Monthly Archives: August 2014

Attention System Administrators: New Linux Certifications Launched Specially For You

  linux foundation, 	    linux foundation certified engineer lfce, 	    linux foundation certified system administrator lfcs, 	  new  it certification examsLinux Foundation, the nonprofit organization committed to Linux and everything that goes along with it, has just announced its new Linux Certification Program that targets system administrators (unlike most of rival Linux credentials, by the way). There are two certifications – one for early career system admins (LFCS) and one for seasoned, engineer-level admins (LFCE).

The vision for this certification program of the Linux Foundation was providing system administrators with some reputable and reliable means of verifying their skills through a certification exam that can be taken online – anytime, anywhere. The exams are performance based and do not include any multiple choice questions. Instead, candidates are tested at the command line on the skills they use every day.

Linux Foundation certification exams are distro-flexible and allow candidates to choose the distro they want to certify in. All of this is explained in a cute promotional video from the Linux Foundation:

Now, let’s take a closer look at both certifications and their exams.

  • A Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator (LFCS) credential validates the holder’s skills to do basic to intermediate system administration from the command-line for systems running Linux. Linux Foundation Certified System Administrators are knowledgeable in the operational support of Linux systems and services and are responsible for first line troubleshooting and analysis, and decide when to escalate issues to engineering teams.
  • A Linux Foundation Certified Engineer (LFCE) possesses a wider range and greater depth of skills than the Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator (LFCS). Linux Foundation Certified Engineers are responsible for the design and implementation of system architecture. They provide an escalation path and serve as Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) for the next generation of system administration professionals.

Both certification exams are performance-based and candidates will need to perform tasks or solve problems using the command line interface in their chosen Linux distribution (you can choose from CentOS 6.4, openSUSE 13.1, or Ubuntu 14.04.

Don’t expect to cheat or to get a friend to pass the exam for you though, since candidates are monitored by a proctor during the exam session via streaming audio, video, and screensharing feeds.

The exam takes 2 hours and has the minimum passing score set at 65%. It has been released in English only, however, more languages may be added in the due course.
Full exam overview, domains, objectives and registration information is available here on the Linux Foundation website.

New: Cisco Mobility Specialist Certifications

cisco mobility specialist certifications, cisco service provider mobility cdma to lte specialist, cisco service provider mobility umts to lte specialist, new it certification examsCisco had recently launched a number of Specialist certifications, and a few more have just been announced. This time, Cisco introduces 2 Service Provider Specialist Certifications that target mobility specialists: Cisco Service Provider Mobility CDMA to LTE Specialist and UMTS to LTE Specialist. These certifications are being launched with the goal to enhance the holders’ skills and ability to design, install, and support specific aspects of service provider networks.Service Provider certifications can enhance your technical skills, confidence, and boost your value as a professional.

Together, these certifications may become a valid competition to CompTIA’s Mobility+ certification. Both certification programs are open to all individuals who work in the field. To pass the exams, you will need to be proficient in the topics outlined in the blueprints, but there are no formal prerequisites.
Cisco Service Provider Mobility CDMA to LTE Specialist
The Cisco Service Provider Mobility CDMA to LTE Specialist certification validates a Service Provider Network engineer’s knowledge and skills required to understand technologies, components, architectures, and products that are found in Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) packet core networks, specifically in the migration to Long-Term Evolution (LTE) Evolved Packet Systems (EPS), including Evolved Packet Core (EPC) networks and radio access networks (RANs).
Required Exams:

  • 600-211 SPCDMA    Implementing Cisco Service Provider Mobility CDMA Networks
  • 600-212 SPLTE        Implementing Cisco Service Provider Mobility LTE Networks

Cisco Service Provider Mobility UMTS to LTE Specialist
The Cisco Service Provider Mobility UMTS to LTE Specialist certification validates a Service Provider Network engineer’s knowledge and skills required to understand technologies, components, architectures, and products that are found in Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) packet core networks, specifically in the migration to Long-Term Evolution (LTE) Evolved Packet Systems (EPS), including Evolved Packet Core (EPC) networks and radio access networks (RANs).
Required Exams:

  • 600-210 SPUMTS    Implementing Cisco Service Provider Mobility UMTS Networks
  • 600-212 SPLTE        Implementing Cisco Service Provider Mobility LTE Networks

Would these credentials be an option for you? Or do you prefer a CompTIA Mobility+ Certification?

