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The Big Question Rises How To Become Microsoft, Cisco, ComTIA Certified

The big question rises how to become the Microsoft certified , All Microsoft certifications are acquired by simply taking a series of exams. If you can self-study for said exams, and then pass them, then you can acquire the certification for the mere cost of the exam (and maybe whatever self-study materials you purchase).

You’ll also need, at minimum (in addition to the MCTS), the CompTIA A+, Network+ and Security+ certs; as well as the Cisco CCNA cert.

Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) – This is the basic entry point of Microsoft Certifications. You only need to pass a single certification test to be considered an MCTS and there are numerous different courses and certifications that would grant you this after passing one. If you are shooting for some of the higher certifications that will be discussed below, then you’ll get this on your way there.

Microsoft Certified Professional Developer (MCPD) – This certification was Microsoft’s previous “Developer Certification” meaning that this was the highest certification that was offered that consisted strictly of development-related material. Receiving it involved passing four exams within specific areas (based on the focus of your certification). You can find the complete list of courses and paths required for the MCPD here.

Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) – This is Microsoft’s most recent “Developer Certification” which will replace the MCPD Certification (which is being deprecated / retired in July of 2013). The MCSD focuses within three major areas of very recent Microsoft development technologies and would likely be the best to persue if you wanted to focus on current and emerging skills that will be relevant in the coming years. You can find the complete list of courses and paths required for the MCSD here.

The Microsoft Certifications that you listed are basically all of the major ones within the realm of development. I’ll cover each of the major ones and what they are :

Most people, however, take some kind of course. Some colleges — especially career and some community colleges — offer such courses (though usually they’re non-credit). Other providers of such courses are private… some of them Microsoft Certified vendors of one type or another, who offer the courses in such settings as sitting around a conference table in their offices. Still others specialize in Microsoft certification training, and so have nice classrooms set up in their offices.

There are also some online (and other forms of distance learning) courses to help prepare for the exams.

The cost of taking classes to prepare can vary wildly. Some are actually free (or very nearly so), while others can cost hundreds of dollars. It all just depends on the provider.

And here’s a Google search of MCTS training resources (which can be mind-numbing in their sheer numbers and types, so be careful what you choose):

There are some pretty good, yet relatively inexpensive, ways to get vendor certificate training. Be careful not to sign-up for something expensive and involved when something cheaper — like subscribing to an “all the certificates you care to study for one flat rate” web site — would, in addition to purchasing a study guide or two at a bookstore, likely be better.

If you want a career in IT, then you need to have both an accredited degree in same (preferably a bachelors over an associates), and also a variety of IT certifications. The MCTS is but one that you will need.

You should probably also get the Microsoft MCSE and/or MCSA. The ICS CISSP. And the ITIL.

There are others, but if you have those, you’ll be evidencing a broad range of IT expertise that will be useful, generally. Then, in addition, if the particular IT job in which you end-up requires additional specialist certification, then you can get that, too (hopefully at the expense of your employer who requires it of you).

Then, whenever (if ever) you’re interested in a masters in IT, here’s something really cool of which you should be aware…

There’s a big (and fully-accredited, fully-legitimate) university in Australia which has partnered with Microsoft and several other vendors to structure distance learning degrees which include various certifications; and in which degrees, considerable amounts of credit may be earned simply by acquiring said certifications. It’s WAY cool.

One can, for example, get up to half of the credit toward a Masters degree in information technology by simply getting an MCSE (though the exams which make it up must be certain ones which correspond with the university’s courses). I’ve always said that if one were going to get an MCSE, first consult the web site of this university and make sure that one takes the specific MCSE exams that this school requires so that if ever one later decided to enter said school’s masters program, one will have already earned up to half its degree’s credits by simply having the MCSE under his/her belt. Is that cool, or what?

I wouldn’t rely on them over experience (which is far and away the most valuable asset out there) but they are worth pursuing especially if you don’t feel like you have enough experience and need to demonstrate that you have the necessary skills to land a position as a developer.

If you are going to pursue a certification, I would recommend going after the MCSD (Web Applications Track) as it is a very recent certification that focuses on several emerging technologies that will still be very relevant (if not more-so) in the coming years. You’ll pick up the MCTS along the way and then you’ll have both of those under your belt. MCPD would be very difficult to achieve based on the short time constraints (passing four quite difficult tests within just a few months is feasible, but I don’t believe that it is worth it since it will be “retired” soon after).

No job experience at all is necessary for any of the Microsoft Certifications, you can take them at any time as long as you feel confident enough with the materials of the specific exam you should be fine. The tests are quite difficult by most standards and typically cover large amounts of material, but with what it sounds like a good bit of time to study and prepare you should be fine.

Certifications, in addition to degrees, are so important in the IT field, now, that one may almost no longer get a job in that field without both. The certifications, though, are so important that one who has a little IT experience can get a pretty good job even without a degree as long as he has all the right certs. But don’t do that. Definitely get the degree… and not merely an associates. Get the bachelors in IT; and make sure it’s from a “regionally” accredited school.

Then get the certs I mentioned (being mindful, if you think you’ll ever get an IT masters, to take the specific exams that that Strut masters program requires so that you’ll have already earned up to half the credit just from the certs).

If you already have two years of experience in working in the .NET environment, a certification isn’t going to guarantee that you will get employed, a salary increase or any other bonuses for achieving the honor. However, it can help supplement your resume by indicating that you are familiar with specific technologies enough to apply them in real-world applications to solve problems.

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Mozilla reports flat revenue from Google-Firefox search deal+

Revenue growth stalled in 2013 but expenses climbed 42%

Mozilla today said that 2013 revenue from its deal with Google was flat compared to the year before, as was its income overall, even as expenses jumped by 42%.

The flat-lining of revenue was in stark contrast to its previous financial statement, which had shown a bullish increase of 88%.

The Mozilla Foundation’s 2013 revenue was $314 million, up half a percentage point from 2012, according to the financial statement released Friday (download PDF).

Mozilla Foundation is the non-profit that oversees Mozilla Corp., the commercial arm that develops the Firefox browser and Firefox OS mobile operating system.

