Venting about size of books

CyberCop123CyberCop123 Senior MemberMember Posts: 338 ■■■■□□□□□□
I'm potentially going to go for the CISSP next year. I've had a flick through some of the well known books and one thing about them is they are gigantic. Like 700-1000 pages.

This is a bit ridiculous for a few reasons:

1) taking the book anywhere is not going to work. When studying I try to carry the study book with me. Like to work, on the train etc... just so I can read or have a look at something. Helps the learning process

2) even sitting at a desk would get annoying id imagine. 1000 pages stacked up and awkwardly in the way

3) its also a very daunting task I'd guess to have such a thick, seemingly never ending book to work through

maybe im over thinking this.

Id pay a bit more for cissp books which were domain focussed.

Eg one book just for domain one. A nice 100 page compact book which you can read anytime and sit with it anywhere.

Not sure if this as occurred to others or just me!
My Aims
2017: OSCP -
COMPLETED
2018: CISSP -
COMPLETED
2019: GIAC GNFA - Advanced Network Forensics & Threat Hunting -
COMPLETED
           GIAC GREM - Reverse Engineering of Malware -
COMPLETED

2021: CCSP
2022: OSWE (hopefully)
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Comments

  • TheFORCETheFORCE Senior Member Member Posts: 2,298 ■■■■■■■■□□
    What about when you try to look up something at domain 2 while already at domain 5. Do this a few times and you will have stacked up 8 books at all times at your desk.
    What about doing a refresh just right before the exam date? You will carry with you 8 books?

    Yes, the books are big but there is a reason for them.

    I think the Shon Harris AIO book was 1500 pages. So 1000 is nothing. Besides most books now come in epub or pdf formats so you can use your favorite e-reader.
  • TheRedBar0nTheRedBar0n CISSP, CySA+, Sec+, MCSA, ITILv3 Cape Town ZAMember Posts: 60 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Why not use an e-reader like the Amazon Kindle?
  • Danielm7Danielm7 Member Posts: 2,310 ■■■■■■■■□□
    maybe im over thinking this.
    Yes. Read a PDF, ebook, or just get over it. There is just a lot of material.
  • SteveLavoieSteveLavoie Member Posts: 1,081 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Safaribooksonline.com :) an entire IT library in your pocket...

    I dont work for them, just a very happy customer since 2012.
  • TechGromitTechGromit GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Member Posts: 2,119 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Technical books are big as they have to be to explain the subject. If it was limited to say 200 pages, then you complain it failed to cover all the material on the exam.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • cshkurucshkuru The details of my life are quite inconsequential Member Posts: 246 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I have thought about the one book per domain idea before. I like the idea of something like the "A Very Short Introduction" books. One per domain with special topics broken out further. Another idea I have liked for a long time is CISSP Trivial Pursuit (or some variation thereof)
  • jamesleecolemanjamesleecoleman Member Posts: 1,899 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Shoot, I'm tired of carrying all of the books. I'm going to transfer just about all of my books to my flashdrive and ipad.
    Booya!!
    WIP : | CISSP [2018] | CISA [2018] | CAPM [2018] | eCPPT [2018] | CRISC [2019] | TORFL (TRKI) B1 | Learning: | Russian | Farsi |
    *****You can fail a test a bunch of times but what matters is that if you fail to give up or not*****
  • cbkihongcbkihong Member Posts: 52 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Or another way to think of that. You can flaunt your thick pile of CISSP books after passing the exam and certified, those outsiders will be impressed how "professional" you are having gone through those thick books (though you will have one less thing to flaunt now, that signature 6-hour exam!)

