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Novell Netware 6.5 CNA Exam Cram 2

Novell Netware 6.5 CNA Exam Cram 2

by Warren E. Wyrostek, E. D. Tittel

The Certified Novell Administrator (CNA) certification is the frist step to becoming Novell certified. To pass this important exam, you need to surround yourself with the most comprehensive, exam-focused materials on the market. That's where Novell Netware 6.5 CNA Exam Cram 2 comes in. You will be able to focus your knowledge with this guide, which


The Certified Novell Administrator (CNA) certification is the frist step to becoming Novell certified. To pass this important exam, you need to surround yourself with the most comprehensive, exam-focused materials on the market. That's where Novell Netware 6.5 CNA Exam Cram 2 comes in. You will be able to focus your knowledge with this guide, which emphasizes the learning topics of the CNA exam and closely follows the exam objectives. Step-by-step lessons offer the no-nonsense, straight-forward information needed to pass the exam. It is accompanied by a CD-ROM that features ExamForce's CramMaster product, a powerful, full-featured test engine. Prepare for the CNA with the smartest, most efficient way to study — the Novell Netware 6.5 CNA Exam Cram 2.

Product Details

Pearson IT Certification
Publication date:
Exam Cram 2 Series
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.20(d)

Related Subjects

Read an Excerpt


Terms You'll Need to Understand

  • Form test

  • Adaptive test

  • Practicum test

  • Hot-spot question

  • Drag-and-drop question

  • Mutiple-choice question

  • Fill-in-the-blank question

Techniques You'll Need to Master

  • Test-taking strategies

  • Identify the differences among a form test, an adapative test, and a practicum

  • Identify the differences among the various question types

I would like to welcome you to Novell NetWare 6.5 CNA Exam Cram 2. The sole purpose of this book is to help you earn the CNA by passing the Novell Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 exam (050-686). Sometimes I simply call this the Foundations exam. At those occasions, I am abbreviating the title of the exam simply to conserve on space. Realize when I say the Foundations exam that I am referring to the Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 exam (050-686).

The NetWare CNA is an introductory certification that requires you to pass a single test, the 050-686. This is not a difficult exam if you have some background in networking and a bit of hands-on experience with NetWare 6.5. Even a complete network novice can pass this exam if he is willing to work and study diligently. The test is not a cakewalk, but a true test of your ability to perform basic workstation-based administrative tasks. You will also be tested on a few server-based tasks and the steps and requirements for installing a fresh NetWare 6.5 server.

Quite honestly, because I've taught the CNA courses as a Novell contract instructor for the past eight years, my students are my main motivationfor writing this text. Students come into the Foundations class seeking knowledge and leave enthusiastic about what they can do based on the knowledge they have learned. The real success stories are the students who contact me after earning their CNA. Their pride is amazing. For my future students and those of you whom I will never meet in a classroom, I hope you leave this Exam Cram 2 with the enthusiasm that my in-class students have, and more importantly, with the CNA in NetWare 6.5.

At the beginning of every class, I ask my students what their objectives are for the class. Some come to learn a skillset, some come because their employer forced them, some come because they want to take a week off from work, and some come because they want to earn the CNA and realize its value. This book is not the War and Peace of NetWare 6.5 administration. Its sole purpose is to help you pass the Foundations exam.

If you are looking for more detailed information on administrative skills, I encourage you to take the instructor-led Novell authorized course, 3016, "Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5"; purchase the authorized self-study kit from Novell; or seek out one of the great titles from Novell Press on NetWare 6.5 (http://www.novell.com/training/books/). You can find further information on Novell training options at http://www.novell.com/training/.

As we begin this journey together, I hope you have as much fun preparing for this exam as I have presenting the information to you. I wish you all good things as you prepare to earn the CNA. About This Book

Each chapter in this Exam Cram 2 follows a regular pattern and offers graphical cues about important or useful information. Following is the structure of a typical chapter:

  • Opening hotlists—This is a list of the terms, tools, and techniques that you must learn to fully understand the chapter's subject matter.

  • Topical coverage—Each chapter covers the main content that is related to the chapter's subject title. Each chapter has sections that relate to one of the published test objectives.

  • Exam alert—Throughout each chapter, topics or concepts that are likely to appear on a test or specific pieces of exam advice are highlighted using a special Exam Alert layout, like this:


Exam Alert - An Exam Alert stresses concepts, terms, software, or activities that are likely to relate to one or more certification test questions. They reflect the information you need to know as defined in the exam objectives laid out by Novell.