Virtually all the foundation’s 2013 revenue came from search providers, which paid Mozilla to place their engines as the default in Firefox. In 2013, those royalty payments accounted for 97% of the year’s income, a slightly-lower portion than in 2012.

Royalty revenue totaled $306 million in 2013, up $3 million, for a very small increase of just 0.5%. In 2012, Mozilla’s royalty payments had doubled over the year before due to a new contract with Google, its global search partner, that was signed in late 2011. At the time, reports circulated that claimed the contract guaranteed Mozilla $1 billion over the three-year deal.

Payments from Google in 2013 were approximately $275 million, an increase of $1 million from 2012. Google’s contribution accounted for 88% of Mozilla’s total revenue last year.

As it has in the past, Mozilla did not name its largest source of income, saying only that, “Mozilla entered into a contract with a search engine provider for royalties which expires November 2014. Approximately 90% of royalty revenue for 2013 and 2012, was derived from this contract.”

But that “search provider” was Google.
On Wednesday, Mozilla announced that it had not renewed the Google contract, and had signed with Yahoo for the U.S. market. Yahoo will replace Google as the default Firefox search engine early next month, probably when Firefox 34 launches during the week of Dec. 1. Additionally, Mozilla said it has agreed to other deals in Russia and China, and would try to forge partnerships with search providers on a country-by-country basis.

But because of Mozilla’s financial release timetable, the results of the new monetary strategy won’t be apparent until November 2016.

Most of Mozilla’s expenses — 67% in 2013 — were devoted to software development, which increased from $143 million in 2012 to $197 million last year, a jump of 38%. Another line item, branding and marketing, increased by even more, 60%, to $46 million in 2013.

Overall expenses increased 42% year-over-year. Along with flat revenue, that halved Mozilla’s “profit” — it tagged the line as “net cash provided by operating activities” — to $36 million.

But the foundation’s financials remained in good shape. Cash, cash equivalents and the organization’s investments totaled $272 million in 2013, up 13% from the year before. With that in the bank, Mozilla could survive at its 2013 expense pace for just shy of four quarters if income suddenly vanished.

Yet Mozilla still faces a rough road, especially if 2013’s pattern of flat revenue-versus-increasing expenses continues.

Firefox’s share of the desktop browser market has slipped by 26%, or about 4.8 percentage points, in the past 12 months, according to metrics firm Net Applications, even as the global share of browsing from the desktop has fallen because of the move toward mobile devices.

Meanwhile, Firefox OS faces an uphill battle against ultra-cheap Android-derived devices in the emerging markets Mozilla has targeted.

Some analysts have begun to wonder whether Mozilla can be a long-term player in browsers, much less mobile.

“Mozilla’s browser share is likely to shrink over time,” contended Jan Dawson, principal analyst at Jackdaw Research, in an interview yesterday. “Because there are more costs to cover moves [like Firefox OS], it’s stretched thinner than before. If its [browser] share shrinks, it will have less revenue, which means it can spend less on development. That may make its products less appealing to users, so fewer people use them.”

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Microsoft opens new competitive fronts with cloud-based Windows Server

Amazon, VMware and even Microsoft partners threatened by Windows Azure move

Microsoft doesn’t want to admit it, but a Gartner analyst says the vendor’s decision to offer Windows Server instances in the Azure cloud is opening a new competitive front against partner hosting companies.

Before 2010 is over, Microsoft will update Windows Azure with the ability to run Windows Server 2008 R2 instances in the Microsoft cloud service. The move could blur the lines between platform-as-a-service (PaaS) clouds like Azure, which provide abstracted tools to application developers, and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) clouds such as Amazon’s EC2, which provide raw access to compute and storage capacity.

Microsoft Windows Azure and Amazon EC2 on collision course

This move also improves Microsoft’s competitive stance against VMware, which is teaming with hosting companies to offer PaaS developer tools and VMware-based infrastructure clouds.

But the cloud-based Windows Server instances open up a new competitive front against Rackspace and other Web hosters who are Microsoft partners, according to Gartner analyst Neil MacDonald.

Microsoft has, to some extent, downplayed the new capabilities, saying the cloud-based Windows Server – which goes under the name Windows Azure Virtual Machine Role – is primarily an on-ramp to port some applications to the Azure cloud.

“What they really want is people using Azure,” MacDonald says. At the same time, VM Role “is a form of infrastructure-as-a-service,” he continues. “The reason Microsoft is being so vague is they really don’t want to upset their ecosystem partners, all the hosters out there in the world making good money hosting Windows workloads. Microsoft doesn’t really want to emphasize that it is competing against them.”

Whereas IaaS clouds provide access to raw compute power, in the form of virtual machines, and storage that is consumed by those VMs, PaaS clouds provide what could be described as a layer of middleware on top of the infrastructure layer. Developers using PaaS are given abstracted tools to build applications without having to manage the underlying infrastructure, but have less control over the basic computing and storage resources. With Azure, developers can use programming languages .Net, PHP, Ruby, Python or Java, and the development tools Visual Studio and Eclipse.

Microsoft officials have previously predicted that the lines between PaaS and IaaS clouds will blur over time, but stress that Windows Azure will remain a developer platform.

In response to MacDonald’s comment, Windows Azure general manager Doug Hauger says “our partners provide a vast range of services to customers for hosting an infrastructure-as-a-service [cloud]. The VM Role does not compete with them in this space.”

For what it’s worth, Rackspace does view Microsoft as a cloud competitor. “The cloud market is going to be huge and there are many ways to win in it,” Rackspace President Lew Moorman says. “Microsoft is serious about the market and we view them as an emerging competitor as well as partner. We are confident that our service difference will resonate to a large part of the market regardless of the technical offers that emerge from players such as Microsoft.”

In an interview this week, Hauger discussed both the similarities and differences between Microsoft’s cloud-based Windows Server instances and the virtual machine hosting provided by Amazon and other IaaS vendors.

“I think there is an incredibly broad, gray line between infrastructure-as-a-service pure-play and platform-as-a-service,” Hauger says.

