GIAC certification renewals

docricedocrice Posts: 1,706Member ■■■■■■■■■■
My GSEC renewal is coming up. These days there are quite a few options to renew existing GIAC certifications, including retaking the exam, taking training, publishing work, having work experience in the field, among others:

http://www.giac.org/certifications/renewal

What's cool is you can apparently split earned Certification Maintenance Units (CMUs) from taking a SANS class among different cert renewals. I also understand that if you take a SANS course and then pass the related exam, they count as separate CMUs.

In any case, there are a lot of ways to slice and dice your renewal matrix, and your available mix of options become more complicated the more GIAC certifications you hold. I have seven (non-Gold) at the moment spread out through three and a half years. Talk about being maintenance-heavy...

I let my Cisco certifications and WCNA expire, but I think I might maintain my GIAC certs. They're the only ones that really mean anything to me out of the ones which expire every x years as they represent a body of knowledge which has expanded my brain more than almost any other training/certification provider combination.

Anyway, so I'm looking at the updated SANS 401 courseware because I'm thinking of sitting the exam again ... but now that I'm flipping through the first couple of books covering networking basics and defense-in-depth topics, perhaps I should consider renewing through other means as this feels like a rather tedious exercise. I remember taking the GSEC back in 2010 and while it wasn't a "tough" exam for me then, it certainly wasn't trivially easy. Security+ was easy, GSEC was certainly above and beyond that by a mile. I remember the difference pretty well because I took those two exams within a month or two apart from each other. So while going through the updated books helps refresh my memory on a lot of things, perhaps my time could be spent better elsewhere.

I think the most respectable thing would be to write a Gold paper ... but I'm really, really busy these days.

Anyone else up for GIAC renewals or have personal strategies which works for you?
Hopefully-useful stuff I've written: http://kimiushida.com/bitsandpieces/articles/

Comments

  • veritas_libertasveritas_libertas CISSP, GIAC x5, CompTIA x5 Greenville, SC USAPosts: 5,735Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    Thanks for bringing this up. I'm currently studying for the GCIH exam and I was under the impression that the only way to renew it would be to take the exam again or write a Gold paper. It seems that the training you take does not necessarily have to be from SANS:

    GIAC Certification Renewal Attend Training or Teach
    Currently working on: Linux and Python
  • docricedocrice Posts: 1,706Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    I was logged into the SANS portal and noticed that for my GSEC renewal, I had the links to the updated MP3s for SEC-401. I had thought that for the renewals, I would only get the books and not access to the audio. So in this sense, it's just like signing up for the SelfStudy course option with a discount.
    Hopefully-useful stuff I've written: http://kimiushida.com/bitsandpieces/articles/
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