I will use this section to post contents and information related to VMware’s VCP5 (VMware Certified Professional 5) Certification. Most of the content is from this previous post, but I will make this permanent as this may help other members of the VMware Community to find learning materials and sources. I would like to stress that thanks to the many materials above, and except books, I have been able to study without incurring any expenses other than taking the VCP5 exam.
The VMware VCP5 Certification
The key to success is hands-on experience. You will not be tested on theory and memorization, but on the ability to analyze a situation and plan/act accordingly. I will quote VMware’s official description of the exam and its target audience, which is very clear:
Achieving the VCP certification confirms that you have the education needed to successfully install, deploy, scale and manage VMware vSphere environments, as well as the skills obtained by a minimum of six months experience with VMware infrastructure technologies.
I can’t stress that enough: build a lab!
Important Warning : About brain dumps
I recommend all the readers to stay away from brain dump websites which aren’t a credible source of learning. I found that the solution to many questions were erroneous, and I would recommend to give priority to hands-on experience over memorization. It is easier and better to build a lab with spare machines at work, install, break and reinstall rather than memorizing questions. Questions are prone to change and if you plan to pass advanced certifications, brain dumps will prove to be utterly useless. Brain dumps are not official training materials, but the result of what other VCP exam attendees memorized.
- Scott Lowe – Mastering VMware vSphere 5. I began studying for VCP4 originally and purchased Scott’s Mastering VMware vSphere 4. It is a huge & comprehensive reference, and provided a great base of knowledge. I purchased the V4 version on my Kindle.
- Duncan Epping & Frank Denneman – VMware vSphere 5 Clustering Technical Deepdive. Even better than the HA bible that was VMware vSphere 4.1 HA & DRS Technical Deepdive. Both purchased on Kindle, I wish I also had the paper version for the yummy colorful graphs (you can see them on Kindle Cloud Reader!)
- VMware vSphere 5 Official documentation (available in a variety of formats, MOBI files are Kindle compatible & text-to-speech enabled)
Studying Resources & Blogs
- My central hub for learning resources online has been Scott Vessey‘s VMware Training blog. Comprehensive, with lots of links to other members of the VMware community. If you don’t know where to start from, go to Scott’s site, everything is very well categorized and explained. His site has been my main inspiration so what you will find below is most likely to be redundant with what you’ll find on his blog.
- Andrea Mauro‘s vInfrastructure Blog and his blueprint with notes
- Jason Langer & Josh Coen‘s VCP5 Study Guide (<– guess what I had on me 10 mins before taking the exam)
- Duncan Epping‘s yellow-bricks.com is filled with gems, especially enjoyed among others his article on esxtop
- Lots of great blogs where I’ve gathered info and which I unfortunately forgot to bookmark
Blogs with test practices
I spent quite a lot of time on the following excellent sites, which are linked from Scott Vessey‘s VMware Training blog (see above).
- Simon Long‘s SLOG practice questions
- Paul McSharry‘s Elastic Sky VCP5 practice questions
- Robert Slothard‘s practice questions
- The VMware mock exam isn’t bad, but questions are almost always the same and it gets quickly expedited.
Videos & Podcasts
- Eric Sloof‘s podcasts are a joy to look at, a video that I enjoyed a lot was about private VLANs, being underskilled in networks it helped me to better understand the matter and how it relates with vSphere.
- A brilliant series of VCP-related brownbags are announced on Damian Karlson‘s website. The previously recorded brownbags can be found on Cody Bunch‘s website. They feature prominent members of the community and cover various objectives of the blueprints. I am not certain how they are organized so feel free to contact me so I can give credit where credit is due.
I had very fruitful conversations about my lab setup with Matt Liebowitz and Tommy Trogden. Thanks to them I found out that I didn’t have to sell a kidney to get a decent lab. I have also built my own lab and I am more than glad to answer questions if you need help with this.
Did I mention twitter yet? There’s a fantastic VMware community active on Twitter. I’ve had the chance to talk with great folks which were all very helpful. Feel free to engage with the community!