AZ-305 preparation guide

How to prepare for AZ-305: Designing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions Certification Exam?

This blog on the preparation for AZ-305: Designing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions exam not only guides you on how and where to start the preparation but also provides you with a holistic knowledge of the certification exam.

This will answer all your questions about the AZ-305 exam and you will get to know the intended audience, the recommended and necessary prerequisites, the objectives, and the skills that you will be assessed upon.

The AZ-305 certification exam is a replacement exam for the expired Microsoft certification exams AZ-303 (Microsoft Azure Architect Technologies) & AZ-304 (Azure Architect Design). Once you pass the AZ-305 certification exam, you will be fit for the job role: of Azure Solutions Architect Expert

azure solutions architect

But before that, let us learn about the role of a Microsoft Certified Azure Solutions Architect Expert.

What does a Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert do?

A Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert advises stakeholders and translates business requirements into designs for scalable, reliable, and secure Azure solutions.

Also, they collaborate with administrators, developers, and others in the implementation of solutions on Azure. As you have seen in the below image, the rising demand for Microsoft Azure solution architects is very clear.

Azure solutions Architect
Source: Google Trends

Who should take the AZ-305 exam?

The AZ-305: Designing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions certification exam is for professionals who have:

  • Thorough understanding of IT operations and an advanced level of experience in Identity, Business Continuity, Security, Data Platforms, Disaster Recovery, Networking, Virtualization, and Governance.
  • Subject Matter Expertise in the designing of hybrid and cloud solutions, that run on Azure, which includes Storage, Monitoring, Security, Compute, and Network.

Professionals in this role are required to know how a solution and decision in an area should be managed and the way it affects a holistic solution.

What are the prerequisites for the AZ-305: Designing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions exam?

The prerequisite for this certification is to have experience:

  • Azure development
  • Azure administration
  • DevOps processes

You are required to have passed the AZ-104 Microsoft Certified: Azure Administrator Associate exam to take this exam.

What are the Azure skills assessed in the exam?

The demand for Azure Solution Architects with Azure Infrastructure designing skills is increasing faster!

Azure Solutions Architect

The various exam objectives or skills that could be tested during the AZ-305 certification exam include,

Designing Governance, Identity, and Monitoring Solutions: This part covers around 25-30% of the exam questions.

It includes designing logging, monitoring, authentication, authorization solutions, governance, identities, and access for applications. It involves designing a log routing solution, suggesting monitoring tools, identity management solution, identity security, auditing compliance, hierarchical and organizational structure, user consent solution, and more.

Designing of Business Continuity Solutions: This part includes 15-20% of the exam questions.

It includes designing solutions for high availability, backup, and disaster recovery. Broken into components, it entails suggesting recovery solutions for on-premises, hybrid, and Azure workloads, meeting recovery objectives, that is, Recovery Level Objective, Recovery Time Objective, and Recovery Point Objective. It also includes suggesting high availability solutions for compute, and relational and non-relational data storage.

Designing of Data Storage Solutions: This section covers 20-25% of the exam objectives.

It involves the designing of data storage solutions for relational and non-relational data,  data integration, suggesting database service tier sizing, solution for data analysis, data integration, database scalability, storage of structured, semi-structured, and non-relational data, designing solutions for durability and protection, and more.

Designing Infrastructure Solutions: This covers 30-35% of the exam.

It consists of designing application architecture, migrations, network, and compute solutions involving suggesting solutions for a virtual machine, container, and serverless based compute. Prescribing message architecture, event-driven architecture, solutions for migrating databases, applications, unstructured data, network performance, and security optimization, and more.


AZ-305 Certification

How to prepare for the AZ-305 exam?

