you should be able to sit an MCSA 2003 for the enxt 3 years at least.

The MCTS / MCITP series are simply exams based on vista and server 2008 technologies.

To the OP, sit 70-272, its fairly easy if you have a clue and will make you a MCP. It's the easier half of an MCDST, so you can sit 271 later and become a MCDST.

http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exams/70-272.mspx





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