How to become a Microsoft Certified Azure Specialist

A few weeks ago Microsoft Learning announced a new exam with which you can show the world your knowledge of Microsoft Azure solutions.

At Microsoft Learning  you can find an overview of the technical knowledge which will be tested during the exam. In the (near) future a 5-day training will become available, which you can attend via a Learning Partner.

My co-worker, Bert Wolters, was looking for some more specific information and created a nice blogpost in Dutch on our corporate (Dutch) team blog. Together we collected the information for almost all of the exam subjects. If you’re looking for even more information or study material, please visit the Azure section on the Microsoft Virtual Academy.
In the exam there are six different parts:

  • Implementing Websites
  • Implementing Virtual Machines
  • Implementing Cloud Services
  • Implementing Storage
  • Implementing Azure Active Directory
  • Implementing Virtual Networks

Next you can read the six different subject with the appropriate links, we didn’t only use links to Microsoft resources….

image  Implement Websites

Deploy websites

  • Define Deployment Slots (Study material: link)
  • Roll Back Deployments (Study material: link)
  • Configure and Deploy Packages (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Deploy Web Jobs (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Schedule Web Jobs (Study material : link)

Configure websites

  • Configure App Settings (Study material : link1, link2)
  • Connection Strings (Study material : link1, link2)
  • Handlers (Studie materiaal : link)
  • Virtual Directories (Study material : link)
  • Configure Certificates (Study material : link1, link2, link3)
  • Custom Domains (Study material : link)
  • Traffic Manager (Study material : link1, link2, link3)
  • Configure SSL Bindings and Rutime Configurations (Study material : link)
  • Manage Websites by using Windows PowerShell and Xplat-CLI (Study material : link1, link2)

Configure Diagnostics, Monitoring and Analytics

  • Retrieve Diagnostics Data (Study material : link)
  • View Streaming Logs (Study material : link1, link2)
  • Configure Endpoint Monitoring (Study material : link1, link2)
  • Alerts (Study material : link)
  • Diagnostics (Study material : link)
  • Monitor Website Resources (Study material : link1, link2)

Configure Scale and Resilience

  • Configure Auto-Scale using built-in and Custom Schedules (Study material : link1, link2)
  • Configure by Metric (Study material : link)
  • Change the Size of an Instance (Study material : link1, link2, link3)

Manage Hosting Plans

  • Create Hosting Plans (Study material : link1, link2, link3)
  • Migrate Websites between Hosting Plans (Study material : link)
  • Create a Website within a Hosting Plan (Study material : link)

 

image Implement Virtual Machines

Deploy Workloads on Azure Virtual Machines (VMs)

  • Identify Supported Microsoft Workloads (Study material : link1, link2)
  • Deploy and Connect to a Linux VM (Study material : link)
  • Create VMs (Study material : link)

Implement Images and Disks

  • Create Specialized and Generalized Images for Windows and Linux (Study material : link)
  • Copy images between Storage Accounts and Subscriptions (Study material : link)
  • Upload VHDs (Study material : link1, link2, link3)

Perform Configuration Management

  • Automate Configuration Management by using PowerShell Desired State Configuration and Custom Script Extensions (Study material : link1, link2, link3)
  • Enable Puppet and Chef Extensions (Study material : link)

Configure VM Networking

  • Settings Include Reserved IP Addresses (Study material : link1, link2)
  • Access Control List (ACL) (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Internal Name Resolution (Study material: link)
  • DNS at the cloud service level (Study material: link)
  • Load Balancing Endpoints (Study material: link1, link2)
  • HTTP and TCP health probes (Study material: link)
  • Public IP’s (Study material: link)
  • Firewall rules(Study material: link1, link2)
  • Direct Server Return (Study material: link1, link2

Configure VM resiliency

  • Scale up and scale down VM sizes (Nog geen Study material gevonden)
  • Auto-Scale (Study material: link1, link2, link3)

Design and implement VM storage

  • Configure disk caching (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Plan Storage Capacity  (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Configure operating system disk redundancy  (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Configure shared storage using Azure File service (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Replication (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Encrypt disks (Study material: link1, link2)

Monitor VMs

  • Configure endpoint monitoring (Study material: link)
  • alerts, No input
  • and diagnostics (Study material: link)

 

image Implement Cloud Services

What are Cloud Services (Study material: link)

