September 29, 2023

Microsoft Azure Fundamentals Exam (AZ-900) Review

I completed and passed Azure Fundamentals AZ900 tonight and wanted to quickly write up the experience of what it was like.

Coming into Azure, I didn’t have much background knowledge of Microsoft Azure so it was a really useful certification to get. I used the learning materials at Microsoft Learn, and a training course provided by New Horizons, which also gave me an exam voucher. Also recommended is Thomas Thorton’s site here which is chock full of tips and exam guides.

The proctored exam was new to me. I booked the exam for 22:00, and logged on at 21:40. I was connected to a greeter, who looked at the ID and photos I had provided of myself and my workspace, and then asked me to do a 360 scan of the room using my laptop’s webcam. I was asked to show my wrists, and to remove a plate mat I had left on the table. (I was in my kitchen). Finally I was warned that if anyone walked into the room, it would be an immediate fail.

Once that had completed, I was passed through to the exam. I found it tough enough — I was second guessing at the answers I had provided. Halfway through, a chat box appeared from one of the moderators who asked me to stop covering my face. I have a tendency to place my hand on my face or over my mouth when I’m concentrating.

I wasn’t allowed anything on the table. No snacks, drinks, anything. Leaving the room is a dismissal. Someone walking in is a dismissal. They are very strict conditions, and you are asked to give up any right to privacy when opting to do the exam at home. This is the price of convenience!

As for the exam, I scored highly on the Azure concepts and services. I scored low on the ‘Accounts and Support’. I think I had underestimated that abut 20%-30% of the exam is on the accounts, help and support options available, which I kind of glossed over when studying. I’m not one to RTFM. It’s something to keep in mind when going for this exam — it’s not a pure techy exam. You need to show you are aware of the help and support options available, and for whom.

It is so good to be able to schedule an exam anytime you want these days. No more going to a test centre! Circumstances meant I had to do the exam quite late in the evening — I think in future I’ll stick to doing it in the morning if possible. I think my brain found it hard to make sense of some of the questions and answers!

I am not sure which Azure cert I will go for next. Thomas Maurer has recommended the Azure Administrator exam, however I’ve been told to go for security based on my interest in Cyber Security. But then again, the Azure functions and logic apps look fun to play with, so I will give that learning path a crack and see how I get on. There’s plenty of overlap anyways. Looking forward to getting more certs in 2020 🙂