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Thread: Road to Computer Certifications

  1. #1

    Default Road to Computer Certifications

    Ok, so I am basically looking at new venues in order to find work.

    Long story short, I have a Bachelor's Degree in General Biology, Highschool Teachers Certification, and a few computer certifications, there being:

    APS – HP Commercial Desktops, Workstations and Notebooks

    There have managed me to land some computer jobs, but unfortunately all have been out of the area.

    I am currently studying for the Linux+ test, mainly for two reasons: I want to polish myself at Linux and I want to have that certification, because I've noticed that, at least around here, plenty of companies are asking for Linux Administrators with the Linux+ certification (heck, with no previous experience required even!).

    I was thinking that after that, I would pursue the Server+ as well as MCSA certifications.

    Those who work in the computer industry...what do you guys recommend? No, going back to college is not what I am after, because at this point in time, I simply cannot. Heck, I even thought about a Masters in Educational Technology or Perhaps Computing Education, but money is a factor.

    Besides, if an employer thinks I cannot do the job even though I know everything, for the sole reason that I don't have experience, I simply say "Let me prove how WRONG you really are" and then I begin doing so. Hey, it has worked!

    Which certifications should I pursue? Why? How come? Any food involved?

  2. #2


    Some things that are good:

    A+ Hardware
    A+ Software

    Security is becoming a must-have cert because any company that's worth anything will want to guard any kind of information they have, and they want YOU to know, too.

    Hardware because if something breaks, all they have to do is get the part and you can install it. Most people say "plugging it in? That sounds easy!" Okay, lemme see you fix an iBook cooling fan (just an example). Plus, techs won't have to be contracted at very overblown rates from other companies, they got you in-house.

    Software because if something gets corrupted you at least have a method of troubleshooting it and are not dead in the water waiting for tech support to become available (or not have to pay for as much tech support over the phone).

    Pizza, hot pockets and gatorade. Lots of it

    Yes, Linux is where it's at. I took the classes on Linux admin., but the best learning experience is build a computer and install a distro on it, then make it do stuff-- be a webserver, be a firewall, have it contact as many machines as possible locally, then go online with it and see who pings it, see what will connect, and if you can connect to it from outside.

    Put Slackware on a laptop. Loads of fun, there. Especially a 200mhz laptop. It will become a love-hate relationship

    That's just my view from what I do. Hope it helps.

    Last edited by nathanallan; 24-02-09 at 08:53.
    My chuckwagon auctions! We have ZERO OHM RESISTORS!

    Covering the world with Genesis Goodness!

  3. #3


    Thanks man! I totally forgot about Security+!

    A+ was/is dead easy. I don't understand how many have problems and fail at it. I couldn't believe how easy it was, specially the hardware portion. Speaking of which, I may consider taking the upgrade extam, just for kicks, even though CompTIA says I really don't need it.

    Ironically, I am studying and I did install a distro on my spare machine: Ubuntu 8.04. I was kinda forced to, because I had an issue that the PSU died on my main computer and since it was a mATX, finding the correct one was a pain. So I had to order it in the mail, because non of the shops around here had it in stock.

    Best thing was that I got to love Linux. Everything I learn I have practice using this machine (using it now) and now, I've gotten so accustomed to using Linux, I have no use to return back to Windows. So that's a plus.

    I have gotten pretty far in my studies. Now I am going to practice how to create basic scripts.

    Also, I don't study from only one source. When I was studying for the A+, I noticed that it was best to gather info from different sources, as each tells you something the other does not. All complement eachother. So for Linux, I have two books and at least four CBTs. And practice, practice, practice!

    So after I take this certification, I am going to go for the Security+, Server+, and MCSA. It's going to take time since I need to study and gather money, but that's ok!

  4. #4


    What about PHP and MySQL

    Those are popular for web applications
    "There's never enough time to do all the nothing you want" -Calvin & Hobbes

  5. #5


    Forgot to mention, DEFINITELY get up to speed on IPv6. That'll *be* the internet pretty soon, and all the big companies are using it already (if only internally and some are still experimenting)

    /minirant Death to Cisco routers!! /end minirant

    For your Ubuntu box, make it do stuff. Scripting is a must have skill, but learning to use the included server software is also really important. It has full-fledged server apps inside it much like a bunch of other distros.

    If you can, get a cheap osx ibook from somewhere and learn it, too. There's a webserver built in there, it was the coolest thing! Configuring it is a bit tricky and gott do homework on it (I know I did) but totally worth it.

    Glad you're having fun with it, it's a really fun field if you let it be fun. A lot of people think of this stuff as work-- I have fun every day doing this stuff!

    People love to see that I have Security+, makes them feel safer or something. One guy who didn't know computers at all said I was a sdangerous as a cocked gun. Didn't really know how to take it at the time, but whatever.
    My chuckwagon auctions! We have ZERO OHM RESISTORS!

    Covering the world with Genesis Goodness!


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