  • Tips—In addition to Exam Alerts, Tips are included to give you an alternative method of accomplishing a NetWare 6.5 administrative task. This is more practical real-world information that might or might not be on the test.


Tip - This is an example of a tip. Although Novell is moving away from NetWare Administrator in NetWare 6.5, NetWare Administrator can still perform many administrative functions more efficiently than some of the newer utilities.

  • Notes—The Note icon flags information that is related to the material within the chapter body but is not meant to be part of the content flow. A note is also known as an aside.


Note - This is what a note looks like. A note details or clarifies information in the chapter body.

  • Exam Prep questions—These practice questions appear at the end of every chapter. These exam-like questions are similar to what you will find on the Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 (050-686) exam.

  • Further details and resources—On the CD you will find a document that provides direct pointers to Novell and third-party resources offering more details on the chapter's subject.

In addition, Chapters 13, "Practice Exam 1," and 15, "Practice Exam 2," include two sample tests that review the material presented throughout this book to ensure that you're ready for the exam. Chapters 14, "Answer Key for Practice Exam 1," and 16, "Answer Key for Practice Exam 2," offer the answer keys to the sample tests that appear in Chapters 13 and 15. Take the sample tests when you think you're ready for the live exam.

This book also offers appendixes that provide technical resources, additional practice questions for file system rights, commonly used management URLs and ports, the low-down on what's on the CD-ROM that accompanies this book, and instructions for using the ExamForce software (again, see the CD-ROM). Concluding this book are a Glossary, which explains terms, and an index, which you can use to track down terms as they appear in the text.

Finally, the tear-out Cram Sheet that is attached to the inside front cover of this Exam Cram 2 book represents a condensed and compiled collection of facts, exam alerts, and tips that you should memorize before taking the test. It is a summary of key testable points that you might encounter on the Foundations exam. Exam Experience

The Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 exam is a straightforward computer-based assessment of your knowledge. Authorized exam providers administer this test.

Arrive at the test center, after registering with your provider, at least 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment. This gives you time to sign in with the test proctor; provide two forms of identification, one of which must be a photo ID; deposit any books, bags, cell phones, or study aids with the proctor; and take a deep breath. Remember that all Novell tests, including the Foundations exam, are closed book exams.

The proctor then escorts you into a test room that has a window or closed-circuit camera system enabling him to monitor the test. Each test room has one or more computers, generally separated from each other by a partition. You are given a sheet of scrap paper and a pen or pencil (some provide erasable boards and an erasable pen) to write down any notes before or during the exam. After you compose yourself and before you start the exam, write down on the notepad any facts or mnemonics you want to remember during the exam. This includes any lists that you memorized during your study time. You must surrender all notes when you leave the test room.

When the proctor leaves the room, you can click Start for the Foundations exam. The proctor has the exam preloaded for you.

The computer has a clock in the upper-right corner of the screen. This tells you how much time you have left in the exam.

As you proceed through the exam, answer every question. You cannot mark a question and return to it at the end of the exam. You have only one chance at each question. Take your time, look at the possible answer choices, and provide the best possible answer. If you leave a question blank, it is scored as incorrect. For this reason, it's better to guess than to skip a question entirely.

After you answer the final question, the test is scored automatically. You are notified immediately on your computer screen if you earned a passing score. A score report is routed to a printer that the proctor monitors and given to you when you leave the test center. The score report provides your score, the passing or cut-off score, and the objectives that correspond to questions that you answered incorrectly. This gives you an immediate reference to this Exam Cram 2 and any authorized courseware you might have used to study from. When you leave the test center, you are asked to sign out and return any notepads that were given to you at the beginning of the exam. Your personal possessions are then returned to you. Test-Taking Strategies

The exam experience is an exhilarating one. Depending on whether this is your first Novell exam or the hundredth, you will take the exam with a certain amount of nervous anticipation. Here are a couple of hints for doing the best you can:

  • Take your time and read each question and answer carefully. Don't read too quickly, or you might miss a key component that is there to trick you.

  • Most of the questions are short and straightforward, but some contain a short scenario. Read through the scenario and make sure you know the key element that the scenario is addressing. Many of these questions have extraneous information that is there strictly to confuse you.

  • If you have no idea what the correct answer is for a question, try to narrow the choices down to two or three and then guess. Don't leave a question blank.

  • Don't spend too much time on any one question because that could mean running out of time at the end of the exam. Answer all questions. If you have to, use every minute to do so.

  • Refer to any notes that you made before starting the exam to see if any might help you on a particularly difficult question.

  • If you encounter a question that you have no idea how to answer, provide an answer and move on with a positive attitude. Remember that it is only one question. Be patient with yourself and the test. You might know more than you think you know.

