Great System Administrator Certifications to Boost Your Career

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Great System Administrator Certifications to Boost Your Career

System Administrator Certifications

More and more businesses and organizations depend on complex IT systems for their daily communications and workflow; therefore, professionals who hold a System Administrator Certification know how to manage and maintain these systems are in high demand. This demand is not likely to change any time soon. In order to keep up with the new developments in IT technology, it is important for professionals to keep themselves educated and to keep up with the current IT certifications as credentials for their expertise. This is an overview of several great system administrator certifications that will give your IT career a boost:

System Administrator Certifications

Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE)

The MCSE or “Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert” certification is part of the Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) program. It offers the following five focus areas with different key technologies:

  • MCSE: Business Applications (focusing on Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Dynamics 365)
  • MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure (Microsoft Azure and Windows Server Virtualization)
  • MCSE: Data Management and Analytics (Microsoft SQL Server with SQL administration, on-site as well as cloud-based data solutions)
  • MCSE: Mobility (Windows System Center)
  • MCSE: Productivity (Microsoft Office/Microsoft Office 365)

TechSherpas offers several options for MCSE certification training. Find out more about them here.


CompTIA Network+

CompTIA Server+ is a vendor-neutral certification that ranks high among the system administrator certifications as well. Here at TechSherpas we offers a variety of different CompTIA learning solutions for different levels.

If you are an entry-level computer support professional looking for a career as a network administrator, then CompTIA Network+ might be a good choice for you. You should possess basic Windows end-user computer skills to successfully participate in this course.


CompTIA Linux+™ Powered by LPI

TechSherpas CompTIA training course, CompTIA Linux+™ Powered by LPI prepares you to become a CompTIA Linux+™ Certified Professional. When taking this course, you should at least possess a user-level knowledge/experience with the Linux operating system.

TechSherpas also offers several courses that you can take to be prepared:

  • UNIX and Linux: Fundamentals
  • UNIX and Linux: Advanced User
  • CompTIA A+: A Comprehensive Approach (a helpful addition, but not required)


C)VDE Certified Virtual Desktop Engineer

If you are already experienced with VMware vSphere (2+ years) but new to the VMware Horizon Suite, the C)VDE Certified Virtual Desktop Engineer training course will familiarize you with the installation and configuration of Horizon View, as well as, the components. The successful completion will put you above the level of VCP-DT.


For more information on which training course is best for you, or for any other related questions, simply send us a message or give us a call!



How Can a Microsoft Azure Certification Boost Your Career?

More and more businesses are using cloud-computing technology. Therefore, there is an increasing demand for people that possess the required skills better known as a Microsoft Azure Certification. One reason this technology has become popular is its ability to help saving on company investment of server space. Another reason for its popularity is because employees increasingly need to be able to access their files from somewhere else other than their stationary office work space. If you need to show that you possess cloud-computing skills and know how to apply them, a Microsoft Azure Certification provides you with just the right advantage over the job-seeking competition.

Microsoft Azure Certification

Microsoft Azure and the Microsoft Azure Certification

In our recent blog post, we have already elaborated on the six different Microsoft Certification Paths and the Microsoft Certification Map: The MCSA Certification (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) with 17 different focus area certifications that form the stepping stones to achieving that goal.

  • one of the five MCSE (Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer) certifications
  • or the MCSD certification, which stands for “Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer.”

Depending on which focus areas and key technologies you focus on while achieving your MCSA Certification, you can set the path towards a Microsoft Azure related MCSE/MCSD certification.


Why invest into obtaining an official certification?

It is true: Nowadays, there are many ways to achieve knowledge and to hone one’s skills. One can read books, subscribe to podcasts and newsletters, watch Youtube videos and much more. Theoretically, you might be able to work with Microsoft Azure without any specific certification in that area.

If you have chosen information technology and cloud computing as your actual career fields, then these kinds of self-taught skills are probably not enough to get ahead. Anyone can claim they possess the skills and practical experience, but if you want to make a sustainable career out of those, you are going to need to show corresponding credentials as a recognizable proof of your expertise.

When you are looking for a new job, your CV usually is the first source of information for your potential future employer, and they probably have to decide between a multitude of applicants. A convincing CV is extremely important, because this phase of the application-process is the first hurdle you need to master in order to make it to a personal interview. An official and industry-recognized Microsoft Azure Certification in your CV documents that you have participated in a structured education and made it successfully through the required exams is important. This does not only show your personal dedication, but also provides a certain security for the future employer, that they will be able to rely on you having received your education and certifications by a reputable and recognized provider.

