I have just completed my SCWCD and am planning for SCBCD. I do not have any practical experience on EJBs but have little understanding of the same.
Currently I have a book (bought 2 yrs back) HFEJB for EJB 1.2.
1. what is the difference between SCBCD 1.3 and SCBCD 5.0 ? 2. How much preparation is required to get a good score (although it depends on person to person, just a general time frame) 3. The book that I have (HFEJB 1.2) whether it is helpful in any way or should I go for a latest book ? 4. where to start up.
Secondly, it takes aproximately one month to be prepared.
And to the difference. You have to find out yourself, because there is a lot of difference to be described in one post.
I highly depends on what you follow with your certification. Many say, that SCBCD 5.0 is the definite way, but I don't agree. Many systems still run on EJB 2.x (especially systems based on WAS), so if this is your case, better go for SCBCD and use the HF book.
If you would like to go for EJB 3.0 I still recommend reading HFEJB for understanding of the concepts and after that you can learn new concepts brought by EJB 3.0. Nobody can truly tell you what is the best way for you.
If you wish to go for SCBCD 5.0 I would recommend that you pick up a good book (see my thread) on EJB 3 and read through it carefully. Once done read the EJB 3 spec & Mikalai Zaikin notes. Also install NetBeans 5.5 or 6.0 and run as many examples as possible on Glassfish server. In my opining 1 month is not enough to get yourself prepared for a good score if your start from zero and are not able to afford 10 hour per day learning sessions... Estimate for from 2 to 4 months... Maybe more if you really do not have prior experience with EJB. I think it is not worth the effort to go for SCBCD 1.3 now. Entity beans seem to be dying quickly still learning them is a challenge.