Monthly Archives: November 2013

ExamCollection: Frequently Asked Questions

examcollection, faqs, vce files, pdf to vceWe have recently updated the FAQ section on the ExamCollection website to cover all the stuff we are usually asked – or most of it, at least. In case you missed the update, here it is below. If you are new to IT certification exam preparation, all this braindump and VCE stuff, this is a good place to start and understand how it works.  If your question sill hasn’t been answered, feel free to add it in the comment box below. Hope it helps!

General questions

What is

Examcollection is a community of IT certification exam takers committed to sharing their exam knowledge and experience with their peers, as well as those looking for free information sources to study for their IT exams. Our members share their knowledge on IT certification exams in convenient VCE files.

Please note that Examcollection is basically an information sharing platform: we do not sell software, neither do we support or troubleshoot it (keep reading to find out where you can get your VCE software). All we do is let people share their VCE uploads, download files and post their feedback.

What exactly are VCE files?

VCE (Virtual CertExam) is a file format that realistically simulates IT exam environment, allowing for the most convenient exam preparation you can get – in the convenience of your own home or on the go. If you have ever seen IT exam simulations, chances are, they were in the VCE format. For details on how to create, use and convert VCE files, please refer to the separate section below.

Who can upload the files?

All files are uploaded by Examcollection community members. We encourage everyone who has recently taken an exam and/or has come across some braindumps that have turned out to be true to share this information with the community by creating and uploading VCE files.

Who can download the files?

The files may be downloaded by individuals for their personal use – your exam preparation. This means that downloading files for commercial use/reselling is not permitted. Examcollection reserves the right to block users suspected of reselling the files at our sole discretion.

How many files can I upload/download per day?

You can upload an unlimited number of VCE files. Downloading is restricted to maximum 15 files per day. The limit was imposed with the goal to prevent commercial use of VCE files created by our members.

About VCE Files and Software

What is VCE?

VCE is a file format associated with Visual CertExam Software. This format and software are widely used for creating tests for IT certifications. To create and open VCE files, you will need to purchase, download and install Visual CertExam Suite on your computer.

Where do I get Visual CertExam Suite?

Visual CertExam Suite can be purchased from its developer, . Please note that Examcollection does not sell or support this software. Should you have any questions or concerns about using this product, please contact Avanset support team directly.

Can I convert PDF files into VCE?

Yes, PDF files can be turned into VCE easily with Exam Formatter, a free tool that allows for an easy file conversion. A tutorial on how to convert PDF into VCE files, which also includes some other tips and tricks, is available here.

Premium Files

What are the Premium Files?

You have an option of purchasing Premium VCE files generously provided by our sponsor, PassGuide. Available for the most popular exams at a discounted price, these VCEs are truly reliable and reputable tools to prepare for your IT certification exams.

How are these Premium VCE files different from all other uploads?

These VCEs have been developed by industry professionals, who have been working with IT certifications for years and have close ties with IT certification vendors and holders – with most recent exam questions and some insider information. As PassGuide makes their files available for a small fee, they make a great source of reliable information.

Of course we’re not saying that the free VCEs uploaded by our members aren’t reliable (experience shows that they are). Yet, with everyone being able to create and upload the file, you should use your critical thinking as to what you download and memorize… you know what we’re saying.

Examcollection Account and Other Technical Details

How do I register with Is the registration free?

The registration and membership with Examcollection are FREE. To register, please fill out a brief form here:

  • After submitting the form, you will receive an email from that will include your confirmation link.
  • IMPORTANT: make sure your mailbox does not treat our message as spam by adding to your contact list.
  • You will need to click on the link in the confirmation email to finalize your registration process. The email usually arrives within a few minutes, you will receive the confirmation email. If you do not see it in your inbox, be sure to check your Spam or Junk folders.
  • If you still can’t find the email, please add to the address book of your email account and use Forgot Password page.

Why do I need that confirmation email? Can’t you just log me in?

Like many other Internet resources, we employ the 2 step registration process in order to ensure that our users are honest in providing their email information, and to prevent spam registrations. This is a necessity if we want to keep our website a clean friendly community populated by honest users, so we truly appreciate your cooperation.