MCSA Office 365: Another Path to MCSE Communication, Messaging or SharePoint

mcsa office 365, mcse communication, mcse, mcse sharepoint, mcse messaging, lync, it certification examsGreat news for those considering an MCSE: Communication, Messaging or SharePoint. Microsoft has just added the MCSA Office 365 as one of prerequisites for those MCSEs. Until recently, candidates interested in pursuing one of the three MCSE certifications needed to have achieved an MCSA: Windows Server 2012.

Yet, as the software landscape is quickly changing and more and more professionals work with Office 365 and other cloud-based solutions, the MCSA Office 365 seems like a great option for the professionals interested in these MCSEs.

So, now, you can satisfy the prerequisites for pursuing these three MCSE certifications (Communication, Messaging or SharePoint) by having either an MCSA: Windows Server 2012 or MCSA: Office 365. So now professionals can choose the path that best meets your career path or organization’s needs. Taking the MCSA: Office 365 path to your MCSE is a great choice if your organization is considering, or has deployed, cloud-based solutions. For those who focus on deploying on-premise, MCSA: Windows Server 2012 is still the path for you.

Which MCSE should you choose?

MCSE: Communications (Lync) credential  proves that you have the core skills to manage a Lync Server 2013 infrastructure. This advanced Lync Server certification validates your unified communications (UC) expertise in creating a consistent communications experience for your organization.

Achieving MCSE: Communication certification validates your ability to plan, design, deploy, and manage Lync Server 2013 in an environment that includes legacy services and Lync Online. It confirms that you can translate business requirements into technical architecture and design for a UC solution, and it verifies your skills around IM, presence conferencing, and Persistent Chat.

MCSE: Communications (Lync) Required exams: 346, 347, 336, 337.

MCSE: Messaging (Exchange) credential validates your skills and capabilities of managing an Exchange 2013 infrastructure. This advanced Microsoft Exchange certification validates your ability to install, configure, and support Exchange messaging deployments in a real-world business context.

Achieving MCSE: Messaging certification confirms your knowledge of configuring transport, the mailbox role, and Client Access, and it confirms your understanding of unified messaging, site resiliency, security, archival, and enterprise deployments for an Exchange environment.

MCSE: Messaging (Exchange) required exams: 346, 347, 341, 342.

Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE): SharePoint certification proves that you have the core skills to manage a SharePoint infrastructure for organizing, collaborating, and sharing information. This advanced Microsoft SharePoint certification validates your ability to design a SharePoint topology, install and configure SharePoint farms, secure SharePoint deployments, and create web applications and site collections. Achieving MCSE: SharePoint certification confirms that you know how to plan, upgrade, and migrate SharePoint installations.

MCSE: SharePoint required exams: 346, 347, 331, 332.

Interested? Find out more on the Microsoft Learning Website.

Just in: MCSE and MCSD Recertification News

mcse, mcsd, recertification, it certification exams, microsoft, exam preparation, examcollectionIn early 2012, Microsoft introduced the Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) and Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) credentials. It may be hard to believe that it’s been well over 2 years already, but nevertheless it’s about time to recertify for the first wave of MCSE and MCSE holders, and they are desperate for recertification news. Since both MCSE and MCSD need to be renewed every 3 years, Microsoft has been inundated with questions about recertification. And, finally, they’ve given some answers!

There haven’t been too many details released at the moment, but the video posted on the Microsoft Learning Blog gives some insights. The key one is: MCSE and MCSD recertification exams are coming soon, and whenever this happens, the recertification timelines will be adjusted to give candidates at least 12 months to prepare and pass the exams. So it looks like it’ll be another year before your credential expires.

The video, by the way, is the first part of a series of new videos dubbed “ACE NewsByte” (ACE stands for Ask a Certification Expert). Starring Briana Roberts and Liberty Munson (if you follow Microsoft certification news, you probably know who these ladies are!), the video series is supposed to be a more fun and dynamic way to supply Microsoft users with certification news.

