Thursday, 13 February 2014

Moving on from MCSA Windows Server 2012


The MCSA Windows Server 2012 qualification has proven exceptionally popular with the technical community over the last 18 months. Rightly so, as the qualification gives students a solid grounding in all aspects of Windows Server 2012 roles and features, and once the certification has been attained, students can be confident in capably working with the operating system.

Since its release in 2012, many have now held the MCSA certification and have been using the associated technologies for an extended period of time. This segment of the server community frequently seeks the qualification or qualifications that are next on the ladder.

Taking the next step

MCSA Windows Server 2012 is the prerequisite qualification to a range of MCSE qualifications, including: MCSE: Messaging and MCSE: Communications, which are tracks for those specialising in Exchange Server and Lync Server technologies. MCSE: SharePoint is also an option for those planning to work with SharePoint on a regular basis. All three of the aforementioned MCSEs are clearly defined and easy to differentiate from each other.

There are however a series of Microsoft qualifications that are not so easy to differentiate, as they appear to have considerable crossover. These are the qualifications we will be taking a closer look at in this article. They include the MCSE: Server Infrastructure, MCSE: Private Cloud, and Microsoft Specialist: Server Virtualization with Windows Server and System Center qualifications.

Know the right direction

In order to pick which qualification is right for you, take a look at your job role and ask yourself the following questions:
  • How much do I work with System Center 2012 R2?
  • How much do I work with Microsoft Virtualization technologies?

If you work primarily with Microsoft infrastructure, using Microsoft Virtualization and want to evaluate the System Center 2012 R2 suite: MCSE: Server Infrastructure is the choice for you.

If you work primarily with Microsoft infrastructure and you use Hyper-V and Virtual Machine Manager to manage your virtualization environment. Or you currently work with a third-party hypervisor and will be transitioning to Hyper-V and Virtual Machine Manager. In this case, Microsoft Specialist: Server Virtualization with Windows Server and System Center is for you.

If you work in a data centre managing the virtual environment for your internal business units or for your customers. You now wish to gain an in-depth knowledge of the System Center 2012 R2 product suite. Then MCSE: Private Cloud is for you.

To read the full article written by Firebrand’s lead Windows Server Instructor Mike Brown, check out

About the Author:       
Sarah writes for Firebrand Training on a number of IT related topics. This includes exams, training, certification trends, project management, certification, careers advice and the industry itself. Sarah has 11 years of experience in the IT industry.