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Programming or Networking

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I've been out of school a few years now and I've been working a few tech support jobs just trying to learn a much as I can. I have a few basic Microsoft qualifications, compTIA A+ and I've recently started studying for a compTIA Network+ qualification.

I'm just not 100% sure if networking is really where I want my career to go. I love the hardware, obviously because I'm here on OCN, but programming (coding what ever you want to call it) seems like a really good career path.

Does anyone have any advise?

Also do you get programming qualifications like a Cisco equivalent?

Thanks in advance OCN
 

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Really depends on what you want to do, they are two absolutely different career paths. I personally don't enjoy programming all that much (although several programming classes are required, and i'm not too shabby at them to say the least
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) BUT i personally enjoy IT administration much more than going through and writing code. Of course just my 2 cents, but if you go the programming route, its going to require significantly different classes and the knowledge isn't exactly transitive from what you've currently got.
 
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I'd rather kill myself that become a programmer by trade, but that's just me. If you can get good at Java (and I know a ton of people who have tried and ended up saying "f this") you'll be in good shape. Another in-demand but much-loathed career path is in databases, specifically SQL and Oracle.

Networking isn't necessarily a panacea, either. Some people really hate it.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueTac View Post

thanks for the input. I think I'm going to start learning python or some javascript after sitting (and passing) my Network+ exam. If i'm not enjoying it or find it way to hard to pick up then I'll stick to what I'm doing

Guess I need to try it myself really
I think the choice you make should ultimately be up to you based on whatever you find more interesting. It's not a bad idea to learn some programming either way though. Of the two languages named I would suggest learning Python over Javascript, since it's far more universal. Python is a general purpose language that can be applied anywhere and is very popular today, while Javascript is limited to web development.
 

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It really comes down to both what you enjoy more, and what you're better at. I've tried more times than I can count to learn programming, and I get stuck at the same place every time. I feel it just wasn't meant to be. However, last semester I started an Internetworking Management degree and I absolutely love it. It has opened many opportunities for me and I have become absolutely certain this is the career path I want. Don't know if this has helped, but in any case, best of luck to ya
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Learn both. They are BOTH helpful. I wish I learned more networking.....
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Network+ will always be handy no matter what you do. If you say Cisco you will need to know Network+ . But Cisco isnt really a language its more of a proprietary system that you can script though software.

There are really so many ways to go in programming. Java , Ruby, Python, etc. I would think about what area you want to really work in and do a core language that you can compile or API with.
More then likely they will start you with C sharp as your first class then VB or some front end editor. So just starting anything is the right thing to do, anything to know if you are wasting time thinking about programing , lol . but srsly
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by aCe_eXtreME View Post

Network+ will always be handy no matter what you do. If you say Cisco you will need to know Network+ . But Cisco isnt really a language its more of a proprietary system that you can script though software.
No.

No. No. No. No.

Net+ is useless if you're looking at career Networking. Cisco does not give two crepes about Net+, anyone that takes their first CCNA exploration course could ace the Net+ with ease. A CCNA is not all that hard to obtain and is leagues ahead of Net+.

I have had my Net+ for a while and it has done absolute nothing for me in the real world, interview, or otherwise. Additionally, everything covered by the Net+ was weeks 1-3 of my first CCNA training class.

If you're looking at Cisco, take the CCNA track and CCNP, also look at the Juniper certs so you know the two biggest players in corporate networking. Once you're comfortable there, look into Checkpoint systems as well and look to specialize in either Cisco or Juniper devices.
 

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Both are good fields. I started out as a programmer decades ago, but I've found that I enjoy networking more, but that's me.

Now what I'm going to say next will most likely start a riot, but oh well.

I would recommend going into networking if you want a high paying job that will last. The reason being it's a lot harder to outsource a Network Engineer than it is a programmer. More and more companies are finding that you can get good quality programmers to do the job from another, low paying, country. Sure the absolute best programmers may not have the option of being out sourced, but the problem with breaking into the market is that you will be paid much less since you don't have the experience, and by the time you get the experience level that you can't be out sourced, you will be much older, and there will be tens of thousands of others who are already in the field ahead of you.

I'm sure people will now proceed to rip me apart, but oh well.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboTurtle View Post

No.

No. No. No. No.

Net+ is useless if you're looking at career Networking. Cisco does not give two crepes about Net+, anyone that takes their first CCNA exploration course could ace the Net+ with ease. A CCNA is not all that hard to obtain and is leagues ahead of Net+.
Lol!
there is nothing wrong with knowing the basics even if you aren't directly in that field. Cisco is built on the concepts that network+ teaches which is a fuller view of networking and protocal. I have never had an issue getting any job with network+ knowledge. Every computing job I have ever had Network+ knowledge helped. OP inst sure what direction to take programming or networking.

Cisco is a lifestyle choice of a business or individual , TCP/IP is RFC determined . Cisco is an interpretation (through programming) of TCP/IP and other protocols and that is determined through RFC standards. Round and round back to tcp/network fundamentals which is what Network+ teaches . I still stand by what i said originally
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by aCe_eXtreME View Post

Lol!
there is nothing wrong with knowing the basics even if you aren't directly in that field. Cisco is built on the concepts that network+ teaches which is a fuller view of networking and protocal. I have never had an issue getting any job with network+ knowledge. Every computing job I have ever had Network+ knowledge helped. OP inst sure what direction to take programming or networking.

Cisco is a lifestyle choice of a business or individual , TCP/IP is RFC determined . Cisco is an interpretation (through programming) of TCP/IP and other protocols and that is determined through RFC standards. Round and round back to tcp/network fundamentals which is what Network+ teaches . I still stand by what i said originally
Net+ is extremely limited scope, so I don't know where you're getting a "fuller view of networking" from. Net+ is all about port memorization and which layer insert random protocol works at. Barely touches subnetting and just the very tip of the ideas of VLANs or any network security concepts beyond "This protocol is called XXXX....it deals with security."

OP should save his money and not bother with Net+ and just jump into a CCNA track if he chooses networking over programming. Besides, if he is considering networking, even an exploratory CCNA class will give him a far better glance at what the job/industry/etc.. will be like over what Net+ shows.
 

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If you do either most places will hire you before you are done because the lack that exist out there. Find what your best at and get as much experience as you can. that will land you a good job
 
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