Showing posts with label mcsd. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mcsd. Show all posts

Friday, 19 May 2017

Firebrand Launch the Azure Academy

We’re living in a mobile-first, cloud-first world. According to Forbes, the cloud computing market is set to reach 127.5 billion by 2018 and 42% of UK and US companies are actively looking to hire professionals with cloud computing skills.

Microsoft’s public cloud offering Azure is leading the way with 120,000 new customer subscriptions per month. Demonstrating the strength of Azure, 90% of Fortune 500 companies are currently using the platform.

For those unfamiliar with Azure, it’s “a growing collection of integrated cloud services – analytics, computing, database, mobile, networking, storage and web – for moving faster, achieving more and saving money”.

In this post we’ll take a look at Azure’s growth and how rapidly expanding demand for Azure cloud professionals is creating a skills gap. 

The growth of Microsoft Azure



In July, Microsoft announced that Azure revenue and usage again grew by more than 100% in the past quarter. Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella attributed the growth to a mixture of high demand for cloud platforms combined with Azure’s ability to offer solutions that reflect the realities of today’s world. 

Testimony to this high demand and growth, is Microsoft’s recent announcement of the first complete cloud offering delivered from a global provider within the UK. These datacentres, which adhere to Microsoft’s stringent Trusted Cloud principles, means Azure can now offer customers 28 regions – with six more coming soon. More than any other major cloud provider.  

As mass adoption continues to accelerate, so too does the demand for cloud professionals with well-developed skills in Azure solutions. In a recent study by the managed cloud provider Rackspace, jobs specifying Microsoft Azure experience increased demand in the UK by 75%.

Lagging significantly behind this demand however, is the number of qualified individuals capable of supporting a business’s Azure needs. Rightscale found that the number one challenge for companies looking to bolster their cloud capabilities is the shortage of appropriate skilled job candidates.

Furthermore, while Microsoft’s Azure certifications provide excellent insight into the cloud platform, professionals and businesses alike are increasingly looking to further their Azure knowledge and subsequent application.

Microsoft offer a series of highly-demanded Specialist Azure certifications; Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions, Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions and the MCSD Azure Solutions Architect – aimed at demonstrating how to competently implement and administer Azure in a business environment. However, the demand for more in-depth, technical know-how surrounding Azure has seen Firebrand training in partnership with Microsoft develop the Azure Academy.

The birth of Firebrand’s Azure Academy 


Azure Academy is a new, accelerated product created by Firebrand Training in partnership with Microsoft and partners. The Azure Academy introduces the cloud platform in a greater and never-before seen depth.



The accelerated nature of Firebrand Training means each deep dive is just 4 days. Moreover, the content provided includes more than 80% in-depth technical content not found in the Microsoft Official Curriculum.  

Our UK Commercial Manager, James Lapwood said: "We’ve worked with Microsoft and partners in creating the accelerated Azure Academy. The content of the programmes - from Apprenticeships through to expert-level Deep Dives - has been developed based on what the market has asked us for. All delivered at twice the speed of traditional training".  

This Academy, which should be seen as an extension of the MCSD Azure Solutions Architect, is made up of three deep-dive programmes:
  • Infrastructure and Networking
  • Data Platform
  • Application Development

Let’s take a look at them in a little more depth:


The first of the three brand-new Microsoft programmes is Infrastructure and Networking. The course will focus on topics such as:
  • Cloud computing environments
  • Azure storage, backup and recovery
  • Automation, PowerShell and the Azure CLI
  • Microsoft Cloud Estate

You can see the full curriculum here.

The second deep-dive program is Data Platform. This programme will develop understanding of Azure data services, analytics and IoT – plus a detailed look at security. Some of the topics covered include:

  • Implementing Azure SQL Database
  • Azure Redis Cache
  • Azure HDInsight
  • Azure BizTalk Service

Check out the full curriculum.

The third and final Azure Academy programme is Application Development. Aimed at developing your knowledge of designing cloud application in Azure, some of the topics you’ll focus on include:

  • Availability
  • Data-management
  • Messaging
  • Resiliency

Integrated into each deep dive program is a focus on Azure security. With security in the Cloud seen as the second largest cloud challenge to businesses, the need for a holistic understanding of security is imperative.

Check out the full curriculum


Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Get the New Microsoft Certifications for 2017

Click to enlarge
Microsoft recently announced significant changes to their technical certifications. In short, Microsoft streamlined certification pathways, launched a range of new Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) and Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) certifications, retired 13 existing certifications and restructured the way you certify and re-earn certifications.

In a recent blog post we outlined these changes, covering what’s new, what’s retiring, how you can achieve these new certifications and the process of re-earning your certs.

