[#mscrtpro]:

Microsoft Certified Professional

Microsoft offers several different certfications.

Note: At the time of this writing (in 2018), a lot of this information may be a bit out of date (probably written somewhere from around 2009-2014). The webmaster has some incentive to have this be updated again, but until this note is removed, realize that some of these details may be known to be outdated.

IT certifications
[#mscrtnam]: Names of certifications
Changing names

Microsoft Certification Overview : FAQ : How changes impact existing Microsoft Certifications notes, “Over time, the MCTS, MCITP, and MCPD certifications will retire and will transition to a legacy status. Legacy Microsoft Certifications will still appear on your transcript and will be designated as such.” Instead, the “Server certification path” shows “MCSA” and “MCSE” (and “MCSM”). Now, funny thing is: MCITP was designed to replace (an older version of) MCSE.

At least at one point, getting an MCSA would involve also getting titles of being a “Microsoft Certified Professional” (“MCP”) and Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (“MCTS”). With MCTS apparently going away, though, that may be changing.

Certification Overview, Microsoft: View by technology, Microsoft Certified Professional.

Some online commentary notes, “MCSE or MCSA was used for around 17 years, since Windows NT 3.51”. It seems like Microsoft tried to ditch MCSA/MCSE in favor of MCITP:SA and MCITP:EA for Windows Server 2008, but the market did not respond as desired, and so Microsoft started reverting to some of the familiar old terms. Although, that doesn't really explain by MCTS may be going away.

The switch back to MCSA/MCSE may be due to the new certification terms not working out as hoped. That may have been because the industry was fairly content with Windows Server 2003, and much of the computer industry was not pushing for the 2008 technology. Some online commentary notes, “The fact still currently remains; Microsoft did a better job of speading the word when it came to the MCSE and didn't put the same force behind the MCITP.”

MCITP page notes that MCITP certifications “are based on older versions of Microsoft technologies, and your MCITP certification will decline in value as companies move to newer versions of our products.” Reddit comment: A person took an examination made by the people at Microsoft, and “gained my MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Configuration and automatically was given MCSA: Windows 7 after they switched the name to MCSA.”

Some online commentary quotes a Microsoft FAQ (although the FAQ seems to have since changed). It had stated, “Q.” “Does MCSA equate to MCITP: Server Administrator and does MCSE equate to MCITP: Enterprise Administrator?” “A.” “No, not exactly. The MCITP on Windows Server 2008 certification requires a new skill set—in some cases, a more robust one—that differs from the skill set needed for MCSA and MCSE certifications.” Some bullet points elaborated: “MCITP: Server Administrator certification covers more operations-related job skills than the MCSA certification.” “MCITP: Enterprise Administrator maps to an actual job role profile, whereas the MCSE certification does not. The latter combines technology and job skills.”

Staying up to date

Don Field's blog states, “As technology changes, the way we approach validating those skills needs to change as well. For example, as Microsoft continues to move into cloud computing, we need to think about ways to help people demonstrate the capabilities they have that are relevant to cloud-based solutions.” ... “The goal here is to make sure we're certifying only those people who truly have the requisite skills — as opposed to those who still have a ways to go before they’ve fully acquired them.” ... “In the past, we’ve certified people based on a particular version of a product, but because that is changing” ... Microsoft has implemented “ways to assure people have the relevant skills as our cloud offerings evolve.”

So Microsoft wants to keep people studying the latest technologies to be considered up to date. (That makes some sense, though the approach does require ongoing work for people to continually be brushing up knowledge.) It would be nice if they at least kept things stable enough so that the non-technical staff, such as people who hire the technical staff, can better learn what to expect. (Things like changing certificate names does not help for such confusion.)

Following includes a bit of older information. It has not yet been purged, but realize that some of the following information may be for some more outdated offerings. (It may at some time be moved o re-categorized.)

At least some of these certifications are on a the list of Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) page tab #2: Certifications. Getting a first MCTS certification is simpler than some of the other names of Microsoft Certifications. For example, an older MCSE for Windows Server 2003 includes the requirement (in practice, even if not officially) of an older MCSA for Windows Server 2003, and the requirements for an older MCSA for Windows Server 2003 or a newer MCITP requires multiple MCTS certifications. For this reason, it is simply expected that an MCTS will come before the others.

