Windows Server Certification FAQ

mcts mcitp windows-server-2008

Trika published the Windows Server 2008 Certification Live Meeting FAQ on her blog :

per your request, written questions from Wednesday’s Live Meeting, below. I’ve put them in some order but these are verbatim and not proofed and not spellchecked etc etc. Posting to help you guys plan ahead–the “official” info, all proofed and prettied, ironed and perfumed, is underway and will be available on in a few weeks. In the meantime, here is the rough FAQ, all red-eyed and uncombed, with slip showing. If you catch anything that looks wack, let me knwo.

  • exams in general
  • transition exams 648/649
  • exam and certification retirement/recertification
  • technology coverage in exams
  • MCITP certs
  • Off topic

…Exams in General

Will the costs per exam stay the same? Answer: Yes…no plan to raise exams prices.

Anyway.. are the exams going to be the standard pass / fail or are they going to be ‘graded’? They will be standard Pass/Fail.

: Is there a time limit when taking the 70-640 exam? Yes, there is a time limit that you will be presented with as you start the exam. Though it is generally much more time than you will need.

Is there anything you can do about the screen resolution in the testing environment? On the last 3 exams I took, the text was so big that it was hard to see diagrams clearly, etc. We are always working on that, and now that we have a single test providor (Prometric) we hope to have more control over those type of issues.

when did you say the emulation testing was coming out? Emmulations will be added to exam 640 about 1/2 way through the year. It will go live first with only standard exam question types.

How many questions in the exams must be answered corretly to pass? Sorry, we do not make public exactly how many questions are required for a pass, but I can tell you a 700 or higher is passing.

…upgrade exams 648/649

Is there a limit to the # of attempts to take the 70-649 exam? No, there are no limits. We learned our lesson with Windows 2000 🙂

will 70-649 have simulations?: No, the upgrade exams will not have sim’s or em’s in the near future (a year or later).

Is there a training kit ready for 70-649? Answer: No TKs for the transition exams but there will be bundles of the relevant TKs for a discounted price.

I passed my 648/649 upgrade exam but I can’t order a welcome kit on the MCP site. What is up? You will get certificates – one for each MCTS you earn – but because the upgrade exams came out so early and because we hvae this model of one exam = many certs, we aren’t set up to deliver yet. *guess* is in early January.

one of the Win2k8 MCTS certifications has had a name change. On the transcript the wrong name shows up, when is this going to change? (The change is: MCTS: Applications Platform, Configuring has been finalized as MCTS: Applications Infrastructure, Configuring). We are updating that in our next drop (hopefully before the end of the year)

people who upgrade from MCSA/MCSE 2000 to MCSA/MCSE 2003 can upgrade to windows 2008? Yes. There is no upgrade path frmo 2000 to 2008, but you can upgrade from 2003 to 2008.

I hold an MCSE and an MCSA in Server 2K3. I want to upgrade both. How many exams am i looking at.  To both MCITP = 649 + 620 or 624 + 646 + 647 = four exams total from MCSE 2003.

Can you retake the upgrade exams? Yes

Currently working on upgrading my MCSE 2000 to MCSE 2003. Having major difficulties trying to pass 70-292 just to get MCSA 2003. Would it be advisable to get the MCSA 2003 and then make the transition to to Win2K8 exams or would it be better to earn the full MCSE 2003 before making the transition to Win2K8 exams? It’s really up to you. The number of exams is less using the transistion exams, but if you are having issues with the Windows 2003 exams you may like the new TS item types we are using in the Windows Server 2008 TS exams better. The 648 upgrade for MCSAs gives you a good headstart on Server 2008, so that might be a good choice to stop there.

Hi, what happens if you don’t pass 70-649? Is your MCSE 2003 gone? No, your credential is safe 🙂

What exams does a MCSE 2003/MCDST take to get both mcitp’s? 1. Take 621 to upgrade your MCDST – then you cover your 620 requirement. 2. Take 649. 3. Take 646. 4. Take 647. Four exams and you’ll have your MCITP: Enterprise Support as well.

I am currently MCSE: Security and would like to get MCSE: Messaging….is there a way that I can get this with the Exchange 2007 test or will I also have to take the Exchange 2003 test…My organization is using 2007 and would like to just take those. No, you will need to take the exams focused on previous versino of Exchange.

Exam and Certification Retirement/Recertification

Is 292 and 296 retiring? Yes, March 31, 2008.

Transcript of MCSE/MCSA 2000 exams would be removed from my MCP profile after the W2K exams retires ? No exams will be removed from transcripts, even after they retire. MCSA and MCSE will also stay on your transcript, even if underlying exams retire.

What is the specific reason for removing older certifications from the Transcript? They show to employers a history of maintaining one’s credentials. We are not removing older credentials (MCSA/MCSE) from transcripts. In the future, we will remove MCTS and MCITP/MCPD credentials once the technology is no longer supported by Microsoft (MCTS) or the three year recertification period is not met (MCITP or MCPD) but the exams will stay on your trascript so you will be able to show progression throught the program.

You say that the exams have to be retaken every 3 years. So if I become MCITP how many retests will be required every three years? That has not been completly decided yet, but I don’t see more than a single exam for recert will be required.

