AZ-104 exam preparation

How to Prepare for the AZ-104 Microsoft Azure Administrator Exam?

The demand for certified professionals in the public cloud computing landscape is driving many new changes. Most of the cloud service providers have maintained their credibility in the area of a professional certification by updating their certifications according to new technologies, and so Microsoft updated its Azure exams. Microsoft Azure has brought up its role-based model for Azure certs to ensure that candidates prove their professional skills.

The search for ideal sources on the AZ-104 exam preparation shows that new Azure cloud certification exams gain faster recognition. The AZ-104 exam is the updated version of the existing AZ-103 exam for the role of Microsoft Azure Administrator. Since Microsoft has turned out to be a notable player in the cloud computing industry, the job prospects with Azure certifications have also increased. If you want to qualify an Azure certification exam, you need a proper guide to prepare effectively for the exam. 

The following discussion would serve a crucial role in your Microsoft Azure Administrator AZ-104 exam preparation by providing you a brief preparation guide. The preparation guide would include a detailed illustration of all basic information regarding the exam. Candidates could find the target audience, prerequisites, and other formal details about the AZ-104 exam in this discussion.

However, the primary highlight of the following AZ-104 preparation guide would be the coverage of domains included in the AZ-104 exam. In addition, candidates could also find a brief outline of the subtopics covered in each domain of the exam. Finally, the discussion would arrive at a comprehensive guide for the AZ-104 exam preparation with recommended steps and best practices to enhance your preparations. 

Note: Not mandatory but Microsoft Azure Fundamental AZ 900 certification can be considered as the entry point to achieve the AZ-104 certification in the Azure administrator career path.

Latest Update:

Exam AZ-104: Microsoft Azure Administrator is the new replacement of the Azure AZ-103 exam for the Azure Administrator role. Here we bring the definitive guide for your AZ-104 exam preparation!

AZ-104: Microsoft Azure Administrator Certification Exam

First of all, all candidates should remember that AZ-104 is the new standard Microsoft Azure Administrator exam. You can also think of it as a new version of the existing Microsoft cloud certification exam for the Azure Administrator job role. So, if you want to become a Microsoft Azure Administrator, then the AZ-104 exam is the way to go!

AZ-104 exam has been available on April 2, 2020, according to the official certification page of AZ-104. Candidates should note another important fact that the AZ-103 exam and the AZ-104 exam will be available concurrently until the retirement of the AZ-103 exam on August 31, 2020.

The phased release schedule of Microsoft allows candidates to appear for the AZ-103 exam without any issues. After the retirement of the AZ-103 exam, AZ-104 will be the only standard exam for becoming a Microsoft Azure Administrator. The AZ-104 exam will be available in the English language only, and the registration fee for the exam is $165 USD. 

Target Audience for the Exam

The next important concern in the AZ-104 exam preparation is the identification of the target audience for the exam. It is important for candidates to verify that they come under a suitable target audience for the exam. The AZ-104 exam is suitable for candidates trying to become Microsoft Azure Administrators, having a minimum of 6 months of hands-on experience in Azure workload administration. Candidates for the AZ-104 exam must have in-depth knowledge of core Azure services, workloads, security, and governance.

An Azure Administrator’s job role involves recommending services to achieve optimal scalability and performance. Azure Administrators also have to engage in the implementation, management, and monitoring of cloud infrastructure and its components. In addition, Azure Administrators also have to provision, size, and monitor and adjust resources according to requirements for the infrastructure. If you are up for all these tasks, then you are ready to start your AZ-104 exam preparation! 

If you’re planning to become an Azure Architect, you should prepare for the Azure Architect certification AZ-303 and AZ-304.

Requirements for the Exam

Once you have verified that AZ-104 is the right certification exam for your career aspirations, you must check exam prerequisites. The exam prerequisites are an important addition in the AZ-104 preparation guide. Candidates should note that the following requirements are not mandatory to follow for participating in the AZ-104 exam. On the contrary, having fulfilled these knowledge and experience requirements gives an additional advantage to candidates in qualifying the exam. 

  1. Minimum of six months of hands-on experience in Azure administration.
  2. In-depth understanding of core Azure Services.
  3. Fluency in Azure workloads, governance, and security.
  4. Experience in the use of Command Line Interface, ARM templates, PowerShell and Azure Portal.
  5. Expertise in networking, cloud infrastructure, operating systems, storage structures, and virtualization.

Having knowledge and experience in these areas can improve your AZ-104 exam preparation considerably. 

