Objective Study Strategy

need2learn16need2learn16 Registered Users Posts: 5 ■■□□□□□□□□
I just decided to start studying for the exam. I dont have any experience with servers. I recently passed my A+ and N+.

I understand this will be a lot harder and require much more time and possibly different study tactics then before. I have briefly read some of the posts on here and got some information that will help.

On my previous cert exams there was an objective list with individual subjects within the larger objectives. What I basically did was make flash cards and memorize each individual subject by subject before moving on. Im guessing that this test will be a lot less memorization and much more working knowledge. Is this correct? How much memorizing do I need to do vs. lab work.

Example: Plan for server installation section= Memorize as much content as possible until you know all the objective's content(or least as much as possible) without looking info up + Do the labs until you can do them without help?

Its tough to articulate my question but I guess the major thing is I dont want to waste time memorizing facts(that wont be on the test) for an exam that is mainly about functional and scenario knowledge. This was a problem for me on my previous certs.

Thank you


  • djrabesdjrabes Member Posts: 66 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Honestly, you don't need to lab until you can do it without looking at documentation - There's a lot to learn and you won't be able to memorise it all. Read books, setup domain controllers, clients, group policies, DHCP, just have fun! PowerShell is your friend, do everything in the GUI, then mess about with doing it in PowerShell. You will break Server, just don't give up and don't be scared!

    The Microsoft exams are hard because they word it in a way that makes it confusing and you need to think an awful lot about what answer is correct. Read up about the changes between 2003/2008 and 2012, as they will test you on this - They like to mention the differences between the old and new Server OS'

    Whatever worked for you in your A+ and Net+, keep doing that!

    Good luck!
    Certifications: CompTIA A+, MCP, MCSA: Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2016, Windows 10
    Studying: Exam 70-414: Implementing an Advanced Server Infrastructure
    Want: MCSA: Office 365, MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure Exam 70-414: Implementing an Advanced Server Infrastructure), Network+, Security+
  • PseudonymPseudonym Member Posts: 341 ■■■■□□□□□□
    You're definitely right in that working knowledge is more important in most MS exams than the A+/Net+. There is also a lot of memorisation though. Things like pre-requisites for installations/server roles and conceptual knowledge you need to drill down on. You generally won't be asked straight up 'what OS version is required for this feature to be installed?' But it might be set up more in the way of 'You are planning on doing a+b+c. What is the best option considering all the requirements of a+b+c?' And the answer might be deduced by thinking 'well you need server 2008 minimum to do a, but you need server 2012 r2 to do b + c, so I have to choose to upgrade all the servers before I can implement the solution'

    I mean, that's a very basic example, but yeah. There is memorisation plus labbing. You just need to do a couple MS exams before you start seeing the pattern. Maybe get a practice test from Measure Up early on in your studies so you can get a better handle on what might be required. It might also be advisable to do a client cert first. The client configuration exam for Windows 7 was easier than most others I've done and I expect the Windows 10 one is quite similar.
    Certifications - A+, Net+, Sec+, Linux+, ITIL v3, MCITP:EDST/EDA, CCNA R&S/Cyber Ops, MCSA:2008/2012, MCSE:CP&I, RHCSA
    Working on - RHCE
  • poolmanjimpoolmanjim Member Posts: 285 ■■■□□□□□□□
    The first challenge is each individual learns differently. What has worked for me may not be the best process for you.

    The second is that even though Microsoft publishes a list of objectives and training materials, they aren't fully comprehensive. A good example of this is with the 411 exam. It asks that you know how to "[FONT=Arial, sans-serif]configure certificates" which is a very vague objective. Certificate Services isn't covered until the 412 exam so how deep do you need to go to be good at that subject? Its a challenge finding that balance the first time through. [/FONT]

    [FONT=Arial, sans-serif]What I recommend is to read up on a subject, taking notes, and then try to lab that subject. Microsoft focuses very hard on Powershell so try to figure out the Powershell way to do everything and the nuances of Powershell commands. Examples would be what is the difference between Add- and New- or the scenarios when the setup command does something but the Set- command that goes along with it doesn't necessarily do that (New-Partition and Set-PartitionAccessPath). [/FONT]

    [FONT=Arial, sans-serif]On the note of Powershell: If you can do it in the GUI, find the Powershell command that does it. If it doesn't have one, find the command line option that does it. If it doesn't have a Powershell command or Cmd alternative, look again, make sure you didn't miss it. Also know what commands are being deprecated (looking at you ImageX) and which ones are brand new in that OS version. [/FONT]
    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
  • gespensterngespenstern Member Posts: 1,243 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Yeah, compared to CompTIA which is rather dry I'd say MS exams on MCSA/MCSE tracks are much more practice oriented, so usually labbing helps tremendously.
  • need2learn16need2learn16 Registered Users Posts: 5 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for all the replies. I think one of the hardest parts about studying for a new cert is just figuring out what information is important to the test and how its presented. I found transcender tests where the closest to the comptia exams I found, how about for MSCA. I saw another thread where someone said labsim were really close.

    Ideally I would like to study an objective > Lab the objective> do a practice test on objective. Once I was consistently scoring high move on to the next objective and refreshing from time to time. Is this a sound strategy?

    If so the key is I need a good practice test that I can use for an extended period of time that is as close to test as possible.

    Thank you for the help
  • need2learn16need2learn16 Registered Users Posts: 5 ■■□□□□□□□□
    To add to the previous questions Im going to the borntolearn objective pages and making flash cards on each section of the page. Does that sound like a good idea?
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