Many thanks from me to Netconomy for sponsoring and encouraging me to pass the AZ-303 Azure Certification Exam.
AZ-303 is one of the two exams you need to pass to become a certified Azure Solutions Architect. The other one is AZ-304.
For the preparation I used the free learning path on the Microsoft Docs + one month paid account on Cloudacademy + some info from other resources. The first two are recommended on the official exam page (not anymore). In total I’ve spent about 50 hours preparing.
In my opinion if you’re going to implement solutions on Azure Cloud then it’s better to pass the AZ-900 (Azure Fundamentals) exam and then just poke around the Azure portal and learn things by doing. The AZ-303 checks just too many specific things. You can decide afterwards if you want to pass this level-up from AZ-900 once you practiced enough. Besides it will save you some money.
Nevertheless I’m going to pass the AZ-304 this year and then maybe check the certifications from other cloud providers and build some knowledge in multi-cloud solutions and in comparing the hyperscaler providers.
Last thought. In one of the recent Stackoverflow podcasts there was a question about what is the latest hot programming language for the US IT college students. What they told is that everyone is crazy about getting AWS certified.
I think this is actually not a bad idea. While preparing to the exam I was constantly torn apart imagining physical networks and bare-metal devices and forced myself to think in Virtual Networks, VMs, Scale-sets and Serverless computing.
Yes, that takes us one level up from the actual bits and bytes but it happened before. Just as Java was once thought as too abstract to write an efficient code we might think cloud is to abstract to control the infrastructure. But the reality seems to show that current solutions are good enough – and that’s what matters.