  • Make sure you answer the questions the way that Novell wants you to. If you have a boatload of certifications from other vendors but have never taken a Novell exam, you might have problems if you answer the questions the way you are accustomed. For example, if you answer a Novell question the way that Microsoft, CompTIA, or Cisco would have you answer it, you might get it wrong. Remember that this is a Novell CNA exam, not a Microsoft MCP, CompTIA Network+, or Cisco CCNA exam.

  • The worst thing that will happen is that you might fail the exam. That is financially costly but not life threatening. You can take the exam again, and it's likely you will pass it if you take what you learn from the experience, study the objectives you got wrong, and patiently work through the material again. The only students I have had who have failed are those who did not study the material I pointed them to, those who were overly nervous, or those who did not answer the questions the Novell way.

Exam Providers

Most Novell computer-based tests, including the Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 (050-686), cost $125 each. Each time you take the exam, you are assessed an additional $125 fee. Several of Novell's newer practicum exams, which are discussed in the "Exam Types" section, have a higher price associated with them. In the United States and Canada, most Novell tests are administered by Pearson VUE and by Thomson Prometric. The newer practicum exams are being administered by Novell through their authorized training partners. You can contact Pearson VUE and Thomson Prometric at the following addresses and phone numbers, respectively:

  • Pearson VUE—Sign up for a test or get the phone numbers for local testing centers through the Web page at http://www.vue.com/novell. You can also register by phone at 800-TEST-CNE (in North America) or 800-837-8263.

  • Thomson Prometric—Sign up for a test through the company's Web site at http://www.2test.com. You can also call 800-RED-EXAM (in North America) to register.

You can find information about Novell's practicum exams at the Novell Practicum Portal (http://practicum.novell.com/).Exam Scoring

Each Novell exam has a defined passing score. Based on the number of people who have taken an exam and where a test is in its life cycle, the passing score might change. When you are preparing to take a Novell exam, check Novell's Test Data Web site (http://www.novell.com/training/testinfo/testdata.html) for the current passing score.

At the time that I am writing this Exam Cram 2, the passing score for the Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 (050-686) exam is 650 out of a possible 800 points. Currently, the exam has 66 questions, and you have 75 minutes to complete it.

When you look at Novell's Test Data Web site (see Figure I.1), notice that there are two Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 exams. The 050-686 exam is for CNAs and CNEs. The 050-886 is for Novell instructors, or CNIs. There is no difference in content between the 050-686 and 050-886 exams. The only difference is that the passing score is higher for Novell instructors who want to be authorized by Novell to teach the class for Novell training partners using the authorized courseware. If a Novell instructor takes the 050-686 exam and passes it with a score higher than the 050-886 passing score, he will be authorized by Novell to present the class. Novell encourages instructors to take the 050-886 exam, but it accepts the 050-686 exam as long as the score for instructional authorization is above the passing score for the 050-886 exam.
Figure I.1  Test 050-686 test data.Retake Policy

Novell's current retake policy permits you, should you fail this exam on your first attempt, to take the exam again as soon you want. However, should you fail an exam twice, you must wait a minimum of 30 days before attempting to pass the exam on a third or fourth attempt. This is to prevent folks from stealing Novell's test content and publishing it to a braindump site.

After passing an exam, you can retake the same exam no sooner than 12 months later, unless Novell has changed the published objectives or modified the content.

If you violate these policies, Novell denies or revokes your Novell certification(s). Exam Readiness

Before tackling the Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 exam, read through the Self-Assessment, which follows this Introduction. This document gives you a good sense of whether you're ready for the exam or if you need to brush up on a topic or two.

The best way to prepare for a Novell exam, after working through this Exam Cram 2, its practice tests, its end-of-chapter review questions, and other third-party sources, is to set up a NetWare 6.5 test lab. The lab should consist of a Windows 2000/XP workstation with the Novell Client, networked with a NetWare 6.5 server.

This type of lab environment can get expensive. To work around purchasing additional computers for your practice lab, you can set up a virtual network on a computer using VMWare workstation, which you can find at http://www.vmware.com/products/desktop/ws_features.html. You can download VMWare for a 30-day trial period before purchasing it. If you are seriously interested in pursuing Novell certifications, VMWare is a great product to invest in for study and research. To establish your network, your computer should have at least 1 GB of RAM installed, be running a Linux or Windows platform, and have enough hard disk space to install NetWare 6.5 and Windows XP Professional.

After you have your network up and running, get familiar with the utilities, the interfaces, the paths to those utilities discussed in this text, the server console commands, and the steps needed to accomplish basic administrative tasks. Practice, practice, practice. That is the best teacher.

