Failure with Concessions

Today wasn’t the greatest day for me in one respect. Unfortunatly I flunked my 70-236 Configuring Exchange Server 2007 exam for the second time, and strangely, with months more Exchange experience under my belt (and I mean that because we’ve faced our share of issues and undertaken our share of mini-projects on infrastructure engineering since my last attempt), and with loads of preperation, I actually scored roughly 75 points lower than my first attempt.

I purchased a three exam pack through Prometric earlier in the year which expires December 31st 2011, so I’ve got to try and get two exams passed before the end of the year still, with MDOP being my next exam and still undecided on the third, but Exchange better look out, as once I’ve done my two remaining in the pack, I’ll be going back for my MCITP for Exchange Server 2007 and 2010.

The concession in all of this is a feeling of self-enlightenment. Tomorrow, my trusty laptop will be going back to the office from home so that I can re-deploy it with SCCM to install my yummy new SSD disk (I would clone the disk, but I have a feeling BitLocker might not accept that too kindly). To make sure I didn’t loose any data, I hooked up my VPN this evening and made sure that all of the data on my laptop was safe and sound on the file servers and work, and then I turned my attention to OneNote.

I’m an avid OneNote user, and will use it over written notes whenever I possibly can. Being a Windows Phone 7 user, I also enjoy the OneNote integration in the phone giving me super access to my personal notes. I quickly realised that through the course of migrating through various working practices at work, I had one notebook in my SharePoint 2010 MySite and another locally on the laptop, and then a third in the Windows Live SkyDrive cloud. I’ve just combined them all into my SharePoint 2010 MySite notebook and I feel great for it.

Unification for the win 🙂

Am I Overdue My MCSE

When I was previously working for Xerox I got into a great little routine – I would churn out an MCP exam to the tune of one every month or other month. This meant I was well on my way to achieving my MCSE, and with my MCSA already in the bag I had only two exams left:

  • 70-294: Active Directory
  • 70-298: Security for a Windows Server 2003 Network

When I moved to Vocera we all agreed that I could carry on with my training to complete my MCSE and maybe even aim to move onwards to an MCITP for Windows Server 2008 which suited me perfectly as I was planning this all along with or without backing.

It’s amazing how time blazes by you without a second thought until it dawned on me recently!

I was looking at my Microsoft Learning transcript just a week or so ago and I realised that it is now over a year since I sat my last exam – 70-350: ISA Server 2004. This made me realise how behind I have gotten, especially when you consider it may only be another year or so before the Server 2003 exam line is discontinued.

As a result I’ve got my butt into gear and this week I have taken one day’s holiday already, with another to come on Friday with the sole premise of training for the 70-294 exam. After Monday it’s all going well and I was achieving about 80% on the practice exams, so assuming all goes well after more studying on Friday I will be checking myself into the test centre on Monday afternoon to take the exam.

I think that finishing the Active Directory exam will be great weight lifted from me, because I actually started to study for this one prior to leaving Xerox, and having only one exam standing between me and MCSE, I think I should be able to master it up pretty quickly.