I can’t find an email from you. What’s wrong?

If you do not see emails from us, that’s most likely because they have landed to your Spam/Junk folder. Please check these folders, and once you find an email from , open it and remove the Spam label. To prevent messages from being marked as Spam in the future, add to your email address book, so it is recognized as a trusted email.

If you need to retrieve your registration confirmation email and link to finalize your registration, please use the Forgot Password page, and we’ll re-send the message to you. Before you proceed, however, make sure you have completed the previous steps so this email doesn’t end up in your spam folder again.

I forgot my password. What should I do?

As simple as it gets: please use the Forgot Password page. And yes, make sure the message does not go to your Spam folder.

Where can I keep up with the news from Examcollection?

Make sure you visit the website often to keep up with the latest VCEs that appear on, and visit our blog for IT Certification news.

What’s Not To Miss: Microsoft Certification Upgrade Offer

microsoft, special offers, certification upgrade, freebies, mcsa, mcitp, mcse, exams With Black Friday just days away, we are all thinking deals, good prices and special offers, right? It’s that time of the year! In case you missed it, Microsoft stays in trend offering a “Buy 2, Get 1 Free” deal on some exams, plus free retakes in case you need them. The deal basically covers Windows Server 2012 certification upgrades, so if you still have a Windows Server 2008 on your resume, now is the best time to upgrade it.

So what’s that “Buy 2, Get 1 Free” offer?

To be eligible, you need to be currently holding one of the following certifications:

  • MCSA: Windows Server 2008
  • MCITP: Virtualization Administrator
  • MCITP: Enterprise Messaging Administrator
  • MCITP: Lync Server Administrator
  • MCITP: SharePoint Administrator
  • MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator

When you choose to upgrade and follow one of these paths…

  • MCSE: Server Infrastructure — 417, 413, 414
  • MCSE: Desktop Infrastructure — 417, 415, 416
  • MCSE: Private Cloud — 417, 246, 247

…you get three exams for the price of two. You are also granted one free retake on each exam in the pack if you fail.

To take advantage of this offer, you need to purchase the upgrade (go to Prometric website) by May 31, 2014, and finish your exams (including free retakes) within 2014.

Take New VMware Associate Level Exams For FREE: Find the Promo Code Inside!

vmware, associate level certification,  it certification. free exam, promo, promo code, discount, special offers, freebiesEarlier this year, VMware has joined other IT certification vendors in new launches and expanding their certification portfolio by adding Associate Level Certifications (VCAs) to their certification map. Not only can you register and take these online exams from the convenience of your home (online exams are a HUGE advantage if you ask us!), but until January 31, 2014, you can do it for free by using a promo code (scroll down to the bottom of this post).

What Are The VCAs About?

VMware did not have entry level certifications before. So, while those seeking to start their career in, for example, networking, could choose a certification to validate their entry level skills between’s CompTIA Network+ and Cisco’s CCENT or CCNA Routing & Switching. Meanwhile, if you’d want to build a career in VMware virtualization, you would have to rely on getting practical experience and self-study up to the level when you’d be ready to for their Professional Level certification. Not anymore though. Here’s what VMware has for you now. Click on the links for detailed information, exam blueprints, FREE eLearning and exam registration:

VMware Certified Associate – Data Center Virtualization

VMware Certified Associate – Cloud

VMware Certified Associate – Workforce Mobility

Certification titles are rather self-explanatory: the certifications validate candidates’ skills and understanding of strategically important technologies related to virtualization: Data Center Virtualization, Cloud Solutions, and Workforce Mobility/Horizon. With the extensive FREE study materials available and braindumps starting to come in, the exams shouldn’t be that challenging, if this is your area of interest.

Take ‘Em Now!

