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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I passed my Windows 7 MCTS exam using this book
I'm a little bit bewildered by the harsh criticisms of this book, stating that it is not enough to pass the exam with. Actually, the majority of the errors in the book refer to the DISM.exe utility and are easily cleared up by viewing the (free) errata page on Microsoft Press' website.

The exam itself is quite easy if you have used Windows 7 at home and at...
Published on 16 July 2011 by Dan Coin

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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good study guide, but too many errors..
Above all, i passed my exam after reading this book.

There was just about enough information in the book to allow me to pass. Though the exam DEFINATELY asked lots of questions on subjects that the book didnt even touch, or at the very least glossed over vaguely.

The book has so many spelling mistakes, erroneous characters (IN SYSTEM COMMANDS!!)...
Published on 6 Mar. 2010 by N. R. Phillips


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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good study guide, but too many errors.., 6 Mar. 2010
By 
N. R. Phillips (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
Above all, i passed my exam after reading this book.

There was just about enough information in the book to allow me to pass. Though the exam DEFINATELY asked lots of questions on subjects that the book didnt even touch, or at the very least glossed over vaguely.

The book has so many spelling mistakes, erroneous characters (IN SYSTEM COMMANDS!!) which can set you back hours and days in troubleshooting until you find them. I have a whole questions/answers part printed in my book BACK TO FRONT! This leads to a fun experience trying to work out if you have studied the chapter or not.

I cannot stress how much this book needs to be updated, some sections were laughable.

On the other hand, alot of parts were in depth, accurate and on topic - which kept you interested.

I passed every practice exam on the CD that i took, and i didnt see one single similar question in my exam - i was VERY worried.

So, after i read my Windows Vista book by the same authors, i thought this was natural progression. It seems as though this was not proof read and was rushed out. How many other parts have i been taught wronly by this book?

I have read lots of similar reviews to this, so be careful...

Sorry guys!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Windows 7 was not Orin Thomas' idea, 14 May 2010
This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
The book was easy to follow although as mentioned there are some mistakes.

It covers Windows 7 new features and the test questions will make you feel confident booking an exam.

Each practise test I did - over eight seen a lowest score of 82% and highest of 91%. Unfortunately what a complete waste of time this book and test questions have been. Less than 10% applied to the exam that I sat and I questioned myself if I had booked the right one.

By all means read the book but you will want to study with something else as well that is more in-depth. This on its own is simply not enough.

Windows 7 was definitely not Orin Thomas' idea and I'm not a PC.

One word to sum this up disappointing.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good guide for the exam but confused and many errors., 11 Dec. 2010
This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
This book is a good guide for those taking the exam and identifying the knowledge that is required to pass successfully. However, the number of errors and the confusing format of some parts make it very difficult to use as a tutorial guide that functioned so well in other SPTK's. Other work by Orin Thomas is generally very high quality and informative and possibly this book was rushed out by MS Press to cover the lack of other training materials for Windows 7.

More Detailed Review:
Firstly, it's clear that meeting the prerequisites for this book is not enough. You really need some very stable experience of using Windows 7 in a business environment, not just any Windows client as stated in the book. The book guides you through the setup of at least two Windows 7 machines which can be performed in a virtual machine (make sure you understand the VM software) but make sure your PC has got a fair chunk of RAM and a decent processor (preferably with hardware VT). A lot of the book also requires a working knowledge of Server 2008 and a VM of this would be a good idea too. Note that this is not the fault of the book but the exam can have a few Server 2008 related questions shoved in there too.

The first three chapters are unbelievably confusing and some parts seem to be done in the wrong order. Some hard to understand topics are discussed early on and you spend a lot of time trying to wrap your head round it only to find a much simpler explanation in a later lesson/chapter. Accurately skim the chapters first, then read again from the beginning. From chapter four onwards things get much easier and the errors much less frequent. It's also important to try the free Microsoft resources that are recommended in the book. There are also errata available on the net but make sure to use the Microsoft Press site one because it details more errors. I actually printed each corrected error out and placed them on slips of paper inside the pages they affect because there are a lot of them. Some exercise cannot be completed successfully without the errata!

