noob when it comes to Windows Server...

leghornleghorn Registered Users Posts: 2 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hi,

I am currently working in a computer retail store as a technician/sales doing what most people in that position do - fix/sell computers for end-users. I am fairly proficient when it comes to most things to do with "stand-alone" PCs. Problem is I am a noob when it comes to a corporate environment where a Server-Client setup is used.

I have dabbled in it on occasions when customers have say bought a new client PC(s) and asked me to link it up to the workplace's local server - That I can do but not with any sort of supreme confidence or ease.

So what I'm asking is can someone advise me on what exam modules I should be looking at studying or beginning with.

Cheers... :D

Comments

  • Mojo_666Mojo_666 Member Posts: 438
    leghorn wrote: »
    Hi,

    I am currently working in a computer retail store as a technician/sales doing what most people in that position do - fix/sell computers for end-users. I am fairly proficient when it comes to most things to do with "stand-alone" PCs. Problem is I am a noob when it comes to a corporate environment where a Server-Client setup is used.

    I have dabbled in it on occasions when customers have say bought a new client PC(s) and asked me to link it up to the workplace's local server - That I can do but not with any sort of supreme confidence or ease.

    So what I'm asking is can someone advise me on what exam modules I should be looking at studying or beginning with.

    Cheers... :D

    Microsft Server 2003 70-290 then 70-291 books would be a good start, just get yourself a copy of server 2003 to play arround with. icon_thumright.gif
  • SlowhandSlowhand MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, MCSA: Windows Server 2003/2012/2016, CCNA Routing & Switchi Bay Area, CaliforniaMod Posts: 5,163 Mod
    Normally, I'd definitely recommend the MCSA/MCSE path as well. However, if you're just starting out, you've got quite a journey ahead of you, and it might serve you better to start out with the Windows Server 2008 certs, MCITP: Server Administrator and MCITP: Enterprise Administrator. While Windows Server 2003 is still going strong right now, you're going to see Windows Server 2008 begin to pop up more and more, and it may not be worth your time to study the 2K3 material as in-depth. Of course, that doesn't mean you can't pick up a reference book and get familiar with the older technology as well.

    One thing I can assure you is that, as a Windows admin, regardless of which version you work with, most companies are going to assume you're familiar with Exchange. Once you've earned your Windows Server cert, it's probably going to be a good idea to look at the MCITP on Exchange 2007 or 2010.

    And, regardless of if you start with Windows Server 2003 or 2008, you're going to need the software to play with. I can highly recommend picking up a TechNet Plus subscription. With TechNet, you're entitled to download and install full versions of pretty much all of Microsoft's software, including Windows XP/Vista/7, Windows Server 2003 and 2008, as well as Exchange, SQL Server, and a whole lot more. It costs about $350 to start the subscription, then $250 a year to renew, but there's always some discount or another going on if you do a Google search for it. Or, if you're a student, you can get the DreamSpark offer for free.

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  • Chris:/*Chris:/* Member Posts: 658 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Great recommendations Slowhand for the budding Windows Admin, rep for you!
    Degrees:
    M.S. Information Security and Assurance
    B.S. Computer Science - Summa Cum Laude
    A.A.S. Electronic Systems Technology
  • leghornleghorn Registered Users Posts: 2 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the quick response Slowhand... Would you recommend CompTIA Network+ first up or is that too basic?
  • RobertKaucherRobertKaucher Member Posts: 4,298 ■■■■■■■■■■
    leghorn wrote: »
    Thanks for the quick response Slowhand... Would you recommend CompTIA Network+ first up or is that too basic?

    For anyone who is starting out I always suggest that they start with brushing up on the basics. I recall when I was first getting into IT how much I thought I knew about this stuff that I actually didn't. Do a quick review of A+ study material, do a quick study of the Server+ study material, study the Net+ objectives and then move on to the MCSA or MCITP Server Admin track.

    When I decided to get my MCSE the first thing I did was review the A+, Net+ and Server+ exams. I was very thankful that I did that. I did not actually take the exams, but I believe having a firm foundation in the domains covered by their exam objectives made the MCSE easier on me than it would have been otherwise.
  • Chris:/*Chris:/* Member Posts: 658 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I always recommend the CompTIA trilogy when starting out in information technology there is good information in A+, Network+ and Security+ that you may not pick up initially from other certifications.

    The CompTIA certifications provide a solid foundation in which to build from. They are Entry Level Certifications not what I would call basic more fundamental. Its like football if you do not know the fundamentals you are going to have a much harder time getting to the end zone.
    Degrees:
    M.S. Information Security and Assurance
    B.S. Computer Science - Summa Cum Laude
    A.A.S. Electronic Systems Technology
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 0 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Slowhand wrote: »
    Normally, I'd definitely recommend the MCSA/MCSE path as well. However, if you're just starting out, you've got quite a journey ahead of you, and it might serve you better to start out with the Windows Server 2008 certs, MCITP: Server Administrator and MCITP: Enterprise Administrator. While Windows Server 2003 is still going strong right now, you're going to see Windows Server 2008 begin to pop up more and more, and it may not be worth your time to study the 2K3 material as in-depth. Of course, that doesn't mean you can't pick up a reference book and get familiar with the older technology as well.

    One thing I can assure you is that, as a Windows admin, regardless of which version you work with, most companies are going to assume you're familiar with Exchange. Once you've earned your Windows Server cert, it's probably going to be a good idea to look at the MCITP on Exchange 2007 or 2010.

    And, regardless of if you start with Windows Server 2003 or 2008, you're going to need the software to play with. I can highly recommend picking up a TechNet Plus subscription. With TechNet, you're entitled to download and install full versions of pretty much all of Microsoft's software, including Windows XP/Vista/7, Windows Server 2003 and 2008, as well as Exchange, SQL Server, and a whole lot more. It costs about $350 to start the subscription, then $250 a year to renew, but there's always some discount or another going on if you do a Google search for it. Or, if you're a student, you can get the DreamSpark offer for free.

    I believe there is also a cheaper TechNet subscription also that is $199. That might make it easier on someone just starting out so they don't go all in for $350. I won't argue that $350 isn't a good deal though.
  • RobertKaucherRobertKaucher Member Posts: 4,298 ■■■■■■■■■■
    xmalachi wrote: »
    I believe there is also a cheaper TechNet subscription also that is $199. That might make it easier on someone just starting out so they don't go all in for $350. I won't argue that $350 isn't a good deal though.

    If you are just starting out I don't really think either is needed. You can download trial copies of most of the technologies for 120 days.
  • earweedearweed Member Posts: 5,192 ■■■■■■■■■□
    +1 To RK for his suggestion of studying Server+ material. I've been going through the objectives for Server+ and you will see practically everything from those exam objectives as you do your Server 2008 studies.
    I'd also recommend that you have a 64 bit computer capable of running 2008 R2 since that is being phased in for the exams.
    No longer work in IT. Play around with stuff sometimes still and fix stuff for friends and relatives.
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 0 ■■■■□□□□□□
    If you are just starting out I don't really think either is needed. You can download trial copies of most of the technologies for 120 days.

    True, forgot about that. +1

    Edit: I would have repp'd if I could but apparently I like the things you say too much
  • DevilsbaneDevilsbane Member Posts: 4,212 ■■■■■■■■□□
    If you are just starting out I don't really think either is needed. You can download trial copies of most of the technologies for 120 days.

    Or you can use the cd's that come in the back of the books that you will likely buy for your studies. 90 days is more than enough.

    As the others have mentioned, you can go with either the 2003 path or the 2008 path. There is much debate on which way a person should go. My personal opinion is that the MCSA/MCSE is a better place to start because most companies are still using 2003 servers and the MCSE is still probably the most recognized certification. The only concern with this option is that eventually the tests are going to be retired. However, the March retirements were released about a month ago, and none of these tests are on there. So you have at least until mid to late next year, which is plenty of time.
    Decide what to be and go be it.
  • earweedearweed Member Posts: 5,192 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Devilsbane wrote: »
    Or you can use the cd's that come in the back of the books that you will likely buy for your studies. 90 days is more than enough.