Ultimately, the marketplace will only care about the technical capabilities of cloud services, not the taxonomies used to define them, Hauger continues. With VM Role, Azure customers will have to manage and patch their own guest operating system. This is clearly different from pure PaaS, in which developers write to endpoints and services through an API, and are “abstracted from even worrying about the operating system,” Hauger says.

But VM Role, when it becomes available later in 2010, will still have some of the developer tools and other benefits of PaaS, so “it’s not the ground floor of infrastructure-as-a-service,” Hauger says. “You’re taking the elevator up a little bit.”

Even though Microsoft is offering VM hosting, that does not mean customers will be able to create custom compute and storage configurations, as they might with an IaaS provider like Rackspace, Hauger says.

Custom storage configurations are “something we absolutely do not offer with the Windows Azure platform, because we’ve made an architectural decision to have a uniform storage pool.”

On the other hand, Azure customers don’t have to worry about writing multi-tenancy capabilities into their applications. Hauger argues that building applications that are resilient, scalable and automated is, while not impossible in an IaaS cloud, quite difficult when “you’re staring down the throat of a VM and you have to manage that yourself.”

Even with VM Role, and a Server Application Virtualization option that will let developers transfer application images to Azure, Hauger does not recommend that customers “forklift a big, monolithic application from on-premise and move it over to Windows Azure.”

VM Role could be used to move some “lightweight” HPC applications to the Azure cloud, Hauger says. If a customer needs large-scale data analysis, but only for a short amount of time, it makes sense to move that app to Azure temporarily and then take it back in-house, he says. Some customers are finding that purely Web-based applications, like Facebook games, also make sense for Azure, he says.

Microsoft officials are willing to admit that Azure’s capabilities are not limitless.

For example, Microsoft CTO Barry Briggs says his own team used Azure last year to build a charity auction application, but kept credit card processing on-premise “because PCI compliance is a big deal.”

“There are some things that will probably stay on-premise for a while and I suspect PCI compliance will be there, because customers want to take some time to understand what the capabilities and potentials of the [cloud] technology really are,” Briggs says.

Although Microsoft is expanding Azure by offering VM hosting, it’s important to note that the offer applies only to Windows Server 2008 R2. Microsoft clearly wouldn’t offer Linux VMs and offering older versions of Windows Server would not fit the Microsoft strategy, either, MacDonald says.

Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud, meanwhile, offers Windows Server 2003 and 2008, eight versions of Linux and OpenSolaris.

Although Amazon does offer a billing service, load balancing, databases and a variety of other tools designed for developers, Amazon has not made any significant moves into PaaS, MacDonald says. Amazon says its approach prevents customers from “being locked into a particular programming model, language or operating system.”

But Microsoft’s Windows Server hosting does put the two companies into more direct competition, MacDonald says.

Perhaps most crucially for Microsoft, the VM Role service gives CEO Steve Ballmer and his cloud team a more viable way of competing against VMware, which has partnerships designed to provide both PaaS offerings and the VM hosting capabilities needed to move applications to the cloud.

“The customers need to have an easier on-ramp to cloud computing, and Microsoft wasn’t providing that and their biggest competitor was,” MacDonald says. “This was a gap they had to fill and I’m glad to see they’ve done it. I’d say it’s two years late. It doesn’t mean they’re too late, but they should have done this from day one.”

As for the Web hosters who now find themselves in competition against Microsoft, MacDonald says they will simply “have to evolve.”

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Chrome 24 vs. Firefox 18 – head to head

A quick look at the two latest versions of the biggest non-Microsoft browsers on the market

With major new releases of both Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox happening within days of each other, it’s been a big week for the browser market. Chrome 24 began to be rolled out to stable channel users via Google’s automatic background updater on Thursday, while Mozilla announced the release version of Firefox 18 on Tuesday.
Chrome vs. Firefox

FURTHER READING: Google revs up Chrome, crushes bugs

FIREFOX 19 BETA: Firefox getting built-in HTML5-based PDF viewer to improve security

But which browser got the biggest upgrade? Who’s the fastest? The safest? The easiest to use? We took a look at Chrome 24 and Firefox 18 to try and find out.

Both Google and Mozilla highlighted performance boosts in their latest releases. Google said during Chrome 24’s beta phase that the browser had achieved a more than 26% improvement in JavaScript speed over the course of the past year, and Chrome has always had the reputation of being snappy and responsive.

But that isn’t all that’s been added to Chrome 24. New support for MathML, or math markup language, means that it’s a lot easier to display mathematical notation on web pages, and a Flash update will keep that plug-in working on Chrome for the near future. (It should be noted that MathML has been natively supported on Firefox for some time.)

Google made a number of security updates in Chrome 24, as well — 11 out of 24 of which were rated “high” risk by the browser’s security team. Three of those highly rated vulnerabilities resulted in bug bounties for their discoverers, with one prize of $4,000 and two of $1,000 handed out.

One of the knocks against Firefox has long been its supposedly poky performance compared to the fleet Chrome, but Mozilla is apparently working to change that in Firefox 18 — the new IonMonkey JavaScript compiler should provide a 25% speed boost compared to the previous JavaScript engine used by the browser. Whether that’s enough to close the gap on Chrome isn’t clear, but it’s still a substantial improvement, if Mozilla’s figures are correct.

Firefox 18 also packs several new features like support for Retina display resolutions on sufficiently recent versions of OS X, and the underpinnings of support for the developing webRTC standard, which is designed to enable real-time communication via the Web.

Broadly, it’s still a matter of personal preference — Chrome’s cleaner design, blazing speed and instant updating will be more attractive to some, while Firefox’s flexibility and customization options will tempt others.

In this latest round of updates, however, it seems like Firefox has received more of a boost — the new JavaScript engine should help address one of the most common complaints about the browser, potentially giving it a more compelling user experience.

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70-573 Q & A / Study Guide / Testing Engine

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A site definition has been purchased from another company. It is used to created SharePoint sites.
Now there is a request to modify the home page for the site definition by adding a Web Part.
What actions need to be taken? Select two.

