Conflicting study material.

JumboManJumboMan Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
I've been self studying for the A+ the past few months and I'm now revising for the exams however I'm now noticing different study sources have different information which doesn't help with the learning process. I've been using Professor Messer Videos, All-in-1 study guide 7th ed, and Exam Cram 5th ed.

Today I was going over DVD types and storage capacity, one source states that a Single sided/single layer DVD has a capacity of 4.37 GB, the other source states 4.7GB and lists it as DVD-5. Also the capacity for a Dual Layer/double side DVD reads as 15.9GB from one source and 17GB from another, and is listed as DVD-18. All the other DVD capacities also differ somewhat.

I was also looking over 802.11 standards and there different ranges, one source lists 802.11b as 300feet and the other 38 meters (125feet), there are also other differences with the other standards.

The more I am revising the more I'm noticing the differences between these sources which are all produced for the same exam, I'm finding this rather off putting, as I fear it may cost me valuable marks. Even some of the questions on the practice exams have incorrect answers. Basically I don't know which source to believe and revise for the exams.

Comments

  • FloOzFloOz Member Posts: 1,614 ■■■■□□□□□□
    yah it can be a little overwhelming with all the diffferent available content out there. but stick to the messer vids and the all in one book. those are the two sources i used to pass my exam.
  • MrXpertMrXpert Member Posts: 586 ■■■□□□□□□□
    JumboMan wrote:
    I've been self studying for the A+ the past few months and I'm now revising for the exams however .....

    I can't comment much on the storage medium as its been a long time since I looked at A+ stuff. However the numbers 4.7GB and 17GB look more familiar to me than 4.37GB and 15.9GB. Perhaps space is manufacturer dependent? wouldn't be the first time.

    As for the wireless, i'd be very surprised if 802.11b reached 300feet.That distance is more 802.11n Some sources claim 802.11n can go as far as 600 feet but they are most likely referring to mainly outdoors with a clear line of sight and a clear fresnel zone.

    As a general rule these are the figures I would remember for exam

    802.11a = 100 ft
    802.11b = 150ft
    802.11g = 150 ft
    802.11n = 300ft +. uses MIMO and data rates between 130Mb to 600Mb
    The 802.11n can go much longer than 300ft to be honest. Whenever I use a wifi analyser I can pick beacons from close to 400 ft away.

    When I studied for the A+ i also noticed the discrepencies with the specifications. Don't get hung up about it. When you do the real exam they wont be so picky or pedantic and the right answer will be easy enough to spot.
    I'm an Xpert at nothing apart from remembering useless information that nobody else cares about.
  • JumboManJumboMan Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    That's vastly different to what I've been revising from Prof Messer.

    Prof Messer (approx range)

    802.11a = 35 meters (115ft) 54 Mbps
    802.11b = 38 meters (125ft) 11 Mbps
    802.11g = 100 meters (328ft) 54 Mbps
    802.11n = 300 meters (984ft) 600 Mbps


    All in 1 7th ed (max range)

    802.11a = 150 ft 54 Mbps
    802.11b = 300 ft 11 Mbps
    802.11g = 300 ft 54 Mbps
    802.11n = 300+ ft 100+ Mbps
  • MrXpertMrXpert Member Posts: 586 ■■■□□□□□□□
    REMOVED UNNECESSARY QUOTED REPLY FROM PREVIOUS POST

    Mike Meyers states in his A+ book that
    802.11a = 150 ft 54 Mbps
    802.11b = 300 ft 11 Mbps
    802.11g = 300 ft 54 Mbps
    802.11n = 300+ ft 100+ Mbps

    Chris Bryant in his CCENT guide states
    802.11a = 100ft
    802.11b=100ft
    802.11g=100ft
    802.11n=160ft

    I'd like to think that my version is a harmonic mediator between all versions and it's got me through all my exams without any issues.
    I'm an Xpert at nothing apart from remembering useless information that nobody else cares about.
  • timesvan32timesvan32 Member Posts: 79 ■■□□□□□□□□
    WTF Comptia lol?
  • MrXpertMrXpert Member Posts: 586 ■■■□□□□□□□
    REMOVED UNNECESSARY QUOTED REPLY FROM PREVIOUS POST
    LOL at your comment :D
    I'm an Xpert at nothing apart from remembering useless information that nobody else cares about.
  • PlantwizPlantwiz Alligator wrestler Mod Posts: 5,057 Mod
    @JumboMan,

    Mike Meyers' text is the best (IMO) for prepairing for A+ and Sybex makes a great text as well, so those are my two top recommendations. Aside from this type of study material, I'd strongly recommend you have a copy of the objectives and simply take them point-by-point and create your own guide.