    As the others have mentioned, you can go with either the 2003 path or the 2008 path. There is much debate on which way a person should go. My personal opinion is that the MCSA/MCSE is a better place to start because most companies are still using 2003 servers and the MCSE is still probably the most recognized certification. The only concern with this option is that eventually the tests are going to be retired. However, the March retirements were released about a month ago, and none of these tests are on there. So you have at least until mid to late next year, which is plenty of time.
    +1 MS has been good lately about announcing retirements in advance. The next retirement date will be Oct 2011 and I don't seriously think the base Server 2003 exams will be on there. MS will probably start retiring the electives first (Security, Messaging, etc) and later hit up the base exams . MS tends to keep 2 Operating system test sets active and when they start to get ready to release the next server OS will push 2003 tests into retirement.
    No longer work in IT. Play around with stuff sometimes still and fix stuff for friends and relatives.
  • RobertKaucherRobertKaucher Member Posts: 4,298 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Devilsbane wrote: »
    Or you can use the cd's that come in the back of the books that you will likely buy for your studies. 90 days is more than enough.

    As the others have mentioned, you can go with either the 2003 path or the 2008 path. There is much debate on which way a person should go. My personal opinion is that the MCSA/MCSE is a better place to start because most companies are still using 2003 servers and the MCSE is still probably the most recognized certification. The only concern with this option is that eventually the tests are going to be retired. However, the March retirements were released about a month ago, and none of these tests are on there. So you have at least until mid to late next year, which is plenty of time.
    If you have access to those, can you do the 120 day trial on the 2008 and then activate for another 90?
  • earweedearweed Member Posts: 5,192 ■■■■■■■■■□
    If you have access to those, can you do the 120 day trial on the 2008 and then activate for another 90?
    Good question as I've never tried that. One thought though is that if the OP is doing Server 2008 then he'll want to lab 2008 R2 and the books only include trials of Server 2008. I don't even know if the 120 day trials of Server 2008 are still available but I know the 120 day trials of Server 2008 R2 are.

    Also can you extend the 90 days like you can extend the 120 day trial (you can extend the 120 day trial 3 or 4 times by doing slmgr.vbs -rearm)
    No longer work in IT. Play around with stuff sometimes still and fix stuff for friends and relatives.
  • DevilsbaneDevilsbane Member Posts: 4,212 ■■■■■■■■□□
    earweed wrote: »
    Also can you extend the 90 days like you can extend the 120 day trial (you can extend the 120 day trial 3 or 4 times by doing slmgr.vbs -rearm)

    Roughly $30 for 9-12 months is much better than the technet subscription, in this scenario at least.
    Decide what to be and go be it.
  • brad-brad- Member Posts: 1,218
    Microsoft exam 70-290. That is what you're interested in. Look at the material for that and/or the W2k8 equivalent exam - I think it is 70-640.

    I didnt take 70-270 because I did the DST for XP, but I think that exam quizzes your knowledge on client machines as they pertain to a domain.

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  • Mojo_666Mojo_666 Member Posts: 438
    MCSE or MCSA or even MCP on Server 2003 is still very much a valid path, but if you want to walk down what I consider a rather expensive not very desirable tack then go for it, the 2003 track is still the most desirable. 2003 is more relevant (although not as up to date as 200eaight every recoursce for 2003 is easily available, every bit(torrent) of software relating to 2003 is easily available and pretty much any system could run a 2003 VM lab.

    2003 will cost you little and give you more back, even if you do not take or pass the exams knowing it will give you more for less and still set up for 2008 and give you a good feel of what track you want to take.

    Even a single 70-290 pass will give you credability as a newcomer even if you do go on to 2008, I also assume you know xp pretty darn well? if so that's another bonus for studying 2003 as that is the partner OS for it.
  • SlowhandSlowhand MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, MCSA: Windows Server 2003/2012/2016, CCNA Routing & Switchi Bay Area, CaliforniaMod Posts: 5,163 Mod
    leghorn wrote: »
    Thanks for the quick response Slowhand... Would you recommend CompTIA Network+ first up or is that too basic?