A. Add..
B. Uninstall..
C. Remove…
D. Modify..
E. Install…
F. ..the file CSTemplate.xsd
G. ..the file Onet.xml
H. ..a Feature receiver
I. ..a Feature dependcy
J. ..the file config.web
K. ..the file web.config

Answer: D,G


A customized Site Featured need to be made. There is customized site definition.
The Feature of this site definition must be activated for all additional sites which are created using
What actions need to be taken? Select two.

A. Add..
B. Uninstall..
C. Remove…
D. Modify..
E. Install…
F. ..the file CSTemplate.xsd
G. ..the file Onet.xml
H. ..a Feature receiver
I. ..a Feature dependcy
J. ..the file config.web
K. ..the file web.config

Answer: D,G


There is third party site definition named CertKingdom.
A file named TemplateCertKingdom.xsd is included in CertKingdom.
TemplateCertKingdom.xsd contains configuration date.
There is a provision handler for CertKingdom.
The information in TemplateCertKingdom.xsd must be read.
The following property should be used.


There is a specialized program to import data into SharePoint sites.
There is a specialized site definition named CertKingdom created by MS Visual Studio 2010.
The specialized program code must be run whenever a new site is created by using CertKingdom.
What should be done to ensure this? Select three.

A. Modify..
B. Add…
C. Delete…
D. ..file..
E. ..class..
F. ..feature..
G. .. CSTemplate.xsd
H. ..SPItemEventReceiver
I. .. Onet.xml
J. .. receiver
K. .. SPChangeFile
L. .. SPWebEventReceiver
M. .. dependcy
N. .. SPWebProvisioningProvider
O. ..config.web
P. .. web.config

Answer: B,E,N


There is a specialized Web Part named CertKingdomWebpart.
There must be a test to check if CertKingdomWebpart generates leaks in the RAM.
What should be done to ensure this? Select two.

A. Modify..
B. Add…
C. Run..
D. Delete…
E. .. WinDbg.exe
F. .. CSTemplate.xsd
G. ..SPItemEventReceiver
H. .. Onet.xml
I. .. SPDisposeCheck.exe
J. .. SPChangeFile
K. .. SPWebEventReceiver
L. .. SPMetal.exe
M. .. SPWebProvisioningProvider
N. ..config.web
O. .. web.config

Answer: C,I


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Making lame excuses for Microsoft’s decision to drop the Start button in Windows 8

Is there method ot Microsoft’s madness, or is the decision pure madness?

Over the past few days I’ve seem a number of Microsoft pundits come up with lame excuses to try to justify Microsoft’s decision to drop the on-screen Start button in Windows 8. Is there method ot Microsoft’s madness, or is the decision pure madness?

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Here’s Paul Thurrott’s justification:

While it’s technically true that the Start button/Orb, which used to adorn the left end of the taskbar on the Windows desktop, is missing in action, most people are missing out on two salient points. First, the Windows desktop is not the primary user interface in Windows 8 anymore. That’s the Start screen.

Second, the Start button isn’t gone, and it’s not going away at all. In fact, it will be present on every single Windows 8 device sold going forward.

He goes on to post a picture of a physical Windows button on a tablet, and points out that a physical Windows Key is required for any PC or device to get the Certified for Windows 8 logo from Microsoft.

Well, I’ve got two counterpoints to Thurrott’s argument. First, and I’m surprised he didn’t mention this, it’s just the visual ‘orb’ hat’s being removed from the left-hand-side of the taskbar. There will still be an invisible hotspot in that part of the screen that does what the button currently does. Microsoft is kinda assuming that everyone will still go there looking for the Start button and will continue to offer the functionality, albeit without the UI.

Secondly, and I think that this is an important point – is a physical button a step forward or a step back compared to an on-screen button?

Before we answer that, let’s consider Apple’s iPhone and iPad. Neither of these devices have any sort of on-screen Home/Start button. Did Microsoft ‘copy’ Apple here? maybe, but that doesn’t matter. The difference is that the iOS platform has never had an on-screen Start/Home button. Windows, on the other hand, has had this feature since Windows 95, and people have come to expect it, so I expect that it’s removal (even if just the symbolic gesture of removing the UI element) will raise (and possibly knit) a few eyebrows.

Personally, I think that removing an on-screen UI element and replacing it with a physical button (a physical button that most systems already have) seems like a step backwards to me because it penalizes people who prefer using a mouse than a keyboard. I’m happy with the Windows key on keyboards, but the idea of having to rely on a physical button on a device that OEMs can put wherever they want puts me off because I know that OEMs can do boneheaded things. If Microsoft was bold enough to remove the functionality as well as the UI element, that would be one thing, but adopting some sort of halfway gesture seems like sitting on the fence to me, and all the lame excuses are just making that decision seem even lamer.

Either keep the Start button in or remove it completely.

Do you think Microsoft was right to follow in Apple’s footsteps and remove the on-screen Start button, or do you think that it’s one UI change too far?

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70-448 Q & A / Study Guide

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You work as a database administrator at The network contains a SQL Server
2008 database server named ABC-DB01, which hosts the SQL Server 2008 Reporting Services
(SSRS) instance.
During routine monitoring, you discover that this instance does not render any extensions for
Microsoft Office Word.
How would you modify the instance to render these extensions?

A. The Report Server database should be modified on ABC-DB01.
B. The RSReportServer.config file should be modified on ABC-DB01.
C. The XML configuration file should be modified onABC-DB01.
D. The Web.config file should be modified on ABC-DB01.

Answer: B


You work as a database administrator for The network contains a SQL
Server 2008 database server named ABC-DB03.
You are in the process of designing a SQL Server 2008 Integration Services (SSIS) package for
the network. has informed you that ABC-DB03 will be hosting the package.
You receive an instruction from the CIO to devise a plan of action in the event that ABC-DB03
becomes inactive.
How can this be achieved?

A. The master database should be backed up.
B. You should back up ABC-DB03.
C. You should execute an incremental backup on a weekly basis.
D. The SSIS package should be backed up.

