Top positive review
187 people found this helpful
A good set of books
on 23 April 2004
Despite some of the comments below, you're not going to get through thesebooks in an afternoon unless you're gifted; there's some 4000 pages oftechnical information to digest. It took me two weeks at 8 hours or so aday to get through them (a few exercises included).
I used these books to pass my 2003 MCSA/MCSE and thought they were great.I tend to buy the vendor's books when I sit an exam because I figureno-one will know the product (and exam content) quite like the vendor.Normally that means I'm resigned to a fairly stuffy read. Not in thiscase. The books are still major heavyweights on the technical facts, butthis time I found them a (relatively) easy read. There's even a fewcomments in them which made me smile.
Facts are good and examples are clear. I only noticed one contradiction inthe whole set and that's to do with Quota's. One book says quota's are pervolume, per user only. Another book says quota's can also be applied togroups (not so from what I can tell). Other than that, I saw no majorhowlers at all. (That's not to say I didn't THINK I'd found some, I did.Investigation or a re-read of a para or two and I realised the fault wasmine.)
As with all books like these, they do not cover all content in the exam.One or two questions fall outside the scope of the books but that seems tobe the rule rather than the exception in this game. On the whole, coverageis very good.
I used only these books to pass the exams, but as the introduction saysyou are expected to have 18 months experience to get the best from them. Ihave 4 years worth and did find that I needed to "fill the gaps" with myreal-life knowledge. That's not to say you should discount these books ifyou don't have the experience, just be aware that you may well need tosupplement them with something else.
I definitely recommend the set, they're as good as anything else you willfind and better than a lot of others I glanced at. They would have got 5stars but in places you feel like you're completely lost in a sea oftechnical gibberish, although with content like this that shouldn't beoverly suprising. Some parts could have done with more explanation, but at4000 pages already maybe that's not a viable option.
Finally, I normally sell my study books when I've got the cert, but thesehave some rather useful information in them for real life application.This set will be staying on my shelf for a year or two. A good set fromMicrosoft and the authors.
Oh, and if you read this far I assume you're going for your MCSE. In thatcase, good luck :)