The case of the missing Windows Server 2008 R2 updates

April 13, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Posted in Kaplan IT Training news, Microsoft | 2 Comments

She walked  out of the rain into the Transcender detective agency, and with one look I could see she was trouble. She had an angel’s face but a devil’s attitude. She said that she failed the 70-646 exam and she wasn’t one bit happy about it.  She wanted to hire this old gumshoe to find out what this new 70-646 exam hullabuloo was about.

I’d been hired to track down missing heirs, find cheating husbands, and find Maltese Falcons, but never to research a Microsoft exam.  But I put my hat on and hit the street, putting the heat on my snitches for some inside intel on this exam. One of my informants, Johnny,  ran with a gang that installed Windows servers on the west side of town. He chain-smoked and watched bad Adam Sandler movies, but his info was always good as gold. Johnny told me, “The test changed, man. It was all about Windows Server 2008 R2. I looked at the 70-646 prep guide, man. Georgie, I didn’t see anything about any 2008 R2 on no prep guide. I didn’t see nothing!”

Johnny didn’t know it, but he wasn’t alone. Another informant, Samantha, is a cute lady and a hopeless romantic looking for Mr. Right. She’s a part time singer at the local jazz club, but she manages a couple of Active Directory domains for a Fortune 500 company during the day. She, too, had taken the 70-646 exam. She said to me, in a Lauren Bacall-type voice, “It was the same, but different. It was the same in that you got the typical multiple choice questions. It was different in that you had to answer questions based on Case Study scenarios. Georgie, you have to see for yourself.”

I know this guy, Big Kenny. He was a former strong man for an Eastern syndicate, played pro ball in another life, and now manages Hyper-V servers. Big Kenny owed me a favor for helping him out of a jam with a Windows Server 2008 Server Core install, so I hit him up for a Prometric voucher to take the 70-646 test for myself.

To prep myself for the 70-646 exam,  I looked at the 70-646 prep guide  and then cross-referenced each objective with what was listed as a new OS feature in the free E-book from Microsoft, Introducing Windows Server 2008 R2. I paid close attention to the following:

•    What’s New in Service Accounts
•     What’s New in Failover Clusters
•    What’s New in User Account Control
•    What’s New in Hyper-V
•    What’s New in the Server Core Installation Option
•    What’s New in Print and Document Services

It took a little time to prepare. I went to take the test. Samantha was right; there were case studies on this test.  I was hoping the case studies focused on one particular objective, but this was not to be the case. Each case study had a different set of questions covering multiple objectives, with different time limits for each case study. The questions within each case study covered many objectives.  There was a lot of info in the case studies — way too much information for this old gumshoe.  I did not graduate from some fancy Northeastern college. I graduated from the school of hard knocks. I did not have time to read the entire case study. I took the easy way out; I read the questions first, and then I went back into the case study for further clarification. In this world you have a limited amount of time to take a test – and when it’s over, it’s over, baby.

On the 70-646 exam, time moves fast. Don’t let it run out. With the case studies, read the questions first and then try to find collaborating information in the case study. You will save time. It seems to me that Microsoft could ask a zillion questions about each case study. They may have a pool of questions for each case study. You only need to concentrate on the information that pertains to the questions that you are asked. My attitude (and some might call it a bad one) is, why waste time reading info in a case study that does not pertain to the questions that you are being asked? Cut to the chase. Shoot first and clarify the question later.

But getting back to my angel of a client, I agreed to meet  her at the Transcender office to relay what I’d discovered.  She was scared of the case studies. I told her, “Every exam can be conquered, lady. You just need to know how to prepare.”  I told her to use the 70-646 prep guide , the free E-book from Microsoft on Windows Server 2008 R2, and the  Windows 2008 R2 from the Microsoft  site.

She said in a tearful voice, “I have never even seen a testlet before.  I am scared to death.”  I told her,”We’ve got a solution for you, kid. There’s half a dozen testlets in the Transcender practice exam for 70-646 MSCert: PRO: Windows Server 2008, Server Administrator, with R2 updates. Not to mention multiple choice questions and over two hundred flash cards. We’ll even give you a money-back guarantee. You’ll regret not taking the 70-646 exam. Maybe not today, not tomorrow, but some day.  So just follow my advice, and you will do fine.”

The tears on her face started to dry.  The dark rain clouds outside my window parted to let some sun in. She said, “I think I will make it my goal to pass the 70-646 exam.” As she was leaving down the stairs, I called out, “Here’s looking at you passing, kid.”

–Gumshoe Monsalvatge


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  1. The very first song George Transcender, [ aka Transcenderarts ]
    wrote was entitled “Lisanne” in 1979,
    the very same actress Lisanne Falk in this image, almost 33 yrs later –

    This is COINCIDENCE 2.O !

    SPOOKY !!!

    • The actresses in the graphic is Rachel Ward from the classic parody movie Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid ( If it comes on TV or you can find it on NetFlix, I definitely recommend it.

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