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My story is that I am working now almost 10 years as an administrator, I deal with SQL Server and other IT stuff, most of my knowledge is self taught by reading books, dealings with problems and asking and reading sites like this. Now I want to circularize and certificate that by going to, learning and try to pass Microsoft official exams and programs. Where I should start and what kind of curses and exams I need to look for. I am pretty confused whit so many choices the way I can go.

At one local Microsoft Certified Partner they offered me 4 courses for label of Microsoft Certified IT Professional Server Administrator (equivalent MCSA) Also they are offering "MSCSE" as Enterprise Administrator.

  • Do I need both of this one so I can continue learning for SQL Server Administrator?
  • Do I need this ones at all ?
  • What is the correct name in MS terminology for SQL Server Administrator?
  • Does there exist a SQL Server developer calling in MS world or is this only extension for already developers of common MS languages such as C#, C++ ?
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Where are you located/looking for work? –  jcolebrand Feb 21 '12 at 16:28
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3 Answers

up vote 8 down vote accepted

Do I need this one at all ?

No. The MCSA (and MCSE) are aimed more at administering networks, not SQL Server. These particular 2 are aimed at administering Windows 2003 networks. I think you would be wasting your money taking them as I think these 2 certs will be retiring soon. The Windows 2008 versions use the newer MCTS/MCITP naming convention.

In general, the current naming convention progression is MCP (MC = "Microsoft Certified", P = "professional", one exam, of anything), MCTS (TS = "technical specialist", one introductory technical exam), MCITP (ITP = "IT Professional", the relevant MCTS plus one or more "pro" exams). There are MCM (M = "master") certifications, but those will cost between $10k and $20k, so only if your company will pay for them would they even remotely be practical.

What is correct name in MS terminology for SQL Server Administrator?

SQL Server certs. Start with the relevant exam for the MCTS, that would most likely be 70-432. Then when you know more, take the 70-450 exam. That will give you the MCITP: Database Administrator SQL Server 2008 certification. You cannot get the equivalent SQL Server 2005 certs because they were retired in June.

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MS SQL server is a broad topic in itself and to be a master in it, you have to specialize in it.

The MS SQL certification levels in order of advancement are MCTS>MCITP>MCM>MCA. There are two tracks of exams: Database Development and Database Administration. Passing the first MCTS exam will get you a MCP status. You can get a MCTS and MCITP in both tracks. You will need to have MCITP in both database administration and database development to be eligible for the MCM exams. After the MCM you can apply for an MCA (Microsoft certified Architect) in SQL, which is the capstone certification in MSSQL.

You can start by checking out all the information in this link. The certification paths are visualize in a pdf in this link.

Wish you all the best.

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Many years ago there was s certification called MCDBA. It was really strong certification, with server adinistration and networking adinistration exams inside. Current MCITP certification is easy (I have earned both), and I'm not sure that just finished the courses and just certified MCITP DBAs or DBDs are 100% ready to administer or develop the database. So, I'm sure, you don't need to pass these exams. Go to the trainings and (of you can) conferences, and use this knowledge at your work, because the expirience in your resume looks better than MS certifications. Also, I'd recomend to read the book 'DBA Survivor Become a Rock Star DBA'. This question and more another question about DBA job are explained in this book.

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