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I realized that I never post my experience about VCDX(3) certification path… Maybe is not too late


As everybody probably knows VCDX is the highest level of VMware certification, and has a long path (that require also a lot time).


The complete path is available at:

It consists in 4 steps:

1. VCP certification

2. Enterprise Admin Exam

3. Design Exam

4. Defense


The first time that I hear about VCDX was in the middle of 2008, and I filled the VCDX Qualification Review on August 21, 2008, just for curiosity and as a challenge.

I was thinking (wrong) that there where some intermediate certifications for each step (now there are the VCAP certification, but only for the VCDX4 path), and I was very interested to prove myself knowledge on the Admin exam.


On September 8th 2008 I receive this mail with the blueprint of the Admin exam:

“Thank you for you interest in the VMware Certified Design Expert Program.  We have received your pre-registration survey and are working to schedule more Enterprise Administration Exams.  As soon as we have more dates and locations scheduled, we will send you the appropriate information.

In the meantime, please be sure to review the attached Enterprise Administration Exam blueprint as the exam will, from today, be based on VMware Infrastructure 3.5.”


On February 12th 2009 I receive another e-mail with the great opportunity to take the Admin exam at VMworld Europe in Cannes. I schedule the exam at February 23rd 2009.

On March 19 I receive the report with the result… PASS!!!


At this point was clear for me, that the intermediate steps are not useful… So I tried the full path and start studying for the Design exam.

Initially I was thinking that the full path was useful only for architect that design big and complex virtual infrastructure… But also medium and small infrastructures require a good design, and in some cases are also more difficult that large one… so why not?

Unfortunately I loose the opportunity to take the beta exam of the Design exam… So I had to wait until the official exam was available. So I take the exam on October 23rd 2009, and I pass at the first attempt.


Then I scheduled the Defense step at the Partner Exchange 2010 at Feb 10th 2010.

The last step (IMHO the hardest part) has more steps (in a recursion way) that are very clear describe in the VCDX Application Form, now available from the VMware site:

Also now there is available a VCDX Defense Prep guide to get tips from the Experts:


Read more in Part 2…


Note that the VCDX3 path is near to be closed (Admin and Design exams are closed and last chance to the defense is PEX 2011 at February, for more info see: ).

I'm not a real blogger (due to time constraints) so my report will be very brief…


This was my second VMworld Europe (on February I also attendee at PEX 2010), and first time at Copenhagen.

The city is very nice, but a little far, expensive and cold for me (fortunately the weather was fine for all the days). Locations was good (although I prefer Cannes, or other new places like Barcellona, for example) but Bella Center was large enough for all the attendees (and lunch place was more comfortable then the one for Cannes!) and good served by public metro and trains.

The metro/train pass and the shuttles for the airport were a really good idea.


About the event, as other people have written, labs where one of the best thing!

A lot of labs, well designed, on several arguments.

Maybe the only defect (if I have to find one) is that the performance on few lab was not optimal (I see that the View lab was too slow for me).


About the sessions, most of them were very interesting (and I just wait to have all of them online to see what I’ve missed). Maybe some technical sessions were not enough technical (from my point of view).


But the best think of this kind of events (IMHO) is the social part, the possibility to meet and know several people, talk with expert or share ideas and though…

Probably I will forget some people, sorry for that…

It was an honor and pleasure to meet some people from VMware like John Troyer and Jon Hall, several VCDX like John Arrasjid, Scott Lowe, Wade Holmes, Duncan Epping, Frank Denneman and Andrew Hald (the last three were in my panel, although Frank formally was only an observer).

Also several people of the community were present, I cannot list all them of them, so I just mention Ully Hankeln (aka continuum in the community).


Last mention of all the people from my County (Italy) and a wish to start a local VMUG…