The included CD is quite useful and on the contrary to other reviews about the tests I actually did get some very similar questions from the sim-test on my real exam. The way the book is organised helps you make sure that you are covering each objective and have quite a thorough understanding of the operating system. Don't go to the exam expecting commonsense to get you through (like was possible on the Windows XP one).

On the whole the book is actually quite informative and very useful if you read every last drop of information. Try all the practical examples for yourself and use the Technet website for help - it is the only way you will realise that there are errors in the book and make sure you get it right in the exam. If it wasn't for the confusing descriptions in some parts and the crazy numbers of errors in the book this would have been 5 stars.

Please note that Orin's and Ian's usual work is to a very high standard and their knowledge is great mentoring for Microsoft products.... I think this one probably just missed a couple of editing and proofreading stages to get it on the shelf fast.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Gets you started but....., 4 May 2010
By 
Mr. C. Lennox "Game_Guy" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
This book starts off really well, but as you go through it you run into commands that dont work, or procedures missing information. Or just information that the exam has, but the book seems to be missing.

Most notable for me was the 'Virtual Hard Drives' section at the beginning of the book. BCDEDIT not being a tool i have used often, i was a bit 'wound up' each time i ran into a problem, which i googled only to find that the reason some of the commands were not working was due to typo's in the book. Eventually if you persevere enough and look in the right places (internet, ask colleagues, google, etc...), you get there.

One example, On page 108, there is a command that goes like this : "bcdedit /set <guid> device vhd=partition w:" which actually errors. Ive actually skipped the whole Virtual HDD section for now due to every other page (seemingly) having errors. It may be that I'm not be doing something right, but surley this would mean the text isn't cleary enough explained?

Another example, when building a Windows AIK disk image, it kept failing to boot. It wasnt until i found that i needed to copy a certain file into a folder that was to be copied onto the WAIK disc, that my disc's then started to work. Using non Re writable disc's, it can get wasteful, especially if you dont click on to the fact there is a problem. For example, the first one I did I thought I had used a bad disc.

This book needs to be Proof Read (again if it wasnt done the first time), and alot of mistakes corrected before the next edition is released. In fact..... if this book could blue screen.... i think it would have done already!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I passed my Windows 7 MCTS exam using this book, 16 July 2011
By 
Dan Coin (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
I'm a little bit bewildered by the harsh criticisms of this book, stating that it is not enough to pass the exam with. Actually, the majority of the errors in the book refer to the DISM.exe utility and are easily cleared up by viewing the (free) errata page on Microsoft Press' website.

The exam itself is quite easy if you have used Windows 7 at home and at work before. If anything, the book covers TOO MUCH material - as you will see when it starts discussing developer utilities and repositories in the Performance section.

The Measure Up tests are good to test your knowledge, they are slightly easier than what you'll see in the exam but still very useful.

In summary, if you really want to pass MS exams, you need to supplement your knowledge using Technet and with hands-on experience.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not really good for the 70-680 exam, 9 Mar. 2010
By 
This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
Firstly, you have to get past the severe grammatical mistakes, incorrectly scored practice exercises and poorly thought out content. Once you've done that and worked really hard towards the exam, you then have to get over the fact that you've just wasted a lot of time because this book does not cover most of what is in the exam!

There are some good points about this book. It does explain some things well and tells you about the new features in Windows 7 (Branchcache, Direct Access, VPN reconnect). What this book fails to do (and in my opinion this is a really bad fail) is to prepare you for the exam. The exam is beyond the scope of this book. You will be in for a shock if you use this as your only study guide.

There has been some serious false advertising here. The book should be advertised as nothing more than a beginners guide, but for beginners who have to look everything up on the internet anyway because the content is wrong in most cases.

You're better off using the free technet website. Personally, I prefer to have a book as reference, but when it gets it so wrong, it kind of misses the point.

If you don't believe what I'm saying, go to the micrsoft website. There is a whole page dedicated to the errors of this book! Amazing.
[...]
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Will get you through the exam, Beware of the errors, 3 Mar. 2011
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This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
A very good study guide, Points you in the right direction for passing the exam. Overall the book is well laid out and follows the exam objectives in a logical order and was easy to follow. However the book does contain mistakes and typo's. Especially in the first chapters, (chapter 2) Page 67/68 creating windows PE CD Rom, the correct information was obtained from Microsoft Technet spring board series of articles. Microsoft press has addressed this issue somewhat, you can download the ammended pages from the microsoft press website.
The book does prepare you for the exam but the resources'at the Technet web site were useful to ensure you had the most up to date information and to give the full syntax for the CMD line instructions used in the exam.
The practice test included on the cd point you in the right direction for the exam although the chapter tests do not accurately represent the exam.