    OK, seriously, as others said, get yourself ebook(s) and read on your computer / phone / tablet / Kindle / whatever. As an IT people it's good to show others you are committed to utilize IT to solve real life problems (in your case, logistical issues regarding physical books). I have the printed edition of the CBK but I nearly exclusively used the ebook for exam studying so that I could add annotations whenever I wanted without marking the physical book.
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb Member Posts: 3,298 ■■■■■■■■■□
    You could also get Eric Conrad's CISSP book that is only about 500 pages if you want a smaller one. Or just tear you books apart into each domain is an option too. Seems like a very small thing to be worried/complaining about when going after a certification though. The books aren't 100lbs weights...
  • TechGuru80TechGuru80 Member Posts: 1,539 ■■■■■■□□□□
    11th Hour CISSP is way shorter as far as quick glances...but the CBK covers a ton of material, similar to combine CCNA / CCNP / CCIE books but for a manager.

    Also, if it’s so awkward to carry around I would suggest passing the exam faster!
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Senior Member Mod Posts: 6,927 Mod
    I was coming here to make a joke about the super secret solution of lightweight ebooks but guys beat me. I'm old school and prefer physical books, but for CISSP, CEH, and even CCSP my approach was physical book at home and ebook on the road. It's just highly impractical to carry some books around.
  • jhearnjhearn Member Posts: 12 ■□□□□□□□□□
    The books are big for a reason. The Sybex one organises the syllabus so that it flows nicely, it doesn't stick to the strict sequence of domains so I think that breaking the subject matter down by domain might affect readability. Other than that, e-books are your friend.
  • SteveLavoieSteveLavoie Member Posts: 1,081 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I agree that reading Shon Harris AIO can be awkward in the train... That's why ebook reader, tablet or even your phone can be used. Keep your book at home to read at night or on the week-end. I understand many people prefer paper over screen, but after a while you will not bother and prefer the ease of electronic reading. I am using a Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 to read ebook, either Kindle, PDF, or on Safaribooksonline. I just turn the luminosity very low and use the reading mode when I am in the dark. This way it is "almost" as having a e-ink screen...
  • ShamsiddeenShamsiddeen Registered Users Posts: 2 ■□□□□□□□□□
    That is too much but if there is any other alternative then go for it
  • GettingThereSoonGettingThereSoon Member Posts: 19 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Same observation, books get thicker in CISSP compared to CSA+/Security+. Look at this way, the size of the books and the length of exam (6 hr) probably scare lot of people away (I was one of them couple years ago). As others said, many books come with pdf, so you can read them on tablets while on the road. After some quick reading, I used the paper books mainly as reference guide so I don't carry them around.
  • gespensterngespenstern Member Posts: 1,243 ■■■■■■■□□□
    It's still doable, I remember myself carrying a 1000 pages book in a backpack and reading it while commuting in a subway.

    But that was like 10 years ago.

    Also, it's not necessary to read the books, I passed my (ISC)2 exams without reading preparation books.
  • beadsbeads Senior Member Member Posts: 1,523 ■■■■■■■■■□
    The fact that your planning to take a exam with some 1200 pieces available on Amazon and your complaining about the weightiness of the material would be dumbfounding to people who took the exam before 2008 when there one book: Shon Harris' AiO. Not to mention you had to fly to somewhere she was teaching the first CISSP prep courses.

    The exam is completely predigested in pablum form - just drink.

    - b/eads
  • kabbrakabbra Member Posts: 17 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I totally agree with the issue with thick books, specially the ones for CISSP. They are thick because of the repetitive topics in most of the chapters, sometimes just crude "copy+paste". icon_neutral.gif
  • chrisonechrisone Senior Member Member Posts: 2,253 ■■■■■■■■■□
    You should not vent over the process of a journey you have yet to start.
    Certs: CISSP, EnCE, OSCP, CRTP, eCTHPv2, eCPPT, eCIR, LFCS, CEH, SPLK-1002, SC-200, AZ-900, VHL:Advanced+, Retired Cisco CCNP/SP/DP
    2022 Goals:
    Certs: EnCE (cert obtained), SC-300 (in progress), AZ-500, SC-100, SPLK-1003
    Course: BC Security - Empire Operations 1 (completed), Zero Point Security - CRTO (course completed)
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb Member Posts: 3,298 ■■■■■■■■■□
    kabbra wrote: »
    I totally agree with the issue with thick books, specially the ones for CISSP.

