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RE: Network+ and Security+
From: "Petter Bruland" <pbruland () fcglv com>
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2007 16:14:14 -0700


I was in the same boat as you are now Martin... And as Rishi said, you
have miles to go, but don't let that stop you.

And Google is you friend.

I worked as help desk for quite some time, and always wanted to get to
where I'm at today, although there is always more to learn. I've been
really lucky, where I've always had lots of computers at home where I've
setup all sorts of network/server setups and learned on my own by trial
and error. And most of the places where I've worked, I have had the
chance to work with network techs and sys admins who also wanted to
teach me stuff.

Most of my books were only purchased for reference, except for when I
got my CCNA. If you haven't built your own box and cut your own network
cables, both of the books you refer to would be a good start. I'm not
sure about you, but I have to have some hands-on rather than reading to
remember/understand stuff. Maybe I've got A.D.D. who knows..

Learning a programming language is a great too. One thing that I learned
a lot from was setting up a site using PHP to display network/server
data pulled with SNMP via MRTG/RRDTOOL. It's not too complicated, and
it's a lot of fun.

Not sure if I was any help, but that's what I've got :-)


-----Original Message-----
From: listbounce () securityfocus com [mailto:listbounce () securityfocus com]
On Behalf Of Rishi Narang
Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2007 3:22 PM
To: Martin Tran
Cc: security-basics () securityfocus com
Subject: Re: Network+ and Security+

Hey Martin,

You have miles to go, and many of us are somewhere on this way too :)
Anyways, I did my Bachelor's in Information Technology and then started
with Server Administration in Linux. Completed my RHCE and CEH trainings
but didn't took exams. I did my CCNA cert. during BTech University
Studies. Slowly then I shifted to Security Research, particularly into
IDS/IPS, Vulnerability & Exploit Analysis and want to continue in it.

These days I am targeting GIAC Security Certs (GSEC etc.). So, if you
want to switch from System Helpdesk into Server or Security side, you
can start strengthening your skill set by participating into Forums, and
mainly Googling your curiosity!

Apart from self study, you can also attend trainings and conferences at
your place and receiving up to date info in security trends etc.
You already opted for Network+ and Security+ but I am not sure of these
as I started with CISCO CCNA. But, these will definitely give you a
start and a little push.

Rest, lot many members are always there to help you in your specific
questions, queries or curiosities :) But, do try first to google a lot
for your query as that will encounter you with a broad spectrum of
knowledge and sidelines to your highway to success + enjoy your work!

Cheers Martin & Best Wishes for your journey to success, cherish it!

Securely yours'

- Rishi Narang | Security Researcher
+ E-mail: x72.x6e (at) gmail (dot) com
+ MSN Id: rishi.narang (at) hotmail (dot) com
+ Mobile: +91.988.6982.678

Martin Tran wrote:
Hi everyone,

I've been in the IT area for about a year or so.  I came from an 
engineering background from University of Maryland and never really 
gone into that working field.  So I jumped into working IT b/c I liked

being around computer and learning the ins and outs on certain 
processes.  Right now, I'm working in Helpdesk (I'm recently in charge

of Symantec administration side since no one in my company wanted to 
claim it...I have also took initiative to make batch files for many of

the applications used on users workstations) and wanted to know how I 
can better myself with certifications or if I should get my masters in

information systems?

I definitely do not want to be in the Helpdesk (since the pay isn't 
great at all) position for long and wanted to improve and grow into
being a security or network or even a system administrator.   Yeah it
sounds like I want to get up and  start fast making it BIG as an IT 
guy, but I know I work hard in what I do since coming from a different


So right now I picked up a Network+ book by Sybex written by David 
Groth.  That seems pretty good to start I think.  And after I was done

with that book and exams, I wanted to grab myself a Security+ book 

If you guys can give me advice on your success and some insight on a 
direction on certifications(or go back to school for a masters in 
Information Systems)  I would greatly appreciate it!

Sorry for the long email :( but what is the going salary for a 
helpdesk position? Or with my qualifications, what should I be aiming 

B.S degree in Engineering @ the University of Maryland Focus area was 
Electrical and Mechanical (Minor)
1+ experience working with MSOffice, Symantec, MACS, Win98/00/XP etc
In charge of Symantec Clients/server etc

Thanks in advance for your feedback and sorry for the long email.  
Take care

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