To promote the VCA certifications, VMware gives limited time 50% discount for all of them. Yet, we go even further by giving you with a FREE certification code. By inputting it during your registration, you can get all 3 VMware Associate Level Certifications for FREE. The trick is, you can’t be registered for a more than 1 certification at the same time, so your algorithm would be: registered with the code for the first exam – took the exam – registered for the second exam – took the second exam- registered for the third certification exam – and you’ll be using the same code. You get the point – that’s in case you want do go all three of them. And, if you have time, why not try? After all, you can take the exams online, whenever it suits you, in the convenience of your home or office. Here’s your code and good luck:



 Hurry up as the code is valid until January 31, 2014 😉

Migrating from CCIE Voice to CCIE Collaboration: When? How? Why?

ccie voice, ccie collaboration, cisco, it certification examsSt. Valentine’s day may not be the first thing on the mind of CCIE Voice holders this season, as February 14, 2014, will be the day when their certification, CCIE Voice, retires leaving the stage to the new CCIE Collaboration. If you are a CCIE Voice holder, what should be your next steps? And (in case you missed it) what has all the fuss been about?

Initial Scare

In May 2013, Cisco announced the new CCIE Collaboration track, based on the CCIE Voice certification. This appeared to be a natural evolution of CCIE Voice, which was now up to its version 4 and a decade old. The update has been long due, and it was about time to give this path a broader angle. Yet, the Cisco community was slammed with disappointment when it turned out that CCIE Voice certification was being retired, and not renamed. And for those holding CCIE Voice, getting CCIE Collaboration certified would mean going through the entire certification process, with tedious labs, related equipment investments and all this pain many of you can certainly relate to.

Cisco community, especially CCIE Voice holders, turned to blogs, Social Media and petitions to state what they believed was unfair: making them go through the whole recertification process. As the blueprints of the two certifications are 80-85% identical, the evolution didn’t seem that crucial to retire the Voice without leaving any migration paths to the Collaboration.

Cisco Listens

A week after the launch (and the week has been filled with petitions and all kinds of Social Media complaints), Cisco have made a statement saying:

We are listening to the feedback from our valued CCIE community, and will be adjusting the CCIE Collaboration requirements. As a quick preview of the evolution of the CCIE Collaboration certification, a current holder of the CCIE Voice designation will now be able to migrate to a CCIE Collaboration credential by taking the CCIE Collaboration written exam only. We appreciate all of the great feedback and patience of the community while we update our webpages to reflect this change. We will be communicating further details about this modification as soon as possible.

Well, this is a great example of an A-list company backing off and actually listening to their customers (especially given that the customers make sense!)

Migration Paths

So how does this work? There has been some confusion before Cisco announced the actual mechanics of the migration. As part of a CCIE Voice to CCIE Collaboration certification conversion program, Cisco offers 3 migration options requiring a CCIE Voice certification – active or suspended – as of February 13, 2014. The options are:

  • Keeping existing CCIE Voice certification AND getting CCIE Collaboration by following the standard CCIE recertification path.
    • Attaining both a CCIE Voice certification and a CCIE Collaboration certification by passing both the CCIE Collaboration Written Exam and the CCIE Collaboration Lab Exam and then receiving a CCIE Collaboration certification in addition to the previously earned CCIE Voice certification. CCIE Voice holders who have passed the CCIE Collaboration written and lab exams will be granted both the CCIE Voice and CCIE Collaboration certifications. CCIE Voice holders with a valid CCIE Voice Written Exam or CCIE Collaboration Written Exam are eligible to register for the CCIE Collaboration Lab Exam (available starting February 14, 2014).
    • Passing the CCIE Collaboration Written Exam and then permanently converting/migrating your CCIE Voice certification to a CCIE Collaboration certification between November 21, 2013 and February 13, 2016.

Conversion Rules

For those of you interested in the last option, which is passing the written exam (400-051) to convert the CCIE Voice into CCIE Collaboration, here’s what you’ll need to do:

After you take and pass the CCIE Collaboration Written Exam 400-051, you should request a permanent CCIE Voice to CCIE Collaboration certification conversion by submitting an online Cisco certification support case at and include the following information:

  • Candidate ID
  • Name
  • CCIE number
  • Description: CCIE Voice to CCIE Collaboration Conversion Program
  • Date (mm/dd/yyyy) of the CCIE Collaboration Written Exam pass

It’s worth keeping in mind that CCIE Voice to CCIE Collaboration conversion program is a permanent and final certification conversion. Once you change your certification to CCIE Collaboration, you won’t be able to use the CCIE Voice title any longer and won’t be eligible to regain it in the future (although with CCIE Voice being retired in February, it’s not like there’s enough time left for that anyway). This process will remain in place until February 13, 2016.

