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Jwelsh
(@jwelsh)
New Member

Hey I'm currently in my 2nd year of computer forensics degree and understand all the theory side of computers fine. When applying for placement years lots of places are asking for practical network and hardware experience which the degree seems to lack and I cant afford more than 1 computer to experiment P

Can anyone suggest some courses that give hands on experience of setting up networks, managing network users etc where you actually get to do the practical side of it not just learning theory. Was looking at computeach and COMPTIA+ are these any good for that sort of thing?

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Posted : 05/02/2007 9:40 pm
az_gcfa
(@az_gcfa)
Active Member

You must have some very, very cheap courses. Surely you can afford a 4port kvm ($150), 1 or two cheap e-net hubs($35-50), and a couple of junker pc's(150-300). I have several old celerons and P3's just for testing and doing CF research! As a matter of fact my main workstations are (3) dual PIII's 866's with 2gig memory . Learn to love E-bay. I am planning on buying a dual-core E6600 in the near term with SATA drives.

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Posted : 06/02/2007 2:51 am
hawkwind
(@hawkwind)
Junior Member

I agree with az_gcfa, check with friends and family for old bits and you may find a local auction in your area that sells ex office equipment at a good price.

Doesn't your degree have any Cisco training modules that you can enroll in, because they will give you a bit of experience because of the nature of the courses.

I cant speak for COMPTIA+ but about 8 years ago I did the computeach course in C programming and it was the biggest waste of money I have ever spent, the help and guidance I received in the course would have been better delivered by a monkey. I didn't complete it and neither did my brother in law who went and tried even after I warned him, personally I would advise against them.

And just in case your thinking I probably gave up to easy I'm on my final year at Uni so I hopefully cant be that dumb D.

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Posted : 06/02/2007 3:56 am
Jwelsh
(@jwelsh)
New Member

It's not just the money its lack of space too since I dont have dedicated room for computers. Currently I got my newer PC (which is a huge space hog) and my old computer I upgraded from for testing linux since I'm new to that and switch between the two using a 2 port kvm. But dont feel its enough if I get into placement job and am expected to know what to do with bigger networks. I dont think my course does any Cisco training at least not this year, but thanks for reponses.

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Posted : 07/02/2007 5:57 am
ewiget41056
(@ewiget41056)
New Member

at least in the states, a lot of companies wont hire someone straight out of school without necessary hands on experience. My suggestion since you cant afford the money or the space for the hardware is to find an intern job to get some hands on experience in networking. Some colleges will also offer intern jobs to students. You could always get a job as computer support and then work your way up the ladder. If you dont have the money for the degree in networking, you could use something like brainbench self test center to test your knowledge in networking after you get some hands on experience. Proving you understand the concepts may be enough for most places.

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Posted : 08/02/2007 1:50 am
elmurado
(@elmurado)
Junior Member

Another way to get experience is to get a PT job at your local PC repair shop-they often get jobs setting up small networks etc.
And pimp yourself out to your friends and family as the PC fixit/setup guy-you can get free beer for that kind of gig too.

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Posted : 13/02/2007 6:20 am
barryradish
(@barryradish)
New Member

just an idea that i became involved with for a msc network coursework … that was creating 2 removal operating system hard disks one with xp as my main home computer and then windows 2k server as the swap … this ensuring that my computer did not fall over with the dual boot.

set up a second old computer with windows 2k which was network connected to the server and then used a laptop for network acquisition and investigation work which was connected through the netgear 4 port hub.

worked fairly weel .. setting up the server network was coursework in itself.
just got to figure out how to do networkl acquisitions now.

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Posted : 11/04/2007 2:40 pm
farrahyde
(@farrahyde)
New Member

Try your local Salvation Army or Goodwill, flea market perhaps, That's where I got my start on hardware for $50.00(us) Many times these are older machines with little glitches, but you can learn how to repair. I used my kitchen table while i was learning, and still find that room a valuable place to think.. Then maybe a install of Linux(free) or Win2k(will not use as many resources) and then you can throw in a cheap switch from walmart $35- 40.00 and learn how to create a small network. You just have to be creative when you're on a shoestring budget just keep at it, you'll get there.

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Posted : 11/04/2007 7:10 pm
SBuddell
(@sbuddell)
New Member

You could always set up a vitrtual network using VMWare. Kills two birds with one stone 1) a virtual network and 2) gives you exposure to a tool that is heavily utilised in the UK Forensic IT market.

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Posted : 11/04/2007 7:59 pm
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