After all that practice, return to the review questions at the end of each chapter and the practice tests at the end of this text. These questions alert you to what you know and what you don't know. You should score a minimum of 80 percent without help to feel comfortable with the material. If you fail to score 80 percent or higher, make a list of what you don't know and perform additional study. Do some additional practice. Look at the help screens that each interface offers. You might want to visit Novell's NetWare 6.5 Documentation Web site (http://www.novell.com/documentation/nw65/index.html) to fully research any sticking point. Exam Types

Novell currently offers computer-based exams using three formats: form-based, adaptive, and practical (commonly called practicums). Adaptive and form-based exams are scored on a 200–800 scale. Practicums are scored on a pass-fail basis.

A form exam is a standard or traditional exam in which you are presented with 60–70 questions in a defined period of time. Your final score is based on the number of questions you answer correctly. All Novell exams start out as form-based exams. The Foundations exam (050-686) is currently a form-based exam.

After a form-based exam has been live for an extensive period of time, and after the test has been taken at least 1,000 times, Novell might convert it to the adaptive exam format. An adaptive exam is a condensed, efficient testing format in which you are presented with 15–25 questions. You are initially presented with a question of moderate difficulty. If you get that question correct, the testing algorithm presents you with a second question that meets or exceeds your ability level, gauged from your response to the first exam question. If you get a difficult question wrong, the next question you are presented with is easier. If you get a question correct, the next one is generally more difficult. A question of moderate difficulty is normally the first question. You are presented with questions until the algorithm concludes that it knows your ability level. You might see only 15 questions, or you might see 25.

Novell's adaptive algorithm is a mystery to most test takers. The important thing to remember is that although the test is relatively short in scope and duration, it is still testing your knowledge and ability as accurately as a form-based exam. Your final score on an adaptive exam is based on the difficulty level of the questions you answered correctly and incorrectly. The score is not simply based on the number or percentage of questions you answered correctly. It is based on a weighted average, with the weights corresponding to the question difficulty level. You might answer almost all of the questions correctly, but if you only do well on easy and moderately difficult questions, you might not receive a perfect score of 800. The Foundations exam is not currently an adaptive exam.

The third and newest type of exam format is the practicum. Practicums were released a few years ago as the definitive exam format for those pursuing the CDE (Certified Directory Engineer). The practicum was offered through the Pearson VUE testing provider. That certification path is no longer available. Novell is now using the practicum for the CLE (Certified Linux Engineer) and CLP (Certified Linux Professional) certifications. Practicums are now offered only through authorized Novell training partners. See the earlier section titled "Exam Providers" for the practicum Web site.

In a practicum exam, you are presented not with a knowledge-based exam format, but with a task-oriented exam format. You are connected, across the Internet, to a bank of servers at Novell headquarters where you must perform a series of tasks, including installing and troubleshooting products. The exam format tests your ability to perform these tasks in a defined period of time. If you perform a task incorrectly, you fail the exam. Either you perform all tasks to perfection, or you fail. The exam is scored on a pass-fail basis. Novell is currently trying to work out some bugs for the CLE practicum. The CLP practicum is currently in beta and has not gone live. The current pricing for the CLE and CLP practicums is $195 each. The CDE practicum was in excess of $300. Novell has hinted that its long-range goal for certification testing, including testing for the CNA and CNE, is to go with all practicum tests. Only time will tell. Question Types

The Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 exam (050-686) is a form-based one. You can expect to see several types of questions on this exam. These question types have been used for years in paper-based exams and have been adapted for computer-based exams. The question types are multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blank, matching (which is now graphically accomplished through a drag-and-drop interface), and hot-spot or identification.

Multiple-choice questions come in two formats. Either the question has one correct response, which is represented by a radio button, or it has several correct responses, which are represented by square check boxes. Multiple-choice questions have a short question or scenario and four or more response options. Those questions that have several correct responses have more than four options available. Generally, on Novell exams, if a multiple-choice question has several correct responses, you are told at the end of the question to "Choose 2" or "Choose 3." Rarely have I seen "Choose all that apply" on a Novell exam. On those questions that have several correct responses, you must select all the correct options. For example, if the question says to "Choose 3" and you choose two of the correct options but get the third one wrong, that question is marked as incorrect. Many multiple-choice questions have associated exhibits that you must examine so that you can respond correctly. Take time to carefully look at the exhibits so that on multiple-choice questions that have several correct responses, you select all of the correct responses.