See also:


The Microsoft Certification Paths and the Microsoft Certification Map

In our last blog post we discussed two Microsoft certifications – MCSA and MCSE – as entry-level and mid-level IT certifications to boost your career as an IT professional. Today we would like to take a closer look at the six Microsoft certification paths for the certifications of MCSA, MCSE and MCSD: the Microsoft Certification Map.

What do the Microsoft Certification Paths show?

There are six different Microsoft Certification paths as part of the Microsoft Certification Map: 17 MCSA focus areas, 5 MCSEs and 1 MCSD. The Microsoft Certification Map shows how you can combine these focus areas to stepping-stones towards achieving the desired MCSE or MCSD certification.

While MCSA (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) is an entry-level certification that can stand on its own, it is also part of the certification path (or track) to an MCSE (Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer) or MCSD (Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer) certification.

The 17 MCSA focus areas are (in alphabetical order):

  • BI Reporting
  • Cloud Platform
  • Data Engineering with Azure
  • Linux on Azure
  • Machine Learning
  • Microsoft Dynamics 365
  • Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Operations
  • Office 365
  • SQL 2016 BI Development
  • SQL 2016 Database Administration
  • SQL 2016 Database Development
  • SQL Server 2012/2014
  • Universal Windows Platform
  • Web Applications
  • Windows 10
  • Windows Server 2012
  • Windows Server 2016


Microsoft Certification Map

Microsoft Certification Map


The Microsoft Certification Map explained

The Certification Map with its six Microsoft Certification Paths shows you, which of the different MCSA (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) focus area certifications form the path to each of the five MCSE (Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer) certifications and the MCSD certification.

The five MCSE certifications/focus areas with their different key technologies are:

  • Business Applications
  • Cloud Platform and Infrastructure
  • Productivity
  • Data Management and Analytics
  • Mobility

In addition, there is one MCSD certification path (Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer) within the focus area.

  • App Builder with the key technologies: Azure, C#. SharePoint. Office Client, Visual Studio, .Net and HTML5

The have already mentioned stepping-stones for each of these six certification paths which are:

  • combinations of the above mentioned 17 MCSA focus areas
  • PLUS one passed exam from an elective exam pool

These exam pools are periodically updated, and so it is important for you to always consider the current version of the Microsoft Certification Paths.

You can find our most current version of the certification (road-)map here, or by clicking on the image above. This will lead you to not only an enlarged version of the map, but also to a more detailed info graphic for each of the certification paths.





3 of the Best Entry Level IT Certifications to Boost Your Career

If you want to make yourself a career in the field of information technology, you should consider achieving one of the well-established, entry level IT certifications as a credential for your IT skills.

Why are Entry Level IT Certifications important?

Many people are nowadays interested in computer and IT subjects, which is a continually changing and evolving career path.  An IT Certification serves as a standardized tool to help potential employers or customers to assess your knowledge and skill set and make an informed decision about hiring you.

Which of the Entry Level IT Certifications is right for you?

Entry level IT Certifications

CompTIA A+

A CompTIA A+ certification provides a starting point and foundation for your IT career as an entry level IT technician. A CompTIA A + technician offers technical and operational IT support and maintains, troubleshoots and repairs PCs, mobile devices, operating systems and peripheral equipment.

TechSherpas CompTIA A+ training course provides qualified training and preparation for your CompTIA A+ certification for participants who already possess basic computer skills.


Cisco Certified Entry Level Technicial (CCENT) and Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA)

For aspiring network technicians, a Cisco Certification as Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) and/or Cisco Certified Entry Level Technician (CCENT) as a stepping-stone to becoming an associate is the way to go. Typical job titles for professionals with such a CCNA certification are “Systems Administrator,” “Network Administrator” or “Network Engineer.”


Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA) and Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE)

The Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA) is an entry level IT certification and a stepping-stone to becoming a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE). Both certifications are part of the Microsoft Certified Professionals (MCP) program.

There are 17 different focus areas for an MCSA, among them:

  • BI Reporting
  • Cloud Platform
  • Office 365
  • Windows 10
  • SQL 2016 Database Administration

Depending on which area or areas you want to focus on, you can select the particular MCSA accordingly. You can also group several of these focus area certifications (as illustrated in our Microsoft Certification Map). This enables you to achieve the mid-level Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) certification.

