Trying for nys comp operator job

has anyone taken one of these civil service exams before?

DUTIES: As a Computer Operator, you would operate printers and other peripheral devices and monitor data communications equipment and lines, such as modems. You would operate tape and disk systems. You would monitor and control or assist in controlling computers in conformance with written instructions describing each computer application. In some installations, you may operate the console. In many installations, off-shift operators act as Help Desk consultants for users of remote systems, and may consult with programmers/analysts on procedural matters and problems. You may be required to move or lift equipment and supplies.

SUBJECT OF EXAMINATION: There will be a written test which you must pass in order to be considered for appointment. The written test is designed to test for knowledge, skills and/or abilities in such areas as:

  1. Operation of computer hardware and peripheral equipment – These questions test for technical knowledge and concepts relevant to information technology and the operation of a computer and associated peripheral equipment. Although the questions asked are not specific to any vendor or any model of computer, the questions on storage media and peripheral equipment cover such subjects as characteristics of tape and disk systems as storage media, basic data communications terms, and the operation of peripheral equipment.

  2. Reading and interpreting instructions relating to the execution of computer programs – These questions test for skill in following and applying written directions expressed as generalized operator instructions. You will be presented with generalized operating instructions and specific rules for applying them. All the information needed to answer the questions is presented in the test booklet; training on any particular computer system is not required.

i assume section 2 is just giving me pseudo code and asking me to solve simple programming problems?

but section 1 has me wondering what kind of questions they ask. “how many bytes in a megabyte?” “what’s faster, tape or disk?”

I dare you to say “1000”. :twisted:

If it’s the kind of Computer Operator positions I know of–I automatically think of 24/7 departments in data centers–I’d be surprised if the questions in section two even extended as far as understanding pseudocode, but it’s possible. The ones I’ve worked had hirings helped by showing a basic grasp of things like UNIX shell scripts. But I’d expect literally instructions on what scripts to trigger/menu widgets to hit/etc. and in what sequence to do things like kick out full backup tapes from robots, set up a printer definition on a system, and so forth, and not much above that level.

Basically, they tend to be dead easy jobs for anyone moderately bright and any technical savvy at all, and even better, it’s the kind of work that you don’t take home with you, which is good as it’s…probably not what you’d call rewarding. (If you get stuck in a department that’s run by an incompetent with all the ethics of a petty criminal who actively sponsors a toxic work environment, it might kill your soul. I’m speaking purely theoretically here, I’ll hasten to add, and have absolutely no reason to sound bitter on such matters myself. None.) But there’s a lot to be said for not-rewarding-but-easy; it’s a lot better than not-rewarding-but-high-stress.

Sounds boring as shit.

crap. can you point me to a good site that will give a good tuturial on that stuff? i haven’t done much server stuff, and my one credit unix class i had to fudge my script assignment by making it go through every combination instead of doing it as simply/elegantly as the teacher wanted it to.

should i buy a “unix for dummies” type book?

and “boring as shit” describes my current job but with half the pay of the above.