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MCSE Windows Server 2003 upgrade paths and retirement deadlines RRS feed

  • Question

  • ( I think sorting out all the certification options by itself should earn some credit towards certification, but let's not go there...)

    I'm currently MCSE on Windows Server 2003 and did so by upgrading while possible from NT4.0 onwards (-;

    So now that 2012 is in the wild the upgrade paths are fading away towards july 31 but certifications have changed also...

    My organization is facing job cuts and certification starts to be important again for my resume.

    So the goal is a 'current certification' with the least amount of ... effort (you'll all recognise the latter phrase from the exams) and also not being pressed for time.

    Sofar I gathered this much:

    A fresh MCSE: Server Infrastructure takes 5 exams on an OS I haven't really worked with and leaves you without a current certification until you pass the first three (70-410, 70-411, 70-412).

    Upgrading to 2008 MCITP: Enterprise Administrator (which would be the logical choice being the 2008 equivalent of MCSE 2003) is pointless because there's no extra credit in it towards the current MCSA or MCSE certifications. It takes 3 exams, 2 of which expire on july 31 (70-649 and 70-647) which is gonna cause some serious stress trying to pass them in just 4 months while also having a job, kids, wife, etc.

    Upgrading to 2008 MCITP: Server Administrator seems rather attractive. It takes 2 exams, 70-648 and 70-646 of which only 70-648 expires on july 31. 70-646 doesn't seem to expire anytime soon because it also earns credit towards the current MCSA 2008 certification.

    From what I understand passing 70-648 and 70-646 as a MCSE 2003 (= also MCSA 2003 on my transcript) makes me MCITP: Server Administrator ('old' 2008 certification) and MCSA 2008, which is current.

    Current MCITP: Server & Enterprise Administrators could confirm this as I've read that they automatically became MCSA 2008.

    From there on one could take 70-417 to upgrade to MCSA 2012.

    And then 2 exams to get the MCSE on 2012...

    In short:

    MCSE/MCSA 2003 + 70-648 before july 31 + 70-646 = current MCSA 2008

    MCSA 2008 + 70-417 = current MCSA 2012

    MCSA 2012 + 2 'elective' exams = MCSE: <whatever field I choose>

    Is this correct?


    • Edited by UniMatrix Friday, March 15, 2013 2:24 PM inconsitencies in naming the certifications
    Friday, March 15, 2013 2:20 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    Upgrading to MCSE: Server Infrastructure will take you 5 exams (70-649, 70-646, 70-417 70-413, 70-414). You will get MCITP/MCSA 2008 with two exams and MCSA 2012 with three exams during the 5 exams.

    Not upgrading will also require 5 exams for MCSE: Server infrastructure (70-410, 70-411,70-412, 70-413, 70-414) You will get MCSA Server 2012 after three exams during the 5 exams.

    For 70-410, 70-411 and 70-412, 70-413 and 70-414 you can buy the self-paced study books from Microsoft Press.

    http://www.microsoft-press.co.uk/scripts/product.asp?ref=310985

    http://www.microsoft-press.co.uk/scripts/product.asp?ref=310896

    http://www.microsoft-press.co.uk/scripts/product.asp?ref=310952

    As MCSE: Server infrastructure is your end goal you will have to learn about Server 2012 at some point anyway so why do the upgrade? I would go for a new MCSA/MCSE 2012 certification.

    Always make sure that you keep your personal value for employers (current and future) up to date with valid certifications and required knowledge in case you might need to switch jobs


    Danny van Dam, Citrix CCIA/CCEE Microsoft MCSE Server Infrastructure/MCSE Desktop Infrastructure/MCSA Server 2008, Cisco CCNA, VMware VCP 3/4/5 http://www.citrix-guru.com http://www.rds-support.eu

    • Marked as answer by UniMatrix Wednesday, March 20, 2013 8:02 PM
    Saturday, March 16, 2013 8:57 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Your overall logic looks good.  One thing that looks off though is the upgrade to MCITP: Server Administrator.  You list 70-648 and 70-646.  However, I think you'll need 70-649 and 70-646.  See http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/windows-server-certification.aspx for the upgrade list where it shows this.  BTW - I can confirm that I automatically got the MCSA (and note that one of the certifications that I hold is the MCITP: Enterprise Administrator).

