As part of my preparation for the “HP0-Y32: Designing and Troubleshooting Open Standard Networks” exam, I used the official study guide from HP Press: “HP ASE Network Infrastructure Official Certification HP0-Y32 Exam Guide.”
I used the Kindle version of this book. My preference would have been a non-DRMed format, but the only alternative electronic version as an Adobe-restricted file, and there was no way I would buy that.
Roughly, the book is divided into two sections. The first section covers the topics of switch management, Spanning-Tree, Layer 3 Redundancy and Routing. It looks at how each of the topics is configured for ProCurve, Comware and Cisco systems. For spanning tree in particular, it focuses on the interoperability gotchas and caveats when deploying a mixed network. Ultimately it can’t go too deep in any one topic, since it has to cover a range of topics, for three different operating systems.
The second section of the book covers the troubleshooting processes, from Layer 1 to 4. From a process perspective, this will be nothing new for anyone who has done much troubleshooting. You will pick up some HP commands, if you haven’t had much exposure to those.
Each chapter has a set of practice questions, and the book ends with a complete sample test of 74 questions. I like this format, as having to go through questions regularly helps ensure I’m actually taking in some of what I’m reading. None of the questions were overly taxing though – personally I found the real exam questions a bit trickier and more time-consuming. But the sample questions were sufficient for ensuring you are paying attention to your reading.
After reading so much while studying for CCIE, I take a slightly more critical eye to textbooks now. There were many minor technical and typographical errors in this book. Nothing major, but they are quite jarring to me. I suspect that the Kindle version may be worse, as there were many layout/formatting issues. Basic things like a table of contents didn’t work when reading the book on my iPad using the Kindle app. Overall, I wasn’t particularly impressed with using Kindle for reading technical texts. Maybe it would work better if the book had been laid out with Kindle in mind, and not just pasted in.
After the first couple of chapters, I started noting down the errors. I created two separate files for errata – one for technical errors, and one for layout/typo issues. These have been submitted to the publisher, but I don’t know when they will be integrated into future editions. (Files are in RTF format).
Would I buy this book again? If you’re planning on studying for the HP0-Y32 exam, then yes, I would buy the book. It covers most of what you need to know, and is not too onerous to read. Would I buy it purely as a reference? No, you can probably get by with the various free publications and references HP has, such as: