MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-561): Microsoft® .NET Framework 3.5―ADO.NET Application Development (Microsoft Press Training Kit) (英語) ハードカバー – 2009/3/28
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EXAM PREP GUIDE Ace your preparation for the skills measured by MCTS Exam 70-561—and on the job. Work at your own pace through a series of lessons and reviews that fully cover each exam objective. Then, reinforce and apply what you’ve learned through real-world case scenarios and practice exercises. This official Microsoft study guide is designed to help you make the most of your study time.
Maximize your performance on the exam by learning to:
- Connect to data sources; query and retrieve data
- Manage data integrity and transactions
- Use LINQ to query data across types, including XML
- Work with DataSets and in-memory stores
- Synchronize data—including smart-caching strategies
- Generate an EDM using the Entity Framework
- Use ADO.NET Data Services for Internet applications
Assess your skills with the practice tests on CD. You can work through hundreds of questions using multiple testing modes to meet your specific learning needs. You get detailed explanations for right and wrong answers—including a customized learning path that describes how and where to focus your studies.
Your kit includes:
- 15% exam discount from Microsoft. (Limited time offer). Details inside.
- Official self-paced study guide.
- Practice tests with multiple, customizable testing options and a learning plan based on your results.
- 240+ practice and review questions.
- Code samples in Microsoft Visual Basic® and Visual C#® on CD.
- 90-day trial of Microsoft Visual Studio® 2008 Professional Edition.
- Fully searchable eBook of this guide.
A Note Regarding the CD or DVD
The print version of this book ships with a CD or DVD. For those customers purchasing one of the digital formats in which this book is available, we are pleased to offer the CD/DVD content as a free download via O'Reilly Media's Digital Distribution services. To download this content, please visit O'Reilly's web site, search for the title of this book to find its catalog page, and click on the link below the cover image (Examples, Companion Content, or Practice Files). Note that while we provide as much of the media content as we are able via free download, we are sometimes limited by licensing restrictions. Please direct any questions or concerns to email@example.com.
I am a Microsoft C# MVP and the founder of Wildermuth Consulting Services, LLC, a company that is dedicated to delivering software and training solutions in the Atlanta, Georgia area. I am also a speaker on the INEA Speaker's Bureau and have appeared at several national conferences to speak on a variety of subjects. I am the author of the book "Pragmatic ADO.NET", the upcoming "Prescriptive Data Architectures", both for Addison-Wesley as well as co-author of several certification books for Microsoft Press. I have been writing articles for a number of years for a variety of magazines and websites, including MSDN, MSDN Online, DevSource, The ServerSide .NET, ONDotNet.com and Intel's Rich Client Series. I have enjoyed building data-driven software for more than twenty years.
Mark Blomsma, Microsoft MVP for C#, specializes in .NET technologies, enterprise application development and integration, and software renovation
Jim Wightman is a programmer, architect, and consultant with 27+ years of software development experience. He currently focuses on Windows® Azure, Windows 7, and applying Microsoft technologies to environmental issues.
Compared to other Microsoft training kits, this one was disappointing for many reasons (hence the lower review than I've given other books). Firstly, the grammatical errors are plentiful. They are present not only in the text but in the example code as well. For example, more than one LINQ query suddenly has a reference to a new variable that should not be there. Look through the examples carefully and do not accept them if they don't make sense. Similar errors exist in the lesson review questions.
The content itself is left at a high level, for the most part. While some areas like connection strings are described with a great deal of verbiage, most areas that need it such as LINQ and Entity Framework are left quite short. For example, useful topics related to those two sections include lambda expressions and better descriptions of WHERE clause syntax - none of which is present. The coverage is broad, yet shallow. While I understand that DataSet use is a deep topic, additional examples and use cases would be helpful for the exam.
The practice tests were typical for the MCTS training kits. The questions helped to illuminate the areas missed by the book, though there are still some errors - e.g. questions that are marked as incorrect when the explanation states it should be correct. The book itself acts more as a supplement to the training exam.
In all, the book was useful as a preparation guide, but only barely. It was far more helpful to me to have a solid understanding of databases and relational structures than it would have been to have only used the book. With some extra content on EF, LINQ, and DataSets, this book could be much better and a more well-rounded preparation guide. As it stands, though, it is merely mediocre - however, mediocre enough to help me pass the exam... If the quality of the material dropped below this level, the value of the study guide would be insufficient to merit using it as preparation for the exam.
1) p. 19, there is a mixup between RsaProtectedConfigurationProvider, which is specified, and DataProtectionConfigurationProvider, which is actually used. Note that this error occurs in the VB code, but not in the C# code.
2) pp. 43-44, we are told we will see a demonstration of a transaction where a column is updated in one table, and a row is inserted into another table; instead, the VB code shows two SELECT statements (the C# code is correct, however).
3) p. 51, quiz question #1, option A is said to be correct, and option B is said to be incorrect, even though the only apparent difference is that option A uses a user id and password, whereas option B uses SSPI. The answer key says that in option B there is no space between the words "Initial" and "Catalog," but there is no way for the reader to know this since the line is split after the word "Initial" (this split occurs in options A and B alike).
4) p. 103, quiz question #2, option A is said to be correct, and option C is said to be incorrect because there is no such thing as a "LEFT INNER JOIN". Of course, option A uses the same LEFT INNER JOIN that is employed in option C.
I'm going to keep working with this Training Kit because there really isn't any alternative. Still, these kinds of typos are inexcusable.
UPDATE: typos seem to be limited primarily to the sections written by James Wightman; sections by Mark Blomsma ad Shawn Wildermuth (pp. 133ff) seem mostly OK. The practice exams on the CD use an italicized font, and this makes some of the words almost unreadable on my 22-inch, 1680x1050 LCD monitor.
Typos and inconsistencies are par for course with rushed-out test prep books, and this one doesn't disappoint. I take away one star for that, but it doesn't detract from the book's usefulness much.
The book loses another star for poor coverage of the entity framework. While the entity framework is covered in detail on the exam, the book gives a high-level overview. The chapter refers to EntitySQL and Linq to Entities, but then fails to cover those topics.
And it loses one more star for the incoherent and dismally inadequate chapter on data synchronization.
I passed the test, but many of the questions on the entity framework and synchronization were on material that was not covered at all in the book. I had to do a lot more "multiple guesswork" than I expected.
I'd only recommend this book if you can't find anything comparable.