FROM THE FIELD: WIN2K CERTIFICATION PLANS
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Do you plan to get Windows 2000 certification? Is it necessary? Here's what two NT professionals have to say:
Eric LaRue, systems integrator, Allprop Corp., consulting firm specializing in manufacturing and distribution applications, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
NT certification status: Not certified; has five years of NT experience.
Win2K certification plans: To get the MCDBA (Microsoft Certified Database Administrator) and MCP (Microsoft Certified Professional) first and then pursue W2K certification. "Since W2K will bring a lot of changes, I've decided to start with the electives first, like SQL Server and Internet Information Server. For the MCDBA, I'll also have to take some NT courses. For those, I'll focus on the Windows 2000 curriculum unless I have time in the next six months to go ahead and do all the NT 4.0 tests. If I can't do both, I'll wait until the W2K courseware is adequate."
Why get certified?: "It assures clients that at least you have breadth of knowledge. In the long-term, several of us (principals in the company) will certify so we can get the Certified Solutions Provider designation."
Benefits expected: "Clients won't challenge you as much; it makes getting in the door a little easier. It helps boost your confidence level."
Bruce Anderson, independent consultant specializing in integrating NT networks with AS/400s, Anderson Computing Services Inc., Dallas
NT certification status: MCSE, NT 4.0
Win2K certification plans: To update certification within a year. "I have until June 2001 to re-certify, so I'll start studying as soon as the new books come out. I'm not sure if I'll take formal training or not. I can usually study on my own because I have enough NT experience, but with W2K, I don't know. If you're already certified, you only have to take one major exam and a couple of electives. I'll probably focus on the security and data warehouse tests, like `Designing Security on a Windows 2000 Network.'"
Benefits expected: "Mostly additional credibility, but you do pick up information that you might not normally get. You may never use it again, but it's tucked away in the back of your mind."
Leslie Goff is a New York-based writer who specializes in IT careers.