70-291 vs. 70-293, 70-294, and 70-297

SrSysAdminSrSysAdmin Posts: 259Member
I know this test is nicknamed "The Beast", but can you guys tell me how difficult the other 3 tests are on the way to the MCSE when compared to this one?

It seems like one of the others would be more difficult since they are en route to the MCSE, and not used for the MCSA.

Not a huge deal, just curious. My boss said he thought the designing AD test was the most difficult for him...what do you guys think?
Current Certifications:

* B.S. in Business Management
* Sec+ 2008

Currently Studying for:
* 70-293 Maintaining a Server 2003 Network

Future Plans:

* 70-294 Planning a Server 2003 AD
* 70-297 Designing a Server 2003 AD
* 70-647 Server 2008
* 70-649 MCSE to MCITP:EA


  • PsoasmanPsoasman Posts: 2,687Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    I haven't taken the 297, but I felt the 291 was a 8/10, the 293 a 7/10, and the 294 a 7/10.

    The 293/294 were very wordy when I took them, it helps to read ALL the answers first, then the question, then the answers again. Good Luck
  • Johnny JohnsonJohnny Johnson Posts: 241Member
    IMO 293 was a lot more difficult than 291. Make sure you are very familiar with PKI, Clustering, and GPOs for 293. Good luck to you!
    Next up: 100-101 ICND1 :study:

    Keep the Son in your eyes!
  • bwcartybwcarty Posts: 422Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    291 isn't that bad, but you do need to know DNS inside and out.

    If you really know your 291 material, 293 can be easy as long as you add PKI, Clustering, and NLB to your skillset. Brush up on RRAS and IPSec, and you're in good shape.

    294 was a monster for me. I went in feeling very prepared and failed with a score in the high 600s. I took a couple weeks to study some more and just barely passed it on the second attempt.

    297 wasn't that bad, although the format and timing can definitely kill you if you're not prepared for it. Transcender or Self Test really helps familiarize you with the format. The content is generally from 291 and 294, so it's not too bad. I passed it within a week of passing 294.
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  • Super99Super99 Posts: 274Member
    This post was very helpful to me as well. I'm currently studying for my 291. I hear that a lot of people are saying to know DNS very well.
  • rob7278rob7278 Posts: 57Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    I finished reading the ms press book and I have been going back through doing concentrated studying on areas where I feel I am weakest. One thing that I feel causes the 291 exam to be labeled "The Beast" is there are a lot of networking concepts introduced, however I don't feel the books really take you far enough to fully grasp (learn) the concepts. You get a fundamental understanding of networking components and how they work together, but I felt like every time I would almost be really getting it they would move on to the next topic. So by the end of the book I felt like I had tons of fragmented knowledge. To be fair the authors were explaining concepts that stayed within the scope of the exam objectives. However I have a really hard time retaining information if I don't understand how everything fits together; to me it's the difference between memorization or learning. So what I did was I started reading the 70-293 book and although a lot of the information is beyond the scope of what you need to know for the 70-291 exam I feel like I am able to grasp the concepts better and bring all the information together.

    I do need to give credit to the many people that provide very helpful posts on this forum, as I had read from numerous others that the MCSE courses take over where the MCSA courses leave off.
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