The Written Exam

CCIE Collaboration Written Exam 400-051 will be available starting tomorrow, November 21, 2013. The topics covered supposedly include:

  • Cisco Collaboration Infrastructure
  • Telephony Standards and Protocols
  • Cisco Unified Communications Manager
  • Cisco IOS UC Applications and Features
  • Quality of Service and Security in Cisco Collaboration Solutions
  • Cisco Unity Connection
  • Cisco Unified Contact Center Express (UCCX)
  • Cisco Unified IM Presence

Another natural query is how this conversion will be reflected on your online certification history. According to Cisco, once you have completed the conversion to the CCIE Collaboration program, the verification tool will display only a single title of CCIE Collaboration under “Certification Type.” However, the “Certification Date” will show the date on which you passed the CCIE Voice lab. So, if the date shown is before February 14, 2014, your date will be “converted” to CCIE Collaboration; if the date is on or after February 14, 2014, the individual actually passed the CCIE Collaboration lab exam.

Cisco’s CCIE Voice to CCIE Collaboration Migration FAQ are available here.

As we hear many voices stating that marketing had a lot to do with the introduction of CCIE Collaboration to replace CCIE Voice, the change makes sense on every level, including perception-wise. ‘Voice’ has long become too narrow of a concept to cover all modern collaboration aspects, so the update is definitely welcome. Moreover, Cisco deserved every credit for handling this situation gracefully and coming up with the acceptable migration option. So, good changes are always good. Hope it’s not going to be too much pain for you.

Windows Store Apps Exam Updates: 70-481, 70-482, 70-484 and 70-485

windows, microsoft, apps, it certification exams, exam updates, html5, changes As Microsoft has made updates to their technology by releasing Windows 8.1 and Visual Studio 2013 recently, 4Windows Store Apps exams are being updated, too.

Exams related to HTML5-related exams, 70-481 and 70-482, will be updated next week, on November 18, 2013, as Microsoft announced a few month ago. And the two exams related to C# – 70-484 and 70-485 – will be updated early next month, on 2 December.

Now, let’s look at the exams. Changing next week:

70-481: Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps Using HTML5 and JavaScript
The exam measures the following skills:

  • Designing Windows Store apps (20%)
  • Developing Windows Store apps (20%)
  • Creating the user interface (21%)
  • Program user interaction (20%)
  • Managing security and data (19%)

Here, you can find out which parts of the exam have been changed.

70-482: Advanced Windows Store App Development Using HTML5 and JavaScript
Skills measured within the exam:

  • Developing Windows Store apps (17%)
  • Discovering and interact with devices (13%)
  • Program user interaction (18%)
  • Enhancing the user interface (18%)
  • Managing data and security (18%)
  • Preparing for a solution deployment (16%)

Changes in the 70-482 exam are outlined here.

Those of you focusing on the C# related exams still have over 2 weeks to adjust as the following exams will be changed on 2 December:

70-484: Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps Using C#

Skills measured:

  • Designing Windows Store apps (19%)
  • Developing Windows Store apps (19%)
  • Creating the user interface (21%)
  • Program the user interaction (21%)
  • Managing security and data (20%)

Here’s what exactly will change in the 70-484 exam.

Last but not least, exam 70-485: Advanced Windows Store App Development Using C#

Skills to be tested:

  • Developing Windows Store apps (17%)
  • Discovering and interact with devices (16%)
  • Program user interaction (17%)
  • Enhancing  the user interface (16%)
  • Managing data and security (17%)
  • Preparing for a solution deployment (17%)

This exam’s upcoming changes are available here.

Well, the changes do not seem to be too big or too bad. When they actually are, Microsoft tend to change the numbers of exams. And in this case, when the numbers are kept the same, the updates are expected to be moderate. Yet, it’s better not to ignore the news – to avoid being too surprised on the exam ;).