Answer: A


You work as a database administrator at You are responsible for managing a SQL
Server 2008 database server named ABC-DB01.
You receive instruction that the SQL Server 2008 Reporting Services model needs to be deployed
on ABC-DB01 to support a data source that contains 800 tables for the Marketing division. You
have been tasked with developing a report model.
Which of the following options will make sure that the Marketing division is only able to access 10
tables? (Choose two)

A. A data source view should be developed.
B. The marketing division should be denied access to the other tables.
C. The tables and views the marketing division will not be using should be highlighted.
D. The tables and views the marketing division will use should be indicated.
E. The Dynamic Management View should be properly modified.

Answer: A,D


You work as a database administrator at The network contains a SQL Server
2008 database server named ABC-DB01. ABC-DB01 is configured to host the SQL Server
Analysis Services (SSAS) role.
There is a dimension named Housing in ABC-DB01 that contains three properties named Slabs,
Cement and Bricks. The relationship between the properties is nonflexible. Currently a data source
is used that indicates the changes between the affiliations of the properties. You receive an
instruction from the CIO to ensure that any modifications will be reflected.
Identify the command that will help you to accomplish your task?

A. The ProcessDefault command
B. The ProcessAdd command.
C. The ProcessFull command.
D. The ProcessClear command.
E. The ProcessNone command.

Answer: A,D


You work as a database administrator at Your duties include administering a SQL
Server 2008 Analysis Services (SSAS) sample named ABC-DB01.
You receive an instruction from the CIO to log all queries. You then decide to make the necessary
changes to the QueryLogconnection String feature.
What should your next step be?

A. You should modify the connection string to the default value.
B. A valid connection string should be set on ABC-DB01.
C. The source attribute should be set to 20.
D. You should set the default value using Discover_Query.

Answer: B


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Microsoft – MB2-184 – Q & A/ Study Guide

Microsoft CRM Installation and Configuration V.1.2
Microsoft – MB2-184

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What business framework was Microsoft CRM developed upon that allows it to be integrated with
virtually any system in the world?

A. Windows NT4.0
B. Microsoft NET
C. Web Net
D. SQL Server 2000

Answer: B

The integration between Microsoft CRM and Microsoft Outlook uses which technology that allows
users of the Sales for Outlook Client to see their contacts, leads, activities, opportunities, tasks,
appointments, and e-mail?

A. MDAC 2.7a
B. Microsoft Message Queuing
C. XML Web Services

Answer: C

Microsoft CRM Version 1.2 can be installed in both Windows Server 2000 and Windows Server
2003 environments. In either of these environments, how many Primary Domain Controllers are
installed in a single domain?

A. One Primary Domain Controller is always required
B. At least one Primary Domain Controller and as many Backup Domain Controllers as needed
C. None. All Domain Controllers are considered peers in both Windows Server 2000 and
Windows Server 2003 environments
D. None. Domain Controllers are not required in a Windows Server 2000 or Windows Server
2003 environment running Microsoft CRM

Answer: C

Which advantage does the Active Directory domain architecture provide for companies that have
deployed Microsoft CRM Version 1 .2 in a Windows Server 2003 domain?

A. It provides a single point of management for user accounts, computers, and applications in
the Windows Server 2003 domain
B. It meets the messaging and collaboration needs of small organizations, large distributed
enterprises and everything in between.
C. It enables structured data exchange and data transport
D. It enables an unprecedented level of software integration through the use of XML Web

Answer: A

Which technology allows Microsoft CRM to share data and invoke capabilities from other
applications without regard to how those applications were built, what operating system or
platform they run on, and what devices are used to access them?

A. Application Programming Interfaces
B. XML Web Services
D. Microsoft Exchange

Answer: B

XML Web Services are invoked over the Internet by means of industry-standard protocols
including which of the following?

C. Microsoft NET

Answer: A

Microsoft CRM is tightly integrated with which of the following technologies for the purpose of
validating access level security upon each user request?

A. SQL Server 2000
B. Active Directory
C. Internet Information Server (lIS)
D. Exchange Server 2000

Answer: B

Which software component must be installed on the same machine as your Exchange 2000
server(s) in order to enable the e-mail functionality of Microsoft CRM?

A. E-Mail Router
B. Deployment Manager
C. Outlook Rich Client
D. Workflow Monitor

Answer: A

Which technology render the web pages used by Microsoft CRM and allows organizations to host
and manage web pages on the Internet or on their internal intranet?

B. XML Web Services

Answer: D

Microsoft CRM uses which of the following technologies to display its web forms via the browser

A. XML Web Services
D. Open Database Connectivity (ODBC)

Answer: C

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RTM’d today: MCITP 70-663 Exam Ref: Designing and Deploying Messaging Solutions with Microsoft Exchange Server 2010

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December is looking like Exam Ref month. This new Microsoft Press certification series launched in October, and we’re publishing two more titles just in time for the holidays.

The newest Exam Ref — MCITP 70-663 Exam Ref: Designing and Deploying Messaging Solutions with Microsoft® Exchange Server 2010 (ISBN 9780735658080; 448 pages) — shipped to the printer this week, thanks to the stellar work of author Orin Thomas and our production team.

The Exam Ref series is designed for experienced, MCTS-certified professionals ready to advance their status. Each book focuses on the critical-thinking and decision-making acumen needed for success at the MCITP level. This title provides a comprehensive and concise way of preparing for 70-663, the Pro-level exam required for the MCITP: Enterprise Messaging Administrator 2010 certification.

Each Exam Ref is organized by exam objectives for fast, efficient study, and includes objective review questions, along with the new Thought Experiment element. Thought Experiments help reinforce the design-level thinking required to master the exam and the job role.

Here’s a preview from the book’s introduction. We’ll have a larger sample for you when the book is available in two weeks.

This Exam Ref is designed to assist you with studying for the MCITP exam 70-663, “Designing and Deploying Messaging Solutions with Microsoft Exchange Server 2010.” This Exchange Server 2010 exam focuses on which technology to use to meet a particular design objective; the MCTS exam 70-662, “Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring,” involves knowing how to configure that technology to meet a specific operational objective.

The 70-663 exam is aimed at messaging administrators in medium to large organizations. By passing the exam, you will demonstrate that you have the knowledge and experience to design complex, multi-site and multi-forest Exchange Server 2010 deployments. If you’ve also passed the 70-662 exam, passing this exam will earn you the MCITP: Enterprise Messaging Administrator 2010 certification.

