How Long Did You Study Before You Took Exam?

ampersandampersand Member Posts: 29 ■□□□□□□□□□
How long did you study for your Microsoft 70-680 exam before taking it? Did you pass?

I'm two weeks in, and I'm studying for the exam using the Microsoft Press book and the CBT Nuggets and Trainsignal videos. I feel like I'd be more motivated if I had a deadline -- like a scheduled exam! But I don't know how much time to allocate for studying and lab time before I take the exam. Thanks!

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  • Dakinggamer87Dakinggamer87 Gaming Tech Expert Silicon Valley, CAMember Posts: 4,016 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I usually spend about 4-6 weeks per exam on average for reading the books, practice tests, and labs to prepare. I hope this helps you out. icon_thumright.gif
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  • PsoasmanPsoasman Senior Member Member Posts: 2,687 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I spent around 2 months studying for the exam. I tend to take more time taking notes, labbing, etc. It depends on your experience with W7 and MS in general.
  • PristonPriston Member Posts: 999 ■■■■□□□□□□
    ampersand wrote: »
    How long did you study for your Microsoft 70-680 exam before taking it? Did you pass?

    I'm two weeks in, and I'm studying for the exam using the Microsoft Press book and the CBT Nuggets and Trainsignal videos. I feel like I'd be more motivated if I had a deadline -- like a scheduled exam! But I don't know how much time to allocate for studying and lab time before I take the exam. Thanks!
    I'm having trouble motivating myself to study too. How about this, lets race to see who passes the test first. Winner gets a cookie!
    How about it?
    A.A.S. in Networking Technologies
    A+, Network+, CCNA
  • ampersandampersand Member Posts: 29 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Priston wrote: »
    I'm having trouble motivating myself to study too. How about this, lets race to see who passes the test first. Winner gets a cookie!
    How about it?

    Absolutely. I love cookies! This is my first certification ever, though... do I get a handicap?
  • mattlee09mattlee09 Member Posts: 205
    I'm in!

    Subway has these new raspberry macadamia nut cookies...3 for $1.49! They are awesome.
    And you get a sub - which is mostly healthy, so it works out!

    I finished Chp 1 of MS Press today, with good notes. I'm going to finish the book w/ taking notes, then finish Professor Messors vids, giving myself a week prior to my exam date (Apr 19) for further labbing/reading the topics I seem to be weak on.

    Exam is already scheduled (used the Dreamspark voucher that was posted last month). Just coming from ICND1, I'm finding it a nice change of content. And I feel accomplished/encouraged when I go through 50 pages in an hr or 2 (even though most of them are screenshots, hehe).
  • MentholMooseMentholMoose Senior Member Member Posts: 1,525 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I usually spend about 4-6 weeks per exam on average for reading the books, practice tests, and labs to prepare. I hope this helps you out. icon_thumright.gif
    Same here, however the 680 was probably an exception for me. Immediately before taking it, I spend a month or so studying for the 686 beta, so basically I didn't need to spend much time on the 680 (I actually spent more time on it than I wanted since I was busy with work and kept having to postpone the exam).
    MentholMoose
    MCSA 2003, LFCS, LFCE (expired), VCP6-DCV
  • mattlee09mattlee09 Member Posts: 205
    Same here, however the 680 was probably an exception for me. Immediately before taking it, I spend a month or so studying for the 686 beta, so basically I didn't need to spend much time on the 680 (I actually spent more time on it than I wanted since I was busy with work and kept having to postpone the exam).

    Menthol - you'd say this was the same case for most of your MS exams? Each one comprising your EA for example (take the 70-640). It took you about 4-6 weeks for each? Is this with reading the MS Press books? Adding in some CBT's/Trainsignals for particular ones? w/ extra TechNet resources to supplement your weaknesses?

    Trying to keep this on topic to the thread, lol. I guess what I'm wondering, are most MS exams the length of 70-680 as far as what I've mentioned above? It seems like most of the Press books are the same length.

    Like I mentioned in my earlier post, I'm looking at a solid 2.5 - 3 hrs a night to really "complete" a chapter in the 70-680 Press book. I figured out early on when studying for ICND1 that I was "skimming" the chapter in an hour or less, and not really getting much out of it. I started taking notes, and felt like I got 500% more as an end result.