Aspired to become a Microsoft Certified Azure Administrator? Follow this definitive path to become Microsoft Azure Administrator and get forward.

What Job will you get after completing the AZ-104 Exam?

After the completion of AZ-104, he/she will be responsible for managing and monitoring the AWS resources. This exam covers topic including Azure virtual machine, networking, security, etc. The following are the job titles after passing the AZ-104 exam.

  • Azure administrator
  • Cloud administrator 
  • System administrator
  • Network administrator
  • Cloud software engineer

Domains Covered in the Exam 

The outcomes of preparing for an exam can be successful only if you have prepared for the topics covered in the exam. Therefore, an illustration of the domains covered in the AZ-104 exam is a crucial part of this preparation guide. Candidates could develop a preparation schedule that allocates specific timeframes for different topics on the basis of their weighting.

You can find the domains covered in the exam in almost every AZ-104 study guide. Candidates should also note that the exam is in the beta stage currently and won’t cover the features that are in the preview stage. The preview features will be available in the exam only after they get General Availability (GA). The AZ-104 exam would cover the following domains. 

  1. Management of Azure identities and governance.
  2. Implementation and management of storage.
  3. Deploying and managing Azure compute resources.
  4. Configuring and managing virtual networks.
  5. Monitoring and backup of Azure resources.

A closer look at the weighting and subtopics covered in each domain can help candidates streamline their preparation efforts. The weighting of different domains and subtopics simplifies the AZ-104 exam preparation considerably by improving clarity regarding the exam. 

Domain 1: Management of Azure identities and governance

The first domain deals with managing Azure identities and governance. The domain would account for almost 20% to 25% of questions in the exam. The subtopics covered in this domain are.

  1. Managing Azure Active Directory (AD) objects.
  2. Management of role-based access control (RBAC).
  3. Managing subscriptions and governance.

Domain 2: Implementation and management of storage

The second domain of the AZ-104 exam deals with the implementation and management of storage. The domain would account for almost 15% to 20% of questions in the exam. The subtopics in this domain are,

  1. Managing storage accounts.
  2. Data management for Azure Storage.
  3. Configuring Azure files and Azure blob storage.

Domain 3: Deploying and managing Azure compute resources

The third domain of the exam deals with deploying and managing Azure compute resources. This domain is very important for the AZ-104 exam preparation because it accounts for around 20% to 25% of the questions in the exam. The subtopics in this domain are,

  1. Configuring virtual machines for higher availability and scalability.
  2. Automating the deployment and configuration of virtual machines.
  3. Creating and configuring virtual machines.
  4. Creation and configuration of containers.
  5. Creating and configuring Web Apps.

Domain 4:Implementing and managing virtual networks

The fourth and most important domain of the AZ-104 exam deals with the configuration and management of virtual networks. The domain accounts for almost 15% to 20% of the total questions in the exam, thereby becoming highly crucial for the AZ-104 exam preparation. The subtopics in this domain are,

  1. Implementing and managing virtual networks.
  2. Configuration of name resolution.
  3. Secure access to virtual networks.
  4. Configuration of load balancing.
  5. Monitoring and troubleshooting virtual networks.
  6. Integration of on-premises network with Azure virtual networks.

Domain 5: Monitoring and Maintain of Azure resources

The final domain covered in the AZ-104 Microsoft Azure Administrator exam deals with monitoring and backup of Azure resources. The domain accounts for almost 10% to 15% of the total questions in the exam. The subtopics in this domain are, 

  1. Monitoring resources by using Azure Monitor.
  2. Implementing backup and recovery.

Also Check: Azure Certifications Path

Comprehensive Guide for the AZ-104 Exam Preparation

After covering all the important details about the AZ-104 exam, it is important to start discussing our main theme for the AZ-104 exam preparation. The preparation of a candidate could improve only with guidance. So, if you follow the steps mentioned below, you can find a specific direction to your preparation efforts. 

  • Official Certification Page

The first action in the AZ-104 exam preparation is a visit to the official certification page. You can use the Microsoft official website to access the official certification page of AZ-104 exam. There you can find important details about the exam such as date of availability, language, and registration fee for the exam. In addition, you can also find a direct download link for the AZ-104 exam outline on the official certification page

  • Microsoft Recommended Learning Paths 

The next important thing for candidates is the AZ-104 study guide. Candidates need the ideal learning resources and information on the exact sources to find them. The best source to start your preparations is Microsoft Learn. You can find free online training and learning paths. The platform of Microsoft Learn also helps candidates in accessing control questions and online labs without any cost. Here are some of the recommended learning paths and modules recommended for every AZ-104 preparation guide.

