Help me figure out my path...

LaminiLamini Posts: 242Member ■■■□□□□□□□
I got my A+ 4yrs ago after reading like 20pages of an A+ for dummies book, right when i got out the air force. (I did nothing related to IT). My job was in the air force doing satellite communications, i was a technician. My background lies in test equipment & communications. My tech school was easily 1 year.

nearly 4 years later, its hard to target what exactly my profession is. I spent 1 year doing audio/video testing; amps/transmitters/radios/software (talking about dozens of different items). I also spent several months in iraq working 14+hrs per day / 7daysperweek repairing desktops/laptops/printers small to huge/handheld radios to hummv radios, and a lot mostly soldering. On top of that I have assemled hundred or so Linux machines, installed some ROIP software, and tested those systems. I spent another year doing nothing but remote radio comm on vehicles. and another year doing more military radio comm projects. you see, Ive never seen a payraise the last 4 years... so Im looking to go into IT. I have a neighbor next door who says he'll hook me up as his company is expanding and he's the lead tech (admin). i do pc repair as a side job (hobby) for the last decade. i did staples for several months (eek $8/hr) and did that mostly because of all the business cards I gave out everyday.

Im working on Net+ now, reading it 2nd time around, doing flashcards if I feel I need to. I took the last 4 chapter tests of the sybex net+ book without reading the book and got 100s. IE ive been doing network TSing and playing with Cisco IOS enough before hearing of the Net+ (1 year of ROIP/VOIP projects). I have recently bought the Bryant Advantage CCNA as it was $60 instead of $200 and have not read a page until i get my net+

My question is, should I pursue the network route or should I go through desktop/windows route?
CompTIA: A+ / NET+ / SEC+
Microsoft: MCSA 2003

Comments

  • PlantwizPlantwiz Posts: 5,057Mod Mod
    Lamini wrote:
    My question is, should I pursue the network route or should I go through desktop/windows route?


    Depends on what you enjoy. Pick your career path based on your interests. FWIW
    Plantwiz
    _____
    "Grammar and spelling aren't everything, but this is a forum, not a chat room. You have plenty of time to spell out the word "you", and look just a little bit smarter." by Phaideaux

    ***I'll add you can Capitalize the word 'I' to show a little respect for yourself too.

    'i' before 'e' except after 'c'.... weird?
  • LaminiLamini Posts: 242Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Plantwiz wrote:
    Lamini wrote:
    My question is, should I pursue the network route or should I go through desktop/windows route?


    Depends on what you enjoy. Pick your career path based on your interests. FWIW



    if i had it my way then I wouldve been a porno star, but asians dont get far in that business (j/k!!)

    money has been my incentive. if I can get paid right, my wife wont have to work, i dont have to have 3 jobs, I dont have to work from 7am till 11pm everyday or volunteer iraq trips to make ends meet anymore. i never saw work as something I have to enjoy, seeing my kids healthy, and my wife with them, and us all having fun together is all I ever wanted, my only interest.

    I will probably take both routes, but if anyone has a suggestion, im all ears. my only problem now is I got moved out of the IT lab, which will kill my networking lab for ccna.
    CompTIA: A+ / NET+ / SEC+
    Microsoft: MCSA 2003
  • PlantwizPlantwiz Posts: 5,057Mod Mod
    Lamini wrote:

    money has been my incentive. if I can get paid right, my wife wont have to work, i dont have to have 3 jobs, I dont have to work from 7am till 11pm everyday or volunteer iraq trips to make ends meet anymore. i never saw work as something I have to enjoy, seeing my kids healthy, and my wife with them, and us all having fun together is all I ever wanted, my only interest.

    I will probably take both routes, but if anyone has a suggestion, im all ears. my only problem now is I got moved out of the IT lab, which will kill my networking lab for ccna.


    Good luck.

    Not sure why you think working three jobs is inferior, but that's how I had to pay my bills for years. Sure it would be nice to not have put all that time in and have had a life...possibly would have been married sooner in life and had kids a whole lot young then I was when I started....but sometimes that's just what needs to happen to network with the right people to finally catch that opportunity to have a job which permits for a small life.


