Exchange Server 2010 Pro Designing (70-663) and TS: Configuring (70-662) exams: take a tip from the masters

April 22, 2010 at 4:48 pm | Posted in Certification Paths, Microsoft | Leave a comment
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You know how Phil Mickelson recently won the Masters golf tournament, despite not playing well this year overall? I think he just rode the momentum of having won the Masters twice before. Me, I recently took the 70-663 exam, Pro: Designing and Deploying Messaging Solutions with Microsoft Exchange Server 2010. When I was doing my studying for this test, I notice that there was a lot of overlap with the objectives of the 70-662 exam, TS: Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Configuring. Because I had just recently taken 70-662, I risked cutting down my study time for the 70-663 and just hit the topics that weren’t on the 662 list. Like Mickelson, I rode that momentum, and the gamble worked: I passed.

If it’s at all financially feasible, if you’re prepping for the 70-662 exam, you should plan to take the 70-663 shortly afterward. Here’s why. The 70-662 exam asks you questions on how you may perform specific tasks.  For the 70-662 exam, you will need to know concepts of Exchange Server 2010 installation, message routing, and each Exchange 2010 server role. These concepts will be tested again on the 70-663, but this time the exam focuses on your understanding of how to plan and deploy different Exchange server roles, message security, and high availability of different server roles. Unlike the 70-662, you may not need to know specific switches of Exchange cmdlets, but you will have to know how to these concepts fit within a specific designing or deploying scenario.

The thing is, if  you go into the material for the 70-662 with the aim of understanding the concepts from the ground up, you’ll be studying for the 70-663 by default. If you want to get the Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP): Enterprise Messaging Administrator 2010 certification, you have to pass both the 70-662 and the 70-663. Passing the 70-662 exam is not easy, but if you’ve mastered that, then knocking out the 70-663 exam doesn’t require a lot of extra effort. Just keep the momentum going.

An example of the type of question you would see on the 70-662 test would go like this:

You administer an Exchange 2010 organization for a major software company.Your company recently acquired a chain of frozen yogurt emporiums. All e-mails sent from FroYoYo employees should appear to originate from the parent company’s domain. What should you configure on the Edge Transport server?

An example of the type of question that you would see on the 70-663 test would be as follows:

You administer an Exchange 2010 organization for a major software company. You open a new location near a golf driving range. Golfers from the driving range sometimes hit the balls over the net, hitting the windows in the room that houses the Edge Transport server. The CIO asks you to design a high-availability solution to protect against the failure of a single Edge Transport server. Costs are high, but your budget is limited. What solution should you design?

Get the gist? One is very function specific, the other tests your approach and process.

As of this writing, Microsoft had not released their Microsoft Official Curriculum (MOC) course for the 70-663 test, named Course 10233A. By this summer, your local training center will probably be offering the class. You can also prepare for the test by reviewing and knowing the objectives and sub-objectives in the prep guide for 70-663.

We’re still putting our practice test together for the 70-663, but the 70-662 practice test is available now from Transcender, either as a stand-alone product or bundled with an exam voucher.

You can also take advantage of the Microsoft Second Shot promotion. If you fail any exam with a 70 or 72 prefix before 6/30/2010, you can take a second attempt at the exam for free. Of course, our vouchers work with the Second Shot program. Sweet! So take it from me: now is the time to knock out both the 70-662 and 70-663 exam. (Just don’t take my Masters’ Green Jacket from me. I got it at a garage sale and I love it. You can’t really see the coffee stain on the sleeve.)

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