Hello everyone, happy to report that I successfully passed my Security+ exam with a score of 787/900 today!
Not as good as wanted to achieve performance-wise. But to be honest with everything I'm juggling right now (single-handedly managing a 24/7 IT helpdesk support service) I'll take a pass.
General outline of how I approached exam:
- Studied off and on for 6 months (due to work obligations).
- Read through the entirety of Darril Gibson's Security+: Get Certified Get Ahead textbook (primary source).
- Professor Messer's Security+ Videos and Study Groups for cursory review (secondary backup source).
- Purchased Professor Messer's study guide.
- Purchased Darril Gibsons online test bank for practice quizzes and exams
- Briefly used CompTIA Security+ CertMaster online program (came with deluxe bundle for retake voucher).
Thoughts on sources:
Darril Gibson is by and large the best source I used. At first I thought his questions were unnecessarily punishing. But, as I reviewed the materials over and over again I was amazed at how I missed small differences between protocols or subject materials.
For the first time since starting certifications I am actually surprised to say that Professor Messer was not all that helpful. With all due respect to what he's provided to the community, his Security+ materials seem notably more disjointed in comparison with his A+ and Network+ materials. His study groups were the best help. But, overall Darril Gibson's attention to detail and explanation about why answers are wrong is what enabled me to pass the exam.
The CompTIA Security+ CertMaster is mediocre at best. I found it helpful as an online review. If anything it helped me to dissect the language of the exam makers or understand how to approach exam terminology. I would not recommend it as a primary learning source. Instead it should supplement as a review to challenge your mind as you approach exam day. I wouldn't buy it if it didn't come with a retake voucher.
- Take practice exams from multiple sources to get used to the exam format. Doing so will challenge your mind to understand different approaches to both questions and answers.
- Understand why you get questions wrong. Understanding not only why an answer is right, but why alternative answers are not the "BEST" solution.
- Don't be dissuaded by complicated questions, drives me insane that CompTIA puts unrelated questions on the exam to test/faze you.
- Make sure you've reviewed the Security+ Exam Objectives and haven't missed anything.
- Find a test taking center that is comfortable and supportive. I am amazed at how bad some PearsonVue locations are. I tend to stick with colleges or academic institutions which have dedicated test centers.
- A previous forum post here actually best outlines excellent advice in terms of studying and exam content. I agree with everything they say.
Now, most importantly: what in the world is a POODLE attack?
Certs Achieved: CompTIA A+ | Net+ | Sec+
Currently Studying: MCP Win 10 (70-698) | (70-697)