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ross549

iAdam's Hunt for Red Oct... er, IT Certification

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ross549

Heh! Don't laugh. At the facility where I took my Cisco exams, they have lockers. You have to empty out your pockets and take off all jewelry and watches. They inspect your eye glasses, if you use them. You're issued an erasable pen and a laminated 8" x 11.5" "scratch paper." You have to turn in the pen and paper in as you leave the room.

 

Sounds like my normal advancement exam. ;)

 

Adam

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V.T. Eric Layton

You get the impression they don't trust us test takers?

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ross549

I don't see why.....

 

Update: I got a 96% Woot!

 

:)

 

Adam

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Corrine

Excellent, Adam!

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ebrke

I don't see why.....

 

Update: I got a 96% Woot!

 

Adam

Great! :clap:
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LilBambi

Awesome Adam!!!!!

 

congratulations-desi-glitters-logo.gif

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ross549

Thank you all! :)

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V.T. Eric Layton

iAdam! iAdam! iAdam! Rah! Rah!

 

9Tp5pA8TE.jpeg

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Temmu

congrats, adam, job well done!

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ross549

(rant on)

 

Yes, a fast Ethernet port CAN be a WAN connection!

 

(rant off)

 

Adam

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rolanaj

Congratulations Adam!!

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ross549

rWZnp14.jpg

 

Got them! Only 35 bucks!

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ross549

vvS0y5w.png

 

And this has taken over my life. :'(

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V.T. Eric Layton

Oh, man! You're having fun now!

 

By the way, Odom, the fellow who wrote those official study texts, is a very knowledgeable fellow when it comes to Cisco products. Unfortunately, you'll find that he is probably the most droll technical writer you will ever run across. I found his books to be better than two Sominex®, one Quaalude, and a shot of Jack Daniels, as far as sleeping aids go.

 

Be sure to be WIDE awake before attempting to study Odom. Do not read in bed, on a comfortable chair, or even sitting down. :yes:

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Temmu

lol

i find the problem with many technical writers is they know what they are talking about - but they assume that you know what they are talking about - even if they don't pass on enough info for you to get it!

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LilBambi

So true Temmu!

 

Same could be said of old school UNIX/Linux man files.

 

By the time you understand them, you don't need them except maybe for syntax. ;)

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ross549

I skimmed the introduction of the study guide, and I may not have to read the whole thing, especially if I know the area really well. There are quizzes where you test your knowledge at the beginning of the chapter. If you are good, a light review would be in order, and then you have time to focus on the stuff you struggle with more.

 

:)

 

Adam

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LilBambi

It's good to know the book learning. But also to be flexible. Some things that they don't teach are also possible. Some people even say they are not possible and Jim proved them wrong. ;)

 

Not for the tests, but for real life. ;)

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mac

Books/Tests ≠ "real life" :whistling:

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ross549

Oh, I know. My troubleshootin' skills are up to the task, but If you throw me an ipv6 address and mask, and ask me to subnet it.... I'd have to sit down and spend some quality time working it out.

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V.T. Eric Layton

Troubleshooting skills are worthless without the knowledge of the systems you're troubleshooting. You'll need to know what's in those text books for the exams AND for real life should you ever actually work with a Cisco network in the future.

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V.T. Eric Layton

Now, to be honest here, I will agree with Mac to a point. When it comes to theory, it's great for a full understanding of how something works and what it's supposed to do. However, as far as practical repairs go, that theory isn't as important as experience is. I don't remember ever whipping out my calculator to figure a final output transistor's beta to determine if it needed replacing. I had no RF output, yet I had pre-amp stage integrity. I checked the final for physical damage and relative DC resistance between BCE and ground. Ooops! Dead short between B and E. Transistor is toast. Who gives a rat's patootie what the beta value was when it was working. I already know the transistor info from the schematic or the device itself. SHOTGUN! Meaning R/R the faulty part, test, wrap up, ship. That's the prime directive as a bench tech... FIX STUFF!

 

OK, then...