    The differences between material typically arise form the way one author explains a topic vs. the way another explains it and frequently they say the same thing, just in different ways.

    The more you actually use the material covered in the A+ objectives (i.e. experience) the better the different material will be to understand and re-use later on.

    Hang in there. And I'd recommend you use one source to compliment your experience then use the 2nd source as a review to solidify what you think you already know.



    Example:
    DVD-5
    You will likely find that the indicated capacity will be 4.7GB while the ACTUAL capacity will be 4.38GB.

    The comment you posted is very similar to the argument that once took place regarding HDD size. So, you simply need to discern which the author is talking about, actual vs. indicated.
    Plantwiz
    _____
    "Grammar and spelling aren't everything, but this is a forum, not a chat room. You have plenty of time to spell out the word "you", and look just a little bit smarter." by Phaideaux

    ***I'll add you can Capitalize the word 'I' to show a little respect for yourself too.

    'i' before 'e' except after 'c'.... weird?
  • zrockstarzrockstar Member Posts: 378
    Don't beat yourself up over it, just be aware of both options. You have to look at it like this, you are going to get 100 questions from a bank of THOUSANDS of questions. So the chance of you getting the question on single sided DVD capacities is slim. Even if you do get that question, I could almost guarantee you that they will not give you both 4.37 and 4.7 (4.7 should be correct IMO). You are using multiple sources, so you will do fine, just don't get hung up and discouraged tracking down these difference past a simple google search. Good luck!
  • mishymishy Member Posts: 209 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Plantwiz wrote: »
    @JumboMan,

    Example:
    DVD-5
    You will likely find that the indicated capacity will be 4.7GB while the ACTUAL capacity will be 4.38GB.

    The comment you posted is very similar to the argument that once took place regarding HDD size. So, you simply need to discern which the author is talking about, actual vs. indicated.

    I would go with indicated capacity like the post I have quoted and I am quite sure they will never give two answers that could all be right. I am also sure if there is a question it will specifically ask for either actual or indicated if it doesnt or if it has two similar answers then you will have to read carefully like in the MS exams I always found 2 correct answers but after going back to the question again then you realise that there is only one that can be right.

    I bought a laptop with a 620GB HDD but it only has about 580GB available and its the same with every other HDD advertised and there has always been arguments about that.
  • JumboManJumboMan Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the replies.

    I guess the problem is just brain capacity, it's hard enough having to know just one data transfer rate/capacity information for each thing let alone a two or three possible ones

    This morning I was revising Firewire, where I've now discovered IEEE 1394b can have cable lengths up to 10meters, although the Mike Meyers book just states 4.5 meters to cover Firewire in general. I just hope I don't get a question that asks "What is the maximim cable length firewire supports?" with both 4.5 meters and 10 meters being selectable answers, but only one answer allowed.

    I've had a few questions like this in practice exams where there are two correct answers, but the most dated seems to be the correct answer. Another practice question was asking the width of the PCI bus, with both 32bit and 64bit being selectable answers, with only one answer allowed.

    There was also one on Bluetooth asking the about it's general range, again there were multiple possible correct answers depending on whether it was class 1,2 or 3, but the question failed to add this detail. Maybe they were just poor questions?

    I think I just need to book and do the exams as soon as possible.
  • JumboManJumboMan Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Just to follow up this thread, I took the Essentials exam today and passed with 841/900.

    The questions were quite different from those I'd encountered on practice exams, with lots of questions on troubleshooting, operational procedures and conduct plus networking to a lesser extent, and also a good amount of scenario based questions.
    There was very little on hardware and operating systems which was rather surprising considering they make up 27% and 20% of the objectives and of the questions there were they mainly required two answers.

    Thankfully I didn't have any conflicting questions, although there was one on IPv4 network classes where there was two correct answers but only one answer was asked for, I'm convinced there were other questions like that as well.

    I'm not quite sure how the scoring system works but I'm convinced some questions are weighted more than others, there is no way I got 93 out of 100 questions correct. I did notice at the start of the exam it stated some question don't count towards the pass mark as they are not on the objectives/learning material but are still in the exam. It also would have been nice to know what questions I got wrong, and what the correct answers were.