Microsoft Certifications for IT Professionals

The “IT Professionals” is meant to be a separate category from some other categories, such as developers. Several options are listed in Microsoft's list of some certification names.

Note: This information may be dated. Rumor has it that certifications called MCSA and MCSE have been re-introduced, and MCITP is even discontinued. The following information may need to be reviewed/refreshed for accuracy.

Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008
MCITP

There are various MCITP certifications. There are some upgrade paths listed from MCSA and MCSE to MCITP: Server Administrator, and from MCSE to MCITP: Enterprise Administrator. Therefore, those are probably the basic MCITP exams to start with if one has some of those other server-based focuses.

[#mcitpsa]: Microsoft Certified IT Profressional (“MCITP”): Server Administrator

To get the MCITP:SA certification, one of the required exams is Microsoft Certification Exam 70-646: “Pro: Windows Server 2008, Server Administrator”.

This is one of the requirements. In addition, there are more. Choose from the most desirable of the following categories, based on which options are available/possible.

MCITP:SA exams (with no prior certification requirements)

In addition to passing the Microsoft Certification Exam 70-646: “Pro: Windows Server 2008, Server Administrator”, pass both of the following:

70-640: AD
Pass the Microsoft Certification Exam 70-640: “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration” (a.k.a. “TS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory, Configuring”). This also grants the successful exam passer with a certification called “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS): Windows Server 2008 Active Directory, Configuration”
70-642: Net Infrastructure
Microsoft Certification Exam 70-642: “MCTS Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration” (a.k.a. “TS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuring”). This also grants the successful exam passer with a certification called “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS): Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuring”
MCSA to MCITP:SA upgrade

Another option is available for those who have an MCSA certification.

In addition to passing the Microsoft Certification Exam 70-646: “Pro: Windows Server 2008, Server Administrator”, MCSA holders could get MCITP:SA with just one exam.

MCSA page tab #4: Upgrade paths has an “Upgrade to MCTS on Windows Server 2008” section. This section notes that “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration” and “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration” can be achieved for people with an MCSA by taking a single exam, Exam 70-648, which is called “TS: Upgrading your MCSA on Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008, Technology Specialist”. Then the same MCSA page tab #4: Upgrade paths has a section called “Upgrade to MCITP on Windows Server 2008” which shows that someone with “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration” and “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration” can obtain the MCITP:SA certification by just taking 70-646. Presumably they may also need an MCSA. It is quite clear from the more graphical charts that people with an MCSA are intended to be able to get the MCITP:SA by taking the 70-647 and the 70-646.

Of course, if MCSE upgrading is still an option, another route for MCSA holders would be to upgrade to the non-expiring MCSE, and then use an upgrade path from MCSE to the desired MCITP certification(s).

Perhaps see also: MCSA documentation: Tab #4 (“Upgrade Paths”).

MCSE to MCITP:SA

For people with an MCSE from Windows Server 2003, it appears there is at least one additional option available. There is another option for MCSE holders. (As MCSE holders also have all the requirements for an MCSA, this may be in addition to the options available for MCSA holders.)

In addition to passing the Microsoft Certification Exam 70-646: “Pro: Windows Server 2008, Server Administrator”, MCSE holders could get MCITP:SA with just one exam.

Windows Server Certification: Tab #4 (Upgrade Paths) notes that people with an MCSE can take Exam 70-649 to obtain “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration” and “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration” and “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Applications Infrastructure Configuration”.

One might conclude, based on patterns, that an MCITP:SA is awarded upon completing Examp 70-646 and getting the certification called “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (“MCTS”): Windows Server 2008 Active Directory, Configuration” and getting the certification called “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (“MCTS”): Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuring”. Based on that logic, which might or might not have truth to it, one might conclude that a person with an MCSE can take a 70-649 and a 70-646 and end up with an MCITP:SA. That conclusion is true, as documented on Windows Server Certification: Tab #4 (Upgrade Paths). (No strong statements are being made here about whether the logic is true if anybody discovers another way to get those certifications using different exams.)