    Not sure if I'm still going too fast, waaay slow, or if this is similar for most of you guys. Going all day 8-5 @ work and studying from 5-8 that night seems super extreme to my friends/co-workers/family, but I've enjoyed it so far. Slowly starting to feel cut off from the world around me, and I'm sure this is only just the beginning.

    Edit - Reading back over Daking and Psoasman I guess they are pretty much answering what I asked, lol. Sorry! - Man its late!
  • MentholMooseMentholMoose Senior Member Member Posts: 1,525 ■■■■■■■■□□
    mattlee09 wrote: »
    Menthol - you'd say this was the same case for most of your MS exams? Each one comprising your EA for example (take the 70-640). It took you about 4-6 weeks for each? Is this with reading the MS Press books? Adding in some CBT's/Trainsignals for particular ones? w/ extra TechNet resources to supplement your weaknesses?
    I went through the Sybex book for every exam in the SA and EA, except for 70-680 (I didn't use any book for it). I didn't use any training videos... I tried to use one for (I think) 70-643, but I kept falling asleep while watching it (seriously), so it didn't work out! Mainly I just went through the book and did extensive labbing. This, plus my work experience with (primarily) Server 2003, was enough at the time (this was before the exams covered 2008 R2).

    For labbing, I did every lab in the book, plus more. Often while going through a lab in the book, I'd find something interesting, and I'd either work on that for a while, or make a note of it and come back to it. This often required checking Google and Technet. As an example, in the DHCP chapter, I didn't just install, configure, authorize, and test DHCP with one scope. I was interested in how to get it working with multiple networks, so I setup extra networks with VMs on them, setup multiple scopes, setup a DHCP forwarder, and got it working.
    mattlee09 wrote: »
    Trying to keep this on topic to the thread, lol. I guess what I'm wondering, are most MS exams the length of 70-680 as far as what I've mentioned above? It seems like most of the Press books are the same length.
    I guess it will depend on your experience. For me each exam required about the same amount of learning. Most of the exams had some stuff I already knew as well as stuff I didn't.
    mattlee09 wrote: »
    Like I mentioned in my earlier post, I'm looking at a solid 2.5 - 3 hrs a night to really "complete" a chapter in the 70-680 Press book. I figured out early on when studying for ICND1 that I was "skimming" the chapter in an hour or less, and not really getting much out of it. I started taking notes, and felt like I got 500% more as an end result.

    Not sure if I'm still going too fast, waaay slow, or if this is similar for most of you guys. Going all day 8-5 @ work and studying from 5-8 that night seems super extreme to my friends/co-workers/family, but I've enjoyed it so far. Slowly starting to feel cut off from the world around me, and I'm sure this is only just the beginning.
    Do whatever works for you. I was pretty motivated so I studied hard, but I had to take some breaks here and there. At lunch I would often spend my lunch hour studying, plus any downtime, then do a few hours at night.
    MentholMoose
    MCSA 2003, LFCS, LFCE (expired), VCP6-DCV
  • ampersandampersand Member Posts: 29 ■□□□□□□□□□
    mattlee09 wrote: »
    Not sure if I'm still going too fast, waaay slow, or if this is similar for most of you guys. Going all day 8-5 at work and studying from 5-8 that night seems super extreme to my friends/co-workers/family, but I've enjoyed it so far.

    I have a similar schedule, and my boyfriend thinks I'm crazy. I'm glad I'm not alone! In two weeks, I've watched six CBT Nuggets videos (a better introduction to exam subjects) and six Trainsignal videos (longer, but more in depth) and read two chapters of the Microsoft press book and spent hours and hours labbing (currently capturing and deploying Windows images!).

    Yes, I might be a little crazy. But I've been working in consumer IT support for three years, and I want to work in an enterprise environment. Now. So that motivates me!
  • CChilderhoseCChilderhose Member Posts: 137
    I studied about 2 weeks reading the MS Press book and did not get all the way through, then wrote and passed the exam.

    I work with Windows 7 daily and have many years of experience. Plus also studying for the MCITP: EA helped allot as well with a few overlapping things.

    Good luck to everyone and knock it out. icon_thumright.gif
    VCAP-DCA, VCP 55
    MCITP: EA, VA, SA
    VCAP-DCD, VCP6 -- COMING SOON
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