Coming from Ignite this year, Microsoft made it clear that it was moving from the old MCP, MCSA and MCSE model for Azure and instead creating a role based certification paths for Azure. Take a look at the image below, it will show you how you need to take two exams to be get certified for each specific role.
Seeing as I already had the 70-533: Implementing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions, I planned to take the AZ-102 transition exam to get certified as an Azure Administrator. There is a transition exam for each role.
I was eager to take that exam since it was already out of BETA (no need to wait weeks for the results) and I wanted to make sure my Azure skills are still up to date.
Booking the Exam:
Booking the exam was a pleasant surprise for me. The exam was only for 99 US$ and since I already had a Microsoft certificate, there was a 15 % discount. But the most interesting part was that for a limited, there is an offer where you will also get a practice test exam for free from Microsoft (from mindhub) if you register for any of the Azure administrator exams.
Preparing for this exam was quite fun. Unlike 70-533, this transition exam was very specific and focus on certain areas. As you can see from the objectives, the exam is mostly focused on Azure migration and Azure identity. There were a few additional questions about items such as Azure file share, Azure VNET but the majority was migration and Azure AD. Below is a link from Pixel Robots, who did a great job breaking those objectives and providing you with the link to the Microsoft documentation to help you understand.
I highly recommend you to go through all the links in the above post and also to get a proper understanding of Azure AD, I would recommend you to build your own On-premise Domain Controller and through your Azure account, setup AD connect and set up most of the features such as password write-back, etc.. This will surely take some time but it will give you some valuable experience with Azure AD that is now becoming a very high in demand skill for all major enterprises.
This exam, I must say was the most fun exam I ever took. Please note that there are some scenario based questions in this exam and they are quite fun. I found that doing the following was more than enough for me to successfully pass the exam with a score of 820:
- Go through the objectives and use the pixelrobot blog to read about each objective in detail.
- Build my own Domain Controller and set up Azure AD connect.
- Go through the practice test provided by Microsoft several times and carefully reading the explanations for the ones I got wrong.
Please note that I do work with Azure on a daily basis from an IaaS perspective, if you are quite new to Azure your experience might be a bit different. This exam is not for people trying to get into Azure since you already need to have the 70-533 to be able to take this transition exam.
I highly recommend all the current 70-533 holders to take this exam since 70-533 is going to be retired soon. it is a fun and very useful exam.
I wish you all the best of luck.