COMING SOON: CompTIA Mobility+ Certification

comptia mobility,  it certification exams, comptia mobile app securityWhen CompTIA launched their Mobile App Security+ certification, it seemed like the non-profit was seriously putting their foot down in the world of mobile technologies (just like mobile technologies do in the tech world these days!). Now we know that folks at CompTIA mean it, as they have just announced its second mobility-related certification: Mobility+. While it’s on the ‘coming soon’ shelf at the moment, let’s take a look at what exactly is coming.

According to CompTIA, Mobility+ certification was developed in close cooperation with MSPs (Managed Service Providers), whose employees will supposedly be its key target audience. Yet, adding Mobility+ certification to the portfolio may also be useful for in-house networking engineers and mobility professionals. It may be especially beneficial to those holding positions of mobility engineers, network administrators, mobility architects and security administrators.

This certification will give candidates an opportunity to position themselves as skilled mobility professionals, as mobile technology is becoming one of the top IT trends – mostly in terms of job openings available.

The CompTIA Mobility+ exam (MB0-001) will have 100 multiple choice questions covering mobile device management, troubleshooting, security, and network infrastructure. It is being developed to validate the skills of IT professionals who can deploy, integrate, support and manage a mobile environment while ensuring proper security measures are maintained for devices and platforms to mitigate risks and threats.

Although there are no prerequisites for the exam, CompTIA recommends that candidates have at least18 months experience in a mobile environment. Also, they are encouraged to hold a Network+ certification and 12 months networking experience.

The CompTIA Mobility+ exam (MB0-001) will cover the following domains (detailed exam objectives are available on the official website):

  • Over-the-Air Technologies
  • Network Infrastructure
  • Mobile Device Management
  • Security
  • Troubleshooting

So when is it coming? CompTIA have not given the exact date yet. Yet, given the lead time we witnessed with the recent CompTIA launches, it should be safe to say that Mobility+ certification will be available next year. So, now is the perfect time to get ready. Are you up for it?

CompTIA’s Latest Cloud+ Certification and the CV0-001 Exam: Go Higher

comptia cloud cloud technologies, it certification exam, it certification exams, cloud computing, cloud security As cloud technologies become increasingly common, and the global cloud computing market is projected to reach $270 billion by 2020, CompTIA jumps on the trend by adding another cloud computing certification to their portfolio. In addition to CompTIA Cloud Essentials, launched 2 years ago, the vendor has recently introduced a Cloud+ certification.

While the Cloud Essentials is an entry level certification (candidates need to have as little as 6 months experience), Cloud+ targets experienced network and storage professionals, or data center administrators. As more and more organizations (businesses, governments, non-profits – you name it) move to the cloud, the demand for experienced cloud professionals is sure to grow, and this is exactly what the Cloud+ certification should cover.

This Professional Series certification covers standard methodology required to securely implement and maintain cloud technologies. It validates the knowledge and skills required of IT practitioners working in cloud computing environments, who must understand and deliver cloud infrastructure solutions. Recommended experience includes at least 24-36 months of work experience in IT networking, storage, or data center administration, as well as being familiar with any major hypervisor technologies for server virtualization.

“CompTIA Cloud+ was developed by the industry to address this shortage, providing IT professionals with a credential that validates their ability to efficiently and securely implement and maintain cloud technologies,” said Terry Erdle, executive vice president of skills certification at CompTIA, in a statement issued by CompTIA.

To get certified, candidates need to pass the CV0-001 exam. Consisting of 100 multiple choice questions, it covers the following domains:

  • Cloud Concepts and Models
  • Virtualization
  • Infrastructure
  • Resource Management
  • Security
  • Systems Management
  • Business Continuity in the Cloud

We are looking forward to the thoughts and experiences of the first Cloud+ certification holders.

CompTIA Mobile App Security+: what you need to know about the new ADR-001 and IOS-001 exams

comptia mobile app security, it certification examsAs we mentioned the other day, CompTIA recently introduced two interesting certifications. So, if you are working towards the career of mobile apps developer or a cloud professional, consider that you have gotten another goal to strive to.

