On Tuesday, May 20th, I sat for the VCAP Desktop Administrator Exam in Milwaukee. The exam covers a broad range of topics on Horizon View, Persona Management, and other related infrastructure components such as Group Policy. Although I don’t work with View on a daily basis anymore, I wanted to sit for this exam as $work will be starting a Horizon View implementation this summer.
I received the official score report on Thursday night, and I did not pass. I scored a 278 out of 500.
My exam experience mirrors Jason Shiplett’s first attempt. I ran into an issue early in the exam that cost me time – time that I could have used to complete a few of the questions that I had in progress when the exam ended.
I didn’t prep as well as I should have before this exam. I read through the blueprint, and I reviewed Chris Beckett’s VCAP DTA study guides. Despite these two resources and a lot of hands-on experience with View, I went into the exam with some huge gaps in my knowledge in areas of the product suite that I hadn’t worked with in my lab or a production environment.
Unfortunately, the agreement that I had with my wife was that I would only get one crack at the exam before VMworld, and I will need to wait until August before I can take it again. That will give me a little more time, though, to work on the areas where I need improvement.
Keys to the Exam
1. Time Management is critical. You have a very short time to complete the 23 questions on the exam. Spending too much time on one area will hurt you. You may also need to bounce around between questions. I tried to use the materials my testing center provided to keep track of where I was.
2. If there is a task that you don’t know how to do, skip it and come back to it later. You’ll lose too much time if you’re searching the documentation.
3. Hands-on Experience is a Must. This is a practical exam, and you’re tested on successfully completing tasks. You won’t be able to pass this exam if you don’t actually put View in a lab and try to work through the blueprint.
4. Read the blueprint and Chris Beckett’s notes that I linked to above.