Today, we’re excited to announce your fastest route to earning these new MCSE and MCSD certifications, whilst helping you master the latest Microsoft technologies ready for 2017. Read on to discover the accelerated route that’s right for you.

Your fastest route to new Microsoft Certifications


MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure

MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure This certification validates the skills necessary to run a highly efficient and modern data centre.

You have two distinctly different accelerated pathways to earn your MCSE Cloud Platform and Infrastructure certification. 


Azure Cloud Platform - On this route you will master Azure across infrastructure and development. You’ll also learn to architect Azure solutions for the modern Enterprise organisation.

This course is 50% faster than traditional training and you will leave both MCSA: Cloud Platform and MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure certified in just 7 days. 

 Windows Server 2016- this pathway will focus you on learning the skills aligned to the Installation, Storage, Compute, Networking and Identity in Windows Server 2016. You will then focus on developing the skills to Secure Windows Server 2016, critical in a world full of cyber threats. 

This 15 day route is 25% faster than traditional training, during which you will work to achieve both the MCSA: Windows Server 2016 and MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure. 


MCSE: ProductivityThis credential validates your skills to move your company to the cloud, increase user productivity and flexibility, reduce data loss, and improve data security for your organisation.

You’ll quickly learn the skills to transition your businesses’ communications to the cloud. First you'll master Office 365 and earn the corresponding MCSA , before tailoring your route to the MCSE: Productivity certification, choosing to develop skills aligned to one of the following three technology platforms:

Exchange Server 2016 - on this 11 day route, you’ll learn the skills to design and implement an Exchange Server 2016 messaging environment – 45% faster than traditional training. In working with the technology, you’ll touch on key proficiencies, including how to design and configure advanced components in an Exchange Server 2016 deployment. You'll cover advanced topics covering compliance, archiving, advanced security and discovery solutions. 

SharePoint Server 2016 - this 11 day accelerated route focuses on developing your skills in designing SharePoint infrastructure as well as planning authentication and security, managing search capabilities and monitoring and optimising a SharePoint Server 2016 environment. 

Skype for Business 2015 - here, you have the choice to focus on Deploying Enterprise Voice with Skype for Business 2015 or Core Solutions of Microsoft Skype for Business 2015. Both offer a 9 day route to MCSE Productivity which is 50% faster than traditional training.




MCSE: MobilityEarning this credential demonstrates you have the skills needed to manage devices in today’s bring-your-own-device (BYOD) enterprise. 

First, you'll unlock the skills aligned to the MCSA Windows 10 platform and accelerate your 9 day path to achieving the MCSE: Mobility certification. Choose to develop your skills for Enterprise scale businesses across device management, deployment or administration.

Deploying Windows Desktops and Enterprise Applications - on this route you’ll develop the skills to assess operating system and applicant deployment options, determine the most appropriate deployment strategy and implement a deployment solution for Windows devices and apps that meet your environment's needs.

System Center Configuration Manager and Intune - here you will learn the skills to configure and manage clients and devices by using Microsoft System Center v1511 Configuration Manager, Microsoft Intune and their associated site systems.

 Planning for and Managing Devices in the Enterprise - learn the skills to use Enteprise Mobility Suite to manage Windows 10 devices, users and data. You will expand your knowledge and skills helping you to plan, deploy, and manage devices and applications in medium to large organisations.

Whichever route you choose, you’ll achieve your MCSA Office 365 and MCSE Mobility certification 50% faster with Firebrand, qualifying you for roles including cloud administrator, cloud architect, computer support specialist and information security analyst.


MCSE: Data Management and AnalyticsThe MCSA DMA certification will validate your broad skill sets in SQL administration, building enterprise-scale data solutions, and leveraging business intelligence data—both on-premises and in cloud environments.

Choose your fastest way to master the new SQL Server 2016 platform and tailor your route to MCSE with a choice of developing skills across Business Intelligence, Database Development or Database Administration.

Depending on the MCSE elective you’ve chosen you can further advance your skills in your chosen area in just 8 days. 



MCSD: App BuilderEarning the MCSD App Builder validates that you have the skills needed to build modern mobile and/or web applications and services.

With Firebrand, you'll learn to create and implement web applications that scale using the Azure cloud platform to achieve the MCSA: Web Applications certification and MCSD: App Builder.

Your chosen elective will be Developing Windows Azure and Web Services. You’ll learn how to design and develop services that access local and remote data from various sources. You’ll also get an insight into developing and deploying services to hybrid environments, including on-premises services and Windows Azure. 

This 9 day track is the fastest and most popular route to achieving the MCSD App Builder credential.

Why get Certified with Firebrand Training?


