What is the best MCSA 2012 book to get for each exam?

morkethmorketh Member Posts: 26 ■■■□□□□□□□
I've read mixed reviews on the all-in-one book for all 3 exams below. I see the chapters that cover 70-410 are all mixed up in the book and I honestly would prefer to have a book for each exam but if everyone recommends one of these all-in-one type books then so be it, I'll do it that way. What books does everyone recommend?

MCSA Windows Server 2012 R2 Complete Study Guide: Exams 70-410, 70-411, 70-412 2nd Edition


  • LexluetharLexluethar Member Posts: 516
    There is no one book that is the best IMO. I have yet to find one book or one author / publisher that covered all exam objectives. I've purchased and read both books dedicated to one exam and books covering multiple exams (like what you mentioned) and both fell far short of covering all exam topics.

    I've found specific books generally cover more objectives in the exam and sometimes cover as much as 60%. I've found books covering multiple exams generally fall around the 50% mark. That's not to say either book isn't good - it's just Microsoft exams are so freaking detailed no one book will cover it all.

    If you want to get the most bang for your buck purchase the all in one books. I have the exact book you listed in your thread and it's decent but will fall far short in order to pass the exam.

    The mixture that works best for me personally is reading the book then going over the objects from Microsofts website. I'll create a worksheet of all the exam objectives and then a synopses behind each of what that technology does and how to use it.

    I've tried online training video's but for the cost i'd rather just look up the material myself and find the Microsoft KB articles on them.
  • morkethmorketh Member Posts: 26 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Thank you for your input, I figured that might be the case ;)
  • AndersonSmithAndersonSmith Member Posts: 471 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I used this book while studying for the MCSA earlier this year and this is what I can tell you:

    1. The section for the 70-410 is OK. It gives SOME useful information but not NEARLY enough to pass the exam. It's a good supplement and definitely worth reading.

    2. The section for the 70-411 is terrible. A lot of it is just copied and pasted verbatim from the 70-410 section. This somewhat makes sense because there is some overlap in the objectives of the 410 and 411 but the way it's done in this book is horrible. I still read it but it wasn't very good.

    3. I only read bits and pieces of the 70-412 section because I opted to take the 74-409 instead of the 412 so I only read about the objectives I needed out of it - which wasn't very much.

    Overall this book will absolutely NOT give you enough information to pass the exams. The labs are very basic and Powershell is very limited, which is interesting because the author even makes note in the beginning of the book about how important Powershell is to the exams. It's still worth reading as a supplement and the chapter in the 410 content about subnetting is actually very useful.

    There is no single book that is really great for these exams. Although I did find the Exam Ref books beneficial for labbing.
    All the best,

    "Everything that has a beginning has an end"
  • poolmanjimpoolmanjim MCSE, MCSA: 2016, MCSA: 2012 KC, KS, USAMember Posts: 285 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I bought this book originally when I went into my exam studies. For the 410 and 411 sections, I echo what AndersonSmith says: 410 was pretty good and the 411 was awful. I ended up passing by technetting my butt off but the book was little help.

    For the 412 section, it was okay but not all that great. I ended up using the MOAC book for the 412 and plan on using it for the 413 as well.

    Others have said it and it is very true, no one book is going to be enough to pass the exam. The exam is not on the content in the books and thus they never cover enough. The exam is over the technology as a whole meaning there are some obscure and deep details that come up. You have to use a collection of resources to pass: books, technets, videos, and most of all labs.
    2019 Goals: Security+
    2020 Goals: 70-744, Azure
    Completed: MCSA 2012 (01/2016), MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure (07/2017), MCSA 2017 (09/2017)
    Future Goals: CISSP, CCENT
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