On June 29, 2021, I took the CompTIA PenTest+ certification beta exam (PT0-002) for $50 US. That exam went official this week and I found out my results. I failed the beta exam.
That I failed the beta exam didn’t surprise me.
- I only had six weeks to study for a certification that I never heard about.
- Getting my second COVID-19 shot the weekend before the exam didn’t help.
- I was still playing FortNite every night.
I’ll explain why I’m waiting until next year to take the new PenTest+ certification exam.
New Study Guides
The biggest reason for waiting is for the new study guides.
- The Sybex Study Guide will be available on November 2, 2021.
- The Pearson Study Guide will be available on December 20, 2021.
- The McGraw-Hill Study Guide will be available on April 1, 2022.
The dead tree version of each study guide will be $60 US. The ebook version will be $36 US to $60 US. I find it helpful to study from at least two different study guides to make sure I’m not missing anything.
Command Line Preparation
One problem that I had with studying for the beta exam was the command line questions. The study guides will tell you that need to know something about the command line. But it won’t show you how to do that something ing the command line. I found the command line questions on the beta exam to be overwhelming.
“101 Labs – CompTIA PenTest+: Hands-on Labs” by Paul Browning is available now. The dead tree edition is $39 US, but the ebook edition is $19 US.
I started working through the lab book and it looks very promising.
Getting Through The Holidays
With the holidays around the corner, studying for a certification might be difficult. I’m planning to focus on two books for the rest of this year.
- “Kali Linux Penetration Testing Bible” by Gus Khawaja.
- The command line lab book.
These books should be background preparation for studying the PenTest+ certification exam.
I’ve recommended the Kali Linux testing bible after taking the beta exam. Kali Linux is a specialized Linux distro that has all the command line tools installed. But isn’t a very user-friendly Linux distro. That was a steep learning curve when I had only six weeks to study for the beta exam.
With the background preparation out of the way, I can focus on the new study guides after the New Year. I’ll spend three months studying for the new exam. Since my employer wants this certification more than I do, they will be reimbursing me for the $370 US exam fee.
11/30/2021 Update: Buried in my email inbox was the link to the test report. I fell 50 points shy of passing the exam (750+ points). So close yet so far away.