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Exam Profile: VMware Certified Design Expert (VCDX)

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The VMware Certified Design Expert (VCDX) is the highest level of VMware certification. In order to join this elite global community, you must pass several certifications and present to a board. VCDX #46, Harley Stagner walks you through the rigorous steps needed in order to achieve the "holy grail" of virtualization.

VMware Certified Design Expert (VCDX) is the highest level of VMware certification. This elite group is comprised of design architects highly-skilled in VMware enterprise deployments and the program is designed for veteran professionals who want to validate and demonstrate their expertise in VMware virtual infrastructure. The multi-step certification process consists of three exams, a VCDX design defense application, and finally a VCDX panel defense. This VCDX description is for the VCDX4. There will be new requirements for what VMware is calling VCD.next coming soon.

Exam Details

The VCDX is not just a single exam. This is VMware’s highest level of certification and the most difficult to obtain. For the VCDX4, the candidate must pass the VCP4, VCAP4-DCA and VCAP4-DCD in no particular order. Then, the candidate must submit a design and application to be considered for a VCDX defense panel. Finally, if the application is accepted, the candidate must attend a VCDX defense panel where they will defend their design and participate in a mock design and a mock troubleshooting scenario.

VCP4 (VCP410) Details

  • Number of Questions: 85
  • Type(s) of questions: Multiple-choice and drag-and-drop
  • Passing Score: 300
  • Time Limit: 90 Minutes. Candidates who take the VCAP-DCA exam in a country where English is not a primary language will have an additional 30 minutes added to the exam time. An additional 15 minutes is provided to complete survey questions and agreements.
  • How to register: The exam is administered through Pearson VUE.

VCAP4-DCA (VDCA410) Details

  • Number of Questions: 40
  • Type(s) of questions: Live Lab Activities
  • Passing Score: 300
  • Time Limit: 210 Minutes. Candidates who take the VCAP-DCA exam in a country where English is not a primary language will have an additional 30 minutes added to the exam time. An additional 15 minutes is provided to complete survey questions and agreements.
  • How to register: The exam is administered through Pearson VUE. A pre-authorization to verify the candidate’s existing VCP status is also required.

VCAP4-DCD (VDCD410) Details

  • Number of Questions: 113
  • Type(s) of questions: Multiple-choice, drag-and-drop, design items using an in-exam design tool
  • Passing Score: 300
  • Time Limit: 225 Minutes. Candidates who take the VCAP-DCA exam in a country where English is not a primary language will have an additional 30 minutes added to the exam time. An additional 15 minutes is provided to complete survey questions and agreements.
  • How to register: The exam is administered through Pearson VUE. A pre-authorization to verify the candidate’s existing VCP status is also required.

After the two prerequisite exams are passed, the candidate must submit a design and VCDX defense application. If the design and application are accepted, the candidate is invited to participate in the VCDX panel defense. The panel defense is broken into three sections.

  • Section 1: Orally defend the submitted design (75 Minutes)
  • In this section, you will spend about 15 minutes explaining the design and justifying any decisions made in the design. The rest of the time is dedicated to answering the panelists’ questions about the design.

  • Section 2: Orally work through a mock design problem given by the panelists (30 Minutes)
  • The panelists will act as a customer and present a design scenario. It is up to you to ask the appropriate questions and work through the customer requirements of the design.

  • Section 3: Orally work through a troubleshooting scenario given by the panelists (15 Minutes)
  • The panelists will act as a customer and present a troubleshooting scenario. It is up to you to ask appropriate questions to approach a resolution.

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