Today, we’re talking about the vendor’s Mobile App Security+ Certification. With this addition, CompTIA raises an important issue, so often ignored: the security of mobile apps. As we all know (or at least have a gut feeling about), unless we’re talking big players’ ecommerce apps, healthcare and finance, the apps we play around with on our smartphones, aren’t too secure, right?

With smartphones being so vulnerable to hacking, theft or loss, CompTIA insists that it’s the developer’s responsibility to secure the application. And the only sure way to do that lies in planning for security and building security features from the very first stages of the app development process. The challenges of mobile app security can be overcome with the latest technology, such as HTML5, CSS3, JQuery, JQuery Mobile.

So, as CompTIA is fighting to step up security standards of mobile app development, we can expect their certification to become the big thing employers will be looking for in the resumes of their potential developers. So, you should prepare for it. And, as usual, there is no better time than now.

CompTIA Mobile App Security+ has two editions of the exam – for Android and iOS mobile apps (exams ADR-001 and IOS-001 respectively). The exams include 100 multiple choice questions. There is no confirmed information as to whether there are going to be exams for other platforms (Windows Phone mainly, given its steady growth this year), so if Windows is your platform of choice, Microsoft is still your go-to certification destination.

The exams (ADR-001 and IOS-001) will certify that the candidate has the knowledge and skills required to create a secure native Android/iOS mobile application, including securing network communications, backend Web services, etc. Both exams are suited for professionals with at least 2 years of mobile app development experience. Candidates need to be familiar with the principles of secure application development, iOS/Android SDK, and Java(for Android developers).

According to CompTIA, Mobile App Security+ Certification Exam (iOS Edition) IOS-001 covers the following domains:

  1. Application Security and SDLC Fundamentals
  2. Objective-C Coding
  3. iOS SDK, APIs, and Security Features
  4. Web Service and Network Security
  5. Data Security and Implementing Encryption
  6. Application Hardening

To pass, you should have the knowledge and skills to:

  • Describe fundamental principles of application security
  • Describe the security model of iOS devices
  • Describe common threats to mobile application security
  • Develop moderately complex applications using the iOS SDK
  • Describe Web services security model and vulnerabilities
  • Properly implement SSL/TLS for Web communications
  • Utilize the security features of the iOS operating system and APIs
  • Properly implement secure coding techniques
  • Avoid insecure retention of data in memory
  • Describe common implementations of cryptography such as PKI
  • Leverage encryption for storage and/or communications
  • Harden an application against attack to levels appropriate for the risk model of the
  • Application

CompTIA Mobile AppSecurity+ Certification Exam (Android Edition) ADR-001 covers the following domains:

  1. Mobile application security, SDLC, and threat models
  2. Android SDK, APIs, and security features
  3. Web service and network security
  4. Data security and implementing encryption
  5. Application hardening and reverse engineering 5%
  6. Secure Java coding

The successful candidate should have the knowledge and skills to:

  • Describe fundamental principles of application security
  • Describe the security model of Android devices
  • Describe common threats to mobile application security
  • Develop moderately complex applications using the Android SDK
  • Describe Web services security model and vulnerabilities
  • Properly implement SSL/TLS for Web communications
  • Utilize the security features of the Android operating system and APIs
  • Properly implement secure coding techniques
  • Avoid insecure retention of data in memory
  • Describe common implementations of cryptography such as PKI
  • Leverage encryption for storage and/or communications
  • Understand access control and file permissions
  • Harden an application against attack to levels appropriate for the risk model of the application

For more information and detailed exam objectives, please refer to CompTIA’s official website.

CompTIA’s Newest Certifications: CompTIA Mobile App Security+ and Cloud+

comptia mobile app security, new it certification exams, comptia cloudDid you know that CompTIA announced 2 new certifications a few weeks ago? Here’s a quick recap in case you have missed the news.

This fall, CompTIA focuses on the hottest trends of today’s technology: mobile app security and cloud solutions with its two latest certifications: CompTIA Mobile App Security+ for Android & iOS and CompTIA Cloud+ . Today, we’re making an overview of these 2 certifications, and take a closer look soon.

