Best Computer Hardware Certifications for 2014

Best Computer Hardware Certifications for 2014
By , Kim Lindros

Becoming a computer technician is a great point of entry into the IT field and computer hardware certifications will help demonstrate your knowledge and competency in maintaining computers, mobile devices, printers and more. These top 5 computer hardware certs can get your IT career off the ground. 

To a certain extent, the title of this article is something of a misnomer. In the interests of increased specificity, it might be more appropriate to add the words "general" or "mostly vendor-neutral" -- as we do include a credential from Apple in this list that focuses exclusively on Apple hardware. And in fact, it's possible to view some certifications from hardware vendors such as HP, Dell, Cisco, Juniper, Fortinet, and so forth, as hardware focused, at least in part if not in the majority, at and beyond the entry level, too. Thus, as you peruse the options in this article, don't forget that there are lots of other options from which you can choose as well, if you're interested in demonstrating your knowledge and abilities with particular vendor products and devices.

About the Author

Ed Tittel is a 30-year-plus IT veteran who's worked as a programmer, technical manager, instructor, network consultant and technical evangelist for companies including Burroughs, Schlumberger, Novell, IBM/Tivoli and NetQoS. He has written for numerous publications and is the author of over 140 books with a special emphasis on information security, Web markup languages and development tools, and Windows operating systems.

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Best IT Certifications for 2014

There's another misnomer involved in calling these credentials hardware certifications too -- namely, the idea that hardware can exist or operate independently of software (or vice versa). If you dig into the curriculum for any specific hardware-related certification credential in any depth -- be that credential included in our list here or in some other certification offerings -- you'll quickly realize that by and large software is in control of hardware nowadays. 

Software comes into play for installation, configuration, maintenance, troubleshooting, and just about any other activities you can undertake with hardware. We don't want to misrepresent the focus and coverage of these certs, so it's important to understand that the hardware label simply indicates that devices are involved, not that hardware is ALL that's involved.

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