Have been lurking around Javaranch for a couple of years and have never actually posted anything, but have read a lot of other comments on scea. Big thanks to everyone that posted stuff on here. It is a well useful resource.
Heres what it says on the certification database:
This report shows the total points that could have been awarded in each section and the actual amount of points you were awarded. This information is provided in order to give you feedback on your relative strengths on a section basis. The maximum number of points you could have received is 100, minimum to pass is 70. Class Diagram (44 maximum) .......................... 41 Component Diagram (44 maximum) ...................... 36 Sequence/Colloboration Diagrams (12 maximum) ........ 12
(By the way I got 87 in Part 1)
So I guess I should be getting some certificates in the mail sometime.
Anyway here are a few comments, I will try to answer other questions as they come up...
For drawing the diagrams, don't bother sketching it out on paper first (am I the only person that did this?), it just duplicates effort. As soon as you start doing the UML, download a UML tool. I used Pace Star UML, found it quick and easy to use (One month free trial) and also not too memory hungry. It doesn't generate classes etc, but I only wanted to draw a few diagrams...
Obvious really but try and get a clear period of a few months where you won't have many interuptions, then get your head down and do it all in one go (instead of doing it in dribs and drabs). I switched jobs twice while I was doing it, which didn't really help... I eventually waited till the middle of winter when theres not much to do, then made a concerted effort, which seems to have paid off...
As for the level of detail required in the UML diagrams, just get the Sun Certified Enterprise Architect for J2EE Technology Study Guide by Mark Cade, Simon Roberts and use it as a rough guide for what sun are looking for in terms as UML. My UML diagrams were more in depth than in that book, but they don't have to be hugely in depth.
Also, don't worry too much about what other people did. (how many classes/ components/diagrams/level of detail etc). Of course it is useful to get a rough idea about what other people did but then I think its better just to do what you think is ok, then it probably will be ok. I think I had 25ish classes in one diagram and then two or three component diagrams 30ish components on each. I'm sure I put too much effort into my sequence diagrams (they're only worth 12 points so it can't be worth spending ages on them).
You don't need to submit a masterpiece in order to pass, but I suppose you do need to submit a masterpiece if you're aiming to get 100 percent...
I won't fully believe I've got it till I get the certificate, but anyway I suppose I can put SCEA on my CV now. I feel happy
Thanks again to all who posted useful stuff here
PS: Have started studdying for the Business component developer now. I read up on EJBs for part 1 and 2 but scea didn't test my EJB knowledge that deeply so thought I might as well make use of my new found EJB knowledge...
For the project, I probably took about four or five months in total, evenings and a few bits at weekends. However, this was very spread out over about 20 months... I took the part 1 exam in July 2003 and then submitted part 2 and took part 3 in April 2005 (I didn't do any work on it at all in 2004). I've read elsewhere that there isn't a time limit for part 2 and my experience seems to confirm this...
I suspect this is longer than a lot of other people. I didn't really know much about Java Architecture before I took the exam, so I spent quite a lot of time reading through the source for the Petstore application and making notes on it, and reading up on UML and patterns etc. I also spent quite a bit of time sketching out my ideas on paper, which I now think was a bit of a waste of time, its better to just use a UML tool straight away.
I think it depends how much experience you have. I suppose an experienced architect could do it in much less than a month of evenings but it could take a lot longer depending on how much time you have to spend looking at Petstore application and studdying patterns etc.
My architecture was loosely based on Petstore but simplified in some areas. I think one trick is to get as many patterns in as you can (without being too over the top...)
I started off by doing a few sequence diagrams, then class and components at the same time, then some more sequeces. All the time adjusting what I had previously done in other diagrams so they all fitted together.
As I hadn't really done any design/architecture before I was feeling my way a bit so I started with the sequences because they seemed like the easiest way to start.
I've seen various other people that started off by doing class diagram, then components, then sequences. With the benefit of hindsight (and if I had been more experienced) I would probably have done it that way too.
As for fast lane reader versus entity beans, all I can say is that I tried to get as many patterns in as possible (I think thats what sun is looking for).
I got similar situation as your before, I agree starting from sequence diagram is good idea, but my questions: 1. should a sequence diagram for each use case? 2. if a sequence diagram needs to jump to another use case, how do you do that that, such as while customer saving itinerary if not login, system requires redirect to authentication use case. 3. do you get only one class diagram? or a few of them? and how many classes inside.
I did a few sequence diagrams for each use case, to try to show every single interaction, because that seemed the best way of documenting it all... However I think I must have done too much, I guess you could do one for each use case (not sure how much detail is required but probably much less than I put on mine, after all they're only worth 12 points in total...) If one sequence calls another, just put a note on the diagram to say so... I think its not an exact science so you just have to do what makes sense to you and document/annotate it, then the folks at sun should be able to understand it.
PS I got my certificate in the Mail yesterday, I wore my badge to work this morning...
You could have one or two generic sequences to show framework interactions and then one per use case to show business interactions. I'm not sure what the best strategy is... I don't think its an exact science, so just do what makes sense (and bear in mind that they're only worth 12 points...)
I think I more or less ignored it and didn't incorporate it into what I submitted, I just wrapped it up in some Java proxies so I didn't have to worry about it. I know almost no Perl and I'm not even sure what CGI is (something to do with web portals? . I think Sun don't expect you to go into too much detail on this...