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This blog has been updated on 20th June 2018.
AWS has launched a comprehensive certification program and AWS has been quite dynamic to add new certifications and update the existing ones. Clearing AWS certification has become one of the necessities for young aspirants and experienced professionals in the industry.
Types of AWS Certification
Under the AWS certification program AWS provides the below certifications:
AWS broadly has three verticals for different roles one could be performing with AWS viz. Architect, Developer and SysOps. They have two levels viz. Associate & Professional. Recently AWS also has added three professional level certifications for Big Data, Security and Networking Specialty. Clearing any one of the Associate is mandatory to take up the specialty certifications.
What does AWS Solutions Architect Certification consists of?
According to AWS: “Earning an AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate Level demonstrates you have the ability to identify and define requirements for an AWS-based application, as well as follow best practices for building secure and reliable applications on the AWS platform.”
The certification covers almost all the services like EC2, VPC, EBS, S3, Route 53, IAM, RDS, SQS, DynamoDB, etc. Although a lot of the questions are based on popular services like VPC, EC2 and S3, you can expect questions from all the services. And although the questions about these services are more high-level having hands-on knowledge is definitely a must.
The exam is designed to test ones’ knowledge on 5 Domains.
1. Design Resilient Architectures (34%)
This domain assess the test takers ability to design highly available and scalable architectures on AWS. Designing fault tolerant, highly available, decoupled and complex multi tier architectures would be the core focus area of the questions in this domain.
2. Define Performant Architectures (24%)
This domain deals with various performance management scenarios. This includes auto scaling, choosing storage based on performance requirement, caching services, database tuning, etc. would be the focus area here.
3. Specify Secure Applications and Architectures (26%)
This domain has questions about various data encryption techniques in S3, various data protection mechanism in EC2 like security groups, use of IAM roles and users, network security using VPC, etc. This also has use case kind of questions about what would be best method to protect data given a particular use case / scenario.
4. Design Cost-Optimized Architectures (10%)
This domain would test the knowledge of pricing of various services and validates the test takers ability to use cost optimized storage and compute and build cost effective solutions on AWS.
5. Define Operationally Excellent Architectures (6%)
This domain deals with operations issues and troubleshooting the same on AWS. Building self healing applications would be the core focus in this domain.
How to take the AWS Solutions Architect Certification test
One can register for the certification through AWS Training and Certification dashboard here.
How to prepare for AWS Solutions Architect Certification test
The best way to prepare for the test is to have hands-on experience in working with AWS services. AWS also has various whitepapers that you can refer here. We also regularly conduct AWS Certification BootCamps and if you are interested to join, please click here and fill out the form.
I also added sample questions for AWS Solutions Architect Certification. Try it out here.
Please share your views in the comments section below if you also took the certification exam, or if you have specific questions.
WRITTEN BY Bhavesh Goswami
Bhavesh Goswami is the Founder & CEO of CloudThat Technologies. He is a leading expert in the Cloud Computing space with over a decade of experience. He was in the initial development team of Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) at Amazon Web Services (AWS) in Seattle. and has been working in the Cloud Computing and Big Data fields for over 12 years now. He is a public speaker and has been the Keynote Speaker at the ‘International Conference on Computer Communication and Informatics’. He also has authored numerous research papers and patents in various fields.