To begin your career as a certified Azure administrator, you have to take the AZ-104: Microsoft Azure Administrator Associate certification exam. The exam assesses your capabilities in managing, implementing, and monitoring workloads in Azure environments. To pass the exam, you must first understand what skills it evaluates, the prerequisites you should have beforehand, and the best ways to prepare.
What does the AZ-104 exam cover?
The following skills are measured in an AZ-104 certification exam with their respective weights toward the overall score.
Deploying and managing Azure compute resources
This module tests your skills in managing and deploying Azure compute resources, configuring virtual machines (VMs) for scalability, and creating containers.
Read more: What Is Azure VM? Windows Virtual Machine
Managing Azure identities and governance
Azure AD (Active Directory) is Microsoft’s identity and access management (IAM) service. The module tests how, by using AD, you can control access to vital resources by implementing multi-factor authentication (MFA).
Implementing and managing storage
Here, you’re tested on how well you set up file shares and manage them using Azure File Sync. You should also be able to use the Recovery Services vault for implementing data backups.
Monitoring and backing up Azure resources
As an admin, you must be proficient in optimizing resource consumption. In addition, you should be skilled in role-based access control (RBAC), where you ensure users get access to only those resources that are necessary.
Configuring and managing virtual networks
Managing and configuring virtual networks is a crucial part of the Azure cloud. The curriculum comprises designing DNS, using network gateways, and protecting Azure Virtual Networks (VNets). Additional skills include scaling and managing VM infrastructure and troubleshooting whenever required.
Read more: Azure Virtual Network (VNet) FAQ
Prerequisites for the AZ-104 Azure Administrator certification
The basic requirements for the AZ-104 certification include:
- A minimum of six months of practical experience working in an Azure environment with working knowledge of core Azure services and workloads.
- A basic understanding of Microsoft and hands-on experience with tools like Office 365, Command-Line Interface, ARM templates, and PowerShell.
- A working knowledge of VMs, virtual networking, and other IT infrastructure concepts
- A basic knowledge of Active Directory concepts.
- Experience in working with ASP.NET.
How to prepare for the AZ-104 exam
One of the most helpful resources for exam prep is The Complete Microsoft Azure Certification Prep Bundle from TechRepublic Academy. This 6-course package includes lifetime access to more than 500 lessons that will help you set yourself up for success as you embark on your journey toward becoming a certified Azure administrator.
Each course is taught by Scott Duffy, a seasoned Microsoft expert and certified Azure developer and architect. Duffy’s self-paced lessons can help you attain the skills and expertise needed to pass the AZ-104 exam on your first try.
In addition to the AZ-104 certification prep course, TechRepublic Academy’s package deal provides all of the necessary materials to prepare for the following exams:
- AZ-204 Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure
- AZ-303 Azure Architecture Technologies
- AZ-301 Azure Architect Design
- TOGAF 9.2 Part 1 Foundation
Altogether, The Complete Microsoft Azure Certification Prep Bundle is valued at nearly US$2,000, but it’s on sale for US$34.99 for a limited time.
Why should you get an Azure certification?
One of the most important factors that drive individuals toward getting an Azure certificate is the possibility of earning a higher salary. On average, the annual salary for an Azure Administrator in the US hovers around $121,420 per year.
An Azure certification also endorses your skills and shows your commitment to staying updated on the latest trends in the cloud computing space. With an industry-approved Azure Administrator certification under your belt, you can navigate the choppy waters of the current job market and set yourself apart from other candidates.
Read next: Best Microsoft Azure Certifications