Last week I was browsing the VMware website in an attempt to figure out the certification paths available when I noticed some new certifications had launched, VMware associate. The associate certificate sits at the very start of the certification route, and is available as an on-line exam. No need to head to a testing centre.
VMware offer the associate certification in four flavours:
- Cloud (VCA-Cloud)
- Data Center Virtualization (VCA-DCV)
- End User Computing (VCA-WM)
- Network Virtualization (VCA-NV)
The most relevant for me is the Datacenter certification. After registering on the VMware website I sat through the three hour training course. The first part of the course is a high level overview, before part two which covers the VMware products available and the business problems they help solve.
The final part of the training, module 3, touches on the technical side of things. What’s required for HA,FT,DRS etc. The features you get in different vSwitches etc. The last module also introduces you to the extra products VMware offer such as vCenter Operations manager. The course seemed straightforward, especially for anyone who has used vSphere before. Just a case of committing facts to memory for anyone not already familiar with these prdocucts. One that caught me out was the introduction of vSphere Storage Appliance.
After looking over the exam blueprint I decided to dig out my Pearson vue account and book the exam. VMware are offering a voucher code to sit the exam for free before the end of September. Enter discount code VCA501 when you schedule your exam at Pearson Vue to take it for free.
The exam itself consists of 50 questions which you must answer within 75 minutes (More than enough time). From my experience I’d say that 60% of the exam is covered in the on-line course, which product to use to solve which business problem. Knowing the basic requirements is important too (shared storage for HA etc). Make sure you’re familiar with what a vSwitch is and the functionality available.
The other questions in the exam are a little bit more tricky, covering stuff that you’re expected to know from experience using vSphere. More than that I probably can’t say without breaking the VMware non disclosure agreement. Good luck with your certification process.