    It's definitely a good idea to look at the entry-level exams as well. Like RobertKaucher mentioned, a lot of people start with the A+, Network+, Security+ combo, but there are other certs from CompTIA that could be helpful to you as well, (such as Server+, Convergence+, or even Linux+.) The "trifecta" of A+, Network+, and Security+ is a really good place to start, especially for a Windows admin.

    One thing to keep in mind is that, up until now, all CompTIA's certifications have been good for life. Because of some compliance-changes, the A+, Network+, and Security+ certifications will have to be renewed every three years if taken after December 31st of this year. It's not a huge deal, but it's something to be aware of. If you take any or all three of those exams before January 1st, 2011, they'll be considered lifetime certs and won't expire. (CompTIA's other certs are still good for life, regardless of when you take them.)

    Where you want to start is up to you. If you want to get a more rounded start with a lot of different things, then have a look at what CompTIA offers. If you're itching to get started with Windows Server, then you can certainly begin studying for the MCSA/MCSE or MCITP paths.

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  • Cert PoorCert Poor Member Posts: 240 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I just ordered the MS Press 70-290 book and will install 2003 on a machine. Should I use a VM or install it onto its own primary partition? I dunno the pros/cons.
    In progress: MTA: Database Fundamentals (98-364)
    Next up: CompTIA Cloud Essentials+ (CLO-002) or LPI Linux Essentials (010-160)
    Earned: CompTIA A+, Net+, Sec+, Server+, Proj+
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  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Cert Poor wrote: »
    I just ordered the MS Press 70-290 book and will install 2003 on a machine. Should I use a VM or install it onto its own primary partition? I dunno the pros/cons.

    VM. More flexibility with VMs vs physical machines. Grab Virtual box and go for it.
  • N2ITN2IT Inactive Imported Users Posts: 7,483 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Slowhand wrote: »
    Normally, I'd definitely recommend the MCSA/MCSE path as well. However, if you're just starting out, you've got quite a journey ahead of you, and it might serve you better to start out with the Windows Server 2008 certs, MCITP: Server Administrator and MCITP: Enterprise Administrator. While Windows Server 2003 is still going strong right now, you're going to see Windows Server 2008 begin to pop up more and more, and it may not be worth your time to study the 2K3 material as in-depth. Of course, that doesn't mean you can't pick up a reference book and get familiar with the older technology as well.

    One thing I can assure you is that, as a Windows admin, regardless of which version you work with, most companies are going to assume you're familiar with Exchange. Once you've earned your Windows Server cert, it's probably going to be a good idea to look at the MCITP on Exchange 2007 or 2010.

    And, regardless of if you start with Windows Server 2003 or 2008, you're going to need the software to play with. I can highly recommend picking up a TechNet Plus subscription. With TechNet, you're entitled to download and install full versions of pretty much all of Microsoft's software, including Windows XP/Vista/7, Windows Server 2003 and 2008, as well as Exchange, SQL Server, and a whole lot more. It costs about $350 to start the subscription, then $250 a year to renew, but there's always some discount or another going on if you do a Google search for it. Or, if you're a student, you can get the DreamSpark offer for free.


    +1 very nice post
  • SabaloSabalo Member Posts: 100
    If you've not got a lot of experience in server technologies, you're definitely interested in pursuing a Microsoft certification track, and you want to build a good base of knowledge... I'm going to recommend starting with the MCITP: Desktop Support 7 and the MCITP: Desktop Enterprise Administrator 7.

    My thoughts here are:

    1) Those two certs will help you in your current position.
    2) You'll get exposure to some of the technologies and terms you'll need later.
    3) You'll see the format MS uses for their tests.
    4) You'll finish one of the five tests you need for your eventual EA.

    By pursuing those two certifications, you'll learn a lot of what a beginning tech/admin will be tasked with doing. You should come out of it with the skill to deploy images, troubleshoot workstation issues, and do some basic Active Directory work. If you prepared well, you'll also be ready to move on to the Server 2008 track.

    Just an alternate idea!
    I'm no expert, I'm just a guy with some time, money, and the desire to learn a few things.

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