Overthinking Preperatin for Test?

BrinomiteBrinomite Posts: 10Member ■□□□□□□□□□
Hey all,

I am currently studying for the Net+ exam and I am worried that I am trying to learn every finite detail in my sources. I could sure use some advice from those of you who have taken the test recently on the areas that I need to have the ins-and-outs nailed down and those areas where just an understanding will suffice. Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to figure out what to memorize and what I can ignore because I am striving to learn what the info is and WHY it is. But I am starting to worry that I am over studying, over preparing and it might be having a negative effect as I find myself focusing on the more finite details of any given topic. Truth be told, I my be ready to take this thing but am just seriously over thinking the whole deal.

Here are some examples to what I mean:
  • Subnetting. Do I need to know how to figure out CIDR subnetting address ranges, how many subnets and hosts, etc. on the spot or more just the general idea behind it? For the record, I can figure this out on paper but it takes me a bit of time.
  • Wireless. Do I need to know what all the 802.11 standards are (i.e. 802.11d/e/f/h/i etc.) or just an an understanding of a/b/g/n? Also for a/b/g/n do I just need frequencies, data rates and ranges. Do I need to know all channels or just non-overlapping. And transmission method DSSS, OFDM, etc.?
  • OSI. I've got the basics down and can answer most questions I come across. How in depth do I need to go?
Anyway, I think you get my point. Here are the sources I am using:
  1. Took a Network+ course at a community college. Passed with flying colors but realized after taking practice tests realized I had a bunch of ground to cover.
  2. Todd Lammle's Net+ Deluxe Study Guide
  3. Net+ Exam Cram book
  4. The few Kindle shorts available by Darril Gibson
  5. Professor Messer Vids (haven't made it through them all)
  6. CBT Nuggets N10-005 videos (again haven't made it through them all)
  7. Tons of practice questions from the sources above and some online practice exams that I have come across
Maybe a better way of putting my question is are the topics covered in the Exam questions more along the lines of the info Professor Messer presents or more in depth like Todd Lammle presents?

Anyway, any advice and guidance would be greatly appreciated.

Sorry for the ramble and thanks in advance!

Comments

  • dj_kenshindj_kenshin Posts: 26Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Well I would say good for you but since your using ****...err nevermind >.<
  • BrinomiteBrinomite Posts: 10Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    dj_kenshin wrote: »
    Well I would say good for you but since your using ****...err nevermind >.<
    At first I was perplexed about your reply until I googled "exam ****". Now it makes sense. Let me clarify, I am not using "brain ****" or any such thing. Chalk it up to my lack of knowledge pertaining to terminology. I've been out of the test taking loop for 20 some odd years now and had no idea there were such things. I just meant sites that have a lot of practice tests. Examcompass.com, Quizlet, make your own flash card sites and sites like that for example which have tons of N+ tests on it. In my head these sites are places where people "****" their practice tests. Again, terminology. I don't think they are considered "brain ****" in that they are actual questions from the cert exam but maybe they are and I should avoid them. Maybe you can tell me.

    Also, just thinking this through logically, if I was using proper "brain ****" why would I be asking how in depth the questions are and how deep I should study certain topics? Wouldn't I already know?

    I'm not looking to **** here. I have spent countless hours studying and going to school to learn this material. I scored 98% in my Net+ class answering questions that i assure are not found anywhere on the internet as they were written by my instructor and not taken from a book. I have arrived where I am through a lot of hard work and time sacrificed. I was just looking for a little guidance as to whether I was over thinking this whole thing at this junction of my studies.

    Anyway, thanks for the response and the education. I guess I'll have to wing it from here.
  • droolmonkeydroolmonkey Posts: 27Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Hi Brinomite. From what I have been able to gather, yes you are overthinking this test. Yes, you need to be able to use network tools for an actual job, but for the test itself, you just need to know the basic overview of things and how they fit together. You seem to be like me in that you feel like you have to know everything before you are comfortable moving forward, but for this test, you just need to know the basics and definitions. Take the practice tests, revue what you dont get right, then go take the test.
  • BrinomiteBrinomite Posts: 10Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the response, droolmonkey.

    I do have some experience in that I am the sole IT guy overseeing a small business network. Granted it was mostly set up when I took over but we have made some changes over the years. I've built a few workstations, installed a few NAS servers, network printers, WAPs, etc. I've been sort of flying by the seat of my pants which is part of the reason I started taking classes. So it is not like I am totally green but certainly nothing like an enterprise experience would teach. A good chunk of what N+ covers, I have never had to deal with.

    As far as feeling like I have to know everything before hand... that nails it on the head. I often find myself getting mired in the nitty-gritty details of something and then struggling to remember the broader points of something I studied a few days ago.

    Not sure what material you used but if you used Professor Messer, would you say that his broad stroke approach is about as in depth as I need to go?

    Thanks again fro your reply.
  • DarrilDarril Posts: 1,588Member
    Welcome to the forums Brinomite.

    Short answer - Schedule the test and take it.

    Long answer. Based on all you're doing, my gut says you're ready.

    On subnetting, many people don't get a single question while others get one or two. If you can do it on paper, you're ready. You might need to identify a network address and/or subnet mask to accommodate x number of subnets or hosts, you might need to identify valid and invalid subnet addresses for a group of computers in a subnet, the broadcast address for a subnet, and similar subnetting topics.