Staying true to itself and its philosophy, CompTIA keeps its certifications vendor neutral yet very relevant.

CompTIA Mobile App Security+ Certification has been designed to raise security awareness and preparedness among mobile developers. The certification was launched with two editions of the exam – for Android and iOS mobile apps (exams ADR-001 and IOS-001 respectively). The exams include 100 multiple choice queries.

Areas covered in the exams include:

  • Principles of secure application development
  • Security models of Android and iOS devices
  • Common threats to mobile app security
  • Web services security models and vulnerabilities
  • Secure coding techniques
  • Common implementations of cryptography
  • Encryption for storage and communications

 “Mobile apps numbering in the millions are downloaded daily on smart phones, tablets and other mobile devices,” said Terry Erdle, executive vice president, skills certification, CompTIA. “But too often, in the dizzying race to bring new apps to market quickly, security considerations are an afterthought. With these new certifications we aim to bring the security focus back to where it belongs – in the starting blocks of mobile app development.”

CompTIA developed this certification with a variety of jobs and roles in mind, including app and software developers, applications development managers, as well as network security professionals – all with at least two years of application development experience.

CompTIA’s  Cloud+ Certification targets cloud computing professionals. It validates the skills required to deliver cloud-based solutions.

“Cloud computing is an integral part of the IT landscape for a growing number of organizations,” said Terry Erdle, executive vice president, skills certification, CompTIA. “As cloud-based applications proliferate and network architectures become more diverse, networking and technical sales professionals must become proficient in new skills.”

According to CompTIA, 90 percent of companies claim to be using some form of cloud computing, while the number of cloud-computing job opening grew by 30% over the last few years, with the demand for cloud computing professionals now being higher than ever before. And this is exactly the nice CompTIA is striving to fill with its new certification (Before that, reputable cloud computing certifications were only available from Microsoft, with the opportunities it brings, along with some restrictions that come with any vendor-specific certification).

“CompTIA Cloud+ was developed by the industry to address this shortage, providing IT professionals with a credential that validates their ability to efficiently and securely implement and maintain cloud technologies,” Erdle said.

Topics covered in the exam include:

  • Cloud concepts and models
  • Virtualization
  • Infrastructure
  • Resource management
  • Security
  • Systems management
  • Business continuity in the cloud

CompTIA Cloud+ certification is an ideal career step for experienced network, storage, system and data center administrators and other technology professionals whose job roles increasingly require development and use of cloud computing and virtualization solutions.

CompTIA’s Cloud+ certification requires taking one exam, which covers everything from standard cloud terminologies and methodologies to implementing and maintaining cloud technologies and infrastructures (server, network storage and virtualization technologies), to cloud security and virtualization.

Although not required, it is recommended that CompTIA Cloud+ candidates have at least 2-3 years of hands-on experience working in IT networking, storage or data center administration. The candidates should hold CompTIA’s Network+ and/or Storage+ Powered by SNIA certification, and be comfortable working with major hypervisor technologies for server virtualization.

So, as all main industry certification providers have updated their certifications this year (think Cisco’s big announcement in March and final changes in September, as well as Microsoft certification updates), CompTIA has also joined the trend by offering new certifications which look like they’ll be in high demand. Now, who’s up for the challenge?

Should I get Certified as a Windows Phone Developer?

microsoft, windows, windows phone, mcpd, silverlight, it certificationThe question about going into Windows Phone development is now being asked by more and more mobile developers. With Windows Phone being the fastest growing mobile operating system in 2013, Microsoft has doubled its market share in the mobile industry within the last year. But is becoming a certified Windows Phone Developer a good idea now? In this article, we urge you to think twice.

While market share of the Windows Phone has been growing steadily in 2013 (making it the third most-used mobile operating system after Android and iOS), the giant made its ultimate claim for leading the mobile world by purchasing Nokia in September.