    Regarding the expirations - while 70-649 expires on 7/31/13... be aware that 70-646 was released 5 months after 70-649.  I expect that the 70-646 expiration won't be too far behind.

    Regarding the two paths that you can take - you can take 5 exams on Windows Server 2012 or you can upgrade your way to the new MCSE.  Here are my thoughts:

    • Take 5 Windows Server 2012 exams.  Pros - probably learn more since the material is all new, likely retain more as more study time typically translates to more retention, probably be more ready to tackle projects immediately.  Cons - it will probably take more time to get the MCSE since more study time is required, you may have to buy more study material since it will be new, you will have a reduced selection of study material (and some of it won't have much in the way of reviews yet), and you run a higher risk of failing (thus extending the time/effort/money).
    • Upgrade your way to the MCSE.  Pros - quickest route, likely need to buy less study material, least effort.  Cons - may not learn as much as taking 5 Windows Server 2012 exams, may not retain as much knowledge on Windows Server 2012.  Reality is - you mentioned what appears to be a busy schedule - wife/kids/job/etc.  Your ultimate goal is the MCSE.  I'd go the upgrade route.  You've also had a history of success with the upgrade route.  Makes sense in all ways to continue with that now.

    I'd recommend going with the MCSE: Server Infrastructure (which may be what you are already planning on doing).

    Good luck and have some fun!

    Brian

    Saturday, March 16, 2013 4:33 AM
  • Hi,

    Upgrading to MCSE: Server Infrastructure will take you 5 exams (70-649, 70-646, 70-417 70-413, 70-414). You will get MCITP/MCSA 2008 with two exams and MCSA 2012 with three exams during the 5 exams.

    Not upgrading will also require 5 exams for MCSE: Server infrastructure (70-410, 70-411,70-412, 70-413, 70-414) You will get MCSA Server 2012 after three exams during the 5 exams.

    For 70-410, 70-411 and 70-412, 70-413 and 70-414 you can buy the self-paced study books from Microsoft Press.

    http://www.microsoft-press.co.uk/scripts/product.asp?ref=310985

    http://www.microsoft-press.co.uk/scripts/product.asp?ref=310896

    http://www.microsoft-press.co.uk/scripts/product.asp?ref=310952

    As MCSE: Server infrastructure is your end goal you will have to learn about Server 2012 at some point anyway so why do the upgrade? I would go for a new MCSA/MCSE 2012 certification.

    Always make sure that you keep your personal value for employers (current and future) up to date with valid certifications and required knowledge in case you might need to switch jobs


    Danny van Dam, Citrix CCIA/CCEE Microsoft MCSE Server Infrastructure/MCSE Desktop Infrastructure/MCSA Server 2008, Cisco CCNA, VMware VCP 3/4/5 http://www.citrix-guru.com http://www.rds-support.eu

    • Marked as answer by UniMatrix Wednesday, March 20, 2013 8:02 PM
    Saturday, March 16, 2013 8:57 AM
    Moderator
  • One of the reasons that I mentioned that 2012 study material is a bit harder to come by is that it is indeed a bit harder to come by.  The three links above are all for books that are not published yet.  Currently, they are slated for the end of September, assuming the schedule doesn't slip.

    Brian

    Saturday, March 16, 2013 7:45 PM
  • I agree with Brian that the books that I have listed will not be available before the end of September, if you want to start right now then you will be able to find the books for the upgrade exams to MCTIP as Brain already mentioned.


    Danny van Dam, Citrix CCIA/CCEE Microsoft MCSE Server Infrastructure/MCSE Desktop Infrastructure/MCSA Server 2008, Cisco CCNA, VMware VCP 3/4/5 http://www.citrix-guru.com http://www.rds-support.eu


    Sunday, March 17, 2013 7:16 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks for all the input guys!

    Looking at http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/windows-server-certification.aspx#item-ID0EAAAAAEBA

    It lists:

    Upgrade your Windows Server 2003 certification

    Current certification

    Certification goal

    Required exam

    Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator on Windows Server 2003

    MCSA: Windows Server 2008

    and

    MCITP: Server Administrator

    and

    So I would think 648 & 646 is correct.

    I agree on 'having to learn 2012 anyway' and in fact I'm doing so at the moment in the imho best way: hands on. Currently working on Hyper-V clusters, CSV and VDI, also interested in the new file server options, dedupe, CSV etc.

