This week's book giveaway is in the OO, Patterns, UML and Refactoring forum. We're giving away four copies of Refactoring for Software Design Smells: Managing Technical Debt and have Girish Suryanarayana, Ganesh Samarthyam & Tushar Sharma on-line! See this thread for details.
I just took the test few minutes back and passed with 80%. I am primarily a C/C++ programmer for last 4 years and in this world of uncertainty of jobs, decided to give the certification exam to make myself stand out a little. (Now I have a Java horn on my head) Plan to start preparation for the Developers exam now. I prepared for 3 weeks in all. Only book I used (and should all others) was the one by Khalid. Wrote Marcus, Jiris and Dan's mock exam. Also bought J@Whiz 1.4. Marcus exams where little easier for me but on par with what is being asked in the actual exam. Dan has some of the best collections of questions on all the topic for the exam. I highly recommend going through all his questions. J@whiz had some good questions too. I do not know if its worth $40 but I do not regret buying the product. There is huge collection of free stuff on the web and if you have time, that's the way to go. Only problem in that there is lot of repetition and you see the same questions over and over again. I also used Velmurugan Periasamy's note. According me those notes are more than sufficient reading for the exam. If you happen to just read those notes and understand each point, you have done all the reading for this exam. As for the exam itself, it was not different then free mock exams available out there. So there where absolutely no surprises. Garbage collection, thread and collections had total of 10-12 questions. Thread questions where longer in code size but not difficult. If you have your fundamentals straight, you will get it right. So the only piece of advise I can give is work on the fundamentals of each topic covered in the exam and make sure you understand the concept and usage (implementation). That's all there is to the exam. If you want to score high passing grade, just practice a lot of exams. Good to all of you. Specially thanks to Marcus, Dan and Jiris (Sun Guoqiao). Needless to mention Java Ranch is best site around. So thanks to everybody who participates and makes this site a success too. Gautam