CCIE or Null!

My journey to CCIE!

Network certification for Microsoft Azure

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Update 1/17/2021:

I successfully passed the AZ-700 just a few days ago. Summarizing my study plan:

  • I started with the Microsoft free online self-paced learning. This acted as my primer for the topics and technologies. Then reading other KB articles as I needed to better understand certain topics and to better differentiate certain features. (IE: Service Endpoint vs Private Endpoint or the different load-balancer options)
  • My studies were supplemented with a Udemy course by Alan Rodrigues. I liked this course due to the amount of ‘lab’ videos where you can see Alan build out the solutions. Only downside is that lab videos can be repetitive, I feel that some creation tasks could have been skipped or fast-forwarded.
  • When applicable I watched deep dive videos from John Savill’s AZ-700 playlist. These videos are fantastic and go into great detail for managing production environments.

Overall, it was a good exam the exam objectives does a good job summarizing the covered topics. This being my first Microsoft exam in over 10 years understanding the format was about as challenging as the material itself. I do recommend this material for any network engineers that need to work with Azure networking. This exam is great for understanding the different technologies, terminologies, and how they relate to the different resources in Azure.

Original Post:

Microsoft recently (well, maybe a couple months ago at this point) released a new certification focusing on the networking aspect of Microsoft Azure. This provides a great primer to get familiar with the Microsoft cloud from a connectivity perspective especially for those out there who are responsible maintaining cloud connectivity for Azure. The exam is broken up into the following categories:

  • Design, implement, and manage hybrid networking (10-15%)
  • Design and implement core networking infrastructure (20-25%)
  • Design and implement routing (25-30%)
  • Secure and monitor networks (15-20%)
  • Design and implement Private access to Azure Services (10-15%)

The exam code is AZ-700: Designing and Implementing Microsoft Azure Networking Solutions and costs the normal $165 USD. A further breakdown of learning objectives can be found here. The exam syllabus and objectives look to cover a great array of Azure networking topics:

  • VPN Connectivity – Both Site-to-Site customer locations and Point-to-Site for remote users
  • Connectivity leveraging ExpressRoute & VirtualWAN
  • Creating and connecting VNets along with the different ways to accomplish VNet routing
  • Deploying Network Virtual Appliances (NVA), load-balancing, & NAT
  • Security concepts are introduced as well: Network Security Groups (NSGs), Web Application Firewalls (WAF) and how to monitor/monitor these security features
  • Leveraging network watcher for monitoring & logging

A wide array of topics for being able to talk-the-talk and crawl-the-crawl of Azure networking (Not quite walking yet if this your first tango with Azure)

What makes this even more exciting is that Microsoft was kind enough to consolidate many different articles into a free online self-paced learning program with over 8 hours of recommended reading covering the topics directly from the exam syllabus.

A colleague introduced me to another great resource for learning about Microsoft Azure: John Savill’s YouTube channel. There he has created a dedicated playlist for the AZ-700 with many great videos. Including a 3-hour video dedicated to the AZ-700. There is an hour and a half video deep diving into the Azure firewall & another video deep diving into Azure ExpressRoute. I highly recommend this YouTube channel for anything Azure related. (Networking or otherwise)

These are resources, that I wish I knew about a couple years ago when I started working with Azure but I didn’t. Now that I do however, I am going to do something I haven’t done in over a decade study for a Microsoft certification.

Happy hunting.. Wait no happy labbing.

Written by Stephen J. Occhiogrosso

October 5, 2021 at 10:20 AM

Posted in Azure, Cloud

Tagged with , , ,

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