I would like to say "Thank You" to all the contributers to this group. The contributions helped a lot for a better preparation. I took the test this morning and passed with 89% score. I have been touching J2EE, UML, Patterns etc. technologies since last 5 years. So it was a good refresh for me. I studied 2 weekends, but my previous knowledge was very helpful.
Here are my recommendations for preparation =========================================== Books : UML Distilled, Study Guide (Mark Cade, Simon Roberts), Design Patterns (GOF)
I would highly discourage to find a shortcut to pass the test. That is probably not very helpful. It would take some time to understand the indepth behavior of EJB container, Security, Patterns etc., but it is worth it.
Head First EJB is an excellent book and covers a lot about transactions,pooling,remote proxy etc. That book should cover most of the EJB questions. You probably don't need the JMS Tutorial from Sun. I looked at it and it was 278 pages. You need basic understanding on why and how messaging is relevant in the architecture.
I scored the lowest in Security (50%). I studied Pete Morgan's note and the Study Guide. Make sure to read about Applet Security. You may get atleast 2 questions. There may be about 6 questions on Seciruty. I probably got about 5 questions from Common Architecture. May be 3-4 questions on protocol and 5 questions on Legacy Connectivity. I am not familiar with the "Head First Design Patterns" book. I followed the "Design Patterns" by GOF. I personally didn't like GOF book the first time I read. It was difficult to understand and the pictures weren't very clear (for example : didn't specify the interfaces and abstract classes).
But you can't answer the questions just by knowing what the patterns do. You must know the applicability. For Example Container's use of stateless session bean is a "flyweight" pattern. Remote Interface is a Proxy pattern. I would recommend to do the mock tests to get some idea on how the patterns are used.