What is involved in recertifying the MCITPs like Enterprise Admin? Is it just taking the original 1 exam again to recertify? No, it will entail taking a new exam (most likely a TS exam) that represents current technology knowledge.

Technical and Objective Domain

How will Virtual Server certification be addressed? There will be virtual server questions on the Windows Server 2008 exams where it is appropriate, but there will also be a single virtual server exam later
next year. That exam will be a TS exam outside of the Server 2008 track.

Will the MCTS-Virtualization exam also include the Hyper-V technology or just the Virtual server technology? Yes, the TS virtulations will be Hyper V.

For network infrstructure, why was the decision made to include IPv6 questions? Shouldnt that be an assumed skill and then build the questions more specific to maybe IPv6 addresses assigned to devices in answering infrastructure questions? As an emerging technology we decided to include a certian amount of IPv6 to ensure that anyone that holds a current credential has a working knowledge of all available tech in that product.

Is there going to be a separate clustering (MSCS/NLB) course and/or exam? No, there will be clustering related questions in line with the objectives that use that technology. Such as net services, exchange, IIS,,,,

Powershell? Covered in MCTS exams where appropriate, not broken out separately I believe.

MCTIP Certifications

I want to start studying for the 70-647 are there any resources at this time? No, right now we just have our introductory content out – check the and

Is 70-643 is required for Enterprise Admin? Yes.

Before a lot of MCPs picked their exams so that they became MCSA and then MCSE. I know the MCTS exams for MCITP: Enterprise Admin are the same for MCITP: Server Admin. Do you think that their is a requirement for admins to do both 70-646 and 70-647? Answer: It depends on what job role you are looking for. 646 is an operations focused role, where as 647 is a design focused role. We have found that these are end state roles on thier own, and are not subsets of each other.

Regarding Enterprise Admin vs. Server Admin, do you have any tips for telling a potential employer that an Enterprise Admin can still do the ‘day-to-day’ operations that a Server Admin would do? nswer: I would make the point that if you have the design skills you are by default able to accomplish the specific day to day tasks as well. Server Admin is more designed for people that are not interested in the design process.

Can we take any 2 of the 3 MCTS exams to be eligible for Server admin MCITP? No, you have to take the two on the path: 640 and 642.

When will 646 & 647 be in Beta? Late December, most likely.

What about 70-621 for the upgrade for MCSE 2003 to MCITP Enterprise instead of 620 or 624. Yes, that is fine. 621 will work anywhere 620 does. BUT NOT YET!!!

Is it needed to do both the 646 and 647 ? No. Not unless you want to earn both MCITP certifications.

So, just to confirm – if you want to gain the ‘Enterprise Administrator’ cert (70-647), YOU WILL HAVE to write a Vista exam ? (ie) 70-620 OR 70-624? Yes.

…Off Topic

will the Exchange 2007 exams (and courses) be updated to reflect the new product functionality in SP1? We will refresh the exchange exams next year, and when we do that questions on SP1 will be added as appropriate.

I’ve scheduled my first exam with Prometric and have has a terrible experience with them. What was your thinking for removing PearsonVUE as a choice? Please send an e-mail to with this question.

I have a windows 2000 MCDBA. Is there an upgrade path for that cert or is this the latest cert available for DBA’s? Exam 70-447 and 70-431 will upgrade your MCDBA to a MCITP: Database Administrator certification for SQL Server 2005…

why do you call those exams 70-xxx, are those only logically incremental numbers or there is some other reason? The “70” prefix identifies the exam as a Microsoft exam at our exam delivery partners…that is its only use…

are we getting free technet as a benefit when we achieve certification like the old days? We’d like to do that, but you won’t see it in the immediate future. We are working on some new things and we just announced some new benefits (Check out the MCP site)

Which certification will be considered “premium” with regards to maintaining MCT? Currently, MCSE and MCSD were needed to maintain it – will this be similarly matched to MCITP / MCPD? Yes…although the final decision rests with the MCT Program Manager…

So will this mean that we are going to need 8.5 x 11″ business cards to fit all the logos on them? Answer: Yes. We are working on a prototype for that now. 🙂 Seriously, we don’t think MOST people are going to need wallpaper to display their certs, and those that do, we hope will create logos that combine skill sets that highlight the skills they want to show off in any one situation. If you are in a situation where you want to show everything you have, you might create a MCTS and MCITP logo; and list your certs below.

Are the Certification path trees going to be fully updated anytime soon to reflect 70-621 meeting the 70-620 requirement? Plan is to get that in our next code drop; by early January at latest. Keep your fingers crossed.

My company is a Gold Certified partner, will we be able to take any of these exams at a discount? for Server 2008 and/or Vista? through the Partner SKills + program, you can take exams at a discount now. I am 99% sure these MCTS exams (and Vista) will be included in that. There is info on my blog and in MCP newsletter about Partner SKills +…

as for the MCA there’s very little information available on the internet, and i was able to get very little info as well from Tech-Ed. Where can we get some more news about it? Have you looked at the web content: We also held a Live Meeting in June, you can find that here:

I’m MCSE 2003 and I want to become Microsoft certified architect: what’s my path to success? 🙂 There is no “Path” from other certifications to MCA. Please see requirements.