I am completely indecisive and lost..

wellnowwhatwellnowwhat Member Posts: 56 ■■□□□□□□□□
I've been trying to figure out which path to take, the Network+ > CCNA path, or the Microsoft path, and I can't seem to make up my mind.

I have Apple certifications. I know that they are close to useless within the context of enterprise IT, but I am trying to use my current computer knowledge derived from said Apple certifications as a jumping off point into something more interesting. I've been advised to skip the A+ exam as it is probably a lot of overlap with what I already have, and I'm currently working through a Network+ book.

However, I can't decide if I should go Microsoft or Cisco. Basically, I can't decide if I should go the servers/users/domains/systems route or the full-on networking route. The networking stuff is interesting, but so is the server stuff, and I feel as though there are many more jobs for MS Server technicians/admins than there are for network admins..

Anyway, thanks for listening. Any insight you can offer would be great. If not, thanks for letting me rant.


  • EssendonEssendon Member Posts: 4,548 ■■■■■■■■■■
    What do you do at work and where do your interests lie? That'll give us some ammo to give you a good answer.
    NSX, NSX, more NSX..

    Blog >> http://virtual10.com
  • wellnowwhatwellnowwhat Member Posts: 56 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Right now I do on-site support for end users as well as hardware diagnosis and repair at a service center. Basically, I drive to a customers house and help them set up an in-home network, install printers, download software updates, setup backup systems, things like that. When I'm at our service center, I do software and hardware stuff, including hard drive installations, ram upgrades, video card replacements, logic (mother) board replacements, that sort of thing. I also do some small business stuff but haven't really gotten too far into it, as my current position requires the Apple server certification to do business stuff, which I am currently trying to study for but don't currently have.

    I really like working with server systems and "backend" stuff. I've setup Linux servers at my house and configured many different services, and the tinkering and fixing things that break is where my interests lie. I also like helping the end user, I just wish that I got paid more for it. :)

    Edit: I DO have some Windows experience. I've worked with Windows XP and Windows 7 on my own, but haven't really done a whole lot of troubleshooting or support in a business/professional environment. I do know how to fix common problems, repair PC hardware, etc., but I never list it on my resumé because it's not "real" experience..
  • matt333matt333 Senior Member Bay AreaMember Posts: 257 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Network+ isnt going to impress anyone IMO. I got mine for myself, to see if i was able to pass a professional level test (still in college icon_rolleyes.gif) and it has helped me, but there is a lot of overlap in the CCNA and I could have saved myself 250 bucks but yeah, CCNA is entry-level getting it wont label you a networking only guy only someone that wants a strong understanding of networking in general.

    From your posting I think Microsoft maybe the most interesting path for you. look over the exam obj. Heres a link to some free Microsoft videos, they are very good
    Free MCITP Training

    Gook luck
    Studying: Automating Everything, network API's, Python etc.. 
    Certifications: CCNP, CCDP, JNCIS-DevOps, JNCIS-ENT, JNCIP-DC
  • drkatdrkat Banned Posts: 703
  • wellnowwhatwellnowwhat Member Posts: 56 ■■□□□□□□□□
    From your posting I think Microsoft maybe the most interesting path for you.

    My only concern is my lack of client-level support with Windows. I have a lot of Apple helpdesk/tech experience, but nothing on my resumé really says "Windows" on it, at least not in terms of professional experience. Would becoming proficient with Windows Server and getting the MS certs be enough, or am I kind of screwed due to my large amount of Apple certifications/experience?
  • EssendonEssendon Member Posts: 4,548 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Hmm, it sounds you like working with end-users and the server side of things. The servers/systems side of things should be up your alley then.

    The Microsoft route is the way to go then, pick up the MS Press book for the 70-640 exam and start reading through it. You may also want to have a look at the 70-685 book which deals with the Desktop Support kind of roles. Set up a lab at home, there are a whole heap of threads on how to set up a home lab with VMware/VirtualPC/VirtualBox. See if you like it.

    The Net+ wouldnt be such a good idea, the CCENT/CCNA gives you more bang for your buck. I reckon you should ditch that and work on a Microsoft cert, way more ROI man.

    Good luck with whatever you do and let us know if there are more questions.
    NSX, NSX, more NSX..

    Blog >> http://virtual10.com
  • wellnowwhatwellnowwhat Member Posts: 56 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks a lot for your advice, everyone. I appreciate your patience and understanding for those of us who are either new or confused.
  • tprice5tprice5 Member Posts: 770
    System admin job seems like it would be a good move for you. Most require MCITP:EA so I say microsoft.

    I have to echo matt333, Network+ is a virtually useless cert.
    Certification To-Do: CEH [ ], CHFI [ ], NCSA [ ], E10-001 [ ], 70-413 [ ], 70-414 [ ]
    Start Date: 10/01/2014 | Complete Date: ASAP
    All Courses: LOT2, LYT2 , UVC2, ORA1, VUT2, VLT2 , FNV2 , TFT2 , JIT2 , FMV2, FXT2 , LQT2
  • MAC_AddyMAC_Addy Member Posts: 1,740 ■■■■□□□□□□
    While I have the Network+ certification, I believe that this helped me to understand a lot about networking. But, this all depends on what you'd like to do with your career. Since CompTIA have made it the same as Cisco as in you'll have to re-certify every 3 years. I believe that if you wanted to go into networking and have no idea on what's what - buy a network+ book, or even go to your local library and read it. Don't take the Net+ exam, but go straight into CCENT or CCNA. This will help you gain a level of foundation to leak over to the Cisco world.
    2017 Certification Goals:
    CCNP R/S
  • kurosaki00kurosaki00 Member Posts: 973
    I dont know...
    you should either know what path you like more.
    MS or Cisco, very different paths.
    If you like both equally, go for both.
    Start with the Certification that you think that would benefit you the most in a short term.
  • the_hutchthe_hutch Banned Posts: 827
    MAC_Addy wrote: »
    While I have the Network+ certification, I believe that this helped me to understand a lot about networking.

    I agree with this. Network+ may not be the most desirable certification, but preparing for it can be a very good introductory experience for someone just starting out.
Sign In or Register to comment.