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Preparing for GATE while doing Bachelors
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If you are a bachelor student, see GATE syllabus, identify your bachelor subjects which are relevant for GATE and do them properly. After studying those from standard books (never use local author book as your knowledge will be corrupted) those portions, practice previous GATE questions (without looking at solution). Also try top lectures and courses for all important subjects. A common mistake is to ignore mathematics, aptitude and programming – but this is suicidal. Do, programming a lot- because they make the concepts stronger (not copying programs but implementing algorithms on your own). Similarly mathematics – especially discrete mathematics, and aptitude fetches a lot of marks for GATE as they are applied even in other subject questions. Kenneth Rosen for Discrete Mathematics and Cormen for Algorithms are 2 must to be followed books.
I have been with GATE students for about 3 years now. The worst thing they do is to take advise from seniors or from friends/relatives who have no good knowledge about GATE. Ideally one should never take advise from those who have not got a top 100 rank or those who have spent enough time for GATE. I can say this from my personal experience- my advise 3 years before would have been much different from what I say now. Some must avoid things for a good rank:
- Never prepare for GATE by practicing questions from substandard materials like <ABC> test booklet or any similar test booklet. Why? Because they are not prepared by proper faculty (not even by those who teaches in coaching institutes) and have plenty of typing as well as conceptual mistakes. More over there are lots and lots of previous year GATE/TIFR/CMI/ISI questions which are way better than any question that are being provided by any coaching center.
- Never pick and choose for GATE study. Anything is syllabus is important. You have to ensure >75% marks to be safe in GATE. For this you have to follow your study properly and while practicing tests ensure that scoring is consistently over 70. If not identify what your problem is and fix it soon. Just do not wait and just pray for luck in GATE. There is NO difficult portion in GATE worth skipping.
- GATE is a competitive exam. Never feel happy with what your friends or fellow aspirants say regarding any solution. You must be good enough to know if a solution is correct or not. I have seen 3 types of people –
- Those who identifies fault in their solution quickly
- Those who follows what the majority says
- Those who follows what they believe and never changes them
As expected most of the GATE toppers belong to category 1 and the other 2 really struggle however hard they prepare.
Important Topics for GATE
C, DS & Algorithms
This is the most important subject according to GATE point of you. Approximately 25% Questions in Gate come from above topics and all are related with each other. If you are good in this subject this will not only help you in GATE but also after it in so many written exams and interviews of Different IITs and IIITs.
C programming Questions are mostly based on finding outputs which contain some pointers, static variables, arrays, strings, functions etc. There won’t be questions which are dependent on library functions – like return value of printf, various format specifiers etc. and also those on compiler dependent and undefined behaviour parts.
Understand Different Problems on Stack, Queue, Link List. Generally they come in a C program. But you can solve them only if you know the logic – try implementing stack using queues and vice-versa. Properties of Heap. Deletion and insertion of items in the heap.
Practice Tree problems like no of leaf nodes, non leaf nodes, total nodes, height of the tree, no of full nodes, mirror image, etc. AVL tree and balancing them on insertion and Deletion. Binary tree, Binary Search Tree, Inorder, Preorder, Postorder traversal. Spanning Trees, Minimum Spanning Tree problems.
Finding Complexity : Very Important Topic. You need to practice more and with every problem you solved. Sometimes direct question comes related to complexity like give complexity of Heap sort. But mostly you are given a code or question. You need to find best average case complexity of that problem. So try to find complexity of every algorithm or program which you practice. Also understand properties of complexity. Sometimes relation between them is asked.
Searching and Sorting Problems. Difference between Different Techniques and how to apply them on different real life problems.
Questions on approach of dynamic programming, Divide and Conquer, Greedy and Brute Force. Practice basic problems like quick sort, merge sort, knapsack problem, matrix chain multiplication, LCS, Job sequencing, Compressing Mechanism. It will help you to solve other tricky problems.
Basic Theory of P-NP class
Syllabus : Processes, Threads, Inter-process communication, Concurrency, Synchronization, Deadlock, CPU scheduling, Memory management and virtual memory, File systems, I/O systems, Protection and security.
