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70/71-403 - TS: System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008, Configuring (Beta Exam)

70/71-403 - TS: System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008, Configuring (Beta Exam)

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I’ve just come back from the Global Knowledge Testing Centre in Wokingham, where I’ve sat the 70-403 (or 71-403) beta exam of System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008.  Verdict?  Tricky.

I’d love to be able to say that I passed, but with it being a beta exam, you don’t find out instantly like you do with normal Microsoft/VMware etc exams, so I guess I’ll just have to wait and see.  I have a feeling I pretty much nailed it, so I should be ok.  What kind of stuff does it test for?  Well, from the official site:

Skills Being Measured

This exam measures your ability to accomplish the technical tasks listed below.The percentages indicate the relative weight of each major topic area on the exam.

Installing SCVMM

  • Install SCVMM server components
    • May include but is not limited to: Server prerequisites, database, Windows versions, enabling SAN migration, User Access Control (UAC) issues.
  • Install administrator console
    • May include but is not limited to: Administrator console prerequisites, platform support, firewall settings, Workgroup requirements vs. Domain requirements, custom ports, managed hosts from admin console, enable reporting for admin console.
  • Install self-service portal
    • May include but is not limited to: self-service portal prerequisites, IIS components, compatibility, custom ports, host headers.
  • Install PRO tips
    • May include but is not limited to: Ops manager, management packs, Admin consoles, security.
Administering SCVMM
  • Configure user roles
    • May include but is not limited to: delegate admin, setting permissions for specific host or host groups, using self-service portal to create test environment, add delegated administrator.
  • Setup self service
    • May include but is not limited to: enabling user or group for self service, setting custom ports for self service, establishing quota, Self-provisioning (templates).
  • Maintain VMM library
    • May include but is not limited to: adding a library, adding additional library shares or servers, moving files to library share, mapping ISOs, types of library files.
  • Configure hosts
    • May include but is not limited to: adding hosts, installing a local agent, adding VMware VC server, configuring a virtual network, creating filters in the console.
  • Monitor jobs
    • May include but is not limited to: verifying specific jobs, recovering from job failure, change tracking, job filtering.
Maintaining and Monitoring VMs
  • Configure VM hardware
    • May include but is not limited to: NIC configuration, configuring VM drive, configuring memory, configuring CPU.
  • Manage virtual instance checkpoints and patches
    • May include but is not limited to: Checkpoints, creating a checkpoint of a VM, deploying patches.
  • Monitoring and reporting VMs
    • May include but is not limited to: integrating Ops Manager, selecting potential virtualization targets, monitoring utilization.
Deploying and Migrating VMs
  • Convert from physical or virtual platforms
    • May include but is not limited to: P2V, V2V.
  • Move VMs between hosts
    • May include but is not limited to: migrating a SAN, migration options, intelligent placement.
  • Deploy VMs
    • May include but is not limited to: deploy VM from VHD, deploy VM from template, create template from existing VM, provisioning new machines and applications, intelligent placement.
  • Deploy a High Availability VM
    • May include but is not limited to: configuring host clustering, configuring guest clustering, configuring a VM for high availability, configuring library shares for high availability.

So, would I say this list is accurate?  Pretty much.  Based on my experience, you’d need to know your Self-Service policies well, along with SCVMM Self-Service Portal usage, including setup, supported systems etc.  There wasn’t much VMware stuff on my exam, and I would expect more to be added for the final release as, in my opinion, it needs more.  There was a great deal of stuff about SC Operations Manager 2007 included, along with the PRO integration, so make sure you know your stuff on those 2 in particular.

If you’ve used VMM 2008 regularly since beta, you should be fine.  If you’ve gone through installations where things have errored due to pre-requisites missing for example, or ports not being opened in the firewall, these are the type of things that exams try to catch you out on.  Also things like Service Packs of supported Operating Systems – I don’t just mean Guest OS’s, I mean things like what server OS can the VMM Server be installed on? What about the Self-Service Portal?  What Firewall ports does the SS Portal need opening?  What about the VMM Server?  Can Windows OS #1 be converted using P2V? etc etc etc

Best advice I can give – take that list above, go and install VMM 2008 (all the bits), watch carefully when you’re doing stuff, take notes on ports, settings, PowerShell commands even, and just tick stuff off the list when you’re comfortable with it.  Just remember, VMM 2008 doesn’t just manage Hyper-V and VMware’s VirtualCenter (and thus ESX).  What am I trying to say?  Just don’t forget Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1….

If you still want to register and take the exam before it releases (FOR FREE), then you need to do the following:

  • Read the info here
  • Find the exam on the Prometric Site using this link
  • Follow Instructions on the website
  • Select the Exam 71-403:
  • Choose your Testing Center - Schedule the Appointment
  • Login/Register with Prometric
  • Enter the Promotional Code of VMM08
  • Good luck! :-)
  • Could you explain what is mean Windows OS #1 ??

  • Hi Piotrek,

    By Windows OS #1, I just meant a generic Windows OS - so, for example, an exam question may be, which of these Windows OS's can be converted, online, using VMM 2008:

    a) Windows XP

    b) Windows XP SP2

    etc etc

    Sorry - my term is a bit ambigious!


  • Thanks for sharing, it'll help me with my study for 71-403.

  • Thanks for this post, it was most informative. I sat the exam a little while ago and I think I passed (although just as you I won't know for a little while yet). Thanks for outlining each area so clearly for me, it really helped.


    Paul Schnackenburg

  • You're welcome Paul!

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