MCSE 2003 Core Design Exam (Which one?)

Johnny JohnsonJohnny Johnson Member Posts: 241 ■■■□□□□□□□
Since only one exam is needed for the core design portion, I'm just curious as to which exam is less difficult, if there is such a thing. LOL!

70-297: Designing a Windows Server 2003 Active Directory and Network Infrastructure


70-298: Designing Security for a Windows Server 2003 Network
Next up: 100-101 ICND1 :study:

Keep the Son in your eyes!


  • steve77uksteve77uk Member Posts: 48 ■■■□□□□□□□

    I myself have the very same question. To the point where I just did not understand the differences really and what they could do for me generally...

    I did shy away from the security side as I struggled with PKI etc.. and certificates etc..

    But read that the 298 was easy although the 299 was hard, but the consensus was 297 was harder and a lot more tricky.. but if you learnt it good, you should be OK..

    After ordering the MS Press 297 book, I changed my mind and ordered the 298 book instead.

    They way I looked at it is the 297 can only be used down the messaging route, however the 298 can lead you down the messaging and the security route.

    I hope I am correct in saying this, but thought I may change my mind on either exchange or security after the next exam and want to still have an option!

    I am interested in other folks views too!

    I have to send one book back to the other - should it be 297 or 298?!
    A+ | Network+ | MCSA 2003 | MCSE 2003 | MCSA: Messaging 2003 | VCP 410

    Now need 2008 Enterprise AND Exchange 2010 :cry:
  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    The consensus seems to be that 298 is easier. I've seen people fail 297 a couple of times and then switch over to 298 and knock it out on their first try.

    I did 298 myself, and it seemed to be an appropriate difficulty. I wouldn't call it easy, but it's nothing to dread either.

    And yes, 297 is only applicable to the messaging specialization while 298 can be applied to either (or both ;)).
  • gangxtagangxta Member Posts: 12 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I am working on 294 right now, so I am wondering which one to do next as well.

    I could be completely off base here (having not studied for or taken either test), but at a glance, 297 looks like it should be somewhat close to the same material from 294 - GPO's, OU's, groups, site links, etc. plus stuff you should know from previous course - DNS, DHCP, etc. Whereas, 298 looks like some stuff from previous exams - PKI, IIS, IPSec, RRAS, etc. plus some newer things - security principals obviously (planning, preventing, detecting, etc).

    Going straight from 294, on paper, it looks like 297 would be close to the stuff you already know. Personally, I am going for MCSE:Messaging, so either one would work.

    I would be curious to hear from anyone that has studied for and/or taken both.
  • jbayne3jbayne3 Member Posts: 45 ■■□□□□□□□□
    im not sure which one to take either....i really like security, but not the "microsoft way"

    one more and i am a MCSE!
  • Graham_84Graham_84 Member Posts: 85 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I took 70-297 first, as Active Directory was always my strong point. I failed this first time with 564, I then took again and failed 2nd time with 584. Just was in total disbelief. This exam annoying is its how microsoft want you to setup AD, which isnt always right. The main problem with this exam is in a case study, If you "take the wrong path" you will fail the whole testlet. EG if you are asked to choose whether they are looking for seperate forests or seperate domains and you dont get that right, then you will fail most others when asking for user groups etc, ou structure as you will be answering these based on the forest structure you thought they wanted.

    298 i took and was a little cautious as wasnt a big fan of design exams, and already failed 297 twice. But this one was easy. Scored well over 800 almost 900. Some questions were so easy, like using MBSA etc. Nothing really complex at all.

    Hope this helps
    Currently having a break after the MCITP:EA. Citrix or Cisco next, not sure!
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