    ***

    My comment was referencing your indecision of which IT path....you should (IMO) take the path that has more interests for you. It usually makes for a happier person, long-term better advances, more employement options....though it may take longer to reach those goals...it's possible to get there and be relatively happy with what is required of you each day to have a pay check at the weeks end.

    Stay acquainted with the IT lab people, maybe you can work in lab time on breaks, lunches, before/after shift....and maybe something will just open back up for you.

    Also, once you decide on the career track you want..then start looking at those exams, pick one, begin studying so that with your certs, you can....1) get back to the lab for good. OR 2) have developed a skillset that you can move to another company.

    Admirable to want your wife happy.....extremely important to have good health and mental state for yourself so she can enjoy you being around. A dead husband isn't worth squat, and raising children alone sucks. So you're health does matter. (IMHO)
    Plantwiz
    _____
    "Grammar and spelling aren't everything, but this is a forum, not a chat room. You have plenty of time to spell out the word "you", and look just a little bit smarter." by Phaideaux

    ***I'll add you can Capitalize the word 'I' to show a little respect for yourself too.

    'i' before 'e' except after 'c'.... weird?
  • LaminiLamini Posts: 242Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    i know you mean well. being sick of this "current" state of my career just getting to me, ie getting nowhere, 4 yrs never seen a raise. I just got several turns up ahead in life and trying to get some guidance as far as which one can get me a better career or prepare for one.
    CompTIA: A+ / NET+ / SEC+
    Microsoft: MCSA 2003
  • stlsmoorestlsmoore Posts: 515Member
    Hmm seems like you already have a little bit of experience with the networking engineering side, did you like doing that stuff at all while you were in the military? Honestly from what I noticed anyways though is that a network engineer gets paid quite a bit more than a system admin once you get into the higher positions.
    My Cisco Blog Adventure: http://shawnmoorecisco.blogspot.com/

    Don't Forget to Add me on LinkedIn!
    https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnrmoore
  • cisco_troopercisco_trooper Posts: 1,439Member
    If you go the windows route you will have more competition which means lower pay. You also have to deal with users a lot more, which drives me absolutely insane because they always seem to think YOU'RE the idiot.

    On the network infrastructure side, you don't have to deal with the end user as much, which is great if you don't like people anyway. Also people generally have to have proven themselves somehow before they get to start touching routers and switches, so you aren't going to be competing with punk kids right out of high school or college, and from my experience, the network engineers seem to be a little bit smarter. This is good if you don't like stupid people.

    This is just my experience, but I've only been in the biz for about 4 years so....take it for what it is.
  • stlsmoorestlsmoore Posts: 515Member
    I'm a people person though that's one of the main things that draws me to be a sys admin. but to each his own.
    My Cisco Blog Adventure: http://shawnmoorecisco.blogspot.com/

    Don't Forget to Add me on LinkedIn!
    https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnrmoore
  • cisco_troopercisco_trooper Posts: 1,439Member
    stlsmoore wrote:
    I'm a people person though that's one of the main things that draws me to be a sys admin. but to each his own.

    In the end you should do what you enjoy more. If you go to the infrastructure side because you think you'll earn a bigger paycheck, you may be selling yourself short if your heart isn't in the game. People who are truly successful always seem to love what they do. It will be hard to be successful on the network side if you don't truly enjoy the work.

    If you are truly a people person, the sys admin side will probably lead you to your better earning potential in the long run simply because your heart will be in the game and you will typically make better decisions than others that are there for the money. You can still make a buttload of money on the sys admin side.
  • LaminiLamini Posts: 242Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    thanks for the tips everyone

    according to these kind replies, taking the windows route = dealing w/ people + more competition = "lesser" pay.

    networking route = more engineering (than dealing with peeps) + less competition, but more difficulty

    trading off is people calling you idiot vs engineer. i did staples for several months, i cant count with the number of fingers i have the number of times i wanted to punch out some others teeth. can i also say there is better job security in networking? that is, if someone needs networking. im thinking networking here... im just not people friendly, but have tolerated it (I still do part time pc repair). my goal will just be to keep on my networking (with people) and see who I can get hooked up with locally. Im not up to the commute in DC (live in southern Maryland).
    CompTIA: A+ / NET+ / SEC+
    Microsoft: MCSA 2003
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