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thecriscoking

Certifications

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Hey, I was just wondering if anyone knew a good amount of certifications and could give me an explination on some or perhaps there might be a site that explains some of them. I need to start acquiring some of these. Thank you in advanced.

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EC Council offers CEH, CHFI, LPT, and ECSA certifications, while Mile2 offers training for CPTS and other certifications.

Edited by RETN
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Any particular field you are looking to get certified in? By that I mean OS certifications, databases, security, networking, etc...

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I was thinking something like security or networking. I did some research and I read that A+ and Security+ under CompTIA are some good ones.

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I was thinking something like security or networking. I did some research and I read that A+ and Security+ under CompTIA are some good ones.

A+ and Sec+ as with much of the Comptia line are more basic theory and rote-memorization and potentially less applicable real-world value, good for breaking in but you'll need to back them up with practical experience.

Add Net+ for some general networking theory if you need it. A must-get however is the CCNA for some useful though somewhat vendor-specific beginner networking that will be found on many a job requirement listing when you start out.

For network vendor certs Cisco is king, followed a distance second by Juniper and even further down the chain (mainly Canada) is Nortel certification, though it depends on the jobs you are taking and where you plan to work- Huawei and Alcatel/Lucent are also huge in certain markets.

For an intro network job you could get by with your A+ and some XP MCP/Vista MCTS/Linux+ as you'll just be dealing client-side config+troubleshooting initially.

After a bit of time you can work on simple router/switch deployment possibly with an associate level cert (CCNA/JNCIA/etc), moving up to professional level routing+switching (CCNP/etc), eventually branching in to your specialty (everyone should have network design - CCDP and basic security - CCSP, Sec+, mcsa/mcse security; or the work experience with the knowledge behind them).

Five years in you can think about the expert level certs CCIE/etc if you have the experience and backing to engage them.

Unless a company is looking to hire some paper-certs (useless people who've passed the test but don't know how to apply the material) {to say pad the books so they can get silver/gold/etc vendor partnerships and the deals that entail}, a cert is just a piece of paper and you are going to need references + work experience / something to bring to the table or industry contacts to break in anywhere above a helpdesk/gopher job.

Networking and security are very generic.. even 'Network Security' is a very broad field, you would to have to either give up any social life and continuously cram more than most doctors for their MCATS - quite possibly for the rest of your career or preferably consider sub-specialization in a few areas; say to a specific vendor or network application, perhaps voip and telephony security, perhaps web-app and database security or maybe Cisco or Juniper based expert level routing switching with professional level call-manager security+optimization or the reverse of that. If you want to make out like a bandit untapped fields like Unified Communication and the attached UCM/etc security is the next big thing, get on the bandwagon now if you did your homework you could see your investment paying out handsomely though it isn't without risk.. you don't want to get trapped with a specific vendor product only to see it flounder.

Despite its importance, security is an after-thought and can only be applied once you understand the underlying technology, so along the way in order to professionally secure <function in your specialty> you really need to know how to equally masterfully operate and configure <whatever you choose to secure> to begin with and well as how to crack it. You don't want to start fine-tuning an engine without understanding how it works / what will stop it / how to take it apart+reassemble; and you certainly don't want to apply security to something you don't understand or you'll have a craptastic band-aid solution that either breaks things or only removes the lowest of low-hanging fruit putting false ideas in peoples heads. (Think the TSA in America.. oh look, potential terrorists and no-fly listees can still hop aboard flights if they claim they lost their ID and happen to know the identity of someone who should be on the flight).. the illusion of security is oft worse than no security but I suppose every little bit helps..

If it isn't apparent soft-skills are equally as important in most situations as technical ability such that unless you can employ a proxy to go between you and the clients; providing for reading, writing, interpretation, initiative, intuition, vocalization and general communication, personality, or empathy / understanding / patience with the non-technical people.. you may find as many a talented engineer has that you self-sabotage due to flaws in at least one of these areas. This as with general security is where the division of labour comes in, playing to your strengths and acknowledging areas that need improvement. :)

Edited by jabzor
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Does anyone know where we can get our hands on some of the DUMPS...........?? :roll:

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The other thing I'd mention is not to let the idea of which certificates are "hot" determine what you do with your life. There are plenty of good, exciting, in-demand jobs that don't require a certification... and indeed, many of the top IT performers are too busy with their daily jobs to worry about studying and passing tests on stuff they already know anyway.

Do what you like; if it looks like a certification would help you reach your goals in some way, then go for it. But don't just grab as many as you can hoping that they'll land you a job, either. As mentioned, certification is not an even trade-off for smarts and experience.

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Certifications only help with resumes and job applications. If you can get your foot in the door another way that's fine too. Some places offer signing bonuses for those that are certified, which is cool too ;D

There is a customer service place out here offering $1000 signing bonus for those of us that are A+ certified :D

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Certifications only help with resumes and job applications.

Very true, when we are selecting candidates for interviews, it is nice to see certifications and gives you some preference over others. Especially if they are hands-on certifications (think RHCE). Of course that isn't a requirement, and during the technical part of the interview the truth quickly comes out regarding what is resume padding and what they actually know. I have recommended to hire a couple of people after interviewing them, neither of them had any certifications, but they knew their shit, and could apply it to real situations.

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during the technical part of the interview the truth quickly comes out regarding what is resume padding and what they actually know.

I haven't interviewed anyone in a few years, but man it was always hilarious to ask people who put linux on their resume to name a few commands, and explain what they do.

Another alarming trend was the number of aspiring techs that think memorizing what an acronym stands for counts for knowing what the technology is, and how to use it. I always liked when people admitted they didn't know, then they asked me the answer. I never hired anyone that tried to guess.

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Certifications only help with resumes and job applications.

Not necessarily. Some of the higher-end certs (i.e. that require work experience, multiple tests, and some sort of practicum) can translate directly into increased salary. This will depend greatly on where you work... but if you work in a large IT shop, they may offer some kind of standard increase for certification (e.g. an extra $150 per month), or it may factor into an annual performance review and merit-based increase.

Though probably not the A+. :)

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