This is my first results posting, but my 3rd certification this summer fall.
I just passed SCBCD yesterday morning with 95%, and am very pleased. The HF EJB book was IMMENSELY helpful, and I also took some advice awhile back from the Kathy/Bert SCJP book, which was to make flashcards. I carried that through to this book and ended up with a huge stack of them with page numbers, so I could go back and recheck for clarification. The book was great--thank you!
My mock exams were Whizlabs, which again, were VERY helpful.
On September 13, I passed SCWCD with 88%. Again, HF Servlets/JSP, and Whizlabs.
On August 18, I passed SCJP Java 5 with 82%. That time, HF Java was the warmup study, followed by the Kathy/Bert exam prep guide (and Whizlabs).
So where to now? I'm struck how J2EE has evolved into (at least) 3 major focuses since EJB 2.0, namely EJB3, Hibernate, and Spring. So I'm going to start by studying POJOs in Action (Richardson, Manning) which covers all 3. (I'm halfway through chapter 1 as of this afternoon.)
After that? Possibly either the Hibernate in Action book (Bauer/King), or their new Java Persistence and Hibernate 3.2 book (which is in early release on the Manning website, OR perhaps the O'Reilly EJB3 book (Bill Burke). So many decisions!
HOWEVER, I feel that the SCBCD exam has been the foundation going forward to understand the new lightweight frameworks and how they integrate (to greater or lesser degrees) with distributed computing, transactions, persistence, security, and everything else that the EJB 2.0 container provided.
Good luck everybody! And thanks again to Kathy and Bert, the Head First books are EXCELLENT.