Whenever you decide you are going to attempt an exam, there are multiple things that come to your mind, like will I be able to pass it, is the exam going to be tough, and all other sorts of uncertainties. So, here to help you out, we provide you with some essential steps that must be followed to come out of your doubts and pass the exam. They are:

  • Learn the requirement: Go through the skill guide and know all the concepts that could be asked in the exam. Thoroughly understand and learn them, and revise them multiple times.
  • Finding the right resources: A good training material is a learner’s holy trail. Once you are starting with the preparation, good learning resources are a must. As someone said, if I have 2 hours for cutting a tree, I would spend one and a half hours sharpening my axe.
  • Video Course: A self-explanatory video course is the best way to learn. Listening makes learning interactive and easy to understand. Breaking the syllabus bit by bit into small modules for section-wise coverage is really helpful. A good course is one where you get expert support in doubts clarification.
  • Follow the forums: When you join a forum, you get to ask questions and queries, plus you get to connect with a lot of other learners going for the same exam. So, you learn and grow together, and get a chance to know a lot of other questions and answers.
  • Practice Tests: Once the learning is complete, you must assess your preparation with Practice Tests. They let you know which concepts you are missing, and what efforts you need to put in. You can also try our AZ-305 exam questions for free.
  • Hands-on Labs: The best way to prepare for any certification is to try, fail and learn through a practice environment. Labs for AZ-305 certification may consist of case studies making you learn how to provide solutions to complex problems.

Preparation for an exam seems incomplete with any of the steps left uncovered. Though you are free to choose your flow of learning for the certification.

Frequently Asked Questions about the AZ-305 certification exam

1. What is the process to become a Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert?

You will have to follow the following three steps:

  1. Be a Microsoft Certified: Azure Administrator Associate by passing the AZ-104 exam.
  2. Pass the AZ-305: Designing Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Solutions exam.
  3. Earn the badge of a Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect Expert.

2. How much does the AZ-305 certification exam cost?

The price is based on the country in which the exam is proctored. For the United States, the cost is $165 USD, and for India, it is 4800 INR(plus applicable taxes).

3. What is the duration of the AZ-305 exam?

The exam has to be completed within a time span of 120 minutes.

4. What is the passing score for the exam?

You have to achieve a minimum of 700 to pass the certification exam.

5. What is the retirement date for the exam?

The exam does not carry a retirement date.

6. Can the exam be taken in languages other than English?

Yes, the exam is available in multiple languages including English, Chinese(Simplified), Chinese(Traditional), Japanese, German, Korean, Spanish, Russian, French, Portuguese, Italian, Indonesian(Indonesia), and Arabic(Saudi Arabia).

7. Is it possible to reschedule the exam?

The exam can be rescheduled or canceled 24 hours prior to the appointment. Any rescheduling or cancellation after that will result in the forfeiture of the exam fees.

8. What is the AZ-305 exam retake policy?

You can appear for the exam 24 hours after the first attempt. However, a 14-day period should be maintained between multiple exam attempts following the second attempt.

9. How many times can the exam be taken within the span of a year?

You can make 5 attempts for the exam in a span of 12 months.

10. What is the AZ-305 beta exam retake policy?

A beta exam could be taken only once during that period. If you fail, you can reappear for the exam, once it is live.

11. What is the renewal process for the exam?

You can renew your certification within 6 months before it expires. It will allow you to extend your certification by a year for free.

12. When will I receive my score?

The score will be displayed on the screen immediately after your submission of the test. However, when labs are included, it may take around 30 minutes before you get to see it.

13. What does the score report contain?

It carries your exam score, pass or fail status, performance on various skills tested during the exam, and information on how you can understand your result.

14. Is there any negative marking?

No, you will not be penalized for choosing an incorrect answer. You just would not get any score for it.

15. Will the exam include a Case study?

Supposedly yes, the exam may include real-life scenarios to assess your analytical capability.

16. Are there any unscored questions?

Yes, the exam includes multiple questions carrying no marks, and they are there only to improve the quality of the exam further. But since they are not marked explicitly and you cannot differentiate between them, you must answer every question with full attention.


Here in this article, we have tried to answer all your questions in the best possible way, and any queries that you could have in mind regarding the exam have been answered. We hope this proves helpful to you in your preparation and that you pass the certification on the first attempt. Stay tuned for more!

Start your exam preparation by enrolling in the AZ-305 practice exam and Video courses right now!

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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