TechSherpas is a Microsoft Gold Partner and as such specially certified by Microsoft to provide training and certifications for MCSA and MCSE. Have a look at our course catalog to get a better overview about the various training courses and learning solutions that help you to get your IT career started or better yet, take it to the next level.




All about the MCSE Certification

Among IT professionals, “MCSE Certification” has certainly become a buzzword with a certain ring to it. But what is the MCSE Certification? How do you achieve it, and what are your career options once you are certified? Let us look into that a bit more closely!

MCSE Certification

First of all: What does “MCSE Certification” actually mean?

MCSE is a part of the Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) certification program. It stands for “Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert”. You can either use it as a certification on its own or consider it one of the “building blocks” of the MCP certification.

For your MCSE Certification you have the choice among five different focus areas:

  • MCSE: Business Applications (key technologies: Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Microsoft SQL Server)
  • MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure (key technologies: Microsoft Azure and Windows Server Virtualization, incl. data center, identity and systems management, cloud technologies, virtualization and storage as well as networking)
  • MCSE: Data Management and Analytics (key technology: Microsoft SQL Server, incl. SQL administration, data solutions etc., cloud-based and on-site)
  • MCSE: Mobility (key technology: Windows System Center, incl. device management in respect to “BYOD” (as in: “bring your own device” work environment)
  • MCSE: Productivity (key technologies: Microsoft Office and Microsoft Office 365, incl. skill development for moving your business into the cloud to increase productivity as well as flexibility while also reducing data loss and improving the security of your data)

MCSE Certification at TechSherpas

Techsherpas offers a variety of MCSE certification learning solutions, especially in the character of boot camps. These offer you the possibility to achieve the required skills within a very short but focused period of time (i.e. a few days). You can read about the benefits of learning boot camp-style in our blog post about the boot camp learning method.

If you prefer a classroom environment, you can make use of our training course options in one of our local training facilities. (For more information, see the “ICL” marker in our course catalog, which stands for “In-Classroom Learning”). We offer our courses at various locations and various dates throughout the year. However, if you prefer to participate from your own computer at home or the office, we provide Virtual Live Training (“VLT”) as well.

You also have the option to start with an MCSA certification (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) first, which as such is a stepping-stone to obtain the certification of MCSE.




Take a few simple steps to earn an MCSA/MCSE Cloud Platform & Infrastructure Microsoft Certifications

Certified IT professionals, now more than ever, are being sought out by corporations to ensure they get qualified individuals to run their organizations more efficiently. The streamlined Microsoft Certifications were created with job roles in mind. Depending on the role an IT professional will have, there are certification pathways in place to get them the skills sets and qualifications they will need to fill their role.

Here, we will breakdown the Cloud Platform and Infrastructure certification tracks. There are four pathways to earn the MCSA, which is the first step in earning the MCSE.

 Microsoft Cloud Platform & Infrastructure Certification Pathway

  Microsoft Certifications:

  • MCSA Windows Server 2012,
  • MCSA Windows Server 2016
  • MCSA Linux on Azure (including LFCS)
  • MCSA Cloud Platform
  • MCSE Cloud Platform & Infrastructure

Earning an MCSA requires you to take 2-3 courses/exams (depending on the certificate you are going for). Once you have earned any of the MCSA’s listed above, you only need to take 1 elective course/exam to earn the MCSE.

Target job roles:

  • MCSA level: Cloud administrator, network or computer systems administrator, computer network specialist, cloud specialist in Linux
  • MCSE level: Senior cloud administrator, cloud architect, cloud engineer in Linux, computer support specialist, information security analyst

You can earn an MCSA by taking a bootcamp, or purchasing a bundle. There are Live instructor-led options as well as On-Demand options – all created with you in mind, so there is something to fit every budget and schedule. Sign up today! Get certified!

Boot Camps


  • MCSA: Cloud Platform / MCSE: Cloud Platform & Infrastructure
  • MCSA: Linux on Azure / MCSE: Cloud Platform & Infrastructure
  • MCSA: Windows Server 2016 / MCSE: Cloud Platform & Infrastructure

Have questions? Feel free to reach out to us! Our team is ready to guide you towards the right path to fit your learning goals, budget, and schedule.