Another possibility that one could conceive is whether an MCSE could obtain the MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration certification and MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration cetification by taking exam Exam 70-648, which is called “TS: Upgrading your MCSA on Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008, Technology Specialist” as well as Microsoft Certification Exam 70-646: “Pro: Windows Server 2008, Server Administrator”. It does seem that is possible for two reasons. First, any MCSE should also have an MCSA, and that is a valid upgrade path for the MCSA. Secondly, there is a graphic on Windows Server Certification: Tab #4 (Upgrade Paths) (yes, that's right, this is on the MCSE page) which shows an MCSE being upgraded to MSITP:SA by taking a 70-646 and also taking a 70-648: “TS: Upgrading from Windows Server 2003 MCSA to Windows Server 2008”.

Finally, the section of Windows Server Certification: Tab #4 (Upgrade Paths) suggests that one really only needs 70-646 and either “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration” or “MCTS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration”. However, that web page's implication might only be intended for the MCSE holders. After all, if it wasn't restricted to MCSE holders, then it would seem that the MCITP:SA would requires only 70-646 and either 70-640 or 70-642. What is actually true in reality is that the requirements for MCITP:SA listed all three: 70-646, and also both 70-640 and 70-642.

Perhaps see also: MCSE documentation: Tab #4 (“Upgrade Paths”).

[#mcitpea]: Microsoft Certified IT Profressional (“MCITP”): Enterprise Administrator

Fulfill the requirements from each of these sections.

70-647
It seems that any way this gets sliced and diced, one of the required exams is Microsoft Certification Exam 70-647: “PRO: Windows Server 2008, Enterprise Administrator”.
Technology Specialist certification
MCITP:SE w/o upgrades

One option is to take the following three exams. (This is the option meant for people who are not upgrading from a previous MCSA and possibly also a previous MCSE.)

70-640: Active Dir
Exam 70-640:” “TS: Windows Server 2008 Active Directory, Configuring” (which, by itself, completes the requirements for the following certification: “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS): Windows Server 2008 Active Directory, Configuration”)
70-642: Svr 2008 Net Infrastructure
Exam 70-642: TS: Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuring (which, by itself, completes the requirements for the following certification: “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS): Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure, Configuring”
70-643: Svr 2008 App
Exam 70-643: TS: Windows Server 2008 Applications Infrastructure, Configuring (which, by itself, completes the requirements for the following certification: “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS): Windows Server 2008 Applications Infrastructure, Configuration”).
Upgrading from MCSA

The path from MCSA to MCITP:SE involves taking Exam 70-643: TS: Windows Server 2008 Applications Infrastructure, Configuring, just as if the MCSA was not obtained. However, going from MCSA to MCITP:SE only requries one other exam to complete the “Technology Specialist” certification. By taking Exam 70-648: “TS: Upgrading from Windows Server 2003 MCSA to, Windows Server 2008, Technology Specializations”, there is not the need to take exam 70-640 nor exam 70-642 just to get the MCITP:SE certification. So, having the MCSA does save one exam total. Passing the 70-648 will grant the “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (“MCTS”): Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration” certification and the “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (“MCTS”): Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration” exams.

Perhaps see also: MCSE documentation: Tab #4 (“Upgrade Paths”).

Upgrading from MCSE

Similar to the MCSA to MCITP:SA upgrade path, the MCSA to MCITP:EA upgrade path seems to allow Exam 70-648: “TS: Upgrading from Windows Server 2003 MCSA to, Windows Server 2008, Technology Specializations” to be used to achieve the “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (“MCTS”): Windows Server 2008 Active Directory Configuration” and “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (“MCTS”): Windows Server 2008 Network Infrastructure Configuration” certifications. This, along with an MCSE and successful completion of Microsoft Certification Exam 70-647: “PRO: Windows Server 2008, Enterprise Administrator”, and also successful comletion of the needed “Client certification” category, is enough for an MCITP:SE. Interestingly, this doesn't seem to cover an equivilent for 70-643 (Applications Infrastructure, Configuring), but that doesn't seem to be a problem based on the diagrams from MCSE documentation: Tab #4 (“Upgrade Paths”).