So now Microsoft’s main task appears to be developing a powerful ecosystem for both phones and tablets, and as they go along, there will sure be a high demand for Windows Phone Developers. Even now, Microsoft’s not going bad: with the integration of SkyDrive, Office Mobile, Office 365, etc, the company is sure on the right track. Yet, there’s still a lot to work on, especially in the area of smaller/cheaper consumer apps, to step up the competition with the leader, Google’s Android.  Not surprisingly, in this situation, the MCPD: Windows Phone Developer certification may look like a good option for you, as there will definitely be a rising demand in Windows Phone app developers. Yet, as it usually happens, things are a little more complex than they may seem, and we’ll try to convince you that you’ll need at least some HTML 5 understanding, up to the point when MCSD: Windows Store Apps certification may be a better long-term goal (as opposed to the outdated MCPD: Windows Phone Developer you may be eying).

Is there anything wrong with MCPD: Windows Phone Developer Certification?

Where do we start? The thing is, this certification is strongly focused on Silverlight. Which is fine, considered that this is what Windows Phone development is now based on. Yet, it may not be so fine once you consider that Microsoft has pretty much dropped Silverlight in 2011. Do note also that the certification includes the 4th version of Silverlight among its steps, although the platform was updated to Silverlight 5 back in 2011. So why haven’t they updated the certification yet?

Although it will be supported until 2021, you don’t have to be a genius to understand that it won’t last that long: Microsoft has announced it would be moving to HTML 5 instead. Why would Microsoft kill its proprietary technology? Just look a few years back and it’ll be clear.

History Repeats

2 years after his death, Steve Jobs still remains the trendsetter of the tech world. And it’s not his gadgets (and the recent lack of Apple’s innovation) we’re talking about. Do you remember the outrage caused by Apple’s decision not to support Flash on its gadgets? This way, Apple created the AppStore concept we know today: accessing things you need through apps, which, in turn, brings huge monetization potential to the owners.

Looking back, one can now state that the war between Apple and Adobe over Flash had prompted the HTML5 we use today. And in 2011, Microsoft took the course of moving away from the Silverlight towards using HTML5, thus closing the door on its own proprietary technology. The company admitted it would be dropping its efforts to make Silverlight the leading cross-platform runtime for the web and the desktop.

What Exactly is Silverlight?

Microsoft Silverlight enables writing and running rich Internet applications, similar to Adobe Flash. The run-time environment for Silverlight is available as a plug-in for web browsers running under Microsoft Windows and Mac OS.

Silverlight is capable of providing video streaming. It has been used for the NBC coverage of the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, as well as the 2008 conventions of the US Democratic and Republican parties. Until recently, it has been used by Netflix to enable its instant video streaming, however, the service has announced its switch to HTML5 in the near future.

Truth be told, for years Silverlight had compatibility issues with browsers, and many developers weren’t crazy about its features. Yet, it carried out its mission of a universal platform for delivery of rich online content, with online video streaming being the best and brightest of it. Convenient? Yes! But as a user, would you purchase an app for something you can get without one, just through your browser? We didn’t think so. And neither did Microsoft. So now the company treats its own technology exactly the way Apple treated Adobe’s Flash years ago.

Of course, this platform isn’t something Microsoft can get rid of within a day: the company will support Silverlight 5 until 2021. Although it may still seem far away, it is obvious that HTML5, a quicker and leaner technology, will take its place. And, since Adobe has dropped Flash as a mobile platform for being too energy consuming and too slow, it’s just a matter of time until Microsoft does the same with Silverlight (although it’s not nearly as heavy).

Moreover, Microsoft is now faced with the need to capitalize on its Windows Phone and Nokia investment, and this is something Bill Gates’ company can once again learn from their founder’s lifelong rival, Mr. Steve Jobs: heading towards a lean and consistent appstore-based ecosystem, where desktop and mobile environment are harmonically aligned, and the monetization potential is high. And, with Windows Phone showing the highest growing rates this year, Microsoft seems to finally be on the right track.

So, this article pretty much shows why be believe that while having the MCPD: Windows Phone Developer certification is very useful nowadays (to get the job you want ASAP), you should keep in mind that the technology is very likely to change soon. And, if you already hold a Windows Phone Developer certification, you may seriously want to think of picking up on some of that HTML5 and JavaScript knowledge you will eventually need – on a truly professional level. So, DO consider MCSD: Windows Store Apps to be safer in this ever changing apps world.