Book Review: VCDX Boot Camp: Preparing for the VCDX Panel Defense (VMware Press)

Today, I am doing a book review of VCDX Boot Camp: Preparing for the VCDX Panel Defense (VMware Press).  This is a book not only for VCDX hopefuls but also for people who want to see what’s involved in becoming one.  What could be better than a book written by three VCDXs (who are also panellists), documenting their tips/tricks and what they’re looking for, technically reviewed by two and with added content from five more! Some of them are amongst the very first VCDXs and have first-hand knowledge of how the process was developed.

The content is just over a 100 pages, divided into seven chapters.  The chapters take you through the entire process, from an overview and how you should start preparation, all the way to the “Troubleshooting Scenario”.  The link included allows you to look at the table of contents so I won’t bore you here with the details but I would definitely recommend you have a look as it makes it clear why there is so much value in getting this book as it contains information about the process that you won’t find elsewhere.  As a bonus, you also get to know the answer to the age-old “chicken-and-egg” question: If the VCDX panel contains at least three members, how did the first VCDXs got their certification? 🙂

Each chapter is full of tips and insight into what’s important and techniques on efficiently gaining more points, thereby helping you towards a successful defence.  It also includes quotes from existing VCDXs about their experience of that particular stage.  Official documentation does give you a lot of information about the whole process but the first-hand experience mentioned in this book is invaluable.

The “Design Scenario” chapter discusses the stage where the consultative skills of a VCDX candidate are tested.  As in previous chapters, tips are given on how to deal with this process, focussing on what’s important and how to demonstrate your knowledge. It also gives you three scenarios, which is very useful to get the thought process going.

The “Troubleshooting Scenario” chapter is similar to the one before but discusses the last stage where skills of a candidate are tested to work out if the problem is in the design, implementation or operation of an environment.  This chapter comes with four scenarios, covering all three tracks and again, gives you an idea of how to tackle the drilling that will come with it.

Some might judge the book by the number of pages it contains but I would rather have a book that has concise but focussed information about the process.  Also, it contains content that you wouldn’t find in official documentation.  Sure, it’s a thin book but that’s where it’s great and worth its weight in gold – which going by its actual weight, won’t be that much! 🙂

If you are even thinking about going for VCDX, trust me and get this book!  It will help you make informed decisions about the process, make your preparation efficient and increase your chances for success.


By |2016-12-11T15:25:06+00:00June 21st, 2013|Book Review, General, How To, VCDX, Virtualization|1 Comment

About the Author:

Ather Beg is a technology and virtualisation blogger and is Chief Virtualogist at Virtualogists Ltd, which is a consultancy focusing on virtualised solutions. Ather has worked in IT for over 20 years and contributes his findings on this blog. In addition to holding several industry-related certifications, he has also been awarded vExpert status by VMware.

One Comment

  1. Adarsh February 6, 2016 at 11:30 PM - Reply

    Hi! Ather,

    I hope you are doing good. I’m working with an Indian telecom company in the field of networking with total 19+ years of experience, though have slight idea about the virtualization (only technology perspective) as well. For some time I have been keen to learn VMware technology and may accordingly opt for the Network virtualization (VCDX-NV) track combined with cloud (VCDX-Cloud). I want to seek your guidance to read quality study material (a brief list if you can provide) and understand how to achieve the highest level of certification in above stated fields. The information on site is too exhaustive, hence thought of requesting you to provide the crisp information (or/and relevant URLs) along with bibliography of books and videos, I need to go through. Considering I’m from the networking background, with slight idea about the storage, Windows server OS (actually did my MCSE in 1998-1999) and after that have been slightly informed at the macroscopic level about server/application (but majorly in to networking, again). How long you think it would take me to learn and get certified at the highest level in each track. Do suggest a suitable institute (online) as well, where I can pursue my study and get certified. Also, would you be able to suggest how much approximately it would cost me to get certified for the topmost level of chosen specialization (s).

    Here is the crisp summary of write up above for which I need your help (an inline response against each point would be a great help). I’m optimist that you would be able to guide me aptly and a timely response would definitely leave me obliged. You may redirect to the concerned (and a trustworthy resource) if for whatever reason you can’t (or choose not to) help. Let me know if I should call you (suggest a suitable slot, though I have shared my number below), just in case you can spare 5-10 mins.

    The per-requisites for starting the VMware journey (NSX track) for the tracks captured below?
    The learning journey (books, references, videos, blogs etc.) from taking baby steps to be an expert?
    The levels (and may be certification levels if mapped somehow) I need to clear (if sequential)?
    The institute (in some city, just in case online is not feasible) you would like to suggest for enhanced and speedy learning starting from fundamentals? City doesn’t matter, quality does.
    Highest level of certification in the Cloud track?

    Some free online (or reasonably) resources for practice?

    What is the frequency of exams in Pune/Bangalore/India?
    Does any experience or Cisco certification is an added advantage or counts?
    Study/certification journey time (how many months or years) with how many hours in a day (like 6 months with 4 hours daily study and practical/hands on)? How much time (roughly hours/days/weeks/months) do i need to dedicate, considering i’m ready to take break from work?

    How much would it cost me in total, approximation will also do?
    Can I get a chance to work with VMware in the field of consulting/engineering, considering my networking background and some certifications which I intend to achieve with your guidance?

    If i have overlooked some of the key points which i need to take in to consideration for getting certified, please add.

    Thanking you in anticipation.



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