This boxed set helps you prepare for the four examinations you must pass to qualify as a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) under the Windows 2000 curriculum. You'll find lots of information on Windows 2000 and its networking capabilities in this kit; specifically, it comprises four books (Windows 2000 Server
, Windows 2000 Professional
, Active Directory Services
, and Network Infrastructure Administration
) and a CD-ROM (a 120-day evaluation version of Windows 2000 Server).
This kit is among the first Windows 2000 MCSE packages on the market, and the books are rather accurate and detailed; they're written mostly by Microsoft internal documentation staff, so they use a standard formula. Each module begins with a statement of concepts and facts, such as what a log file is, and what each of the three Windows 2000 log files is for. Then, you get how-to information in the form of stepped procedures for viewing log contents. Option tables come next, as well as other material that explains how to deal with nonstandard situations. Finally, carefully scripted exercises allow you to practice your new skills and get predictable results.
Sections on Domain Name Service (DNS), the IPsec protocol, and the management of network protocols are particularly good. As you might expect from a training kit on a product whose main new feature is Active Directory, the coverage of Active Directory services is top-drawer. Concepts, as well as practicalities, get their due. If only the CD-ROM included a copy of Windows 2000 Professional, so that you could set up an experimental network.
The CD-ROM ought to include also an exam simulator; more test-prep material in the bodies of the books themselves would have been nice, too. As they stand, they're fine tutorials and references, but not great test-preparation aids. Each chapter includes review questions that allow a free response instead of a selection from a list of options. The questions will test your knowledge, and answer keys do appear in appendices, but they don't simulate the multiple-choice format of the actual MCSE exams. Read these books for the information they contain, but wait for an Exam Cram or other question repository to get simulation tests. --David Wall
Topics covered: The Microsoft-published objectives of the four required Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) exams; specifically, material on the Windows 2000 Server (70-215), Windows 2000 Professional (70-210), Network Infrastructure Administration (70-216), and Active Directory Services (70-217) exams.
From the Publisher
Provides self-paced, from-the-source information and practice with the skills measured by the core MCSE exam