Perhaps see also: MCSA documentation: Tab #4 (“Upgrade Paths”).

Client certification

MCITP Tab 2: Certifications” shows to use either:

Exam 70-620: TS: Configuring Microsoft Windows Vista Client (which, by itself, completes the requirements for the following certification: “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS): Windows Vista, Configuration”) or Exam 70-624: TS: Deploying and Maintaining Windows Vista Client and 2007 Microsoft Office System Desktops (which, by itself, completes the requirements for the following certification: “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS): Business Desktop Deployment” or Exam 70-680: TS: Windows 7, Configuring (which, by itself, completes the requirements for the following certification: “MCTS: Windows 7, Configuration”) or Exam 70-681: TS: Windows 7 and Office 2010, Deploying (which, by itself, completes the requirements for the following certification: “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist: Windows 7 and Office 2010, Deployment”).

The MCSA and MCSE upgrade guides shows one may use 70-620 or 70-624 or 70-680. The option of 70-681 does not appear to be in those lists. However, at the time of this writing (Jan 24, 2011), MCITP Tab 2: Certifications noted, “You will not receive credit for this exam toward the certification until June 2011. Thus, if you take this exam to satisfy the requirements of this certification, the certification will not be reflected in your transcript until June 2011.”

Certifications for Microsoft technologies using the platforms of Windows NT 3.1 through Windows XP and Server 2003
Overview

It seems... There may be multiple MSCE certifications. For instance, a person may be MSCE certified for the Windows 2000 platform.

Wikipedia's article for the “Microsoft Certified Professinal” program: section on MCSE states “The MCSE program began with Windows NT 3.1 and is today one of the most widely known Microsoft certification programs.” For IT (technical support) people, the most famous (and common) of the certifications may be the Microsoft Certitfied Systems Administrator (MCSA) and the more-often-mentioned Microsoft Certitfied Systems Engieneer (MCSE).

The relevance of both the MCSA and the more prestigious MCSE may diminish over time: Microsoft's official home page for the Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) certification notes MCSE is for Windows Server 2003. The page notes, “If you want to be certified on newer technologies, such as Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, Windows Server 2008, or Microsoft SQL Server 2008, the Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP) is the appropriate certification to pursue.” As usage of the specific older operating systems becomes less widespread (which will naturally happen as newer equipment is sold with newer operating systems), the marketplace relevance of these certifications is anticipated to diminish: People who have not yet obtained these certifiations should probably plan to upgrade their certifications if these older variations are obtained.

[#mscsysad]: Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (“MCSA” for “Server 2003”/XP and/or older versions): The certification that has become worth getting before MCSE

Getting the MCSA first makes sense simply because it can be obtained more quickly, with most or all of the MCSA exams also being useful for the more prestigious MCSE.

MCSA tab 2: Certifications shows that getting an MCSA requires: Exam 70-290 and Exam 70-291 and one of the client-side operating system exams (70-680 or 70-620 or 70-270 or 70-210), and an elective (with several to choose from, including some specific CompTIA exams). Most of the electives listed on the MCSA page have also been listed as being valid for the MCSE. A few were not on the MCSE when carefully checked: These include 70-270, 70-210, and MCDST (Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician). Therefore, if the plan is to continue onto the MCSE, it may be worthwhile to try to obtain an MCSA by taking exams other than those few.

Having provided that quick overview/disclaimer of some things to keep in mind, it makes sense to see the list of requirements straight from the source (in case requirements have changed). So, rather than trying to repeat the list here, it is recommended to simply check out the requirements directly from Microsoft by visiting MCSA tab 2: Certifications.

For the client-side operating system section, the exams are also listed on the Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) page (tab 2: Certifications).