  1. Administer infrastructure resources in Azure.
  2. Architect storage infrastructure in Azure.
  3. Architect network infrastructure in Azure.
  4. Manage resources in Azure.
  5. Architect infrastructure operations in Azure.
  6. Architect compute infrastructure in Azure.
  7. Manage identity and access in Azure Active Directory.
  8. Architect migration, business continuity, and disaster recovery in Azure.
  9. Manage security operations in Azure.
  10. Implement resource management security in Azure.
  11. Administer containers in Azure.

Also Read: Azure Security Certification

  • Online Training Courses 

Another important requirement to prepare for the AZ-104 exam refers to a reliable AZ-104 online course provider. You can always opt for renowned names in the industry for the best online training courses. Apart from the assurance of experts in designing the course, you can also avail of the benefits of cost and convenience.

Alongside the AZ-104 online course, candidates will also have the privilege of contacting experts for doubts regarding any topic in the exam outline. The online certification training courses of Whizlabs also align perfectly with the exam objectives, thereby training candidates for responding to questions in the actual exam effectively. 

Preparing for the Azure AZ-103 exam? Follow this comprehensive guide for the AZ-103 exam preparation and give your preparation a new edge.

  • Microsoft Documentation

Candidates should also look for official Microsoft Documentation that can help them with their preparations for the AZ-104 exam. Many candidates are confused about covering the theoretical aspects needed to understand subtopics in the exam. However, you can explore Microsoft Docs for each subtopic to prepare and study for your AZ-104 exam attempt.

Now, it is very important to note that the Microsoft Docs important for the AZ-104 exam can be difficult to find. However, you have to try digging here and there just for a moment before you find reliable information. For example, the Thomas Maurer blog is a great source to find out the Microsoft Docs that should be in your study guide for the AZ-104 exam preparation.

  • Practice Exams

Other than the AZ-104 online course, candidates also need the support of the AZ-104 practice exam. Since the AZ-104 exam is currently in the beta stage, it is difficult to find reliable learning resources. AZ-104 practice exams will be really helpful for the candidates to overcome their fears of attempting a new exam.

The practice exam will help candidates familiarize themselves with the topics in the exam, format of the exam, and the environment of the exam. Candidates could become more comfortable in sitting for the actual exam by practicing time management. In addition, candidates can also come up with unique strategies to answer questions in the exam by regularly giving practice tests.

The practice exams also help candidates get a clear impression of their strengths and weaknesses. The detailed evaluation reports with practice tests of Whizlabs can help candidates know which areas they are underperforming. So, there is no scope for doubt left in the minds of candidates after preparing thoroughly for the AZ-104 exam with practice tests. 

Microsoft Azure Administrator Salary

The final aspect of our discussion shall refer to the Microsoft Certified Azure Administrator salary estimate. The salary estimate could act as the final push you need to start your AZ-104 exam preparation right away! As per Nigel Frank’s Azure Administrator Salary Survey, The average annual salary for an Azure Administrator in the US is $100,000.

However, it may vary from $80,000 to $125,000 depending on the skill level of the professional. For example, the Microsoft Certified Azure Administrator salary for entry-level professionals is $80,000 annually on average. On the other hand, high-level professionals can get almost $125,000 annually on average. 

Preparing for an Azure interview? Go through these top Azure interview questions and get ready to crack the interview in the first go.

Are You Ready to Prepare for the AZ-104 Exam?

Obviously, there are no reasons to hold back your plans for the AZ-104 exam preparation now! You should immediately start your preparations after completing this preparation guide. Most important of all, you have to know that preparing for the AZ-104 exam will also have other crucial implications. For example, you have to stick responsibly to the preparation schedule and maintain your accountability at all times.

In addition, you have to take care of your health and diet during preparation. Some of the other concerns include having an external perspective for your preparations with participation in online learning communities, study groups, and discussion forums. These places are a great way to discover new ways of doing your preparations in a productive manner.

Let’s start right now with your AZ-104 exam preparation with the AZ-104 training course and establish a foundation for your promising future career. 

About Pavan Gumaste

Pavan Rao is a programmer / Developer by Profession and Cloud Computing Professional by choice with in-depth knowledge in AWS, Azure, Google Cloud Platform. He helps the organisation figure out what to build, ensure successful delivery, and incorporate user learning to improve the strategy and product further.

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