As Microsoft Gold Learning Partners and leaders in accelerated training, we not only offer you the fastest route to your MCSE and MCSD certifications, but we can ensure you’ll have the latest Microsoft Official Curriculum (MOC) and receive excellent training from our experienced Microsoft Certified Trainers (MCT).

Our unique Lecture | Lab | Review technique combines both theoretical and practical exercises to accelerate your learning and develop the hands-on skills required for when you return to work.

You’ll also take all of your exams on-site during the course, which will be covered by your Certification Guarantee.

If you have any other questions about the new streamlined certification paths, you may want to check out this Microsoft blog with the top 12 questions about the new cert changes. Or, if you’re more of a visual learner, the video below discusses the new changes and why they were made with the Director of Microsoft Learning, Shelby Grieve. 







Monday, 3 October 2016

Massive changes to Microsoft Certifications

Just yesterday Microsoft surprised the IT Pro industry with a complete revamp of their technical certifications. They launched five new Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) and Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) certifications, three new Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA) certifications and will be retiring 13 existing certs. It was also announce that the way you certify is changing, a change that is important you understand.  

This blog will look to dissect the changes made by helping you understand what’s new, what’s retiring, how you can achieve these new certifications and the process of recertification.


What’s new?


New Certifications:
On September 26th Microsoft launched eight new certifications, and announced the retirement of 13 older certifications and changed the way you recertify. Let's take a look at what this means for you and your certifications:

The new certifications have been listed below:

  • MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure - focusing on skills validation for Windows Server and Microsoft Azure 
  • MCSE: Mobility - focusing on skills validation for Windows Client and Enterprise Mobility Suite 
  • MCSE: Data Management and Analysis - focusing on skills validation for both on-premises and cloud-based Microsoft data products and services 
  • MCSE: Productivity - focusing on skills validation for Office 365, SharePoint, Exchange, and Skype for Business 
  • MCSD: App Builder - focusing on skills validation for Web and Mobile app development 
  • MCSA: Cloud Platform - focusing on expertise in Microsoft cloud-related technologies 
  • MCSA: Web Applications - focusing on expertise at implementing modern web apps  
  • MCSA: Universal Windows Platform - focusing on implementing Universal Windows Platform apps that offer a compelling user experience 

The new certification process:

In addition to the new certifications, Microsoft have now changed the way you certify. This is a throwback to the past where historically you could certify via a series of elective exams, rather than a set pathway.

Attaining a new MCSE/MCSD certifications can be achieved by holding the prerequisite MCSA certification and passing one elective exam from a choice of 5 to 10 options. Effectively Microsoft have now made it easier to secure MCSE and/or MCSD certifications as there is just one exam to pass, where previously there would have been two. Furthermore, all new MCSA exams require you to pass two elective exams from up to a choice of five.

MCSA: Cloud Platform
Step 1. To earn the MCSA: Cloud Platform, you must pass two of the following exams.
Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions
Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions
Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions
Not yet available
Designing and Implementing Cloud Data Platform Solutions
Not yet available
Designing and Implementing Big Data Analytics Solutions
Not yet available

MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure
Step 1. Earn one of the following Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA) certifications:
MCSA: Cloud Platform
Step 2. Pass one of the following elective exams.
Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions
Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions
Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions
Not yet available
Designing and Implementing Cloud Data Platform Solutions
Not yet available
Designing and Implementing Big Data Analytics Solutions
Not yet available
Securing Windows Server 2016
Not yet available
Not yet available
Designing and Implementing a Server Infrastructure
Implementing an Advanced Server Infrastructure
Monitoring and Operating a Private Cloud
Configuring and Deploying a Private Cloud
This MCSE certification can be re-earned every calendar year by passing an additional elective exam.

MCSA: Web Applications
Step 1. To earn the MCSA: Web Applications, you must pass two of the following exams.
Programming in HTML5 with JavaScript and CSS3
Developing ASP.NET MVC Web Applications

MCSA: Universal Windows Platform
Step 1. To earn the MCSA: Universal Windows Platform, you must pass two of the following exams.
Programming in C#
Developing Mobile Apps
Not yet available

MCSD: App Builder
Step 1. Earn one of the following Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA) certifications:
MCSA: Web Applications
MCSA: Universal Windows Platform
Step 2. Pass one of the following elective exams.
Developing Microsoft Azure Solutions
Developing Microsoft Azure and Web Services
Developing Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 Core Solutions
Developing Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013 Advanced Solutions
Universal Windows Platform – App Architecture and UX/UI
Not yet available
Universal Windows Platform – App Data, Services, and Coding Patterns
Not yet available
Administering Microsoft Visual Studio Team Foundation Server
Take MVA course
Software Testing with Visual Studio
Not yet available
Delivering Continuous Value with Visual Studio Application Lifecycle Management
Not yet available
This MCSD certification can be re-earned every calendar year by passing an additional elective exam.