    On Wireless, only 802.11 a/b/g/n standards are tested. However, wireless hits many topics such as configuring a WAP, troubleshooting wireless problems, comparing the standards, implementing security, and understanding threats and vulnerabilities. Objectives 2.2, 2.4, 3.3, 5.1, and 5.4 cover the wireless objectives making this an extensive topic. However, if you understand the concepts in the Wireless Kindle Short and you can answer all of the practice test questions within them, you're ready.

    On OSI, only basics are tested. You need to know the layers by name and number, and you need to know which protocols and devices operate on the different layers. You also need to know which layer you'll find packets and frames. Objectives 1.1 and 1.2 are pretty specific making this easier to identify what you need. If you understand the concepts in the OSI Kindle Short including all the practice test questions within them, you're ready.

    One thing I like to stress when using practice test questions is that you should know why the correct answers are correct and why the incorrect answers are incorrect. That way no matter how CompTIA words the questions, you'll be able to answer them correctly. Based on your post, I have the impression you dig into anything you don't understand so you probably do this anyway.

    Good luck.
  • BrinomiteBrinomite Posts: 10Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for your reply Darril,

    Actually it was your Kindle shorts that made me pause and rethink my study approach. They are great for helping me reinforce the topics covered. They are concise and informative without getting clouded by endless nuances. I wish you had your entire Network+ book available. I have your Security+ book on the shelf and ready to go after N+ and A+ are out of the way.

    Based on your explanations above, I am probably much more ready to go than I thought. I know a few areas I need to grasp a bit better and then some of the things you just have to memorize (Lan Technologies, some of the ports, etc.).

    And yeah, I basically operate under the assumption that if you don't know why the answer is the answer then you don't really know the answer.

    Thanks again. It was helpful at set me a bit more at ease.
  • dj_kenshindj_kenshin Posts: 26Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Sorry for the assumption Brinomite. I would say your ready and if your not sure if a site is legit or a **** site check here CertGuard | IT Certification Exam Security & Integrity they will tell you if your alright or if it is a no no!
  • DarrilDarril Posts: 1,588Member
    Brinomite wrote: »
    Thanks for your reply Darril,

    Actually it was your Kindle shorts that made me pause and rethink my study approach.... I wish you had your entire Network+ book available. I have your Security+ book on the shelf and ready to go after N+ and A+ are out of the way.

    You're welcome and good to hear the Kindle shorts are helping. I wish I had the entire book done too:). It just takes a while to make the complex topics seem simple, but it is coming together.

    Good luck on the exam. Do you have a target date in mind?
  • BrinomiteBrinomite Posts: 10Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    dj_kenshin wrote: »
    Sorry for the assumption Brinomite. I would say your ready and if your not sure if a site is legit or a **** site check here CertGuard | IT Certification Exam Security & Integrity they will tell you if your alright or if it is a no no!
    No worries. I get it. No one likes a cheater. I do have to say that I am quite perplexed why anyone would go that route since it would seem that once in the real world it would be obvious pretty fast that they would not be up to the task and be shown the door. That would render any certification(s) they obtained useless. It all seems rather pointless. Being in my 40's and trying to start a new career and improve my station in life, I don't exactly have time to waste by playing make believe I can do something when I can't.

    I also checked out the link. Thanks. That's a great resource for the future.
    Darril wrote: »
    You're welcome and good to hear the Kindle shorts are helping. I wish I had the entire book done too:). It just takes a while to make the complex topics seem simple, but it is coming together.

    Good luck on the exam. Do you have a target date in mind?
    I can only image how tough it is. I have a hard enough time explaining the things I am learning in a somewhat coherent manner to family and friends. Usually they look at me with that bleary eyed "what?" expression.

    As to a target date.... After the replies here I think I am almost ready. I am going through the objectives one by one and marking the things that make me go "huh?" and the ones that I want to do a quick review on. It is a pretty short list. That said, I'm aiming to schedule the exam in 2 to 3 weeks.
  • tbhoustontbhouston Posts: 32Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    dj_kenshin wrote: »
    Well I would say good for you but since your using ****...err nevermind >.<

    thats all comptia tests are though..spend 20-30 hours reading **** and you can pass any of their certs
  • DoubleNNsDoubleNNs Posts: 2,013Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    tbhouston wrote: »
    thats all comptia tests are though..spend 20-30 hours reading **** and you can pass any of their certs

    So now we know how you got your CompTIA trio?
    Goals for 2018:
    Certs: RHCSA, LFCS: Ubuntu, CNCF CKA, CNCF CKAD | AWS Certified DevOps Engineer, AWS Solutions Architect Pro, AWS Certified Security Specialist, GCP Professional Cloud Architect
    Learn: Terraform, Kubernetes, Prometheus & Golang | Improve: Docker, Python Programming
    To-do | In Progress | Completed
  • BrinomiteBrinomite Posts: 10Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    tbhouston wrote: »
    thats all comptia tests are though..spend 20-30 hours reading **** and you can pass any of their certs
    I assume your being sarcastic here. If all it is is memorizing some answers but not having any real knowledge... kind of makes the certification worthless. If its worthless, why waste your time obtaining three of them?
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