How I prepared for and passed AZ-900

I’ve been wanting to get myself familiarized with Azure (public cloud platform from Microsoft) and I found an in person full day training session not too far away from my work place. And they were also distributing free AZ-900 certification code for attendees. What else can you ask for 😉

A good starting place to search for training session is https://events.microsoft.com/ with the keyword -Azure.

This session was conducted by Bob Reinsch (@bobreinsch) and he did a really good job in explaining the key components of Azure.
Concepts that were discussed included:
-cloud deployment models: public, private, hybrid cloud
-understanding availability using regions, geographies, zones
-understanding and customizing the azure portal
-Azure compute, storage and networking options
-Azure resource manager
-security principles and concepts in Azure
-defining and monitoring compliance using Azure
-opex vs capex; benefits and costs associated with on-premises vs Azure

During the session he also mentioned that the learning paths available at https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/ is a good beginning not only for AZ-900 but for other Microsoft Azure certifications. I found the learning path I was interested in
AZ900-Image2
As you can see, this is almost 10 hours long and that is just the time to read. If you are a fast reader it might take you less time but for someone like me who was new, it took longer. I had to read, re-read, take notes and understand… I think it took me somewhere around 20 hours to complete the learning path. There are 12 modules, each explaining a theory followed by a knowledge check question set. (Tip: although answering these questions was good confidence booster, the questions in the certification test were not this easy). My favorite learning paths were:
AZ900-Image3
During the training session, someone had mentioned about a free 15 questions test available at whizlabs and so on the last day I took that test just to check my understanding. I also saw that there were practice tests available for purchase.
The good thing about these practice tests were that they presented a scenario and asked questions based on that. A good study of the Azure Fundamentals learning path is necessary to be able to understand and answer these questions well. At the end you also get to review and understand why your answers were incorrect (if they were). I think taking the practice test after going through the learning path helped me fill the gaps in my learning.

My preference to approaching this certification is as follows:
-attended a session from Microsoft events
-go through the learning path in detail (multiple times if necessary; I also made notes and studied them regularly)
-practice tests from Whizlabs (optional if you have time)

For me all the above three were necessary in the order in which I came across them. The one-day session gave me a basic understanding of Azure concepts; I was lucky to have gotten a really good instructor. The learning path went in detail explaining the relevant concepts, different components, their purpose and how the whole thing ties together. And the practice tests were fun with the example scenarios which strengthen my understanding. It was also a good confidence booster. I would recommend this course to anyone who is new to Azure and wants to have a solid foundation in building their skillset in Azure.

Let me know if you have any questions and good luck if you’re taking the test.

Reference: https://www.youracclaim.com/badges/081e6587-68e8-4ed5-a5f1-1eed258a8934/linked_in_profile

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