This book will review every concept described in the following exam objective domains:

· Planning the Exchange Server 2010 Infrastructure

· Deploying the Exchange Server 201 Infrastructure

· Designing and Deploying Security for the Exchange Organization

· Designing and Deploying Exchange Server 2010 Availability and Recovery

· Designing and Deploying Messaging Compliance, System Monitoring, and Reporting

This book covers every exam objective, but it does not necessarily cover every exam question. Microsoft regularly adds new questions to the exam, making it impossible for this (or any) book to provide every answer. Instead, this book is designed to supplement your relevant independent study and real-world experience with the product. If you encounter a topic in this book that you do not feel completely comfortable with, you should visit any links described in the text and spend several hours researching the topic further using TechNet, Exchange Server team blogs, and support forums. Ideally, you should also deploy your own complex Exchange environment. This involves deploying multiple servers across multiple sites and domains. The simplest way of doing this is to build your own virtualized lab.
Author news: Q&A with author and consultant Don Reifer
2 days ago
by Devon Musgrave

Yesterday we blogged about Don Reifer’s new Microsoft Press book, Software Change Management: Case Studies and Practical Advice (ISBN: 9780735664753):

Why is it so difficult to change organizations? What does it really take to make “process improvement” yield measurable results? For more than 30 years, Donald Reifer has been guiding software teams through the technical, organizational, and people issues that must be managed in order to make meaningful process changes—and better products. This practical guide draws from his extensive experience, featuring 11 prototype case studies spanning the public and private sectors and even academia. Each case study illuminates the original conditions; describes options and recommendations; details reactions, outcomes, and lessons learned; and provides essential references and resources.

You can read an interview with Don about the book, conducted by Ry Crozier of iTnews, here.

The interview begins like this:

iTnews: Perhaps you can start by talking me through the origins of the latest book for Microsoft Press. How long has it been in development and what did you set out wanting to show?

Reifer: For the last 40-plus years I’ve been a change agent working within organisations and then a consultant advising organisations on how to make changes. I’m a numbers guy, too. I’ve been someone who has used the numbers to help justify the changes and make them compelling to management.

I’ve been thinking for about five years about the book and I started writing it earlier this year. Really the book is a compilation of case studies. When I thought about change management there are lots of articles and people who talk about it, but they talk about it in the abstract. The real genesis and focus of the book is to provide examples, positive and negative, that can act as models for people who are going about trying to introduce change into a wide range of organisations.




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Free Microsoft 70-293 Q & A / Study Guide

You work as a network administrator for The network consists of a single
Active Directory domain named There are currently 120 Web servers running Windows
2000 Server and are contained in an Organizational Unit (OU) named ABC_WebServers management took a decision to uABCrade all Web servers to Windows Server 2003.
You disable all services on the Web servers that are not required. After running the IIS Lockdown
Wizard on a recently deployed web server, you discover that services such as NNTP that are not
required are still enabled on the Web server.
How can you ensure that the services that are not required are forever disabled on the Web
servers without affecting the other servers on the network? Choose two.

A. Set up a GPO that will change the startup type for the services to Automatic.
B. By linking the GPO to the ABC_WebServers OU.
C. Set up a GPO with the Hisecws.inf security template imported into the GPO.
D. By linking the GPO to the domain.
E. Set up a GPO in order to set the startup type of the redundant services to Disabled.
F. By linking the GPO to the Domain Controllers OU.
G. Set up a GPO in order to apply a startup script to stop the redundant services.

Answer: B,E

Explanation: Windows Server 2003 installs a great many services with the operating system, and
configures a number of with the Automatic startup type, so that these services load automatically
when the system starts. Many of these services are not needed in a typical member server
configuration, and it is a good idea to disable the ones that the computer does not need. Services
are programs that run continuously in the background, waiting for another application to call on
them. Instead of controlling the services manually, using the Services console, you can configure
service parameters as part of a GPO. Applying the GPO to a container object causes the services
on all the computers in that container to be reconfigured. To configure service parameters in the
Group Policy Object Editor console, you browse to the Computer Configuration\Windows
Settings\Security Settings\System Services container and select the policies corresponding to the
services you want to control.
Jill Spealman, Kurt Hudson & Melissa Craft, MCSE Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-294);
Planning, Implementing, and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Active Directory
Infrastructure, Microsoft Press, Redmond, Washington, 2004, p. 13:1-6


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You are working as the administrator at has headquarters in London and
branch offices in Berlin, Minsk, and Athens. The Berlin, Minsk and Athens branch offices each
have a Windows Server 2003 domain controller named ABC-DC01, ABC-DC02 and ABC-DC03
respectively. All client computers on the network run Windows XP Professional.
One morning users at the Minsk branch office complain that they are experiencing intermittent
problems authenticating to the domain. You believe that a specific client computer is the cause of
this issue and so need to discover the IP address client computer.
How would you capture authentication event details on ABC-DC02 in the Minsk branch office?

A. By monitoring the logon events using the SysMon utility.
B. By recording the connections to the NETLOGON share using the SysMon utility.
C. By recording the authentication events with the NetMon utility.
D. By monitoring the authentication events using the Performance and Reliability Monitor.

Answer: C

Explanation: The question states that you need to find out the IP address of the client computer
that is the source of the problem. Using Network Monitor to capture traffic is the only way to do

Martin Grasdal, Laura E. Hunter, Michael Cross, Laura Hunter, Debra Littlejohn Shinder, and Dr.
Thomas W. Shinder, Planning and Maintaining a Windows Server 2003 Network Infrastructure:
Exam 70-293 Study Guide & DVD Training System, Syngress Publishing, Inc., Rockland, MA,
Chapter 11, p. 826

You are working as the administrator at Part of you job description includes the
deployment of applications on the network. To this end you operate by testing new
application deployment in a test environment prior to deployment on the production network.
The new application that should be tested requires 2 processors and 3 GB of RAM to run
successfully. Further requirements of this application also include shared folders and installation of
software on client computers. You install the application on a Windows Server 2003 Web Edition
computer and install the application on 30 test client computers.
During routine monitoring you discover that only a small amount of client computers are able to
connect and run the application. You decide to turn off the computers that are able to make a
connection and discover that the computers that failed to open the application can now run the
How would you ensure that all client computers can connect to the server and run the application?

