Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Since the beta is nearing it's end (last day tomorrow!), I feel relatively safe in posting my thoughts that I jotted down the night after I took the test.

A short note that the SCCM beta is out next month. Keep an eye on MyITForum for details.


So I took the TS: Configuring Microsoft® System Center Operations Manager beta test on Friday. I found it a little disappointing, and I’ll tell you as much as I can without divulging questions or answers.

Firstly, it was strictly question – answer, your standard Microsoft exam. Some multiple choice, some select three of five, some select the right answer. No “Drag three of these five over there in the correct order”, no “Where would you click to do this”, no interactive at all. This could be simply because it was a beta test, I don’t know. But I found it a bit disappointing. I expected that since the exam is new that there would be a higher level of interactivity. Perhaps those questions are to come in the final exam.

It also lacked the dreaded "scenario" questions. Gone are the three paragraphs of garble that you have to sift through to find the two words that lead you to the "most right" answer. I didn't miss those at all.

There were many questions about restoring a dead RMS server. Be prepared to know how to do so, whether or not you have the encryption key backed up. And know the command line utilities associated with doing so.

Know how to import MOM 2005 management packs.

Know reporting and report subscriptions and publishing. This is likely the area I was least prepared for.

There were many questions around client monitoring. Know what the different client monitoring MP’s do, and what the “Business Critical” group is for.

Obviously, know what a Gateway Server is, and where it goes in a configuration where it’s needed. And know when you need it.

Know the difference between a console task and an agent task, and when each should be utilized.

The test was very straightforward, with very little I hadn’t encountered before. I relied upon real-world experience, reading all of the Microsoft documentation I could lay hands on, and watching the great MyITForumTV videos around SCOM.

It’s likely too late to sign up for the test, but if you’ve signed up and not taken it yet I wish you well.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Wait Until Next Year... again

I may be one of the only Cub fans that did NOT expect them to take the World Series this year. They were after all only the best team in the worst division, and in any other division would not have been in the playoffs. And you can't have Ramirez going 0-the series and expect to win.
Still, it was nice to watch the Cubbies play some October baseball again.
If they come back mostly intact next year, they should be a force in the division again and hopefully go farther in the playoffs. Maybe even all the way.
Go Cubs Go!