GCUX & GCWN versus GSEC?

BrianAndersonBrianAnderson Member Posts: 10 ■□□□□□□□□□
Since I already have a bunch of security certifications, I'm more interested in gaining a 'deeper' set of knowledge and not just general knowledge. From the looks of it the GSEC is roughly equivalent to maybe the Security+ from CompTIA. Please correct me if I am wrong with that thought. I was wondering if anyone has taken the Unix and Windows courses and if they are worth the additional costs? The only reason why I am even considering taken the three courses is its a requirement for the GSE certification. I will be taking the GCIA here shortly and just completed the GCIH. I have also started looking into the GPEN material.

My main goal is to be able to attend the GSE in March 2013, and I don’t mind doing the extra work if it will help solidify my skill sets as an IA Practitioner and prepare me for the hands on lab.
WGU BS-IT Start Date: 01/01/2013 | Current: Final Term Starts 1 April 2014
Certification Goals

- Applied for Written Exam on 11 March 2014
- Approved for Written Exam on 12 March 2014 by GIAC/SANS


  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,868 Admin
    The GSEC is far more broad and technical than the Security+.

    I have heard that UNIX/Linux and Windows security knowledge is needed for the GSE written and lab, so search here for any mention of those certs.
  • ChooseLifeChooseLife Member Posts: 941 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Disclaimer: I considered and looked closely at GCUX class, but haven't taken either GCUX or GCWN. I have taken the GSEC class.

    If you can afford it, do the GCUX + GCWN combo. GSEC is pretty shallow and likely will not advance you in your preparation for GSE.
    “You don’t become great by trying to be great. You become great by wanting to do something, and then doing it so hard that you become great in the process.” (c) xkcd #896

    - discounted vouchers for certs
  • docricedocrice Member Posts: 1,706 ■■■■■■■■■■
    The GSEC is definitely more rigorous than Security+. I took SANS 401 one week after I did my Sec+ exam so I vividly remember the difference in experience.

    I may eventually take both SANS 505 and 506 as I believe it'll help me round out my OS platform knowledge at a decent depth. Being fluent in these areas, however, takes a lot of practice and hands-on time. If you're already well-versed in these respective areas from a security perspective, then you might be a good candidate for the GSE written exam. But at the same time I get a sense that you're trying to rush to a finish line.
    Hopefully-useful stuff I've written: http://kimiushida.com/bitsandpieces/articles/
  • wmcglasswmcglass Member Posts: 13 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I can't comment on GCUX or GCWN as I've not taken those courses, but I agree with the assessment from others that the SANS 401 course and the related GSEC certification have far more depth and breadth than the CompTIA Security+. I don't list my Security+ here, but I did obtain it back in like 2003/2004-ish. The GSEC covers really good foundation, but it is pretty basic. It's always hard to say whether or not it will be 'too basic' for someone or not. My guess is that if you have at least 10 years of experience in Infosec, the GSEC might just be good review for you.
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Mod Posts: 6,927 Mod
    I recently took SEC505 (note to self: hurry up and write a review) with Jasson Fossen and definitely recommend it. One of the best training sessions I've attended lately. It is the only time that I recall where a trainer was able to intelligently answer every question presented. He mentioned that SANS is considering relabeling this course as series 600 due to the advance, in-depth topics covered.

    At my session you could see how some folks were completely lost when he started talking crypto. Same thing happened with other topics.
  • twodogs62twodogs62 Member Posts: 393 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Gsec is much more than security+.

    good overview of security.
    Six day course plus night labs.
    one day is windows security and last day is unix/Linux.
  • DagistoDagisto Member Posts: 25 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I always thought that GSEC is in between SSCP and CISSP...Can someone confirm?
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Admin Posts: 12,868 Admin
    GSEC covers more topics than the SSCP and is much more technical than the CISSP. Although GSEC contains the word "Essentials," I would put it as a mid-level InfoSec cert.
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