VCP 5 Certification Requirements Clarification

In a recent article, VCP 5 certification course deadline looms over VMware pros both vNinja.net contributors (Christian and Ed) are quoted in relation to the VCP 5 certification upgrade deadline of February 29th 2012.

While I can´t speak for Ed, I can clarify my own comments a bit. The following is a quote from VMware, taken from the article in question:

“That requirement is in place to maintain the integrity of the certification. If people could pass the VCP 5 without exposure to and hands-on experience with vSphere 5, it would devalue the certification,” a VMware spokesperson wrote in an email.

While I do see why VMware has that stance, and why they try to keep the exam “real”, my problem is that there is no way for anyone to do the VCP certification without classroom training. I don´t mind that VMware has a training requirement, and I don´t mind that you have to pay for it. What I do have a problem with is that I´m required to sit a 5 day training class. Why not offer an online VCP-prep course that you can complete in your own pace, complete with a pre-exam test that you can use to validate your skill set? That way VMware can still require a minimum of training pre-exam, get paid for it, and students can do their training in their own pace and when they have available time for it. Seems like a win-win (bingo!) situation to me?

As far as I´ve heard the VCP5 exam focuses less on minimum and maximum configuration limits than the VCP4 which is a good thing, but at the same time I don´t think the Install, Configure and Manage course by itself is enough to pass the exam, so in essence VMware is already “devaluing” their own exam by requiring training that does not cover the entire curriculum.

The hands-on requirement is a good one, and I applaud it, the best way to ensure that would be to turn the VCP exam into a hands-on-lab environment where you get tasks to complete, instead of multiple choice questions.

Disclaimer: I have not yet tried to do the VCP 5 exam and I´m only commenting based on feedback provided by others who have.

As far as the time available for existing VCPs to upgrade from VCP4 to VCP5, I also believe the timeframe is too short, and to be completely honest I don´t really see why there should be a time limit at all? After all, if you have the VCP4, you pretty much know what you´re in for with regards to the VCP5. Why rush it, and have people attempt to upgrade before they are ready? Let people do this on their own, in their own schedule, I don´t see how VMware benefits from enforcing a timeframe at all. Unless the motivation is selling more training, of course.

9 thoughts on “VCP 5 Certification Requirements Clarification

  1. I mostly agree… My only discrepancy is that I wouldn’t mind them having the course, and I wouldn’t mind having to sit for it…IF, as you said, it covered the whole curriculum required to pass the VCP.

    I think currently since it is a required course to sit the VCP, that it mistakenly gives the wrong impression that you can sit the VCP immediately after taking the ICM class. Which as all VCPs know is Not the case.

    I remember asking my ICM course instructor for vSphere 4 how much of the material in the class would be on the exam. I was very shocked when he told me it accounted for only about 60% of the required knowledge for the exam…..With that being said though, I think the change should come from making the course be more thorough to match the exam material, and Not make the exam easier to match the course.

    I personally believe that they have the whole course / exam procedure very close to being awesome, just need to make a few changes here and there.

  2. I definitely see some issue with the timing of this as well. My main beef, being a recent VCAP monster, is that I’m frankly tired of exams right now. I truly do not feel prepared for the VCP5’s new material like I would want to, despite what others have said. I do appreciate the confidence others have but in the end it’s MY money I’m putting down for the certification and I don’t like to pay to play unless I am prepared to give it a strong shot.

    The primary comment to me regarding my readiness is “If you can handle the VCAPs then you can certainly handle the VCP”. Sure. I agree 100%. I should be ready and probably could pass it with a quick update of the new features. Unfortunately I have to “gamble” in order to prove that.

    Carrying this further I would say that VMware has set a deadline for VCP4 to VCP5 migrations prematurely since the VCAP5s haven’t been announced yet. I find this to be a bit short sighted since I would love to see my VCP4 get upgraded to VCP5 simply by passing one of the VCAP5s. You can pick which one for all I care because my only incentive to upgrade my VCP5 is to get that Workstation 8 license that I don’t get by passing VCAPs, but that’s another discussion. :)

    P.S. I did get an opportunity to take the What’s New course recently so the deadline doesn’t apply to me per se, but I still feel the pressure to get it done like so many of my peers. For the record I found the course pretty helpful for those with vSphere 4 experience. Unfortunately my attention was sometimes diverted due to issues so I still need to review the material before attempting VCP5.

    1. I totally agree with Josh and had the same problem being a recent VCAP attemptee(is that a word?) and having severe burn out in my preparations for the VCP5 exam. I think this burn out and due to my finding out i had failed my VCAP4-DCA a week before taking the VCP5 exam is a major reason a scrapped by with a 305 whereas when i had a more rested mind for the VCP4 i received a score of 444. It is a tragedy that the course doesn’t cover everything required to pass the VCP5 exam but i like that this one seems much harder and is based much more on your experience of the technology and having a number of real world hours to answer some of the questions. Hopefully it also stops people using dumps and devaluing the credential.

      Gregg

  3. I like the prerequisite for training. Although as an individual the cost is the biggest problem. I have built a lab for self study then found I have to grow a money tree for training almost $4000 + 5 days of my busy life.

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