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Network+ exam by Comptia is designed specifically for the IT professional who have more than nine months experience in the computer network administration or an IT degree. The code of the Network+ exam is N10-003 and it was first introduced in 1997. Till the mid of May 2005, according to Comptia’s announcement, more than 150,000 were Network+ exam certified. Network+ is an entry level exam and it paves the way for the IT professionals in their quest for the more advance certifications like MCSE, CCNA, CCNP etc. There are not prerequisites for this certification. Comptia recommends that you must have the A+ certifications.
Network+ certification is well suited and designed for the network administrators. The topics covered in this exam are media and topologies, standards, protocols, network support and implementations. The Network+ certification shows the candidate’s knowledge of the basic networking fundamentals. Like other Comptia’s certifications, the Network+ certification will not be expired once it is achieved.
Security+ certification is designed for the IT professionals who have 2 years of experience in the network or systems administration and having the main focus on the security. The code of this exam is SY0101 and it was introduced by Comptia in 2002. Security+ is an entry level test for the most advanced tests like ISC2, CISSP and the SANS. As well as it can also be used as the basis for the some Microsoft certifications. Security+ certification is well suited for the network and security administrators and professionals.
The common topics included in this exam are designing security for a network, security infrastructure, cryptography, authentication, access control, internal and external network attacks and the dealing with the company’s security.
Security+ certifications shows the candidates knowledge of these things and it prepares the candidate to such level that he/she competes with the security breaches and finds some good alternative ways that are helpful in reducing the cost of a security breach. Once this certification is achieved it will never expire just like the other certifications of Comptia.
Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) is designed for the professionals who are some requirements of analyzing the business, designing, making infrastructure, and implementing the securities at certain levels. MCSE is based on the Microsoft Windows 2000 platform and Windows NT platform (though many of the NT exams have been obsolete now). The Windows 2003 server has been merged into the MCSE exam.
MCSE certification does not retire but the newer versions are released by the Microsoft after few years. So the candidate has to be upgraded himself/herself with these latest exams. There are no specific requirements for the MCSE certifications. Those candidates who have one year experience in managing a computer network, network or desktop operating systems, will be considered suitable for this exam. Job descriptions and roles including after achieving the MCSE are Systems engineer, Network Engineer, Network Consultant, and Systems Analyst.
There is a 7 exams pass requirement for this certification and the candidates how are holding the MCSE 2000, are required to give 2-upgrade exams. By passing these exams you can achieve Windows Server 2000 MCSE exam.
Cisco CCNA certification (Cisco Certified Network Associates) is an introductory level exam. The CCNA exam by Cisco systems was designed for the candidates who can install, configure and do administrator of the LAN or WAN networks. CCNA is a prerequisite for the some higher level certifications like CCNP and CCDP. The CCNA exam is valid for the three years. In 2003, Cisco has introduced the two paths of the CCNA exam (INTRO and ICND). Job role for the individuals who are CCNA certified are network administration, system administration and network consultant etc.
CCNP (Cisco Certified Network Professional) exam is designed for the candidates who can install, configure and troubleshoot a LAN/WAN network of 100 to 500 computers. The CCNP certification has its prerequisites such as CCNP certification. The topics included in this certification are converged networks, security, VPN, quality of service and broadband technologies like VOIP, DSL, Cable net etc. There is a four, three and two exams path to the CCNP. The CCNP exam is valid for the three years. The job role for a CCNP certified are Network administration, LAN administration, WAN administrator and Network consultant.
CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional) is introduced by ISC2. the ISC2 is a not profit organization and it manages the CISSP exams. A CISSP exam is designed for the candidates who are having minimum four years of experience in the field of Information systems. A bachelor and a Master degree separately, can be a substitute of the one required years for this exam. Also, some lower level certifications like SSCP (Systems Security Certified Practitioner) is also recommended before the CISSP exam.
The CISSP exam is aimed for the IT professionals who want to be Information security professionals, systems security professionals and network security professionals.