Latest Microsoft Updates for September 2017

If you have Microsoft products you will quickly see that regular updates are available to move your system along. This September, there are some major updates and service packs available through Windows Update.  Here is what you should look out for, especially if you are a Microsoft Certified Professional.

Microsoft Certified Professional Employees Should Watch for these Product Updates

Windows 10 Updates

Windows 10 Version 1073 is the latest major update to Windows 10.  They’ve labeled this the “Creators Update”.  In this update the following changes have occurred:

  • The Windows Imaging and Configuration Designer has been relabeled the Windows Configuration Designer.  It is available in the Windows Store as an app.
  • You can now create provisioning packages using the Windows Configuration Designer to enroll devices in the Azure Active Directory.
  • You can now turn off Windows Spotlight on Action Center, and turn off the Windows Welcome Experience.
  • Customized Start and taskbar layouts can be applied to devices using Windows 10 and Windows 10 Enterprise and Education.
  • Cortana and Azure AD join forces for easier access and shared Cortana capabilities
  • New features added to Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection
  • Small updates have been made to various aspects of Windows for Business

Windows 8 Updates

Windows 8.1 is the latest major update to Windows 8, and has been codenamed “Blue”.  In this update, the following changes have occurred:

  • The Start screen has many small new features, most notably an extended “All Apps” view.  This view allows you to sort small and extra-large sizes for tiles.  Additional customization options were also added.
  • Tighter integration with windows-based cloud services
  • Increased security, including a device encryption update
  • Support for Workplace Join feautre
  • Support for 3-D printing

Choose YOUR OWN path towards Microsoft Certification

Why should you get Microsoft certified? This is a question that many students ponder. The truth is IT certifications are a great way to increase your credibility for the job. Employers are looking for candidates that have hands-on training, are officially certified, and can demonstrate they are ready for the job. Microsoft certifications prove to your employer that you have completed hands- on training, providing real life experience, and are knowledgeable about the technology. Certifications will help knock out the competition and increase your chances of employment. With a few certifications under your belt, your career can skyrocket to a new level!

Skyrocket Your Career with a Microsoft Certification!

Certifications are a great way to spice up your resumes and add an additional credential. With more employees entering the IT field, it’s important to stay on top of the game and increase your credibility in your career. A certification can be the deciding factor during your next job interview. Studies indicate that candidates who are officially certified receive more job offers in the IT field. So what are you waiting for? It’s time to get certified!

Choose the certification path that’s right for you

TechSherpas is committed to helping you achieve your career goals, whether you desire to be a Project Manager or Security Engineer. We are proud to offer our Microsoft Certification Bundles that provide you with everything you need to get certified! Our discounted bundles include:

  • Official Microsoft courses and course material (Courses are live instructor-led with remote student capability)
  • Practice exams (180 days of access to practice tests and exam engines)
  • Official Microsoft exams

Students may choose from Windows Server 2012, SQL Server, Windows 7 & 8, SharePoint, Office 365, Exchange Server, Visual Studio, Lync Server, or System Center. Different levels of certification are also available – MTA, MCSA, MCSE, MCSD.

Looking for an accelerated path towards certification? Check out the Microsoft Certification Boot Camps.  This options is a faster pace and gets you certified in days.

There is no typical student. People choose to get trained and certified for different reasons. People have different learning styles. People have different schedules, flexibility, and budget. As a training company, we understand this and is why we have developed two different Microsoft certification paths – to appeal and accommodate a diverse client base. These options let the student choose the path that is right for them. What is holding you back from earning your certification?

The Pathway to Database Expertise– Becoming an MCSE in Data Platform & Business Intelligence

“You can have data without information, but you cannot have information without data.” – Daniel Keys Moran. Data is everywhere we look. In this age of the internet, Google, and high tech reporting tools, businesses and people are flooded with an abundance of data. The flooding of data can be overwhelming, and difficult to analyze and take away valuable MCSE-300x300information. Isn’t data collected in order to provide information to assist with making important decisions? That’s kind of the point, right? That is precisely why data savvy people are so important to successful companies now more than ever. Data experts are needed to collect, organize, and analyze the flood of data from limitless resources.

The Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE)

One way people become experts in their particular line of work is through education and certifications. Studies show that 91% of hiring managers consider certifications as part of their hiring criteria. (Microsoft, Microsoft Certification Program Satisfaction Study, April 2012) With this being said, certification should be high on the To-Do-List to prepare yourself for success, right? Right!

Within the IT world there are several certifying organizations. Globally recognized, Microsoft is one of the largest. Microsoft offers various certification levels that fall under four main umbrellas (below). A Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) certification allows IT professionals to prove their ability to build innovative solutions across multiple technologies, both on-premises and in the cloud. There are currently eight different MCSE certifications that fall within 2 of the 4 main umbrellas:

Client – MTA Server

  • MCSE Desktop Infrastructure
  • MCSE Server Infrastructure
  • MCSE Private Cloud
  • MCSE Communications
  • MCSE Messaging
  • MCSE SharePoint


  • MCSE Data Platform
  • MCSE Business Intelligence

Developer – MCSD

The focus here is on MCSE. To get up to speed on the other levels of Microsoft certifications read the Certification blog here.

The Database Pathway – SQL Server Expert

The Database Pathway provides IT professionals with invaluable, sought after SQL Server skills. Data Platform courses teach how to demonstrate the broad skills needed to administer and build solutions for enterprise scale organizations. These courses also teach the design of database solutions for Microsoft SQL Server 2012 and the development of Microsoft SQL Server 2012 databases.

The Pathway to earn a Database or SQL Server MCSE begins the same, with an MCSA in SQL Server 2012, and then branches off into two distinctive areas. Depending on their job roles and career goals, IT professionals can choose from two different database pathways:

  • MCSE Data Platform – for database professionals who build enterprise-scale data solutions on-premises or in cloud environments
  • MCSE Business  Intelligence – for database professionals who develop and deploy business intelligence solutions and reports


As illustrated above, interested MCSE candidates should obtain the following certifications and training in a specific order:

  • MTA
    • Database Fundamentals (40364) – 3 Day Course
  • MCSA – SQL Server 2012
    • Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (10774) – 5 Day Course
    • Administering Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases (10775) – 5 Day Course
    • Implementing a Data Warehouse with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (10777) –  5 Day Course

Then choose from these two paths:

  • MCSE – Data Platform
    • Developing Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Databases (10776) – 5 Day Course
    • Designing Database Solutions for Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (20465) – 5 Day Course
  • MCSE – Business Intelligence
    • Implementing Data Models and Reports with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (10778) – 5 Day Course
    • Designing Business Intelligence Solutions with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 (20467) – 5 Day Course

For pricing and to register for these courses visit our MCSE Database Courses page. Be sure to also check out our promotion page to receive a discount and learn how to earn free MCSE training!

TechSherpas ’ headquarters in Tampa, FL is a Prometric testing center. When you are ready to take the exam, visit the Prometric website, locate TechSherpas and select a time and date to come in and sit for your exam. The MCSE exam cost is $150.00.

Why take certified Microsoft training courses before taking the certification exam?

When you take an exam you want to be as prepared as possible. This will ensure that you won’t have to retake the exam, and more importantly, it also gives you the SQL skills that hiring managers and companies are looking for.Sixty-four percent of IT hiring managers rate certifications as having extremely high or high value in validating the skills and expertise of job candidates. (CompTIA, Employer Perceptions of IT Training and Certification, January 2011). Having a certification is one thing, and having experience and skills are a completely different thing. The truth is, hiring managers are looking for both! Getting extensive training, with hands-on labs give you more experience working within databases, in real work-place situations.

What kind of jobs and pay can I expect from this certification?

So you registered for classes, prepared for the MCSE certification exam, and passed! What’s next? What kind of job can you expect from having this credential on your resume? An MCSE certification can put you in a very good position when it comes time to find a job or lock in that promotion. It can also add some cash to your wallet as the MCSE is among the top 15 paying certifications of 2013.

Those with an MCSE certification, specifically in Data Platform or Business Intelligence make excellent candidates for the following positions:

  • Database Analyst
  • Database Designer
  • Database Administrators
  • Network Engineers
  • Database Developers
  • Systems Engineer
  • Business Intelligence Analyst

Getting MCSE certified creates a pathway for success

Becoming a database expert by earning your MCSE Database Platform or MCSE Business Intelligence will certainly open doors for you. Certification, training, and experience are three of the top four most important characteristics when selecting a candidate for a cloud-related position. (IDC/Microsoft, Climate Change: Cloud’s Impact on IT Organizations and Staffing, November 2012). Visit our website and contact us today to get started on your MCSE journey.