MCSE: Mobility
Step 1. Earn your Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA): Windows 10 certification.
Step 2. Pass one of the following elective exams.


Deploying Windows Desktops and Enterprise Applications
70-695
Administering System Center Configuration Manager and Intune
70-696
Planning for and Managing Devices in the Enterprise
Not yet available
70-398
This MCSE certification can be re-earned every calendar year by passing an additional elective exam.

MCSE: Data Management and Analytics
Step 1. Earn one of the following Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA) certifications:
Step 2. Pass one of the following elective exams.
Designing and Implementing Cloud Data Platform Solutions
Not yet available
Designing and Implementing Big Data Analytics Solutions
Not yet available
Developing Microsoft SQL Server Databases
Designing Database Solutions for Microsoft SQL Server
Implementing Data Models and Reports with Microsoft SQL Server
Designing Business Intelligence Solutions with Microsoft SQL Server
This MCSE certification can be re-earned every calendar year by passing an additional elective exam.

MCSE: Productivity


Step 2. Pass one of the following elective exams.


Designing and Deploying Microsoft Exchange Server 2016
20345-1
70-345

20345-2
Managing Microsoft SharePoint Server 2016
Not yet available
Deploying Enterprise Voice with Skype for Business 2015
Not yet available
Core Solutions of Microsoft Skype for Business 2015
Core Solutions of Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013
Advanced Solutions of Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013
Core Solutions of Microsoft Exchange Server 2013
Advanced Solutions of Microsoft Exchange Server 2013
This MCSD certification can be re-earned every calendar year by passing an additional elective exam.


The recertification process:


Recertification is dead. The requirement of passing a recertification exam every two to three years to keep you credential in the Active section of your transcript has been scrapped.

You will no longer need to recertify the new MCSE/MCSD credentials, they remain on the Active section of your transcript once gained. You do however have the option to re-earn your certification every year by passing an additional elective exam. Whilst not a requirement this validates both your growth in Microsoft product knowledge, keeping pace with rapid advancements of Microsoft technologies – where new features are launched weekly.

As a result of this switch, recertification exams are retiring will be retiring. Multiple new electives will launch on a yearly cycle to ensure you can re-earn your certification relevant to the latest technology upgrades.

Retiring certifications:


Additional to the 8 new certifications, Microsoft have announced the retirement of 13 current certifications. The list of certification set to retire is listed below:
  • MCSE: Server infrastructure
  • MCSE: Private Cloud
  • MCSE: Data Platform
  • MCSE: Business Intelligence
  • MCSE: Enterprise Devices and Apps
  • MCSE: SharePoint
  • MCSE: Communication
  • MCSE: Messaging
  • MCSD: Application Lifecycle Management
  • MCSD: Universal Windows Platform
  • MCSD: Azure Solutions Architect
  • MCSD: Web Applications
  • MCSD: SharePoint Applications

Although these 13 certs are set to retire on the 31st of March 2017, some of the exams that make up these certifications will not. What this means is that although the Microsoft certification portfolio has been restructured, you will still be able to take some of those same exams, just as an elective for a new MCSE/MCSD certification.

You May Have a New Certification Already!


Microsoft have sought to make the transition between certifications as smooth as possible as they “recognise your efforts in keeping your existing certifications up-to-date”. If you currently hold an active MCSE and/or MCSD certification from the list below, then you’ll automatically earn the corresponding new MCSE or MCSD certification. You won’t even be required to pass any more exams!

  • MCSE: Server infrastructure
  • MCSE: Private Cloud
  • MCSE: Data Platform
  • MCSE: Business Intelligence
  • MCSE: Enterprise Devices and Apps
  • MCSE: SharePoint
  • MCSE: Communication
  •  MCSE: Messaging
  •  MCSD: Universal Windows Platform
  • MCSD: Web Applications
  • MCSD: SharePoint Applications


Additionally, if you have completed a qualifying elective exam since January 1st 2016, then you will be eligible for the new MCSE or MCSD certifications without taking any additional exams, on the condition that you meet all the exam requirements.

If you currently have an inactive MCSE or MCSD certification, you have the choice of taking a recertification exam or a new exam from the electives list corresponding to that specialist certification.

Below we’ve offered some practical examples of certifications you may hold and the new certification equivalents you may have just earned:

Old Certifications
New Certifications
MCSA: Universal Windows Platform + MCSD: Application Builder
MCSE: Cloud Platform
MCSE: Cloud Platform
MCSE: Productivity
MCSE: Data Management and Analytics
MCSA: Cloud Platform + MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure
MCSA: Web Applications + MCSD: Application Builder