A. By running a second instance of the application on the server.
B. By increasing the Request Queue Limit on the Default Application Pool.
C. By modifying the test server operating system to Window Server 2003 Standard Edition.
D. By increasing the amount of RAM in the server to 4GB.

Answer: C

Explanation: Although Windows Server 2003 Web Edition supports up to 2GB of RAM, it
reserves 1GB of it for the operating system; only 1GB of RAM is available for the application.
Therefore, we need to install Window Server 2003 Standard Edition or Enterprise Edition to
support enough RAM.

You are an Enterprise administrator for All servers on the corporate network run
Windows Server 2003 and all client computers run Windows XP.
The network contains a server named ABC-SR01 that has Routing and Remote Access service
and a modem installed which connects to an external phone line.
A partner company uses a dial-up connection to connect to ABC-SR01 to upload product and
inventory information. This connection happens between the hours of 1:00am and 2:00am every
morning and uses a domain user account to log on to ABC-SR01.
You have been asked by the security officer to secure the connection.
How can you ensure that the dial-up connection is initiated only from the partner company and that
access is restricted to just ABC-SR01? Choose three.

A. Set up the log on hours restriction for the domain user account to restrict the log on to between
the hours of 1:00am and 2:00am.
B. Set up a local user account on ABC-SR01. Have the dial-up connection configured to log on
with this account.
C. Set up the remote access policy on ABC-SR01 to allow the connection for the specified user
account between the hours of 1:00am and 2:00am.
D. Set up the remote access policy with the Verify Caller ID option to only allow calling from the
phone number of the partner company modem.
E. Set up the remote access policy to allow access to the domain user account only.

Answer: B,C,D

Explanation: To allow only the minimum amount of access to the network, ensure that only the
partner’s application can connect to your network over the dial-up connection, you need to first
create a local account named on ABC-SR01. You need to then add this account to the local Users
group and direct the partner company to use this account for remote access.
You can use a local account to provide remote access to users. The user account for a standalone
server or server running Active Directory contains a set of dial-in properties that are used
when allowing or denying a connection attempt made by a user. You can use the Remote Access
Permission (Dial-in or VPN) property to set remote access permission to be explicitly allowed,
denied, or determined through remote access policies.
Next, you need to configure a remote access policy on ABC-SR01 to allow the connection for only
the specified user account between 1 AM and 2 AM.
In all cases, remote access policies are used to authorize the connection attempt. If access is
explicitly allowed, remote access policy conditions, user account properties, or profile properties
can still deny the connection attempt.
You need to then configure the policy to allow only the specific calling station identifier of the
partner company’s computer. When the Verify Caller ID property is enabled, the server verifies the
caller’s phone number. If the caller’s phone number does not match the configured phone number,
the connection attempt is denied.
Reference: Dial-in properties of a user account

You are an Enterprise administrator for The company consists of an Active Directory
domain called All servers on the corporate network run Windows Server 2003. At
present there is no provision was made for Internet connectivity.
A server named ABC2 has the DNS server service role installed. The DNS zones on ABC2 are
shown below:

The corporate network also contains a UNIX-based DNS A server named ABC-SR25 hosts a
separate DNS zone on a separate network called ABC-SR25 provides DNS services to
the UNIX-based computers and is configured to run the latest version of BIND and the
contains publicly accessible Web and mail servers.
The company has a security policy set, according to which, the resources located on the internal
network and the internal network’s DNS namespace should never be exposed to the Internet.
Besides this, according to the current network design, ABC-SR25 must attempt to resolve any
name resolution requests before sending them to name servers on the Internet.
The company plans to allow users of the internal network to access Internet-based resources. To
implement the security policy of the company, you decided to send all name resolution requests
for Internet-based resources from internal network computers through ABC2. You thus need to
devise a name resolution strategy for Internet access as well as configuring ABC2 so that it will
comply with the set criteria and restrictions.
Which two of the following options should you perform?

A. Have the Cache.dns file copied from ABC2 to ABC-SR25.
B. Have the root zone removed from ABC2.
C. ABC2 should be set up to forward requests to ABC-SR25.
D. Install Services for Unix on ABC2.
E. The root zone should be configured on ABC-SR25.
F. Disable recursion on ABC-SR25.

Answer: B,C

Explanation: To plan a name resolution strategy for Internet access and configure ABC2 so that it
sends all name resolution requests for Internet-based resources from internal network computers
through ABC2, you need to delete the root zone from ABC2. Configure ABC2 to forward requests
to ABC-SR25
A DNS server running Windows Server 2003 follows specific steps in its name-resolution process.
A DNS server first queries its cache, it checks its zone records, it sends requests to forwarders,
and then it tries resolution by using root servers.
The root zone indicates to your DNS server that it is a root Internet server. Therefore, your DNS
server does not use forwarders or root hints in the name-resolution process. Deleting the root
zone from ABC2 will allow you to first send requests to ABC2 and then forward requests to ABCSR25
by configuring forward lookup zone. If the root zone is configured, you will not be able to use
the DNS server to resolve queries for hosts in zones for which the server is not authoritative and
will not be able to use this DNS Server to resolve queries on the Internet.
Reference: How to configure DNS for Internet access in Windows Server 2003

Reference: DNS Root Hints in Windows 2003



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Get Microsoft 70-680 Exam Video Training

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Mozilla and Microsoft release custom Firefox with Bing

Microsoft and Mozilla have announced a special release of Firefox that integrates with the Bing search engine. The build, which is called Firefox with Bing, is available for users to download from a Microsoft-hosted website.


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When Firefox 4 was released last year, it added Bing as one of the available options in the browser’s built-in search box. Google remained the default, but Bing became easily accessible to users who prefer Microsoft’s search engine. Microsoft and Mozilla also took the opportunity to establish a revenue-sharing agreement around the search integration.

