Showing posts with label server infrastructure. Show all posts
Showing posts with label server infrastructure. Show all posts

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Moving on from MCSA Windows Server 2012


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The MCSA Windows Server 2012 qualification has proven exceptionally popular with the technical community over the last 18 months. Rightly so, as the qualification gives students a solid grounding in all aspects of Windows Server 2012 roles and features, and once the certification has been attained, students can be confident in capably working with the operating system.

Since its release in 2012, many have now held the MCSA certification and have been using the associated technologies for an extended period of time. This segment of the server community frequently seeks the qualification or qualifications that are next on the ladder.

Taking the next step

MCSA Windows Server 2012 is the prerequisite qualification to a range of MCSE qualifications, including: MCSE: Messaging and MCSE: Communications, which are tracks for those specialising in Exchange Server and Lync Server technologies. MCSE: SharePoint is also an option for those planning to work with SharePoint on a regular basis. All three of the aforementioned MCSEs are clearly defined and easy to differentiate from each other.

There are however a series of Microsoft qualifications that are not so easy to differentiate, as they appear to have considerable crossover. These are the qualifications we will be taking a closer look at in this article. They include the MCSE: Server Infrastructure, MCSE: Private Cloud, and Microsoft Specialist: Server Virtualization with Windows Server and System Center qualifications.

Know the right direction

In order to pick which qualification is right for you, take a look at your job role and ask yourself the following questions:
  • How much do I work with System Center 2012 R2?
  • How much do I work with Microsoft Virtualization technologies?

If you work primarily with Microsoft infrastructure, using Microsoft Virtualization and want to evaluate the System Center 2012 R2 suite: MCSE: Server Infrastructure is the choice for you.

If you work primarily with Microsoft infrastructure and you use Hyper-V and Virtual Machine Manager to manage your virtualization environment. Or you currently work with a third-party hypervisor and will be transitioning to Hyper-V and Virtual Machine Manager. In this case, Microsoft Specialist: Server Virtualization with Windows Server and System Center is for you.

If you work in a data centre managing the virtual environment for your internal business units or for your customers. You now wish to gain an in-depth knowledge of the System Center 2012 R2 product suite. Then MCSE: Private Cloud is for you.

To read the full article written by Firebrand’s lead Windows Server Instructor Mike Brown, check out ServerWatch.com

About the Author:       
Sarah writes for Firebrand Training on a number of IT related topics. This includes exams, training, certification trends, project management, certification, careers advice and the industry itself. Sarah has 11 years of experience in the IT industry. 

Monday, 16 September 2013

Keeping your IT infrastructure simple


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Many small enterprises put great effort into establishing an IT infrastructure that is easy to manage, understand and maintain. However, without regular checks and monitoring they can quickly become large, slow, complex and problematic. In order to avoid the frustration and rising management costs caused by an infrastructure gone out of hand, it’s worth thinking about regular revision and keeping it simple.

Consider the following points to maintain an efficient IT infrastructure:

Retiring old servers

You’d be surprised to know how many companies leave old servers running, even when they become completely irrelevant to the day-to-day activities of the infrastructure. It may be convenient to solve problems with more hardware, but do consider the usage of existing hardware before doing so. A reduction in the number of servers will save your company time, effort and money.

Reducing application sprawl

It’s easy to lose track of all the applications running on your infrastructure and then comes the shock: You have too many running, causing you rising costs and increasing complexity. Revise all running applications, and see which ones are essential and which ones can be replaced by existing alternatives. It will do miracles.

Cabling’s enabling

Cabling often gets little consideration, if any at all. But it’s more important than you’d think. Imagine you’re installing new servers and devices, and all of a sudden your data centre became a maze of cables. Your IT team will have a real struggle with maintenance and fixing potential problems.

Relocating to the cloud

The easiest way of keeping IT infrastructure simple is by having someone else take care of it. Moving everything to the cloud will take the burden off your shoulders, but then again it’s worth doing some research on how cloud computing can help you out best.

If you are only just thinking about setting up your company’s IT infrastructure, read our article on how to optimise it. For further information, also check out Modern Infrastructure

About the Author:        
Sarah writes for Firebrand Training on a number of IT related topics. This includes exams, training, certification trends, project management, certification, careers advice and the industry itself. Sarah has 11 years of experience in the IT industry. 

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

The secrets of a modern IT infrastructure for small businesses


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In today’s business world, IT infrastructure plays a major role and without a solid foundation there is little chance for long-term success. The laymen may believe that this so-called solid foundation is of high cost. Well, it might not be cheap, but it shouldn't cost you a fortune either. Having the latest and most expensive equipment is great, but far from compulsory. So, instead of spending a lot of your hard-earned money, try optimizing your infrastructure.  

It’s important to get things right and it is no different in terms of your optimal IT infrastructure. If you wish to create the aforementioned solid foundation, you have to take the following factors into consideration:

  • Ideal size
  • Server-Workstation ratio
  • Platform diversity
  • Speed

Each business is unique and what works for one may not work for another. Bearing this in mind, you should consider the workload and its complexity, in order to determine the number of people you need in your IT department.

However, ideal size does not only mean people, it also relates to the build-up of your network. Getting the server-workstation ratio right is essential, if your infrastructure is to function properly. According to TechRadar, “for most businesses a ratio of one server to 10 users is about right.” So if you are running 10 workstations, think 2 servers, because you will need a backup, right?   

Of course, it’s not only about size. Diversity, in terms of your platforms is also vital. In order to escape the headache caused by a full shutdown, it is useful to mix it up a little bit and use both PC and Macs as workstations.

Once you have got all these right, you just need to make the network fast. Matching your hardware and software correctly is important to minimize slowdowns. The unwritten rule is to spend around 20% of the server costs on networking equipment.


Building a modern and well-functioning IT infrastructure is sometimes hard, but useful guidelines are always available. For in-depth discussions and tips on IT infrastructure check out Modern Infrastructure by TechTarget. 

About the Author:       
Sarah writes for Firebrand Training on a number of IT related topics. This includes exams, training, certification trends, project management, certification, careers advice and the industry itself. Sarah has 11 years of experience in the IT industry. 

Thursday, 31 May 2012

Microsoft announces the release of MCSE: Server Infrastructure

Microsoft has today announced the release of MCSE: Server Infrastructure certification.

The Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert: Server Infrastructure certification helps professionals adapt to the cloud-enabled infrastructure, which is both agile, and cost effective.

The new MCSE cert covers the following exams:
  • Exam 410: Installing and Configuring Windows Server 2012
  • Exam 411: Administering Windows Server 2012
  • Exam 412: Configuring Advanced Windows Server 2012 Services
  • Exam 413: Designing and Implementing a Server Infrastructure
  • Exam 414: Implementing an Advanced Server Infrastructure
You need to have a MCSA: Windows Server 2012 certification to sit for the MCSE: Server Infrastructure cert.


MCSE Server Infrastructure