The book is a good reference guide.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Bad Author, badly written book, badly corrected, 15 Jun. 2012
This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
As far as other reviews have gone, I have to agree that this book is awful. From the first table in the book (in 1st print) showing Windows Server hardware requirements, to the "corrected reprint" version where they changed the table title to state Windows 7 Hardware requirements, but the table contents was not changed (and therefore showed incorrect hardware requirements), so from the very start of this book, you will see that this author has done only half a job (I guess he was working on server and exchange books and just copied and pasted details into the 680 book).

As far as the materials covered in this book, IF you complete all the exercises, play with the virtual systems as the book suggests and read all the related TechNet articles (and any pages that those pages link to), and IF you fully understand all commands, syntax, group policy locations and have working knowledge of Active Directory then this book gives you everything that you need to pass this exam. This is the only resource I used and after 8 days of reading the book I passed the 680 (note that a portion of this course introduces new technologies and concepts which were not around before, so you cannot rely on prior knowledge to complete this exam).

I never want to use this author again, (unfortunately as I work as a trainer for a MS partner, I have to use the official kit to teach with), but trying to find an alternative book which does provide all that is required to pass the exam is not easy either. For example, the Wiley book doesnt go into enough detail and misses a number of concepts which need to be understood in great detail. My next book I will be looking at is the Don Poulton book for the 680 as a number of other Microsoft Trainers have recommended this one. I will review that book once it has been received and digested.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good Standard Text, But Errors Are Distracting, 5 Oct. 2010
By 
Jenny (Bradford on Avon, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
I bought this having read all of the reviews about the mistakes on here along with the extensive errata posted here and on Microsoft's site. I've manually updated my copy (which took a while) but there are still errors, so much so that I'm never sure whether it's me getting something wrong or whether the instructions are erroneous. (Adding a VHD to the boot menu p107 is a good example of this.)

Some of the concepts are new to me as I'm going from XP to Win7 but I'm now finding that the links to Microsoft sources are wrong, e.g. P174 gives More Info boxes for diskpart and bcdboot but they both reference the diskpart article. I want the bcdboot one. Searching Microsoft's site for info is never easy (there's just too much there!) so this is disappointing.

That said, the style, layout and content of the book are of the same form and quality as other Microsoft Study Guides that I've used in the past and I haven't failed an exam yet, so I'm quite confident. Shame that this was rushed out. Bigger shame that there isn't a 2nd edition yet.

Edit: Also meant to say that this is already getting out of date. An update to MDT has been released that changes the way in which deployment shares and deployment points are used. It's a conceptual change, the basic tech seems to be the same, but how are we meant to know what we will get examined on. Difficult to when only the new version is available to download.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Got me through the 70-680 exam, 6 Dec. 2012
By 
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This review is from: MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-680): Configuring Windows® 7 (Corrected Reprint Edition) (Certification) (Paperback)
Having read some of the reviews, I was slightly reticent to buy this book, however it does give you a good understanding of the areas with which you need to be familiar, in order to pass the Microsoft 70-680 exam.

The book does cover most of the topics in sufficient detail, however I did supplement the material with a free video course, I found on the internet.

Bar the grammatical errors, and laboured attempts to use gender specific pronouns, my biggest criticisms of the book are as follows.

- The failure to present certain comparison data in tabular form.
- The limited number of questions in the practice exams.
- The exam discount code was not accepted by Prometric.
- Syntax errors.
- Missing steps in certain procedures.

The upside of having errors in the book was, the sheer fact that I had to do additional research meant that I remembered the topic better.

I did not use the virtual machine software, as I have a virtual server running ESXi.

Despite all its shortcomings, as I said earlier, the book seems to cover the subject matter sufficiently. Hitherto, I have been an ordinary home user of Windows 7, with no enterprise level exposure, however I passed the exam with the aid of this book.

Purely due to the fact that it got me through the exam, I have scored this book highly.
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