    Yea, I would just skip the CISSP. If anyone asks why you didn't get it in a job interview just tell them the book was too big. They'll understand. icon_thumright.gif
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Senior Member Mod Posts: 6,927 Mod
    The last two posts represent the amazing wisdom that keeps me coming here every day, usually when I should be working.
  • msteinhilbermsteinhilber Member Posts: 1,480 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I have several print CISSP books, they don't travel with me - I reserve those strictly for reading at home. When I'm on the go, I have the same books in electronic format for use on my iPad or computer. Usually though, if I'm fitting in some study time on the go or at work it's typically in the form of audio. I'll listen to the Simple CISSP audio book on Audible during my commute or at the office. Sometimes I'll play the Pluralsight videos or Cybrary videos at the office and just listen to the audio while I'm working. My point is, there are plenty of other supplemental study resources you can (and probably should) be use above and beyond the print book(s) that you can use on the go.
  • McxRisleyMcxRisley OSCP, CASP, CySA+, CPT+, Sec+, CEH, Splunk Admin Member Posts: 494 ■■■■■□□□□□
    I notice OSCP is on your to do list. If you are complaining about reading a mere 700-1000 pages, I would advise you to just not even think about attempting the OSCP as the amount of reading required for it will far exceed 1000 pages. Maybe choose a different profession since you dont like reading?
    I'm not allowed to say what my previous occupation was, but let's just say it rhymes with architect.
  • cshkurucshkuru The details of my life are quite inconsequential Member Posts: 246 ■■■■□□□□□□
    McxRisley wrote: »
    I notice OSCP is on your to do list. If you are complaining about reading a mere 700-1000 pages, I would advise you to just not even think about attempting the OSCP as the amount of reading required for it will far exceed 1000 pages. Maybe choose a different profession since you dont like reading?

    Actually he didn't complain about the amount of reading at all. He complained about lugging a refrigerator sized book around with him. I completely agree. I would far prefer smaller more focused volumes. It might actually end up being more pages but the convenience of carry around a smaller domain concentrated book would make up for it, I think. I know there is the e-reader option and I do use that quite a bit but when I am in something for the long haul I like the physical book with pages and page numbers I can flip back and forth too and dog ear etc. In other words OP and I are right and the rest of you are wrong. icon_razz.gif

    b/eads - I am just curious - when you got your Shon Harris tome were the words carved into the stone by the hand of God himself, like when he gave Moses the tablets on Mt. Sinai? Or, did you get your CISSP in the era before the dawn of the written word when all knowledge was passed by oral tradition and blind poets. Seriously dude, I think everyone knows both we and every cert known to mankind don't measure up to your high standards. Give it a rest.
  • moyondizvomoyondizvo Member Posts: 155
    I say, to each their own and do not judge. I am all about that journey so I love my 1000+ paged books, ebooks or hardcover.
  • yoba222yoba222 Senior Member Member Posts: 1,237 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Get the pdf and print out 25-50 sheet batches, double-sided for on the go. Make a study habit so you don't have to print the whole thing. Or print the whole thing if you're really serious.
    A+, Network+, CCNA, LFCS,
    Security+, eJPT, CySA+, PenTest+,
    Cisco CyberOps, GCIH, VHL,
    In progress: OSCP
  • CyberCop123CyberCop123 Senior Member Member Posts: 338 ■■■■□□□□□□
    McxRisley wrote: »
    I notice OSCP is on your to do list. If you are complaining about reading a mere 700-1000 pages, I would advise you to just not even think about attempting the OSCP as the amount of reading required for it will far exceed 1000 pages. Maybe choose a different profession since you dont like reading?

