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Courses and Training Thread, Best way to train at home in Training and Courses; I've decided to train for Microsoft Server 2008 and Microsoft workstation support. The exams I decided to focus on are ...
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    Best way to train at home

    I've decided to train for Microsoft Server 2008 and Microsoft workstation support. The exams I decided to focus on are basic (70,680, 70-685, 70-686 and 70-640, 70-642, 70-646). Ive decided to try the self study route. I assume the Microsoft Press books on these subjects are adequate for the texts. I'm concerned about experience while training.

    My idea is to download a trial of Server 2008 and use it for practice on a spare computer. It lasts 180 days. If I need more time I assume I can just reformat the drive and reload or move to a newer version of Windows Server.

    My questions: Is this a good approach? What is not being considered that is important? Where are the gotchas? I really don't want to invest a lot of time and money only to find out I missed something important. Are there any good study plans available on a web site somewhere from others who took this approach? Should I include more areas to study, such as some specialized networking (CCNA, voice, wireless, etc?) or virtualization. My overall goal is to get a foot in the door as an old guy who has been around computers all his life, is quite capable on his home system, but would be considered pretty green at this in a professional setting even after training and exams. I'm also a CPA with an active license, so this will provide some help in getting started, I assume. I don't plan to compete with the kids as an administrator or at a help desk. I'll probably do some lightweight consulting in this area.

    Thank you very much in advance. You experience is a resource.
    Last edited by bob5000; 19th July 2012 at 03:13 PM.

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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    Moved to Courses and Training.

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    kernewek-sam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob5000 View Post
    My idea is to download a trial of Server 2008 and use it for practice on a spare computer. It lasts 180 days. If I need more time I assume I can just reformat the drive and reload or move to a newer version of Windows Server.

    My overall goal is to get a foot in the door
    If you can run it in a VM and take a snapshot before having a go at something, that way if you mess it up no worries just load the last snapshot and start again. It will save you a lot of work each time. I'm not sure if the trial licence allows you to keep re-installing. As for getting a foot in the door have you considered volunteering, its how I got started (I'm now in a paid position) and you'll build up experience as you go.

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    Not wanting to hijack this thread but we seem to be in a similar place. Does anyone have experience of the MS Self Paced training kits? Any other general hints and tips for resources etc. would be gratefully received also.

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    I have spent allot of time studying at home and I have achieved quite a few exams I have MCP MCTS MCSE MCITP amonst others. My approach is first to have a home lab now this all depends on space you have available but I bought a job lot of Dells off ebay and set up a network, if I was going to do it again I think I would buy something like a Hp Proliant ML series with as many cores as you can afford and and do it all virtually. As for course material I normally buy the Microsoft self paced training kit books, and make this my starting point, I also use CBT Nuggets and I can't recommend them enough because you can stop and start them and go back to them, unlike a training course, and they do answer you emails if you have a question. Above all make sure you use the OS or application you are studying.

    I have found many videos on YouTube too that have been helpful. When it comes to the exam make sure you are confident with your subject use the questions that come with your training material. Oh and make sure you make time for your studying and make it regular.

    Well thats what has worked for me, I have done paid courses too though.

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