 

You'll still need that theory that you learned in those textbooks to understand the systems; expected operation, expected output, etc. You cannot fix anything unless you know how it works, what it does, what to expect. Oh, you might get lucky sometimes, I knew a couple techs during my career that learned everything they knew from looking over a master tech's shoulder as he worked, but these guys were invariably stumped if they had to work on a piece of equipment outside of their experience. This is because they had no real understanding of how anything worked. They only knew what Craig did when he had a unit with that problem. These guys were not ever considered good techs by anyone they ever worked with. They just got by

 

In a repair environment, the NUMBER ONE TALENT YOU MUST HAVE is to be a fast and accurate troubleshooter. The only way to achieve this is with barge loads of theory and experience. Remember, in most jobs of this nature, time is $$$. Downtime for your company's equipment or a client's equipment is a very bad and costly thing. The faster you get that equipment working, regardless of what it is... lawn mowers, computers, router networks, or F-14s, the more your boss will LOVE YOU!

 

I sound like I know my shiite, huh? Wish I could get a job. :(

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ross549

I don't ascribe to the theory of fast troubleshooting. It may be in part because I am working for the US Government, but in reality I have this philosophy- "Slow is smooth, and smooth is fast."

 

I have to take the time to understand the problem. I have to understand the parts, the interactions they all have. The number one problem I fight in the Navy is interfacing between systems. If I do not understand how they interface, I simply cannot troubleshoot effectively.

 

Repair is one thing, but I need to take a methodical approach to solving the problem, especially when i am dealing with a dozen interconnected systems talking to each other.

 

Adam

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V.T. Eric Layton

As long as you're working for da gubberment, you'll be fine. When you get into the private sector, if you ever do, slow is means FAILURE! You have to identify, simplify, fix, and verify... then SHIP IT! I've known many of those slow, methodical type techs. They all failed at being technicians and became clerks or managers. No lies here. I'm telling you the absolute 100% truth of it. Remember, NO ONE CARES about you or your methods in the private sector. All they care about is THE BOTTOM LINE! Let me repeat that for you...

 

THE BOTTOM LINE

 

_________________

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ross549

;)

 

Slow, being a relative term......

 

I don't want to give out the impression that I am lazy. I'm not. I see far too many people flailing at things where they would actually save time by simply slowing down and analyzing the problem. In the long run, it saves an incredible amount of time. But, they flail away at it...... over and over again.

 

That is what I mean by smooth is fast. You make far fewer mistakes.

 

Adam

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Temmu

i wouldn't say troubleshooting electronics in the military is slow, but when your buddies' lives are on the line, you want that comm system to be working effectively before you release the repair to q.a. to release the bird to fly.

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ross549

And we are becoming more and more networked. That means your analytical skills must be up to the challenge. Something many have yet to truly understand.

 

Adam

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LilBambi

Slow or fast depends on the situation, the job, the complexity of the troubleshooting needed, the experience level of the tech, the parts available for in place troubleshooting, etc.

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V.T. Eric Layton

I don't want to give out the impression that I am lazy.

 

I know better than to think that.

 

And fast being a relative term for what I'm talking about. I'm not saying that a successful tech is a haphazard fellow who zips through the repair process. What I'm saying is that he's a fellow who has developed and very honed skill set that allows him to zero in on a problem and resolve it quickly and efficiently.

 

Here's a great example,..

 

In my 20+ years of documented electronics service and the 10 years of hobby-craft prior to that, I discovered that the most skilled and efficient fixers always preferred "piece work" - commission pay. Their reasoning, and mine also when I got to that skill level early on in my career, was that income is limited only by the number of hours you cared to work and the amount of equipment available that needed fixing. Hourly wage techs tended to be lazy slobs by comparison.

 

At one company I worked for, I would work Monday through Thursday about 6 hours per day. I consistently earned weekly paychecks netting $500+. This was back in the early 90s when $500/week was some serious clammage. Ah... those were the days. I remember once at this same place, I went on vacation for about a week. I went to spend Thanksgiving with my mom in our cabin in the NC mountains. Well, I got snowed in (not really, just what I told my boss) and had to stay an extra week. Everyone was panicking because my workload was backing up. I was the only tech specializing in that equipment (high end consumer audio) at this facility. All the other techs were TV techs.

 

I finally arrived back at work after the second week. There were about 35 units awaiting repair on the IN shelves. It took me nine hours (lunch included) to empty the IN shelf. My pay for that nine hours work on that Monday afternoon and evening was about $700 before taxes. I really miss those days. Really, I do. :(

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V.T. Eric Layton

...the parts available...

 

Indeed! The best places I worked (Sony and Sears) were the facilities that stocked HUGE and varied parts inventories.

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