Fill-in-the-blank questions are simply statements in which you have to provide a missing term, command, word, phrase, or path that completes the statement. It is best on these to use all lowercase when entering your response, although Novell says that these responses are not case sensitive. I have seen instances in which student answers were marked incorrect if all uppercase was used, and the students had to dispute this with Novell. To avoid aggravation and a later dispute with the testing provider, I encourage you to use all lowercase. Many consider the fill-in-the-blank the toughest type of question. This is a matter of opinion based on how well you have studied. If you know your commands, glossary terms, and paths to management utilities, fill-in-the-blanks are the easiest of all of the questions.

Matching or drag-and-drop questions are graphical questions in which you click and drag a term to its associated definition. Sometimes these questions involve reordering a series of steps to accomplish a task. For example, on a DOS-based computer, you might drag the boxes containing the terms Command.com, Config.sys, and Autoexec.bat to a part of the screen where you would show their correct order of execution. Some drag-and-drop questions have choices in which you do not have to match to a term, whereas other questions require you to match multiple terms to the same definition. You must match all items or order all items correctly to receive credit for the question. If you match any element incorrectly or put one thing out of order, this question is marked as wrong.

Hot-spot or identification questions ask you to click on an interface option where you would perform a task. For example, you might be asked to click on the menu option in ConsoleOne where you would begin the process of creating a user. If you click on the wrong part of the interface, this question is marked as incorrect.

Each chapter's Exam Prep Questions and the practice exams at the end of this book provide you with all but the matching type of question. Because we are dealing with a paper medium with this text, I cannot provide you with drag-and-drop type questions, but I can offer you some practice on hot-spot, fill-in-the-blank, and multiple-choice questions. Practice Test Providers

The best way to prepare for the Foundations exam is to take a few practice tests. This book has more than 200 practice questions. If you are looking for additional practice questions, I would also encourage you to look toward ExamForce (http://www.examforce.com) for practice tests that will help you toward passing the Foundations exam. This book features a trial version of their popular CramMaster product.Test Objectives

Without hesitation, I encourage you to research one other Novell Web site before taking the Foundations exam. Tests change, and so do their objectives. I have already pointed you toward the Novell Test Data Web site to verify the current passing score for the Foundations exam. The other critical site is the Novell Test Objectives site for the Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5 exam (http://www.novell.com/training/testinfo/objectives/3016tobj.html).

All of the questions on the live exam are based on the objectives that are published on this site. In addition, this Exam Cram 2 is structured around the published test objectives. This book presents the material based on published objectives to maximize your ability to pass the Foundations exam in the shortest period of time. As time moves along, the objectives might change, and you need to be aware of this. Onto the CNA

Now that you have an idea of what the exam is like and what this book is all about, look at the Self-Assessment that follows. Chapter 1, "The Novell Certifications," then takes you through all of Novell's current certification offerings. These documents should help you become enthused about why you bought this book and where you can go after earning the CNA. After you know your goal and have assessed your ability to attain the CNA goal, dive into Chapters 2, "Introduction to Networking, Network Administration, and Netware 6.5," through 12, "iFolder and Virtual Office." Together, we will take a phenomenol journey toward your becoming a Novell CNA in NetWare 6.5. Enjoy the ride!

If you have any questions during your study, don't hesitate to contact me at wyrostekw@msn.com. You can also visit my Web site (http://www.3WsCertification.com), where you can see a virtual installation of NetWare 6.5, a Novell Links page, and a host of classroom notes. Best wishes on your journey, and thanks for letting me help you toward your goal. Self-Assessment

Based on recent statistics, thousands of individuals are at some stage in the Novell certification process. And with the release of NetWare 6 and more recently NetWare 6.5, many more are considering whether to obtain a Novell certification of some kind. That's a huge audience!

This book includes a self-assessment to help you evaluate your readiness to tackle the CNA. It should also help you understand what you need to master Novell's 050-686 exam, "Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5," which is unofficially known as the NetWare 6.5 CNA exam. However, before you tackle this self-assessment, it's important to talk about concerns you might face when pursuing the CNA and what an ideal CNA candidate might look like.CNAs in the Real World

The following section describes an ideal CNA candidate, even though only a few real candidates will meet this ideal. In fact, the description of that ideal candidate might seem downright scary. But take heart: Although the requirements to obtain a CNA might seem pretty formidable, they are by no means impossible to meet. However, you should be keenly aware that certification does take time, requires some expense, and consumes substantial effort to get through the process.