The new “Firefox with Bing” browser sets Bing as the default search engine and comes with Bing configured as the start page. These changes are tied to the special version of the browser and won’t impact the current defaults in regular Firefox releases. Users can also optionally install the Bing Search for Firefox add-on to get the same features in a regular Firefox build.

Mozilla has previously released a number of similarly customized Firefox builds in collaboration with various partners. For example, they released a special version of Firefox with Twitter integration earlier this year. Mozilla has been expanding its relationships with commercial partners over the past year, leading to some unexpected tie-ins. The release of Firefox with Bing is merely the latest development.

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Microsoft releases ‘complete’ Mango SDK

New app creation tools offered up to developers

Microsoft has made its third big Windows Phone Mango announcement of the last 24 hours by releasing a “more complete” build of the operating system to assist app developers 70-640 Training .


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Earlier on Wednesday we learned that the Fujitsu Toshiba IS12T will be the first handset to boast Mango, featuring a 13.2mp camera, 32GB internal storage and an 800x480p, 3.7-inch display.

Yesterday Microsoft revealed it had finished work on the long-awaited OS upgrade and had handed the completed build over to manufacturers.

Now app developers will have access to an all new version of the SDK in order to create new and exciting applications for the Mango platform before its launch this autumn.

More complete build

Senior Product Manager for Windows Phone Cliff Simpkins said on the company blog: “We’ve received positive feedback on the Mango tools and bits we’ve shared, but appreciate that many devs are still interested in working with a more complete build.

“Today’s refresh of the tools represent a month of great progress by the engineering team, further refining and improving the Mango developer experience.

“What we are providing is a genuine release candidate build, with enough code checked in and APIs locked down that this OS is close enough to RTM that, as a developer, it’s more than capable to see you through the upcoming RC drop of the tools and app submission Microsoft Free MCTS Training and MCTS Online Training.”

Although much of the smoke has cleared, and the Mango picture is now much more illuminated than it was just yesterday, we still don’t know when the first handset will arrive in the UK.

Come on Microsoft, throw us a freakin’ bone here.

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Taking the 70-620 TS: Windows Vista, Configuring Exam

If you go for the MCSE or MCITP Enterprise, you will have to take an exam covering a client operating system. One exam, you can take the 70-620: Configuring Microsoft Windows Vista.
The objectives are broken down to the following main groups:


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*  Installing and Upgrading Windows Vista
* Configuring and Troubleshooting Post-Installation System Settings
* Configuring Windows Security Features
* Configuring Network Connectivity
* Configuring Applications Included with Windows Vista
* Maintaining and Optimizing Systems That Run Windows Vista
* Configuring and Troubleshooting Mobile Computing

As with an operating system, you should first start with how to install Windows Vista. Besides running the normal installation DVD, you also need to be familiar with how to install Windows Vista with answer files, Windows images, ImageX, and Sysprep. You will then need to know how to upgrade from older versions of Windows to Windows Vista and from one version of Windows Vista to another version of Windows Vista. You will also need to know how to migrate data files and settings from one computer running Windows to a new computer running Windows Vista using Windows Easy Transfer (WET) and User State Migration Tool V3.0.

One of the new enhancements to the Windows Interface is Windows Aero. Therefore, you need to know the requirements for Aero to work including the color depth, the refresh rate, theme, color scheme and frame transparency.

With Windows Vista, Microsoft has enhanced some tools while introducing entirely new set of tools. For the exam, you will need to know accessibility tools and parental control. Of course, since the wide adoption of IPv6 is right around the corner, you will need to know how to configure IPv4 and IPv6. In addition, since wireless technology has become commonplace, you will need to know how to setup wireless connections.

Over the last few years, there has been a big push for security with Microsoft operating system and applications. As with any modern Windows operating system, you will need to know how to configure file system security. This will be done with NTFS permissions, Share permissions, EFS and BitLocker. BitLocker is a new technology that can encrypt an entire drive, which will protect if a computer such as a laptop is stolen. Be sure to know when it is best to use EFS for encryption and when it is best to use BitLocker. Also know the system requirements for BitLocker.

If you have used Windows Vista, you have seen and experienced User Account Control (UAC). So you will need to know how User Account Control protects your computer and you will need to know how to react to User Account Control prompts and if necessary, you will need to know how to disable UAC. Other tools that help protect your computer are Windows Defender and Windows Firewall. Therefore, you will need to know how to configure those tools.

Besides the new updated interface, Windows Vista also included Internet Explorer (IE) 7.0. Therefore, you will need to know how to configure IE. In addition, you will need to know how to configure Windows Media Player and Media Player Center including understanding regions and Codecs.

As a user, you will need to use standard applications include Wordpad, Notepad, Mail, Calendar, Fax and Scan and Meeting Space. You also need to now how to configure Windows Sidebar and its gadgets.

Lastly, you need to know the tools that are made for mobile computers. That would be including configuring Power management (power plans and hibernate, hybrid and sleep mode), Sync center, offline folders and Windows SideShow. Lastly, you need to be familiar with how to configure Tablet PCs and how to configure Flicks.

If you want to prepare for this exam, I would highly recommend the Exam Cram book 70-620 TS: Windows Vista, Configuring by Patrick Regan (Que Publishing), which will cover each of these topics and give you plenty of practice questions.

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Microsoft Raises Exam Prices

Effective July 1, the price of many of the Microsoft certification exams is increasing. This is the first increase Microsoft has made to the program in nine years and the amount of change depends on what category candidate you happen to be. For example, a non-student U.S. resident will see prices change from $125 to $150 (a 20 percent increase), while student rates go from $60 to $83 (a 38 percent increase). The difference in percentage increases are all over the board — in the United Kingdom, there is only a 12.5 percent increase, while exam candidates in Mexico face a 25 percent increase. The price change does not affect MTA, MCM, MCA or MOS exams.


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All exam vouchers issued prior to July 1 will continue to remain valid until their expiration date, so it is possible to purchase vouchers up to June 30 at the current rates. All Microsoft exams are given through Prometric testing centers worldwide. A FAQ about the price change can be found here

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