About Microsoft Certified: Azure Administrator Associate Certification
This associate-level certificate is developed to validate the candidates’ knowledge and skills in implementing, managing, and monitoring the Microsoft Azure environment of an organization. To obtain it, the professionals must pass the qualifying exam, which is Microsoft AZ-104. The target audience for this path is the Azure Administrators who have the responsibility of implementing, monitoring, and managing identity, compute, storage, governance, and virtual networks within a Cloud environment. They also possess the ability to provision, adjust, size, and monitor resources when required.
Additionally, the students should have adequate knowledge of Azure workloads, core Azure governance, services, and security. They also require to have competence in the usage of PowerShell, Azure Portal, Azure CLI, and Azure Resource Manager templates. There are no compulsory prerequisites for pursuing this certificate, but it is recommended that the candidates possess a minimum of six months of practical experience in administering Azure.
Microsoft AZ-104 measures the individuals’ expertise in managing Azure identities & governance, implementing & managing storage, configuring & managing virtual networking, as well as deploying, managing, monitoring, and backing up Azure resources. This exam can be taken in English, Japanese, Korean, and Simplified Chinese. The associated fee for taking the test is $165 and the registration process can be done through Pearson VUE.
It is important to get conversant with the question formats that may be administered during the delivery of the test. Some of these types include multiple choice, active screen, drag and drop, best answer, short answer, and scenario-based, among others. You should know that there will be about 60 questions that you need to complete within 180 minutes. To succeed in the Microsoft AZ-104 exam, it is required to score 720 or more points.
To help you get the passing score, Microsoft recommends that the applicants go through the official training to prepare them for the exam. There is a free learning path that covers 9 modules focusing on different topics of the test. The instructor-led courses, which are paid-for training, are available as well. The Microsoft Azure Administrator course teaches the professionals how to manage Azure subscriptions, administer infrastructures, secure identities, configure virtual networking, manage network traffic, and implement different storage solutions. The second course, which is known as Azure Administration for AWS SysOps, is a 2-day training designed to equip the candidates with the relevant knowledge of how to administer Azure and the differences between Azure and AWS. This training focuses on Azure Networking, Azure Administration, Azure Storage, Azure Governance, and Azure Compute. In addition to these options, the learners should develop their test-taking skills by working through mock exams.
The qualifying exam measures the candidates’ understanding of five domains. All in all, these topics cover the following:
Manage Azure Governance & Identities (15-20%)
- Manage Azure subscriptions: This part covers the skills in creating users & groups, managing user & group properties, managing device settings, performing bulk user updates, as well as managing guest accounts, configuring Azure Active Directory Join, and configuring self-service password reset;
- Manage RBAC (Role-based access control): This domain focuses on creating custom roles, assigning the roles to offer access to the Azure resources, interpreting access assignments, and managing multiple directories;
- Manage subscription & governance: In the framework of this topic, the candidates should have the skills in configuring the Azure policies, applying tags, configuring resource locks, creating & managing resource groups, managing subscriptions, and configuring management groups & Cost Management.
Implement & Manage Storage (15-20%)
- Manage storage accounts: This objective requires competence in configuring network access to storage accounts, managing access keys, creating & configuring specific storage accounts, as well as implementing the Azure storage replication, producing shared access signature, and configuring Azure AD Authentication for storage accounts;
- Manage data with the usage of Azure Storage: This topic evaluates the skills in importing and exporting Azure jobs, copying data with the use of AZ Copy, and installing & utilizing Azure Storage Explorer;
- Configure Azure files and Azure Blob Storage: This part measures the examinees’ expertise in creating an Azure file share as well as configuring Azure Blob Storage, storage tiers for Azure Blob Storage, and blob workflow management.
Deploy & Manage Azure Compute Resources (20-25%)
- Automate deployment & configuration of virtual machines: This section requires the applicants’ competence in configuring the VHD template, deploying from a template, modifying the ARM template, saving deployment as ARM templates, and automating configuration management;
- Configure virtual machines: This subtopic covers the students’ skills in configuring Azure Disk Encryption, moving VMs with resource groups, managing VM sizes, configuring networking, redeploying VMs, and adding data discs;
- Create & configure containers: The learners need the expertise in creating and configuring Azure Kubernetes Service & Azure Container Instances;
- Create & configure Web Apps: This domain validates the professionals’ skills in creating and configuring Apps Service & App Service Plans.
Configure & Manage VN (25-30%)
- Implement & manage virtual networking: This subject area evaluates one’s competence in creating and configuring VNET peering as well as configuring private & public IP addresses, network interface, virtual network, subnets, and network routes;
- Secure Access to VNs: This part requires the skills in creating security rules, evaluating effective security rules, deploying & configuring Azure Bastion Service and Azure Firewall, and associating NSG to network interface/subnet;
- Configure load balancing: This objective covers the individuals’ abilities to configure Application Gateway, internal load balancer, load balancing rules, and public load balancer as well as troubleshoot load balancing;
- Troubleshoot & monitor virtual networking: The subtopic measures the expertise in using Network Watches & Network resource monitoring, troubleshooting virtual network connectivity and external networking as well as monitoring on-premises connectivity;
- Incorporate on-premises networks with Azure virtual networks: This domain validates the test takers’ skills in creating & configuring Azure VPN Gateway and VPNs. It also covers their proficiency in configuring ExpressRoute & Azure Virtual WAN as well as verifying on-premises connectivity.
Monitor & Back Up Azure Resources (10-15%)
- Monitor resources with the help of Azure Monitor: You need to have the skills in configuring Azure Monitor logs and be able to set up actions & alerts. This module also includes your understanding of metrics;
- Implement recovery & backup: A potential candidate should have knowledge of the creation processes connected to the Recovery Services vault and backup policy. You should know how to perform site-to-site recovery and restore operations as well.
The Microsoft Certified: Azure Administrator Associate certification is a great opportunity to launch a career in the field of IT. There are numerous rewarding positions that the professionals can explore in the industry. Some of these job roles include a System Administrator, a Network & System Administrator, a Storage Administrator/Engineer, a Microsoft Cloud Administrator, a SharePoint Administrator, a Network Administrator, an Azure Developer, a Systems Engineer, an IT Administrator, a Senior Support Specialist, and an Azure Cloud Administrator, and more. With this certificate, the candidates can earn an average of $65,000 per year. Some of the above-mentioned titles can even offer you as much as $190,000 per annum, depending on your experience and the type of organization.