[#mscsyeng]: Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (“MCSE” for Windows “Server 2003”/XP and/or older versions)

MCSE tab 2: Certifications shows that MSCE requires all of the same as MCSA, plus exams 70-293 and 70-294, plus one of the exams on design (either 70-297 or 70-298 or 70-285: see below for further notes), plus an elective. MSCE allows an elective of 70-229 or 70-285 or 70-297 or 70-298 or 70-301 (not listed in MCSA electives), and most of the MCSA electives. Actually, the MCSA for Windows Server 2003 is also listed. That makes the inclusion of other items seem strange (because the MCSA would be obtained by the time the other MCSE requirements are otherwise fulfilled), and any exclusion of MCSA electives seem strange (because they can be used to get an MCSA and cause the MCSA to act as the elective fulfillment).

There are also some “specializations” which can be pursued while going for the MCSE. One thing to keep in mind with either of these specializations is:

  • For the exam on client operating systems, choose 70-210 or 70-270 or 70-620. The newer 70-680 is not listed in the security specialization area. (However, the 70-680 is useful for a requirement for the MCSE to MCITP:EA upgrade path. The 70-620 may also fulfill that same requriement.)

For the security specialization:

  • For the exam on design, choose Exam 70-298
  • Prepare to take a Microsoft Certification on security: 70-229, 70-227, 70-250, or 70-351. Also, prepare to take either another one of those same certifications or one of the authorized third party certifications.

For the Messaging specialization:

  • For the design, 70-285 may not be applicable. However, either 70-287 or 70-298 are. Actually, furthermore, there are some retired exams that may also be applicable if they have previously been obtained: 70-219, 70-220, 70-221, or 70-226. Any one of those will fulfill the design requirements for this specialized version, even though 70-219, 70-220, 70-221, and 70-226 do not fulfill the design requirements for the less specialized MCSE.
Upgrade paths to MCSE/MCSA: Not worthwhile (at this time)
The MCSA does not list upgrade paths from prior versions. (Perhaps it is too new ?) The MCSE does list an upgrade path to go from MCSE for Windows 2000 to MSCE for Windows 2003, but both of the required exams for that are retired. Oddly, the MCSE upgrade path from MCSE for Windows NT 4.0 to MCSE to Winodws Server 2003 does still look available. However, this upgrade path does not save a lot of exams: all it really does is to treat the MCSE from Windows 4.0 as fulfillment of an elective. Required exams include the 70-290, 70-291, and 70-270. At that point, a person who has passed those exams would only be one elective away from an MCSA for Server 2003. However, since the MCSE for Windows NT 4.0 does count as the elective, it means that all the requirements for an MCSA end up being fulfilled. However, those are only part of the requirements. Additionally, this upgrade path requires 70-293, 70-294, either 70-210 or 70-270, and either 70-297 or 20-298. A person who takes all of these would only be an elective short of an MCSE. Again, the MSCE from Windows 4.0 counts as that elective, so this “upgrade path” (as listed on MSCE Upgrade Paths) probably doesn't save the test taker any time compared to ignoring the upgrade path option.
Other categories
Categories of certifications have been listed on Microsoft's list of some certification names
Cost

Microsoft certification policies: FAQ: cost of exams notes, “Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS), Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP), and Microsoft Certified Professional Developer (MCPD) exams typically cost US$150 but” may vary and “are subject to change.” ... “Contact Certiport for exact pricing for Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) exams, and contact Prometric for exact pricing for all other certification exams.” (Hyperlinks adjusted.)

A discount, even for a single exam, may be available via a promotion called “second shot”. Microsoft might provide a retake for free, as part of a Microsoft “second shot” examination promotion. (Note that there are conditions, such as the requirement that the first exam was failed. Micrsooft's FAQ for Second Shot: “No Show” policy notes that missing an appointment does not qualify for the retake.) Such a promotion has regularly shown expiration dates, but then has been extended or re-introduced, because this promotion has been seen time and time again over the years. Also, a discount may be available when using Second Shot (even if there is no need to re-take an examination). So, do check into whether such a promotion is actively being offered.

Certification Pack

Signing up for “Second Shot” has also been known to save a test taker “at least 15 percent off single exam pricing”. That discount might be provided only by having a certification pack be purchased; also such a certification pack is then tied to a single person. Second Shot FAQ: Certification Pack states that the vouchers are not “transferable.” ... “Each Second Shot voucher must be used by the same individual. That individual does not have to be identified at the time of purchasing the voucher. The individual will become associated with/tied to the voucher at the time of the first exam.”

