Join Us!

Notifications
Clear all

sybex A+ or Mike Meyers A+  

  RSS
tonyg1
(@tonyg1)
New Member

Well, i started to read to learn A+ on my own. I had trouble deciding on which book to purchase, so i bought two of them. At first I was going to return one of them after i had some time to see which was easier for me to read.

Then i thought might as well read both one after the other. I started with Sybex A+, it seems more like a machine had written it. I started to read Mike Meyers A+ and it is alot easier to read.
To me the Sybex was like reading a technical manual, it seemed like every sentence i read, i needed to memorize it or else i wouldnt pass the certification. Though the Mike Meyers A+ is easier it seems like it just touches base on stuff but yet i am only on chapter 4 now. After reading some stuff it does say it would be covered in much more detail in a later chapter.
I would like to know if anyone has read either book and passed the A+ certification from just reading one book either it being Mike Meyers A+ or Sybex A+ ?
If you looked at either one of these books and for a specific reason you went with a different book could you please state why?
I am almost certain i will read at the least two books before i take the cert though… thanks

Quote
Posted : 18/03/2010 1:29 am
twjolson
(@twjolson)
Active Member

I have not read Mike Meyers A+ book, but I have read Sybex's. I thought it was good.

However, my philosophy for any exam is not to limit yourself to one or two books. While studying for the A+, I had 4 books (exam cram was a noteworthy one)

By this same token, don't limit yourself to just one practice test. Again, I had like 3 practice tests (Transcender being the most worthwhile).

My strategy, since I had a long history of Hardware/Software experience was to take the practice tests, then go and read the relevant sections for the 3 domains I scored lowest one. Eventually, I just read topics that I missed questions on. So, I missed a question on Bluetooth encryption, I would go to wikipedia and study up on it.

Definitely don't neglect Wikipedia.

If you do not have as much experience with hardware/software, I would advise reading each book, each chapter, and then going and getting your hands dirty. Don't just read about RAM, get a few junk computers and open them up. As well, read each chapter and do outside research, such as reading Wikipedia.

The best advice I can give you, don't prepare for the A+ exam, over-prepare.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 4:05 am
tonyg1
(@tonyg1)
New Member

A friend of mine has exam cram A+, I will actually be picking that one up as well this weekend from him.

I do have a good amount of hardware and software I have been messing with them since i was 8 and I am 32. I want to say my first computer was I386 or was that I286. When my father would upgrade his pc I inherited his old one. Almost all my friends never touched one until high school. My senior year i was working as a tech and i was putting together computers from scratch, 4 or more at a time, like a assembly line. That was right when windows 95 came out. I remember even doing that with windows 3.1 and using dos 6.22 Unless i am off on some of the numbers/versions.

I like to look at it like this, I know computers, i know english, except the way I know computers is sorta like street slang, now I am trying to learn the formal way. O)

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 4:21 am
CforPro
(@cforpro)
Junior Member

I just took and passed the A+ last week. It wasn't too bad. I had been studying and planning to take it for 2 years but just never had the time. I finally broke down and scheduled it so I would be forced to take it! I studied for the 601 and 602 but decided to do the 701 and 702 so I had to re-study. Most of my learning came from my college coursework in computers (my PC Management class used the Jean Andrews A+ Guide to Managing and Maintaining your PC). I also had an operating system course that covered everything from DOS to XP. That along with proprofs.com and a few other study guides I got from friends really helped out.
I'm planning to take the N+ next month.

Good luck with it.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 4:48 am
inspectaneck
(@inspectaneck)
Member

I have hobbied/worked on PCs since the 286 days (about 20 years) and worked/supervised a Best Buy tech bench for about 5 years. I could find my way through just about anything while in front of the PC, but The biggest challenges that required studying were
1. knowing all the command line commands
2. the filenames of important files
3. device interrupts
4. how many pins cables had
5. laser printer components and functions

I found Mike Myers' A+ book to be a great tutorial.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 5:05 am
tonyg1
(@tonyg1)
New Member

Did you memorize alot of stuff ? Did the exam require you to have memorized everything ?

I actually have the mike meyers book on A+ and I am on chapter 5 right now. I just felt that book was not enough to pass the exam once i finish the book. But i had at first tried to start with the sybex a+ an it was just to formal, I found mikes to be more my speed right now but once i am done with it i am gonna read the sybex book which should get me just about there and then i will go with exam cram not to mention just keep reviwing the summaries and quiz/practice tests.

I find myself answering alot of the practice questions correct but then i feel that the actual exam will be a notch or two higher then the practice ones lol is this true?

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 5:18 am
tonyg1
(@tonyg1)
New Member

could you give some tips to me on some majo points of study since you have taken the exam?

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 5:22 am
CforPro
(@cforpro)
Junior Member

study the laser printer process and troubleshooting. different types of cabling and the connectors that each uses. loopback address. L1 cache, L2 cache (speeds and what each belong to). the correct path to a command, for instance, device manager. i right click on my computer and click manage but that isn't an option. you need to know how to get there. a little about subnet masks, class A, B, and C addresses. it is all multiple choice so eliminate what you know not to be correct first.

there was a lot of common sense stuff such as if a customer calls the help desk and you answer and they are complaining about this or that, what do you do?

if you've been working on computers that long and have a little common sense then i think that'll get you to at least 70%. just need that little extra to get the passing score.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 7:35 am
rspishock
(@rspishock)
New Member

Since you already have hardware/software experience, the Mike Meyers book will be fine. I used it when I was studying for my A+ after having about 6 years experience and walked out of both tests (2003 objective I think) in less than an half hour.

I agree with CforPro about studying the laser printing process as you will likely see at least one question on the test about it. Same thing with any of the rarely used concepts such as POST codes. The week before each of my tests I sat down took a few practice tests to make sure I was ready and the day of my test I had my wife drive me up while I reviewed anything that I thought was questionable.

With your experience though, I'm sure you'll have little problems with the exams. It's all procedural and common sense material.

Good luck.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 4:56 pm
douglasbrush
(@douglasbrush)
Senior Member

I took my exame in 1997 an used the Mike Meyers book. Test changed since then but I think the way the books are writtedn in general are helpful.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 18/03/2010 6:33 pm
ForensicRanger
(@forensicranger)
Active Member

Might I recommend a site http//www.techexams.net - it is an excellent resource for CompTIA and other certs. I used it when I prepped for my A+, Network+, Sec+ and others.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 19/03/2010 3:38 am
twjolson
(@twjolson)
Active Member

Did you memorize alot of stuff ? Did the exam require you to have memorized everything ?
I find myself answering alot of the practice questions correct but then i feel that the actual exam will be a notch or two higher then the practice ones lol is this true?

Memorize stuff like USB, Wifi, SCSI speeds. Laser Printer Process is a biggie. Basically, learn everything that would have little to no bearing on actually fixing and troubleshooting computers.

I found that the exam was much easier than the practice exams. I used a handful of different exams (Transcender, Sybex, Exam Cram, and the one from Jean Andrews book) and all of them were more in depth and difficult than the exam I took. To me, the exam seemed more like a difficult computer literacy test. It literally asked me where you install an OS (hard drive, CD drive, or floppy disk). There were only 1 or 2 questsions as hard and in depth as the practice tests.

This was of course my experience. A randomly generated test means I could have had one of the easier ones. Thus, my philosphy remains to over-prepare (read everything, take every test, memorize everything) rather than just prepare. Do your sweating before the test, rather than during.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 30/03/2010 1:11 am
Share: