VMware recently released an entry level exam for data center virtualization professionals called the VMware certified associate 6 - data center virtualization (VCA6-DCV). This certification is an update of the previous version 5 certification. The VCA-DCV based on vSphere 5 is due to be retired on November 30, 2015. VMware recommends those interested in the VCA6-DCV exam first complete a course called Data Center Virtualization Fundamentals.
I took this course as it was recommended by VMware as preparation for the exam. The course is offered online for free and can be accessed right after registering for the class. The course is available for quite a few months after signing up – helpful for those who might not be able to complete the course right away. Even if one couldn’t finish the course in the allotted time, it’s free, so one could simply sign up for a second time. The class takes a few hours to complete and can be started and continued multiple times.
The course doesn’t offer any hands on exercises. I say this up front because it communicates something about the type of course this is. This class is meant to familiarize the student with the language of VMware. There’s much here to familiarize a person with the dictionary of terms related to the various features one should know and where they fit within an enterprise. The course excels at providing basic to intermediate concepts related to vSphere 6 and providing thoughts on the applicability of those features in a typical enterprise datacenter.
There are many people who could benefit from the type of information in this course. It could be especially beneficial to those who need a high level understanding of VMware. Network, storage, and server engineers who work with and support virtualization engineers will find this helpful. It’s also good for those looking to move up in their IT career from other positions though they may need to put in time reading about the other topics outside of virtualization that are discussed. C-Level executives will also find the content appropriate as it explains many features that VMware feels differentiate them in the marketplace and make the VMware hypervisor more than a commodity datacenter technology.
The session is less helpful for experienced VMware admins / engineers who are looking for explicit how-to type of instructions, or really deep understanding of the limitations of the features and concepts presented. The objectives of the course modules are centered on the words, “describe” and “explain.” The course could be used as a form of “What’s New” learning opportunity as the cost is free.