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mcse training online

I need to improve my knowledge on several topics and was wondering if anyone has any recommendations on training preoviders and whats good and whats not.

some of the topics i need to learn more about are
# Networking protocols and implementration
# windows Server
# Windows user policies and the nitty gritty of them
# VPN's

i am not just wanting to get the certification i want to really learn this stuff so i can confidently apply it

i have seen a range of courses by SEEKlearning.com
it includes
Systems / Networking Program:
MCSE 2003 (Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer)
CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate)
CCNP (Cisco Certified Network Professional)
CompTIA Security+
Linux Professional Institute  Administrator 1&2

has anybody had any experiance with SEEK or any other training organisation

i want to do the courses online

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ctbhost
Asked:
ctbhost
2 Solutions
 
authen-techCommented:
I got my MCSE for 2003 using MS Press books.  They teach you the material and also highlight info that you may see again on the tests.  If you decide to get the certs...you can also use TestKing.com to help with passing if you find you are having problems.  The tests are expensive to keep failing for some people.  

I did my whole MCSE from scratch (from a non-technical backgroud) in about 9 months.  That was going at a slow pace to really understand and practice all the techniques and labs.  Plus, it's fun learning in your underwear at home.  :)
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ctbhostAuthor Commented:
my main reason for doing it online is that im self employed, and i feel some of the meterial i may aready know but i need to get to the finer points, the seek courses look good but are expensive $AU5500   + certification exams at the end.

where did you do your training - was it online ?
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authen-techCommented:
I just purchased the MS Press books (pdf format) and went through them on my own.  Having a boot-camp type experience is literally a waste of time unless your main goal is to get the cert.  They go through it all so fast that you only get a snippet of info on the subject with no retention and then you take the exam.  The provide practice questions that you memorize and are identical to the exams.  

If you want to learn the material...check out the ms press books online.  They also make great reference materials for later.  Take a look at this ms press book:
http://72.91.31.228/70-270_-_MS_Press.chm 

Let me know when you have it so I can remove the link.
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Hypercat (Deb)Commented:
I took a week-long on-line MCSA boot camp course through Vigilar (used to be called Intense School, I think, or something like that) a couple of years ago:

www.vigilar.com

I thought it was pretty good, although the part of the course that was supposed to allow you to do a MCSA-Security certification was at the end of the course period and did not get enough attention.  I never did the security portion over again, so I don't know if they do a better job in their other security training courses.  I did have a little problem with the course materials - they initially sent the wrong materials.  But they sent them far enough ahead of time that I was able to alert them to the problem and they got the correct materials to me on time for the course. I liked the discipline of having a set curriculum and dates/times for the course instead of having to rely on my own initiative.  I have my own consulting practice with a few employees, and I find it's all too easy to get busy and fail to set aside the time for learning new stuff and keeping up with the curve.

I supplemented the course with some self-study and using practice tests to prepare for the actual certification tests.

You need to be in a quiet environment with good speakers (unless you want to spend the whole time wearing earphones/buds).  I felt they had enough breaks to keep you from getting too weary, and there was a lot of additional documentation and materials that the course instructor supplied and that was available on-line at their website.  I've never taken another on-line course, so I don't have anything to compare it to, but I felt I got my money's worth.

One thing I will say - and this applies to all of these courses whether on-line or using books or other self-paced training materials - you have to have a fairly decent level of practical experience to benefit from these courses.  If you don't already know at least the basics of whatever area you're studying, you'll get lost pretty quickly.
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ctbhostAuthor Commented:
authen-tech:
you can remove the link  - ill have a look thanks
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gs121Commented:
I took a claass at http://www.cedsolutions.com/
They fly you out, put you up in a hotel.  Give you breakfast and Lunch.

Good school, I found it easier to study away from distrations at home.

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authen-techCommented:
Yes...I've already posted my opinion of boot camps...and that's what that is.  Great for certs...not for learning.
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ctbhostAuthor Commented:
im in australia so that prob wouldnt do any way - the cost would be huge flying from here LOL

and i DONT want a way to pass the certifications  - i really want to learn the material
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Ryan_RCommented:
I did CCNA 1 & 2 last year at a Chisholm TAFE in Australia. I found CCNA 1 quite easy/repetitive since I'd been doing networks in VCE, etc and at home. CCNA 2 was much more interesting, slightly biased towards Cisco products, but the course was still quite fun and challenging.

You can get more info about it at http://cisco.netacad.net

Playing around with Windows Server on a virtual PC at home also helps to build skills and confidence levels. If you have a few computers (or virtual ones - do a google on 'MS Virtual PC 2007 download') you can make some use out of it too - ie I once installed WSUS 3.0 to D/L and distribute Windows Updates. There are also plenty of online articles about topics pertaining to WS 2003.

Hope this helps a bit
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