How I prepared for the Certified Ethical Hacker (V9) exam

Last week I took the Certified Ethical Hacker (v9) exam and I passed it. I thought it would be good to share my experience here, so that people interested in taking the exam can benefit from it.

I explored a few sites with exam preparation questions and asked for input from people that had already taken the exam. One of the suggestions I got was the "CEH V9 All in One" book by Matt Walker. So I decided to order that one. And I think it was a good choice as the questions on the exam were in line with what the author tells and emphasizes in the book.

It all depends on your knowledge level, but I think if you only use this (or any other) book to prepare for the exam, you miss a lot of fundamental knowledge about what constitutes Ethical hacking. The book may suffice to pass the exam (that's were it was written for in the first place), but let's hope the goal is to become a good ethical hacker.

In my attempt to become a good one, I started with my preparations already autumn last year. I watched the pluralsight CEH preparation path. It's 76 hours of video (screen casts), divided in 21 modules. The reason it worked for me is because the authors (most courses are given by Troy Hunt & Dale Meredith) are knowledgeable and enjoyable teachers. The first introductory module helps you to set up a test lab and get you started with exercising the things you learn in the courses. Experimenting in a lab environment is strongly recommended because tool knowledge is really important, on the exam, but certainly in your ethical hacking activities.


The pluralsight ethical hacking series, exercising in a lab environment and the Matt Walker book in preparation for the exam was a good combination that certainly worked out for me. If you're planning to take the exam, good luck!

John Opdenakker

John Opdenakker

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