Important Points :
Scheduling : Numerical Questions have more chances. Practice more in finding turn around time and waiting time of different scheduling policies.
Deadlock : Bankers Algo, Given Sequence is safe or not. Chances of common data or linked questions.
Synchronization : High Probability Of Questions in exam. Practice some question related to semaphores and classical problems of synchronization (this will help you to solve other questions)
Memory Management : Questions generally comes from page table size, number of pages, logical address, physical address, page size, inverted page table, virtual memory, TLB etc.
Theory Of Computation :
Syllabus : Regular languages and finite automata, Context free languages and Push-down automata, Recursively enumerable sets and Turing machines, Undecidability.
Important Points :
Finite Automata covers approximately 50% questions from TOC. So give it more time then others. Do questions related to finding minimum number of states, NFA to DFA conversion, Closure Properties of finite automata, Finding Regular Expressions,mealy moore machine etc.
In Context free grammar practice more on simplification of CFG, pushdown automata, closure properties etc.
Do problems on finding category of any language or grammar.
Concepts related to expressive power of different languages.
Basic problems related to NP-Completeness. Properties of Recursive and Recursive Enumerable Languages.
Turing Machine making and expressive power of different type of turing machine. ( also useful for interview )
Important Points :
Parsing : there is always a question related to parsing. You need to practice all parsing technique because there is also chances for linked questions. finding first and follow, LL(1)-LR(1)-SLR-LALR-CLR.
Precedence and Associativity of operators.
Finding value from expression tree.
Important Points :
No gate paper completed without Normalization. This is very easy once you understand and can solve questions quickly. Questions are like Finding normal form ( comes 70% times in gate paper ), finding candidate keys, decomposition of relation, loss less join and dependency preservation have more probability to come.
SQL Queries also asked in the paper. Practice select clause properly with properties of having,group by, any ,all, exits. Question may come with relational algebra in common data section.
Practice joins because there is more probability of tricky questions from them.
Finding View and Conflict serializability. Finding Recoverable and Cascade schedule.lock based, Two phase, time stamp and graph based protocol with there properties like deadlock freedom, starvation freedom.
formation and structure of B and B+ tress. primary and clustering index. Numerical Questions from no of block required in indexing of different type, collision resolution, minimum and maximum no of nodes in B,B+ trees.
Syllabus : Logic functions, Minimization, Design and synthesis of combinational and sequential circuits; Number representation and computer arithmetic (fixed and floating point).
Important Points :
Digital logic contains very simple questions. If you practice and use your brain in a right way you can do them easily.
Practice K-Map. very high chances of very simple question. Don’t loose your marks here.
Practice Multiplexer, De-multiplexer, Encoder, Decoder questions.
Understand concept of flip flop. They are given and modulus of counter is asked.
Practice questions related to Floating Point representation, integer representation, ieee format, range and precision.
Computer Organization and Architecture
Syllabus : Machine instructions and addressing modes, ALU and data-path, CPU control design, Memory interface, I/O interface (Interrupt and DMA mode), Instruction pipelining, Cache and main memory, Secondary storage.
Important Points :
Addressing Modes : Theory and questions
Numerical related to program counter after some instruction, no of one address-two address instructions, Values after shift and rotate instructions, horizontal and vertical programming related questions.
Numerical Problems on Speed up of pipeline, time taken to complete instruction in pipeline and non-pipeline architectures, Hazards in pipeline, hazards removal, branch penalty etc.
Numerical Problems on cache memory organization, mapping technique, multilevel caches, write through and write back technique
Questions are more tricky in this subject. So you need to practice more on different types of Numerical Questions.
Syllabus : ISO/OSI stack, LAN technologies (Ethernet, Token ring), Flow and error control techniques, Routing algorithms, Congestion control, TCP/UDP and sockets, IP(v4), Application layer protocols (icmp, dns, smtp, pop, ftp, http); Basic concepts of hubs, switches, gateways, and routers. Network security – basic concepts of public key and private key cryptography, digital signature, firewalls.
Important Points :
Addressing related questions : Subnet address, supernet address, brodcast address, range of network, no of host, classless addressing, non continuous addresses, first host and last host finding etc.
Properties Of Circuit Switching and packet switching, Routing Protocols and Numerical Problems on them.
Flow Control and Error Control Policies. Numerical Problems on Window Size, No Of Sequence bits, frame size, bandwidth, round trip time, utilization, Hamming Distance, CRC. Congestion Control policies like slow start, congestion avoidence and Congestion Detection.
IP Header , TCP and UDP header format, theory related to Ethernet and token ring.
Basics Of Different Type of protocols like : FTP, HTTP, DHCP, ARP, RARP, SMTP, ICMP,POP
Basic Concepts of Cryptography and firewalls.
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GATE CSE provides a collection of materials which gets updated regularly. To make it easy to access we use the following domain names
Contains resources like preparation materials, information about colleges, stats/analysis of previous GATE etc. The site is mostly non-interactive as all interaction happens via gateoverflow. The sub domains under gatecse.in include
- books.gatecse.in – Best books for GATE CSE
- videos.gatecse.in – Best videos for GATE CSE
- courses.gatecse.in – Recommended courses for CSE
- md.gatecse.in – Mark distribution in Previous Year GATE CSE
- tests.gatecse.in – A Collection of mock tests for GATE CSE
- dates.gatecse.in – Important dates including application deadlines for admissions/jobs for CSE students
- syllabus.gatecse.in – Detailed syllabus for GATE CSE with links to topic pages on gateoverflow
- wiki.gatecse.in – Is outdated now. All wiki contents have been moved/copied to gatecse.in
Contains all previous GATE CSE questions from 1991 and IT papers from 2004-2008 and nearly 5000 other questions which gets added daily. For GATE purpose previous GATE/TIFR questions are recommended and there is a mode in Accounts section which hides all other questions. The sub domains include
- book.gateoverflow.in – Collection of gateoverflow questions updated 3-4 times a year
- aptitude.gateoverflow.in – Aptitude Overflow is a collection of aptitude questions useful for GATE, CAT, Placements etc. A PDF version is also available.
- mymarks.gateoverflow.in – GATE score/rank/college predictor app made by Pragy Agarwal. Score is predicted after taking a sample of more than 10,000 real marks and applying normalization.
- mockgate.com – Exam Interface of GATE Overflow
- Subject Wise Questions – Subject wise questions from previous gate/others
- Previous Year – Previous year GATE questions, year-wise
- Topic wise questions – Topic wise arranged GATE/other questions
Contains the last rank details of admissions and hence also the top colleges for Masters/Ph.D. for CSE. Sub-domains include
- iisc.gatecselastrank.com – IISc. admissions
- iitb.gatecselastrank.com – IITB admissions
- iitm.gatecselastrank.com – IITM admissions
- iitk.gatecselastrank.com – IITK admissions
- iitd.gatecselastrank.com – IITD admissions
- iitkgp.gatecselastrank.com – IITKgp admissions
- iitg.gatecselastrank.com – IITG admissions
- iith.gatecselastrank.com – IITH admissions
- iitr.gatecselastrank.com – IITR admissions
- iiith-bits.gatecselastrank.com – IIITH and BITS admissions (non GATE)
- foreign.gatecselastrank.com – Admissions to foreign universities for CSE
- cmi-isi.gatecselastrank.com – Admissions to CMI/ISI (for those interested in mathematics)
- ccmt.gatecselastrank.com – CCMT counselling for admission to NITs and other colleges
- ccmt-obc.gatecselastrank.com – OBC list of CCMT counselling
- ccmt-sc.gatecselastrank.com – SC list of CCMT counselling
- ccmt-st.gatecselastrank.com – ST list of CCMT counselling
- others.gatecselastrank.com – State level colleges for GATE CSE
- psu.gatecselastrank.com – PSU admissions for CSE students
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