Thousands of folks have already earned Novell's CNA, so it's obviously an attainable goal. You can get all the real-world motivation you need from knowing that many others have gone before, so you'll be able to follow in their footsteps. If you're willing to tackle the process seriously and do what it takes to obtain the necessary experience and knowledge, you can take and pass the one certification test involved in obtaining a CNA. In fact, Exam Cram 2s are designed to make it as easy on you as possible to prepare for exams. But prepare you must!The Ideal CNA Candidate

Just to give you some idea of what an ideal CNA candidate is like, here are some relevant statistics about the background and experience such an individual might have. Don't worry if you don't meet these qualifications because this is far from an ideal world, and where you fall short is simply where you'll have more work to do. An ideal CNA candidate should have the following:

  • Academic or professional training in network theory, concepts, and operations. This includes everything from networking media and transmission techniques through network operating systems, services, protocols, routing algorithms, and applications.

  • Four-plus years of professional networking experience, including experience with Ethernet, Token Ring, modems, and other networking media. This must include installation, configuration, upgrading, and troubleshooting experience, in addition to some experience working with and supporting users in a networked environment.

  • Two-plus years in a networked environment that includes hands-on experience with NetWare 6.x or NetWare 5.x. Some knowledge of NetWare 4.x is helpful, especially on networks where this product remains in use. Individuals must also acquire a solid understanding of each system's architecture, installation, configuration, maintenance, and troubleshooting techniques. An ability to run down and research information about software, hardware components, systems, and technologies on the Internet and elsewhere is also becoming an essential job skill.

  • A thorough understanding of key networking protocols, addressing, and name resolution, including Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP), Internetwork Packet Exchange/Sequenced Packet Exchange (IPX/SPX), Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP), and Service Location Protocol (SLP) version 2.

  • A thorough understanding of Novell's naming conventions, directory services, and file and print services. This is absolutely essential.

  • Familiarity with key NetWare-based TCP/IP-based services, including Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) Web servers, Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), Domain Name System (DNS), plus familiarity with one or more of the following: ZENWorks, BorderManager, GroupWise, ManageWise, and other supporting Novell products and partner offerings.

  • Working knowledge of Windows NT, Windows 2000 (the server and workstation versions), and Windows XP Professional. This is an excellent accessory to this collection of facts and skills, as is knowledge of Microsoft implementation of key technologies, such as Internet Information Server (IIS), Internet Explorer, and Windows Internet Naming Service (WINS).

Fundamentally, this boils down to a bachelor's degree in computer science, plus three or more years of work experience in a technical position involving network design, installation, configuration, and maintenance. In reality, though, less than half of all CNA candidates meet these requirements, and most meet less than half of these requirements when they begin the certification process. But because hundreds of thousands who already have been certified have survived this ordeal, you can survive it, too, especially if you heed what the self-assessment can tell you about what you already know and what you need to learn.

Don't worry if you do not meet all the previously mentioned criteria. Motivation has a great deal to do with success on Novell's CNA exam. If you want the certification badly enough and are willing to study and work toward your goal, you can be successful. When you look back on it, you will realize how much you have learned in the process. By all means, you should enjoy the certification process.

Many of my students wonder how they will get through the exam process and earn the CNA. When students leave the exam room, having successfully passed the CNA exam, the air of accomplishment that surrounds them is quite noticeable. It is a thrill. Those who have to take the exam a second time do so for one of two reasons. Either they did not focus on the material covered and spend a reasonable amount of time studying, or they had a bad case of nerves during the test. For those taking their first IT certification exam, being nervous is normal. Knowledge goes a long way to overcoming a case of nerves. The focus of this book is to provide you with the information you need to not only get over being nervous, but also to successfully pass exam 050-686, "Foundations of Novell Networking: NetWare 6.5." Putting Yourself to the Test

The following series of questions and observations is designed to help you figure out how much work you must do to pursue Novell certification and what types of resources you can consult on your quest. Be absolutely honest in your answers, or you'll end up wasting money on exams you're not yet ready to take. There are no right or wrong answers, only steps along the path to certification. Only you can decide where you really belong in the broad spectrum of aspiring candidates.

Two things should be clear from the outset, however:

  • Even a modest background in computer science is helpful.

  • Hands-on experience with Novell products and technologies is an essential ingredient to certification success. If you don't already have this experience, you'll need to get some along the way; if you do already have some, you still need to get more!

Educational Background
  1. Have you ever taken computer-related classes? Yes or No

    If Yes, proceed to question 2; if No, proceed to question 4.

  2. Have you taken any classes on computer operating systems? Yes or No

    If Yes, you'll probably be able to handle Novell's architecture and system component discussions. If you're rusty, brush up on basic operating system concepts, especially virtual memory, multitasking regimes, program load and unload behaviors, and general computer security topics.