That promotion, and/or others, may be available. Prometric's Microsoft page has been known to refer to the “Second Shot offer” and also “discounts and special offers” page.

Scheduling
Start with Second Shot

Microsoft's Second Shot page has listed Step 1 to be “Register for your Second Shot voucher”, and then Step 2 is “Schedule and pay for your exam at Prometric using your voucher code.” So, if Microsoft's Second Shot promotion is going to be used, apparently that should be how to start. To do that, go to Microsoft's Second Shot page, and choose an exam type: either from the “Certification Pack” section or the &dlquo;Single Exam with Second Shot” option. Then choose the appropriate “Register for Voucher” option.

Then, after step 1 (fill out info), read the reamining steps, but do not proceed to Step #2: Wait for E-Mail, until after pressing the “Submit” button to submit the filled out info.

Completion of the exam
Upon success
Expiration

Under the “Security policies” section (of the Microsoft certification FAQ), is an “Exam retake policy” section. It does state, “If a candidate achieves a passing score on an exam, the candidate cannot take it again.” However, MS certification FAQ: required frequency of recertification staes, “MCSE candidates will be required to recertify every three years, while MCSD candidates will recertify every two years.” (This might only apply to newer MCSE certifications, and not older ones designed for older operating systems like Windows 2000? Certification FAQ on existing certifications stated, “Other existing certifications, including legacy MCSE certifications, will be unaffected by this requirement.”) MCSA certification FAQ notes, “This requirement does not apply to MCSA certifications.”

MS Certification exam policy: expired certifications states, “If you do not complete the recertification requirement in the required timeframe, your transcript will show that the certification is ‘Inactive.’”

(Exam Preparation: Recert has been referred to by a blog entry by Microsoft's senior director of Certification and Training: Don Field's blog on Cert program integrity, which itself was referred to by Microsoft Certification: reporting sites. However, that info must have moved as it does not seem to still be there.)

ProMetric page on Microsoft policies states, “Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) certificates are issued in a digital format. Individual may order a printed certificate, which will include shipping and handling fees.”

Upon failure
Retaking
Upon completing an examination without passing

Microsoft might provide a retake for free, as part of a Microsoft “second shot” examination promotion. (See details under the “Cost” section (the previous section).)

Microsoft certification policies FAQ: retaking provides a vague information. Further up on the page, under the “Security policies” section (of the Microsoft certification FAQ), is an “Exam retake policy” section.

Prometric may actually have a page that is more informative: ProMetric page on Microsoft policies. A mandatory 24 hour waiting period is required before a re-take may be performed. Upon the second, third, and fourth failures, a 14 day waiting period is required. After a fifth failure, a year (twelve month) waiting period is required, with a possible noted exception that might be available - “a candidate must submit a request and obtain prior permission from Microsoft.”

Training, Practice test
[#brdmpmcp"]: Brian Dump

See also: disapproved training content for an overview. Ignoring that advice could risk losing all prior Microsoft certifications AND being unable to re-certify.

Microsoft Certification policy warning about “brain dump” sites. Microsoft Certification Security policies mentions “candidate bans”. Microsoft Certification: reporting sites.

For authorized training material: The web pages for individual exams (e.g. 70-680 tab 3) have a section called “Preparation Materials”. That may list sites such as MeasureUp.com and SelfTestSoftware.com.

Misc info

The exam prefix helps to classify the exam. Second Shot Exam FAQ: Qualifying exams has referred to, “All IT professional and developer certification exams (all exams with a 070 prefix)” and “All academic exams (exams with a 072 prefix)” and “Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) commercial exams (prefix 098)”. Prometric has identified the prefix of 072 as “Microsoft Academic”, 073 as “Microsoft IT Academy Exams”, and 088 as “Microsoft Certified Master Programs”.

Redirection page for 70-270, Page for 70-270.

This article says, “It would be stating the obvious to say that the MCITP is harder than the MCSE; it is by a long shot.” ... “Compared to MCITP, the MCSE was a cakewalk.”