The following page is intended to provide a landing page for the second advanced certification by VMware, the VMware Certified Advanced Professional 5 - Datacenter Administration. This information should be usefull when you are studying for the VDCA510 exam. By now there are many great study guides available to the community, so i am not going to create another. I will rather try to give you a hint where to start based on your experience and learning style. I will not link every available guide to prevent you from crawling through to much redundant information. I picked out the best and most up to date guides.
- Build a Lab
- Official VCAP5-DCA Information
- Study Guide - Online Version
- Study Guide - PDF Version
- Additional Tips
Build a Lab
VMware puts great effort in education and provides evaluation versions for every product. Build yourself a lab in VMware Workstation, or buy a small server (HP Microserver for example). You need the following components:
- vCenter Server
- ESXi Hypervisor (Install 2 or 3)
- vSphere Management Assistant (Getting started with vMA 5)
- vSphere Update Manager
- PowerCLI (Getting Started with PowerCLI)
Download: Evaluate VMware Products
Not required: Orchestrator, vShield Zones, vCenter Heartbeat and Linked Mode
- Mastering VMware vSphere 5 - A great book for everyone regardless of whether you are just starting with VMware or are already an experienced administrator.
- VMware vSphere 5.1 Clustering Deepdive - Does not cover all DCA tasks, but goes really deep into vSphere HA and DRS.
- Official VCAP5-DCA Cert Guide
Study Guide - Online Version
The most common way to study is by reading guides step-by-step and testing everything by yourself to better remember what you've learned. Both guides are covering all topics. You do not have to read both:
- The Unofficial Official VCAP5-DCA Study Guide By Jason Langer and Josh Coen (Download PDF)
- VCAP5-DCA Study Guide by Paul Grevink (Download PDF)
- VCAP5-DCA Study Outline PDF by Shane Williford (StudyNotes / CLI_StudyNotes)
- VMware Community - Any questions? They will be answered there!
- VMware HOL (Project NEE) - A Lab environment provided by VMware
- VCAP-DCA Exam UI Demo - Want to see how the exam looks like?
- Study Sheet by Chris Wahl - Nice document to track your progress
What are the prerequisites for the VCAP5-DCA Exam?
You have to be a VMware Certified Professional 5 (VCP5)
Are there any additional suggestions?
You should be familiar with installing, configuring, and administering large and complex virtualized environments. This contains the base products included in the vSphere vSphere Suite and especially the PowerCLI. To get the required know-how you sould download the free evaluation from VMware and play around with it. You can install everything inside VMware Worksation for example. There is also a course by VMware called VMware vSphere: Optimize and Scale [V5.x]. This course is not required to attend the exam.
I am new to VMware and have just finished VCP5. What to do next?
Attend the VMware vSphere: Optimize and Scale [V5.x] Course. When you are new to something, there is nothing better than to talk to other people to exchange experiences. But this is definitely not enough to pass the exam. Build yourself a Lab, come back here and go through one of the Study Guides.
What is the difference between VCAP4-DCA and VCAP5-DCA?
There are many VCAP4 Study Guides out there. They are not totally outdated because the content hasn't changed. Doing something in vSphere 4 is mostly the same as doing something in vSphere 5. Only the topics have been changed. Compared to Version 4 in VCAP5-DCA you do not need Orchestrator, vShield Zones, vCenter Heartbeat and Linked Mode. Instead you have to know about Auto Deploy, Image Profiles, ESXCLI, Storage DRS and Network I/O Control.
Is the VDCA510 exam based on Version 5.0 or 5.1?
The lab environment is currently based on vSphere 5.0. But using vSphere 5.1 instead shouldn't be a problem. You just do not need the new features in the exam.