I successfully passed the CISSP Exam three days ago. Thanks be to God,
my beautiful, supportive and patient wife, Telegram group Buddy CISSP and Luke Ahmed, and every member here.
I scheduled my exam in January 2017 (6 months ago) saying to myself that 6 months is more than enough to prepare myself but then because of my job I had to put the books aside.
I started preparing seriously for the exam the month after(Mid-February).
I studied every day around 3-4 hours (from Sunday to Friday). I didn’t study on weekends because those were dedicated to family and prayers.
I was a silent viewer in the Study notes and Theory Facebook page but never missed a question there even if I was answering in my heart without posting.
So, Luke Ahmed thank you for keeping this page alive!
Then I joined the Telegram Group called Buddy CISSP and immediately
fallen in love with it and with all members.
You can’t imagine how addictive this group is.
A group with brilliant people from all around the word reunited by the same passion and the same goal: Crack this exam!
A special thanks to my friend Madunix that helped me a lot with all his intelligent and sophisticated posts…!!
Also thanks to Ahmed Khan, Vaibhav, Albert, Shalini, Rabee, Faizan, Ezra, Dawood, Shrikanth and all other members from this wonderful group.
I’m sorry if I forgot someone (you are all in my heart)
ISC2 Official Study Guide- Sybex: (10/10)
I hated this book at the beginning because it is very dry but quickly I decided to read it cover to cover and to use it as a main reference.
Sybex- Official practice tests: (10/10)
This is a great book with really good questions and explanations.
AIO 7th edition- Shon Harris : (10/10)
At first, I used this book just for studying the big and important subjects like SDLC and BCP/DRP but finally I read it completely.
“I guess this is important not to learn only for the exam but also to learn for your present or future career!”
AIO total tester: (10/10)
Great questions bank
CISSP study guide – Eric Conrad: (8/10)
Nice book and far more easier to read than other books but you can’t make it the first reference because I found that a lot of subjects are explained too briefly and not in depth.
Exam cram 4th edition - Michael Gregg : (8/10)
Same description as section 5
Exam cram Practice questions: (10/10)
Excellent questions bank with detailed explanations.
Cybrary – Kelly’s video :(10/10)
Although I didn’t see all her videos I just can say that this woman knows how to explain and make everything crystal clear.
1. I stopped learning 12-13 hours prior to the exam. But I was still connected and participating in the Telegram group. 😊
2. It is imperative and crucial while practicing questions to review and learn from the detailed explanation. Very important to understand not only the “why” this answer is correct but also to understand the “why not” side.
3. Google as much as you can or look for good videos that explains the subjects more in depth.
Came early to avoid traffic jam and to find a nice parking for the car.
Was surprised that you can’t enter the CISSP exam test center with your own watch.
Was a bit nervous but finally told myself that I did my best during the preparation period so it is now in God’s hands.
I sat and the NDA screen was on (Please download and read it from ISC2 website so you don’t have to waste time on this.)
I answered 100 questions and took a small break to drink.
Went back and finished the 150 questions left.
Then another small break.
Went back and started to review about 30 flagged questions. I changed about 7 answers and for the others I just removed the flag.
After I finished to review I looked at the time and discover that I have finish the exam and reviewing it in about 3 hours.
Was telling myself that maybe I should review the exam from the beginning and started to do so. But when I reached question 20 I said No way! I don’t have the patience to review it again. So, I pressed the Finish exam, Yes, I’m sure button 😊
Stood up and went to see the results.
Honestly, I was sure that I am failing this one and I will explain soon why.
Anyway, waiting for the printer to output the results and of course Paper Jam malfunction.
She tries to print the report again and nothing…just this paper jam on the printer screen. Meanwhile other people getting out from the test center (Other exams) and get their results via the same printer.
In the end and after 20 minutes, the printer gave up and printed my report.
She gave it to me while saying: “You see, it was worth waiting”
And then and only at this precious moment, you can feel this relief sensation taking over your body and mind.
Of course, first call to my Wife!
Why do I think that the exam is tough mentally?
First it is true. No external engine test looks like the real thing.
It is simply because we practice so much that we finally remember them all.
There are questions in Sybex and in AIO that are more difficult than some questions in the exam itself.
I had several questions that I call very easy (of course you need to know your concepts). By easy I mean the kind of questions when you can spot immediately one of the four answers.
But then I found myself struggling to narrow the options for other questions
Always found myself most of the exam time left with 2 good or correct answers.
So, I decided to wear my InfoSec hat and Imagine myself receiving emails with questions from 250 customers waiting for my best answers and/or judgment.
I was rereading the questions again and make a knowledge/logical decision based. Truthfully, I was very surprised to see that a lot of subjects from 8 domains weren’t present in form of questions.
Also, I managed to answer correctly 2 questions by remembering seeing the answers later in the exam. For example, question 163 was answered later by question 219.
I wish all CISSP aspirants the best of luck ..the journey only begins !