    If I had to give one bit of advice it would be read the question carefully and don't rush.
  • EqmmickeyEqmmickey Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I believe that Mike Meyers books are great. and Also professor messor videos... those were my 2 key pieces for passing my certs
  • NetworkVeteranNetworkVeteran Member Posts: 2,338 ■■■■■■■■□□
    JumboMan wrote: »
    there was one on IPv4 network classes where there was two correct answers but only one answer was asked for

    I'm curious, could you provide an example, with the numbers changed to protect the integrity of the exam? :)
  • JumboManJumboMan Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I'm curious, could you provide an example, with the numbers changed to protect the integrity of the exam? :)


    The question asked which of the answers were a Class A IP address, but there were two that fell within that range, although one was within the private range, but still a valid address.
  • zxor1zxor1 Registered Users Posts: 3 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Mike Meyers A+passport is what I'm using.
    its fun and imterrsting
  • ptilsenptilsen Member Posts: 2,835 ■■■■■■■■■■
    For optical media, look on the Wikipedia pages. You'll note there are variances between DVD-R and DVD+R, and also the usually binary/decimal nonsense that we have with hard drives.

    In general, when in doubt on a specific technology, just Google it and/or look at Wikipedia. A+ isn't a secret collection of proprietary or obscure information. Everything on the A+ can be quickly found on the web.

    Also, let me be clear: On these matters, I genuinely trust Wikipedia articles more than Comptia certification books. Comptia, for the most part, will also follow reality, not what's published in any particular author's book. There will be incorrect information in the books, so if you find a conflict Google it and figure out the truth. (The same does not apply to Cisco and MS material -- when it comes to certification material, treat those as virtually infallible.)

    It has been a long time since I took A+, but I don't remember any of this type of thing being a serious issue, so at the end of the day I wouldn't worry about it that much. It's not that hard, and you're unlikely to fail over a couple of medium length/size limitations because two books had different numbers.
    Working B.S., Computer Science
    Complete: 55/120 credits SPAN 201, LIT 100, ETHS 200, AP Lang, MATH 120, WRIT 231, ICS 140, MATH 215, ECON 202, ECON 201, ICS 141, MATH 210, LING 111, ICS 240
    In progress: CLEP US GOV,
    Next up: MATH 211, ECON 352, ICS 340
  • the_hutchthe_hutch Banned Posts: 827
    JumboMan wrote: »
    noticing different study sources have different information which doesn't help with the learning process.

    LOL...yeah, you see this a lot in IT. In my experience, the best option is always to go to the source. If you are studying for an EC-Council exam, use EC-Council material, a Microsoft exam, use microsoft material, ISC2...ISC2 material. Unfortunately, I don't think CompTIA releases official material.
  • JumboManJumboMan Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I just wanted to say I finally got around to doing the 702 exam yesterday and passed with a score of 830, so I'm now certified.

    Not sure what to do next, I'd prefer to be in an IT job before taking more certs, but I'm not sure if an A+ is enough to get me a starting role somwhere. My main area of interest is hardware and networks (I like taking things apart :)), rather than OS and software, a friend of mine in the IT sector told me to do a MS server 2003 cert before they expire, as he says it's still widely used, and will be more sought after once it's phased out.
  • NotHackingYouNotHackingYou Member Posts: 1,460 ■■■■■■■■□□
    JumboMan wrote: »
    I just wanted to say I finally got around to doing the 702 exam yesterday and passed with a score of 830, so I'm now certified.

    Not sure what to do next, I'd prefer to be in an IT job before taking more certs, but I'm not sure if an A+ is enough to get me a starting role somwhere. My main area of interest is hardware and networks (I like taking things apart :)), rather than OS and software, a friend of mine in the IT sector told me to do a MS server 2003 cert before they expire, as he says it's still widely used, and will be more sought after once it's phased out.

    Congrats! If you are just getting started I would reccomend moving on to the Network+ and Security+. Great ways to get a foot in the door and learn a lot of the basics.
    When you go the extra mile, there's no traffic.
  • JumboManJumboMan Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
    CarlSaiyed wrote: »
    Congrats! If you are just getting started I would reccomend moving on to the Network+ and Security+. Great ways to get a foot in the door and learn a lot of the basics.

    Thank you

    I think I'll have a look at Network+, I quite enjoyed the networking section part of A+.

    All I really want out of these certs is to be able to land a Computer/Network Technician job, where I get to troubleshoot, install and configure hardware ideally in the field, I have no interest in being desk based on a screen all day. I've had a look at some MS certs but they seem more suited to admin or helpdesk roles.
Sign In or Register to comment.