    If No, consider some basic reading in this area. You should probably read a good general operating systems book, such as Operating System Concepts, 6th Edition by Abraham Silberschatz, Peter Baer Galvin, and Greg Gagne (Wiley Publishing, 2001, ISBN: 0-471-41743-2). If this title doesn't appeal to you, check out reviews for other, similar titles at your favorite online bookstore.

  3. Have you taken any networking concepts or technologies classes? Yes or No

    If Yes, you'll probably be able to handle Novell's networking terminology, concepts, and technologies. (Brace yourself for occasional departures from normal usage.) If you're rusty, brush up on basic networking concepts and terminology, especially networking media, transmission types, the OSI reference model, networking protocols and services, and networking technologies, such as Ethernet, Token Ring, Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI), and wide area network (WAN) links.

    If No, you might want to read several books in this topic area. Two good ones are Network+ Study Guide 3rd Edition, by David Groth (Sybex, 2002, ISBN: 0-7821-4014-9) and Networking Complete (Sybex, 2000, ISBN: 0-7821-2610-3). Another good one is the Laura Chappell book, Novell's Guide to LAN/WAN Analysis (Hungry Minds/Novell Press, 1998, ISBN: 0-7645-4508-6), for its outstanding coverage of NetWare-related protocols and network behavior. (Even though it is a bit out of date, it's still a worthwhile reference.) Or try Understanding Directory Services by Sheresh and Sheresh (Sams, 2002, ISBN: 0-672-32305-2). One of the best texts on the market, and one that should be in every CNA's toolkit, is the Novell Press title, Novell's NetWare 6.5 Administrator's Handbook, by Jeff L. Harris (Que/Novell Press, 2004, ISBN: 0-7897-2984-9). Yet another comprehensive reference for NetWare 6.x is Guide to Novell NetWare 6.0 Administration, by Ted L. Simpson and Michael T. Simpson (Course Technology, 2003, ISBN: 0-619-12037-1). For a list of self-study references that revolve around networking, see the following article on InformiT.com titled "Now What? A Certification Resource List for Self-Study Career Changers," by Warren E. Wyrostek (http://www.informit.com/content/index.asp?product_id={393BE5F3-4249-415C-856A-204148F4048A}).

  4. Skip to the next section, "Hands-On Experience."

  5. Have you done reading on operating systems or networks? Yes or No

    If Yes, review the requirements stated in the first paragraphs after questions 2 and 3. If you meet those requirements, move on to the next section. If No, consult the recommended reading for both topics. A strong background will help you prepare for the Novell exams better than just about anything else.

Hands-On Experience

The most important key to success on all the Novell tests is hands-on experience, especially with NetWare 6.5, plus the many system services and other software components that cluster around NetWare, such as GroupWise and ZENworks, which appear on many of the Novell certification tests. If you're left with only one realization after taking this self-assessment, it should be that there's no substitute for time spent installing, configuring, and using the various Novell and ancillary products upon which you'll be tested repeatedly and in depth. For in-depth coverage of installing NetWare 6.5 components that will be covered on the CNA 6.5 exam, see Chapters 3, "Installing and Configuring NetWare 6.5" and 4, "Installing and Configuring the Novell Client," and Appendix E, "NetWare 6.5: New Server Installation Planning Table."

  1. Have you installed, configured, and worked with the following:

    • ‰ NetWare 6.5? Yes or No

      The more times you answer Yes, the better off you are. Please make sure you understand basic concepts as covered in Test 050-686.


      Tip - You can download objectives, practice exams, and other information about Novell exams from the company's education pages on the Web at http://www.novell.com/training.


      If you haven't worked with NetWare and eDirectory, you must obtain one or two machines and a copy of NetWare 6.5. Then you must learn the operating system and TCP/IP, IPX, and be familiar with ZENworks.

      In fact, it is recommended that you obtain two computers, each with a network board, and set up a two-node network on which to practice. With decent NetWare-capable computers selling for less than $600, this shouldn't be too much of a financial hardship. Evaluation copies of many Novell products are available, but you'll have to browse each product offering at http://www.novell.com/products.

      One Web site that now offers an online presentation of a NetWare 6.5 installation is http://www.3wscertification.com/.


      Tip - For any and all Novell exams, check to see if Novell Press (an imprint of Pearson Education) offers related titles.

    • For any specific Novell product that is not itself an operating system (such as ZENworks, GroupWise, BorderManager, and so forth), have you installed, configured, used, and upgraded this software? Yes or No

      If the answer is Yes, skip to the next section. If it's No, you must get some experience. Read on for suggestions on how to do this.