    Wow, what a great and well thought out comment. For your information I'm close to sitting my OSCP exam and have thoroughly enjoyed my time studying for it.

    Ironically I think you're the one that may not like reading since you've obviously failed to read my original post correctly. If you did read it properly then you may well have noticed I wasn't complaining about the amount of content, I was suggesting that a good idea would be to split books with 1000+ pages into smaller volumes.


    Such as CISSP Domain1+2 book... 3+4 book. It was an idea.
    My Aims
    2017: OSCP -
    COMPLETED
    2018: CISSP -
    COMPLETED
    2019: GIAC GNFA - Advanced Network Forensics & Threat Hunting -
    COMPLETED
               GIAC GREM - Reverse Engineering of Malware -
    COMPLETED

    2021: CCSP
    2022: OSWE (hopefully)
  • CyberCop123CyberCop123 Senior Member Member Posts: 338 ■■■■□□□□□□
    cshkuru wrote: »
    Actually he didn't complain about the amount of reading at all. He complained about lugging a refrigerator sized book around with him. I completely agree. I would far prefer smaller more focused volumes. It might actually end up being more pages but the convenience of carry around a smaller domain concentrated book would make up for it, I think. I know there is the e-reader option and I do use that quite a bit but when I am in something for the long haul I like the physical book with pages and page numbers I can flip back and forth too and dog ear etc. In other words OP and I are right and the rest of you are wrong. icon_razz.gif

    I agree, we are both right icon_cheers.gif

    yoba222 wrote: »
    Get the pdf and print out 25-50 sheet batches, double-sided for on the go. Make a study habit so you don't have to print the whole thing. Or print the whole thing if you're really serious.

    That's a really good idea, I did that for the CISSP. Printed out one chapter, particularly those which were more complicated and then I could read it whenever I was out and about and I ended up obsorbing it much better.


    ...


    I have to say that I'm a bit surprised at some of the responses here which are quite negative towards my post, I've not encountered this before on the forum. Maybe my original post wasn't clear but I thought it was a valid suggestion and point that some IT books are monsters in terms of their page count.


    I've not said anything about the content itself, but merely that it would be great if there was physical books available which were smaller and more portable. Such as for trains and to read in bed, or wherever.


    The suggestion of using an e-reader is a good one, and I'll probably look at that AND also the book itself. Then I can study quite flexibly then. The only downside to an e-reader is you lose the ability to quickly turn back to something 50 pages back to check something. But that's just a small thing.


    Anyway, thanks for your comments and responses.
    My Aims
    2017: OSCP -
    COMPLETED
    2018: CISSP -
    COMPLETED
    2019: GIAC GNFA - Advanced Network Forensics & Threat Hunting -
    COMPLETED
               GIAC GREM - Reverse Engineering of Malware -
    COMPLETED

    2021: CCSP
    2022: OSWE (hopefully)
  • McxRisleyMcxRisley OSCP, CASP, CySA+, CPT+, Sec+, CEH, Splunk Admin Member Posts: 494 ■■■■■□□□□□
    It seemed like you were complaining about both things to me, but if you weren't then carry on lol
    I'm not allowed to say what my previous occupation was, but let's just say it rhymes with architect.
  • CyberCop123CyberCop123 Senior Member Member Posts: 338 ■■■■□□□□□□
    McxRisley wrote: »
    It seemed like you were complaining about both things to me, but if you weren't then carry on lol

    Haha no problem, and not at all. More than understandable regarding the volume of content needed to learn and pass CISSP syllabus. Was simply about the physical size of some books and the idea that it could be split up to smaller sections.
    My Aims
    2017: OSCP -
    COMPLETED
    2018: CISSP -
    COMPLETED
    2019: GIAC GNFA - Advanced Network Forensics & Threat Hunting -
    COMPLETED
               GIAC GREM - Reverse Engineering of Malware -
    COMPLETED

    2021: CCSP
    2022: OSWE (hopefully)
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