Configure cloud services and roles

  • Configure instance count and size (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Operating system version and family (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Upgrade and fault domains (Study material: link1, link2)
  • ACLs (Study material: link)
  • Reserved IPs (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Network access rules (Study material: Niet gevonden)
  • Configure local storage (Study material: link)
  • Configure dedicated and co-located caching (Study material: link)
  • Local and cloud configurations (Study material: link)
  • Local disks (Study material: link)
  • Configure multiple websites (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Configure custom domains (Study material: link)

Deploy and manage cloud services

  • Upgrade a deployment (Study material: link)
  • VIP swap a deployment (Study material: link)
  • package a deployment (Study material: link)
  • modify configuration files (Study material: link1, link2)
  • perform in-place updates (Study material: link)
  • perform runtime configuration changes using the portal (Study material: Niet gevonden)
  • Scale a cloud service (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Create service bus namespaces and choose a tier (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Apply scalability targets (Study material: link)

Monitor cloud services

  • Monitor service bus queues, topics, relays, and notification hubs; configure diagnostics (Study material: link)

image Implement Storage

  • Implement blobs and Azure files (Study material: link)
  • Read data (Study material: Niet gevonden)
  • Change data (Study material: Niet gevonden)
  • Set metadata on a container (Study material: Niet gevonden)
  • Use encryption (SSL) (Study material: Niet gevonden)
  • Perform an async blob copy (Study material: link)
  • Configure a Content Delivery Network (CDN) (Study material: link)
  • Implement storage for backup and disaster recovery (Study material: link)
  • Configure Azure Backup (Study material: link)
  • Define blob hierarchies; (Study material: Niet gevonden)
  • Configure custom domains (Study material: link)
  • Configure the Import and Export Service (Study material: link)

Manage access

  • Create and manage shared access signatures (Study material: link)
  • Use stored access policies (Study material: link);
  • Regenerate keys (Study material: link)

Configure diagnostics, monitoring, and analytics

  • Configure retention policies and logging levels (Study material: Niet gevonden)

Implement SQL databases

  • Choose the appropriate database tier and performance level (Study material: link)
  • Configure point in time recovery and geo-replication (Study material: link)
  • Import and export data and schema (Study material: link)
  • Design a scaling strategy (Study material: Niet gevonden)

Implement recovery services

  • Create a backup vault (Study material: link)
  • Deploy a backup agent (Study material: Niet gevonden)
  • Back up and restore data (Study material: link)

 

 image Implement Microsoft Azure Active Directory

  • What is Azure Active Directory (Study material: link1, link2)

Integrate an Azure AD with existing directories

  • Implement DirSync (Study material: link)
  •  O365 integration (Study material: link)
  • Single sign-on with on-premises Windows Server 2012 R2 (Study material: link)
  • Add custom domains (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Monitor Azure AD (Study material: Niet gevonden)

Configure the Application Access Panel

  • Configure single sign-on with SaaS applications using federation and password based (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Add users and groups to applications (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Revoke access to SaaS applications (Study material: link1, link2);
  • Configure access (Study material: link1, link2)
  • Federation with Facebook and Google ID (Study material: link1, link2)

Integrate an app with Azure AD

  • Web apps (WS-federation) (Study material: link)
  • Desktop apps (OAuth) (Study material: link)
  • Graph API (Study material: link)

 

image Implement Virtual Networks

Configure a virtual network

  • Deploy a VM into a virtual network (Study material: link)
  • Deploy a cloud service into a virtual network (Study material: link)
  • Configure static IP’s (Study material: link)
  • Configure internal load balancing (Study material: link)
  • Design subnets (Study material: link)

Modify a network configuration

  • Modify a subnet (Study material: link)
  • Import and export a network configuration (Study material: link1, link2)

Design and implement a multi-site or hybrid network

  • Choose the appropriate solution between ExpressRoute, site-to-site, and point-to-site (Study material: link1, link2, link3)
  • Choose the appropriate gateway (Study material: link)
  • Identify supported devices and software VPN solutions (Study material: link1, link2, link3)
  • Identify networking prerequisites (Study material: link)
  • Configure regional virtual networks and multi-site virtual networks (Study material: link)

 

Disclaimer:

The services Microsoft offers with the Azure platform are changing and growing so rapidly, that we’re not sure that the information collected within this blog post will give you enough knowledge to pass the exam. We do think that this information will help you getting ready. If you combine that with a demo Azure subscription, so you can click around yourself, you should really be able to pass the exam.

Good luck.