Exploring CompTIA’s Infrastructure Certifications

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Hello, and welcome to another episode of the Cyber Security For All podcast.  A podcast all about cybersecurity from Apetech.  I’m your host, Alex and today we are going to be taking a deeper look into CompTIA certifications.  CompTIA offers a lot of different certifications and if you are new to the cybersecurity space, a CompTIA certification is probably the best way to go.  If you listened to my episode last week, then you know that I took a deeper dive into the “core” certs that are offered by CompTIA. In this episode we are going to be looking at the Infrastructure certs. There are a lot of pros and cons and I want to talk about those in this episode.  I have personally never held any of the infrastructure certs, but at one point I seriously considered the Network+ cert. Let’s take a deeper look.

Before we jump into the episode, let me update you on a few things.  First off, I now officially have two episodes where I have interviewed guests. I go deep into the conversation with my guests and I really do think you’ll find something valuable in each of those episodes.  One of the interviews is with Christian Espinosa, a cyber security expert and best selling author.  My other interview is with John Lunn, a Microsoft Azure cloud expert.  I really enjoyed interviewing both of my guests and I hope you get something valuable out of those episodes.  Don’t forget to share with your friends and family!  Next, we just crossed over 1590 downloads!I have a goal of getting to 2,500 by the end of the year, but I might try to challenge myself to get there before Fall starts in September.  I have a bunch of episodes planned out, but creating the episodes has been a little more challenging.  But, I really do believe in my podcast and will be investing more time and planning on getting all my planned episodes out before the start of Fall.  I am so thankful to each and everyone of you that tunes in to listen to my podcast.  Every time someone listens to my podcast, I am motivated and encouraged to keep on going.  I really do hope you find something valuable here.  Please feel free to share my podcast with your friends and family so that they too can benefit from the Cyber Security For All podcast!  If you want to leave a message, there is a voicemail URL in the episode description that you can use to get a hold of me.  Also, apetech.me/social is where you can find me and everything else that I am working on.  I’m very active on Twitter and you can find me there @apetechda.  If you enjoy the cybersecurity content, but want more, feel free to check me out on TikTok.  I post even more content about cyber security there that you might enjoy.  If you love my cybersecurity content here on the podcast, you have to check out what I’m doing across other mediums.  Apetech.me/social is where you can get all the details!  Alright, enough updates, let’s get into the episode.

In the last episode, we explored the core certifications that CompTIA offers. These are great starter cert for those looking to start a career in IT, but in today’s episode, we are going to explore some slightly more advanced and slightly more specialized certs. If you’ve been in IT for a while, or maybe you want to increase your IT chops, these three certs that we’ll be talking about are perfect for you. I’ve been in IT for almost 11 years now and just based on the titles of these certs, I can tell that they are valuable. The certs in the infrastructure category are: Cloud+, Linux+, and Server+. Each of these topics are very much in demand within the world of IT and if you’ve been wanting to jump into any of these categories, these are the perfect certifications for you to get.

Let’s start with the first cert which is the cloud+ cert. When I was getting my Security+ cert, this specific certification didn’t exist yet. I’m excited that it does exist though because more and more companies depend on the cloud to not only run their business, but to also build their business on. Virtually every company in 2021 uses a cloud powered service in one way or another. It is almost impossible to not depend or rely on some sort of cloud to get things done. If you are in IT and you’ve been wanting to explore the world of the cloud, but didn’t know where to start, look no further. This cert is an entry level cert and will cover basics such as cloud security, cloud architecture, and cloud deployment. The exam is a little more expensive, coming in at 338 USD, but the return on investment is really good. If you’ve been thinking of taking any of the AWS, Azure, or GCP certs, this Cloud+ cert might be a great way to get your feet wet without taking on too much risk.

The next certification is the Linux+ cert. I’m really excited about this one because I really love Linux, but feel like I don’t use it enough to be really good at it. I know my way around a command line, but I could always use a little more knowledge. What is great about Linux is that it is used everywhere and the skills you learn here can provide a lot of value. I’ve used Linux a lot throughout my entire career and I don’t know where I would be had I not first been introduced to Linux in my second programming class in college. The Linux+ cert prepares you system administrative tasks such as managing servers, the cloud, or virtualization technologies. Another great thing covered by the exam is Linux security. While the operating system itself is pretty secure, you can leverage the security of Linux to secure other services or products. And finally, the last thing I want to touch here is that the cert covers scripting and automation. I want to point this out because most of my experience with Linux has been through some sort of automation script that I created. The exam is also 338 USD and while most jobs will probably not care about the certification, it is still a good thing to have. Many IT jobs rely on Linux and being an expert in that environment can give you an edge.

The last certification is the Server+ cert. I’ve never heard anything about this cert, so I am excited to learn more and share with you. I’ve worked on servers for a good portion of my IT career. I worked on Linux servers and Microsoft servers. The Server+ cert is marketed as the certification you want to get if you are managing on premise servers or if you work at a data center. In either case, I can see this cert being extremely valuable. As more and more of the world goes to the cloud, having the skills outlined in this cert will definitely help. And, in case you are wondering, the cloud is just someone else’s server. Instead of standing up your own server, you rent server resources. Some of the things covered by the cert are installing and configuring physical servers. This is a lot of fun and I’ve configured a couple servers over my career. You also have to learn/know server administration which is closely related to the Linux and Networking certs. Finally, from a cybersecurity perspective, you learn how to protect the servers by having disaster recovery plans in place and other important artifacts. The cert is also 338 USD and I feel like it’s an okay value. If I had to pick, I’d rather get the Network+ and the Linux+ certs instead. The Server+ is more specialized so unless all you want to do is manage servers, I wouldn’t recommend this cert. With Network+ and Linux+, you can leverage the skills in other areas of your career.

There you have it, your overview of the CompTia’s infrastructure certifications. There are many more exams to cover, but we are going to leave that for future episodes.  This is the second episode and just a reminder, if you haven’t listened to my previous episode, you’ll want to listen to that one as I covered the first set of certifications offered by CompTIA. Do you currently have any of these certifications?  I personally had the security+ certification but I let it expire because I didn’t have any need for it in my current line of work.  Are you planning on getting any of these certifications?  I’d love to hear from you and if there is anything I can do to help you prepare for the exams, please let me know.  If you look on Amazon, you will find books for each of the exams that will help you prepare.  If you are not sure if a certification is right for you, please feel free to reach out.  I’d be more than happy to discuss with you and determine what is best for you based on your specific needs.  

Well that’s it for this episode.  I hope you enjoyed it.  If you feel that someone you know could benefit from listening to this episode, please feel free to share it with them.  I appreciate you taking the time to listen to my podcast and thanks for the support! Thanks for being a part of this journey with me.  See you on the next one!

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