So, what else is there to know about the upcoming MCSE and MCSD recertification? MCSD recertification exam will be the first one to come out, and will be released in August-September, which is basically any week now. MCSE is promised to follow shortly.

According to Microsoft certification experts, MCSE and MCSD recertification exam preparation should be about the same as for the regular Microsoft exams of this level. That is, follow the blueprint, stay on top of the latest trends. Since candidates are highly likely to be working in the industry, the exams shouldn’t be too hard for them. Microsoft emphasizes that besides the theory and hands-on skills, the exams will test the candidates’ awareness of the recent product and process changes, and what’s been happening in the field overall. So be sure to do your reading and to keep up with the news.

So, as we are all waiting for the MCSE and MCSD recertification exam updates, be sure to watch the new ACE NewsByte video and stay tuned for updates from ExamCollection ;):



NEW: Cisco Network Programmability Specialist Certifications

network programmability specialist certifications, cisco specialist certification, it certification exams, cisco network programmability engineer specialist, cisco network programmability designer specialist, cisco network application developer specialist Cisco has recently introduced four brand new Network Programmability Specialist certifications. These credentials have been developed with the goal to enhance candidates’ networking skills through foundational networking knowledge, and help them use their software skills to develop network applications in programmable environments.

Network Programmability certifications are a great way to enhance your network skills and your value as an employee. There are total of 4 certifications for Network Programmability Specialists:

  • Business Application Engineer Specialist
  • Network Application Developer Specialist
  • Network Programmability Designer Specialist
  • Network Programmability Engineer Specialist

Each certification requires candidates to pass 2 exams (see details below). While only one of them (Business Application Engineer Specialist) does not have any formal prerequisites, the Network Application Developer Specialist credential requires candidates to have any valid CCNA, and the remaining certifications ( the Network Programmability Designer Specialist and Network Programmability Engineer Specialist) are only open to CCNP holders.

In this video from Cisco, the project manager of Cisco Network Programmability Specialist Certifications gives an overview of these credentials:

Cisco Business Application Engineer Specialist

The Cisco Business Application Engineer Specialist certification targets application engineers involved in designing, developing and building business applications and are willing to leverage the programmability capability of the new open network environment as well as the API in order to collect information from the network. This credential helps application engineers enhance their networking skills through foundational networking knowledge and foundational knowledge of the Programmability features.

To become Cisco Certified Business Application Engineer Specialist, candidates need to pass 2 exams: 600-501 NPIBA and 600-509 NPIBAACI (coming soon later this year).

Cisco Network Application Developer Specialist

The Cisco Network Programmability Developer Specialist certification has been developed for software programmers who focus on the development of the network applications layer, which can live in any of the Cisco provided programmable components, and will enable service provider, campus, and data center use cases. This credential equips candidates with the indispensable foundation skills required to develop network applications in popular programmable environments. Candidates who would like to pursue this certification should be able to program in Python, C, or other languages in an open networking environment, as well as hold any valid CCNA certification.

Those willing to become Cisco Network Programmability Developer Specialists need to pass the following exams: 600-502 NPDEV and 600-510 NPDEVACI (600-510 exam will be available later this year).

Cisco Network Programmability Designer Specialist

Cisco Network Programmability Design Specialist credential is suitable for engineers who possess both architectural and application development expertise. Within this certification, candidates learn to better collect customer requirements and use this information combined with knowledgeable about the applications to leverage the infrastructure and translate requirements into a recommended open infrastructure. The holders of this certification are able to have architecture-level conversations with senior-level application developers and network programmability developers. Cisco Network Programmability Design Specialist certification is only open to CCNP holders. Required exams: 600-503 NPDES and 600-511 NPDESACI (coming soon).

Cisco Network Programmability Engineer Specialist

The Cisco Network Programmability Engineer Specialist is for engineers who deploy network applications into a programmable environment and make them operational. Key skills covered with this certification include implementing and troubleshooting an open network infrastructure designed by the network designers and architects. This certification is only open to CCNP holders. Candidates must pass the 600-504 NPENG and 600-512 NPENGACI exams to become Cisco Network Programmability Engineer Specialists.