      Experience is a must with any Novell product test, be it something as simple as Web Server Management or as challenging as eDirectory installation and configuration. Here again, explore Novell's product Web site for available evaluation copies at http://www.novell.com/products.


      Tip - If you have the funds, or if your employer will pay your way, consider checking out one or more of the many training options that Novell offers. This could be something as expensive as taking a class at a Novell Training Service Partner (NTSP) to as inexpensive as Novell's Self-Study Training programs. Be sure to check out the training options that Novell offers and that it authorizes third parties to deliver at http://www.novell.com/training/train_product.


      Before you even think about taking a Novell test, make sure you've spent enough time with the related software to understand how it can be installed and configured, how to maintain such an installation, and how to troubleshoot that software when things go wrong. This will help you both on the exam and in real life!

Testing Your Exam Readiness

Whether you attend a formal class on a specific topic to get ready for an exam or use written materials to study on your own, some preparation for the Novell certification exams is essential. At $125 per try, pass or fail, you want to do everything you can to pass on your first try. That's where studying comes in.

This book includes two sample tests, and there's a third on the CD-ROM. Take all of them. If you still don't hit a score of at least 76 percent after two or more tests, keep at it until you get there. For any given subject, consider taking a class if you've tackled self-study materials, taken the test, and failed anyway. The opportunity to interact with an instructor and fellow students can make all the difference, if you can afford that privilege. For information about Novell courses, visit Novell Training at http://www.novell.com/training and follow the Training by Product link.

If you can't afford to take a class, you should still invest in some low-cost practice exams from commercial vendors because they can help you assess your readiness to pass a test better than any other tool. The following Web sites offer practice exams online for less than $100 apiece (and some are significantly cheaper than that):

  • http://www.boson.com—Boson

  • http://www.certify.com—CyberPass

  • http://www.stsware.com—Self-Test Software

  • http://www.real-questions.com—realQuestions.com

  1. Have you taken a practice exam on your chosen test subject? Yes or No

    If Yes, and your score meets or beats the cut score for the related Novell test, you're probably ready to tackle the real thing. If your score isn't above that crucial threshold, keep at it until you break that barrier.

    If No, obtain all the free and low-budget practice tests you can find (see the previous list) and get to work. Keep at it until you can break the passing threshold comfortably.


    Tip - Taking a good-quality practice exam and beating Novell's minimum passing grade, known as the cut score, is the best way to assess your test readiness. When I am preparing for a Novell exam, I shoot for 10 percent over the cut score—just to leave room for the "weirdness factor" that sometimes shows up. Murphy and weird seem to walk hand in hand.

Assessing Readiness for Exam 050-686

Novell exam mavens recommend checking the Novell Application Notes, the Novell Support Resource Library, and the Novell Product Documentation Web site found at http://www.novell.com/documentation/. The Novell Support Resource Library provides "meaningful technical support" information that relates to your test's topics. I have noticed some overlap between technical support questions on particular products and troubleshooting questions on the tests for those products. For more information on the Novell Support Resource Library, go to http://support.novell.com/subscriptions/subscription_products/nsrl19.html.Let the Journey Begin!

After you've assessed your readiness, undertaken the right background studies, obtained the hands-on experience that will help you understand the products and technologies at work, and reviewed the many sources of information to help you prepare for a test, you'll be ready to take a round of practice tests. When your scores come back positive enough to get you through the exam, you're ready to go after the real thing. If you follow this book's assessment regimen, you'll not only know what you need to study, but also when you're ready to make a test date at Pearson VUE or THOMSON Prometric. Good luck!

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Meet the Author

Warren E. Wyrostek is the owner of Warren E. Wyrostek, M.Ed. (a Novell Authorized Partner), and 3WsCertification.com (a portal dedicated to Novell Training and Support). He holds a Master's degree in Vocational-Technical Education from Valdosta State College, a Master’s in Divinity from New York’s Union Theological Seminary, and is devoted to technical education as reflected by his list certifications. He currently holds 25 Novell certifications including the CNI, MCNE, and CDE. Warren has been teaching over 20 years and has taught on the College and Secondary School levels. He has taught Novell authorized courses since 1996. Professionally, his main joy comes as a Freelance Writer, Course Developer, and Contract Trainer for various technologies that revolve around integrated networking. He has been the Technical Editor for over 20 certification titles in the last few years. At heart, he is a teacher who loves what technical education offers. Many of Warren’s certification articles can be found on Informit.com, including "Now What? -A Career Changer’s Odyssey." You can reach Warren at wyrostekw@msn.com.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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