VCAP5-DCD

The VMware Certified Advanced Professional 5 – Data Center Design (VCAP5-DCD) certification is designed for IT architects who design and integrate VMware solutions in multi-site, large enterprise, virtualised environments.

The VCAP-DCD focuses on a deep understanding of the design principles and methodologies behind datacentre virtualisation. This certification relies on your ability to understand and decipher both non-functional and functional-requirements, risks, assumptions and constraints. Before undertaking this, you should have thorough understanding of the following areas :  Availability and security, storage / network design, disaster recovery – and by extension performing business impact analysis / business continuity, dependency mapping, automation and service management.

Key in this process is understanding, how design decisions relating to availability, manageability, performance, recoverability and security impact the design.

I have put together some of the vSphere 5 best practises referenced in the exam blueprint, I hope you find the information helpful:  vSphere 5 Design Best Practise Guide.pdf

In preparation for this exam, I found the following books very useful along with the documents provided in the exam blueprint.

  • VMware vSphere 5.1 Clustering Deepdive – Duncan Epping & Frank Denneman
  • VMware vSphere Design 2nd Edition – Scott Lowe & Forbes Guthrie
  • Managing and Optimising VMware vSphere Deployments – Sean Crookston & Harley Stagner
  • Virtualising Microsoft Business Critical Applications on VMware vSphere – Matt Liebowitz & Alex Fontana
  • VCAP-DCD Official Cert Guide – Paul McSharry
  • ITIL v3 Handbook – UK Office of Government & Commerce

Here is the VCAP-DCD certification requirements road map:

VCAP-DCD Certification

As mentioned before, the blueprint is key! – Here is a URL export of all the tools/resources the blueprint targets, this should save time in trawling through the pdf.

Section 1 – Create a vSphere Conceptual Design
Objective 1.1 – Gather and analyze business requirements
VMware Virtualization Case Studies
Five Steps to Determine When to Virtualize Your Servers
Functional vs. Non-Functional Requirements
Conceptual, Logical, Physical:  It is Simple

Objective 1.2 – Gather and analyze application requirements
VMware Cost-Per-Application Calculator
VMware Virtualizing Oracle Kit
VMware Virtualizing Exchange Kit
VMware Virtualizing SQL Kit
VMware Virtualizing SAP Kit
VMware Virtualizing Enterprise Java Kit
Business and Financial Benefits of Virtualization: Customer Benchmarking Study

Objective 1.3 – Determine Risks, Constraints, and Assumptions
Developing Your Virtualization Strategy and Deployment Plan

Section 2 – Create a vSphere Logical Design from an Existing Conceptual Design
Objective 2.1 –Map Business Requirements to the Logical Design
Conceptual, Logical, Physical:  It is Simple
VMware vSphere  Basics Guide
What’s  New  in  VM ware  v Sphere  5 
Functional vs. Non-Functional Requirements
ITIL v3 Introduction and Overview

Objective 2.2 – Map Service Dependencies
Datacenter Operational Excellence Through Automated Application Discovery & Dependency Mapping

Objective 2.3 – Build Availability Requirements into the Logical Desig
Improving Business Continuity with VMware Virtualization Solution Brief
VMware High Availability Deployment Best Practices
vSphere Availability Guide

Objective 2.4 – Build Manageability Requirements into the Logical Design
Optimizing Your VMware Environment
Four Keys to Managing Your VMware Environment
Operational Readiness Assessment
Operational Readiness Assessment Tool

Objective 2.5 – Build Performance Requirements into the Logical Design
Proven Practice: Implementing ITIL v3 Capacity Management in a VMware environment
vSphere Monitoring and Performance Guide

Objective 2.6 – Build Recoverability Requirements into the Logical Design
VMware vCenter™  Site Recovery Manager Evaluation Guide
A Practical Guide to Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery with VMware Infrastructure
Mastering Disaster Recovery: Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Whitepaper
Designing Backup Solutions for VMware vSphere

Objective 2.7 – Build Security Requirements into the Logical Design
vSphere Security Guide
Developing Your Virtualization Strategy and Deployment Plan
Achieving Compliance in a Virtualized Environment
Infrastructure Security:  Getting to the Bottom of Compliance in the Cloud
Securing the Cloud

Section 3 – Create a vSphere Physical Design from an Existing Logical Design
Objective 3.1 – Transition from a Logical Design to a vSphere 5 Physical Design
Conceptual, Logical, Physical:  It is Simple
vSphere Server and Host Management Guide
vSphere Virtual Machine Administration Guide

Objective 3.2 – Create a vSphere 5 Physical Network Design from an Existing Logical Design
vSphere Server and Host Management Guide
vSphere Installation and Setup Guide
vMotion Architecture, Performance and Best Practices in VMware vSphere 5
VMware are  vSphere™: Deployment Methods for the VMware® vNetwork Distributed Switch
vNetwork Distributed Switch: Migration and Configuration
Guidelines for Implementing VMware vSphere with the Cisco Nexus 1000V Virtual Switch
VMware® Network I/O Control: Architecture, Performance and Best Practices

Objective 3.3 – Create a vSphere 5 Physical Storage Design from an Existing Logical Design
Fibre Channel SAN Configuration Guide
iSCSI SAN Configuration Guide
vSphere Installation and Setup Guide
Performance Implications of Storage I/O Control–Enabled NFS Datastores in VMware vSphere® 5.0
Managing Performance Variance of Applications Using Storage I/O Control
VMware Virtual Machine File System: Technical Overview and Best Practices

Objective 3.4 – Determine Appropriate Compute Resources for a vSphere 5 Physical Design
vSphere Server and Host Management Guide
vSphere Installation and Setup Guide
vSphere Resource Management Guide

Objective 3.5 – Determine Virtual Machine Configuration for a vSphere 5 Physical Design
vSphere Server and Host Management Guide
Virtual Machine Administration Guide
Best Practices for Performance Tuning of Latency-Sensitive Workloads in vSphere VMs
Virtualizing a Windows Active Directory Domain Infrastructure
Guest Operating System Installation Guide

Objective 3.6 – Determine Data Center Management Options for a vSphere 5 Physical Design
vSphere Monitoring and Performance Guide
vCenter Server and Host Management Guide
VMware vCenter Update Manager 5.0 Performance and Best Practices

Section 4 – Implementation Planning
Objective 4.1 – Create an Execute a Validation Plan
vSphere Server and Host Management Guide
Validation Test Plan

Objective 4.2 – Create an Implementation Plan
vSphere Server and Host Management Guide
Operational Test Requirement Cases

Objective 4.3 – Create an Installation Guide
vSphere Server and Host Management Guide

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