    Monday, March 18, 2013 8:44 AM
  • Hi,

    The list you provided is for upgrading from MCSA to MCITP, but you have MCSE 2003 so you will have to start with 70-649 (as Brian already mentioned in his reply)

    http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exam.aspx?id=70-649

    http://www.mcitpguide.com/mcse-upgrade-to-mcitp/:

    MCSE Upgrade to MCITP: Enterprise Administrator

    (3 Exams)
    70-649 MCTS: Upgrading from Windows Server 2003 MCSE to, Windows Server 2008, Technology Specializations
    70-680 MCTS: Windows 7, Configuring
    70-647 MCITP: Windows Server 2008, Enterprise Administrator

    MCSE Upgrade to MCITP: Server Administrator

    (2 Exams)
    70-649 MCTS: Upgrading from Windows Server 2003 MCSE to, Windows Server 2008, Technology Specializations
    70-646 MCITP: Windows Server 2008, Server Administrator


    Danny van Dam, Citrix CCIA/CCEE Microsoft MCSE Server Infrastructure/MCSE Desktop Infrastructure/MCSA Server 2008, Cisco CCNA, VMware VCP 3/4/5 http://www.citrix-guru.com http://www.rds-support.eu

    Monday, March 18, 2013 7:23 PM
    Moderator
  • I wrote a Wiki today on upgrading from MCSA/MCSE 2003 to MCSA: Server 2012:

    http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/16483.upgrade-from-mcsamcse-2003-to-mcsa-server-2012.aspx


    Danny van Dam, Citrix CCIA/CCEE Microsoft MCSE Server Infrastructure/MCSE Desktop Infrastructure/MCSA Server 2008, Cisco CCNA, VMware VCP 3/4/5 http://www.citrix-guru.com http://www.rds-support.eu

    Wednesday, March 20, 2013 9:32 AM
    Moderator
  • Hey nice Wiki Marcel!

    Reading it I get the impression that 70-646 also has to be passed before july 31 to get MCSA 2008 allthough 70-646 is not retiring on that date (yet)?

    Wednesday, March 20, 2013 10:49 AM
  • You are right, 70-646 is not the list of exams that retire on 31 July but the MCITP: Server admin will retire on 31 July. For upgrading you will need to pass 70-646 before 31 July.

    My name is not Marcel ;-)

    Retiring exams:  

    Retiring on July 31, 2013

    70-169: TS: Windows Small Business Server 7, Configuring

    70-290: Managing and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Environment

    70-270: Installing, Configuring, and Administering Microsoft Windows XP Professional

    70-291: Implementing, Managing, and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Network Infrastructure

    70-293: Planning and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Network Infrastructure

    70-294: Planning, Implementing, and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Active Directory Infrastructure

    70-297: Designing a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Active Directory and Network Infrastructure

    70-298: Designing Security for a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Network

    70-299: Implementing and Administering Security in a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Network

    70-643: TS: Windows Server 2008 Applications Infrastructure, Configuring

    70-647: Pro: Windows Server 2008, Enterprise Administrator

    70-648: Upgrading your MCSA on Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008, Technology Specialist

    70-649: Upgrading your MCSE on Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008, Technology Specialist

    74-679: Windows Server 2008 Hosted Environments, Configuring and Managing

    70-690: Windows Server 2008 HPC Environments, Configuring and Managing

    70-691: Windows Server 2008 HPC Environments, Developing

    70-699: Windows Server 2003, MCSA Security Specialization Skills Update


    Danny van Dam, Citrix CCIA/CCEE Microsoft MCSE Server Infrastructure/MCSE Desktop Infrastructure/MCSA Server 2008, Cisco CCNA, VMware VCP 3/4/5 http://www.citrix-guru.com http://www.rds-support.eu

    Wednesday, March 20, 2013 11:26 AM
    Moderator
  • Sorry 'bout the name Danny!


    Wednesday, March 20, 2013 7:41 PM
  • No problem! :-)

    Danny van Dam, Citrix CCIA/CCEE Microsoft MCSE Server Infrastructure/MCSE Desktop Infrastructure/MCSA Server 2008, Cisco CCNA, VMware VCP 3/4/5 http://www.citrix-guru.com http://www.rds-support.eu

    Thursday, March 21, 2013 10:03 AM
    Moderator