Which Cisco Network Programmability certification draws your attention? Any plans to boost your career with one of them?

What Is IoT (Internet of Things), and Why Does Everyone Talk About It?

iot, internet of things, cisco, cloud of things, cot, networks technology, it certification examsInternet of Things, or IoT, has become the latest tech buzzword. What is this strange term everyone is talking about, and, as an IT professional, should YOU care about it?

To put it short, YOU SHOULD care because you can build your career around this. The concept of the IoT and its enterprise potential has gotten so big that Cisco has recently launched the IoT specialist certification, which we’ll discuss later on in this post.

What is the Internet of Things?

Internet of Things, also referred to as Cloud of Things(CoT), implies the interconnection of devices with unique identifiers (IPs) and the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction. IoT has evolved from the convergence of wireless technologies, micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS), the Internet and cloud computing. IoT can refer to various devices, including home appliances, like smart thermostats and washers that utilize wifi for remote monitoring, medical devices like heart monitoring implants, automobile built-in sensors, biochip transponders on farm animals and much more.

Although the idea of putting a multitude of devices online isn’t new and has been around for decades, the growth of IoT today is caused by the IPv6 and its endless possibilities for unique IPs.

This TED talk by Dr. John Barrett is a good explanation of the IoT:

As an IT Professional, How Can I Benefit from the IoT?

Do you remember how some years ago everyone kept talking about the cloud and cloud computing, and putting ‘cloud’ on your LinkedIn profile would quickly boost your popularity among employers? Well, now it’s the case with the IoT. Businesses keep talking about it, although not everyone understands how it can be maximized and monetized upon. For example, many businesses are under the impression that they need to store their IoT data, which isn’t really the case. This recent Forbes article has some nice insights.

For those willing to work in IT companies, it’s worth pointing out that the IoT is one of the most financially significant market transitions that manufacturing companies have faced in recent memory. According to the Internet of Everything Value Index, more than $14 trillion dollars of economic impact will come to the global economy over the next 10 years. Within this timeframe there is a $3.9 trillion opportunity for manufacturers around the globe.

Cisco IoT Certification

Therefore, if you are looking for a field to focus your career on, the IoT may be a great option. In fact, just a few days ago Cisco has released an IoT certification: The Cisco Industrial Networking Specialist certification. It targets IT and operational technology (OT) professionals who install, maintain, and troubleshoot industrial network systems in the manufacturing, process control, and oil & gas industries. This credential validates that the holder can manage and administer networked industrial control systems. It provides plant administrators, control system engineers and traditional network engineers with an understanding of the networking technologies needed in today’s connected plants and enterprises.

Unlike other industrial networking programs, this certification tests the hands-on skills through simulations as well as testing theoretical knowledge. With this approach Cisco ensures that candidates are ready for real-world implementations.

Although the Cisco Industrial Networking Specialist certification doesn’t have any formal prerequisites, candidates should have the knowledge and experience in operations technology. To achieve this certification, candidates need to pass the 600-601 IMINS exam: Managing Industrial Networks with Cisco Networking Technologies.

This exam covers the OSI layers of IP networks, networking devices like routers and switches, as well as cabling approaches; specific industrial devices such as drives, PLCs, sensors, and substation equipment; relevant industrial standards and models such as TIA, the Purdue model, and environmental standards; and various safety protocols important in an industrial zone.

600-601 IMINS Exam Topics and Their Weight

  • Install, Replace, and/or Remove an End-Device: 15%
  • Install, Replace, and/or Remove an Infrastructure Device: 23%
  • Install, Replace, and/or Remove Cables (Network and/or Power): 10%
  • Troubleshooting: 35%
  • Maintain Appropriate End-Devices and Industrial Network Infrastructure Devices: 17%

Complete list of topics can be downloaded on the Cisco Learning website here.

Summing up

After you achieve the Cisco Industrial Networking Specialist certification, you may want to consider some top level security certifications, as one of the main IoT-related concerns is the range of security challenges. Yet, this is a topic for a whole new article we’ll be sure to write.

So, the Internet of Things is a huge change, which brings an amazing potential to the world and the industry. As an IT professional, you should consider the potential it has for your career. Why not look into that 600-601 exam now?