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Certification Watch Volume 11 #2

Certification news regarding a new high-end certification from Cisco, discount Apple OS X 10.5 Leopard certification, viagra new certifications from Novell, a bunch of Microsoft exam retirements, new MCITP and MCTS tracks, and the latest Java exams.

Cisco Launches Network Design Expert Certification at Level of CCIE

Cisco systems recently announced the creation of a Cisco Certified Design Expert (CCDE) designation which it says is "parallel to CCIE in terms of difficulty, and expertise." Whereas the CCIE is focused on network implementation and operation, the CCDE is focused on network design and is intended for candidates who have day-to-day responsibilities for creating work products that cover IP routing network infrastructure design and have lots of experience doing so. Specifically, the two CCDE exams test knowledge of routing protocols, internetworking theory and design principles, including the areas of routing, tunneling, quality of service, management, cost, capacity, and security.

As with the CCIE, the CCDE will require an initial computer based qualification exam (ADVDESIGN) followed by a hands on practical exam. The qualification exam is already available at testing centers worldwide, but the hands on component is still under development and slated for release later this year. You can view the blueprint for the written exam on Cisco's Web site.

Apple Reworks Certifications for OS X 10.5 Leopard

Recently Apple has realigned its certification programs to coordinate with Max OS X 10.5 Leopard. This has included a bit of renaming as described below, and alas, there is no upgrade path from Mac OS X v10.4 Tiger to the Leopard incarnation, because, according to Apple, the number of changes and new features makes that impractical.

The Apple Certified Help Desk Specialist (ACHDS) is now the Apple Certified Support Professional (ACSP) 10.5, which covers the Max OS X Leopard. The Apple Certified Technical Coordinator (ACTC) and Apple Certified System Administrator (ACSA) will keep their names, but have a new the 10.5 version number tacked on the end. The Apple Certified Desktop Technician is now the Apple Certified Macintosh Technician. As for the Apple Certified Systems Administrator (ACSA), the Leopard version of the ACSA has 4 required exams, instead of the 7 electives required of the previous version. Otherwise, the layouts are essentially the same as far as number and makeup of exams required for each title, just different test versions.

Two New Certifications from Novell

Novell just announced the launch of two new certifications, Certified Linux Desktop Administrator (CLDA), and Novell Certified Administrator (NCA). The CLDA will test individuals on tasks performed on SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 10. The CLDA exam is expected to be released the week of March 16th. The objectives were not posted at press time for this newsletter, but they should be up soon on the CLDA page.

The second new certification, Novell Certified Administrator (NCA) appears poised to replace the long present Certified Novell Engineer (CNA). Besides switching around the name, the NCA focuses on Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 and Open Enterprise Server for Linux. The test for this is also slated to be released the week of March 16th. This is the first step toward achieving the forthcoming Novell Certified Engineer (NCE ES) designation, which is still under development. NCA objectives will be available on Novell's NCA page. Corresponding training is already available from Novell.

Microsoft Schedules 22 Exams for Retirement Next Month

Microsoft will be retiring 22 exams on March 31, 2008, including exams that make up parts of the MCSA and MCSE tracks for Windows Server 2000 and the MCSA and MCSE upgrade paths from Windows Server 2000 to Windows Server 2003. If you're preparing for a Microsoft certification exam now, be sure to check out the full exam retirement list.

New Microsoft Windows 2008 Certification Tracks for MCITP, MCTS

If you haven't made your Windows 2008 certification plans yet, more options are opening up. There are two new Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP) tracks: IT Professional: Enterprise Administrator, which covers Windows Server 2008 infrastructure design and IT Professional: Server Administrator, which covers day to day operations and management of Windows Server 2008.

On the Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS)side, the latest options are Technology Specialist: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration; Technology Specialist: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration; and Technology Specialist: Windows Server 2008 Applications Infrastructure Configuration, the titles of which are pretty self explanatory.

New Java Enterprise Edition 5 Exams Roll Out, Others set to Retire

Exams for Sun Certified Enterprise Architect for the Java Platform Enterprise Edition 5 and Sun Certified Web Component Developer for the Java Platform Enterprise Edition 5 are now available in testing centers. Corresponding older exams will be retired on February 29, 2008, including exams for Sun Certified Web Component Developer for the Java Platform, Enterprise Edition 1.4 and exam CX 310 051, Sun Certified Enterprise Architect for the Java Platform, Enterprise Edition, among others.

That's all for this edition of Certification Watch. Please keep your certification news and tips coming to the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..