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How to Build a Career in Systems Administration

Microsoft is known not only for the products and services it develops but also as the world’s authority for IT certification.

Microsoft certificates prove that qualified professionals are proficient in technology and are efficient workers. Candidates can choose different levels of certification, from beginners to experts (MTA, MCSA, MCSD, MCSE) and in various areas of specialisation, from data, cloud, and mobility to business applications.

Certifications related to cloud computing are among the most popular, as specialists proficient in advanced technologies are always in demand. As for certifications that most candidates search for, the Microsoft MCSA 70-740 Exam is the most popular. Click here to visit the website.

This credential was launched recently and has brought major changes to the IT industry. It means that even IT veterans have to upgrade their skills and knowledge so that they can remain on point with various IT advancements.

If you are looking for a position as a Systems Administrator, Network Administrator or Network Specialist, this might be the best choice for you. And since Microsoft Servers are widely used, finding your dream job will not be a challenge.

There are no prerequisites for MCSA Windows Server 2016 certification, however, you are required to have at least 3 years’ experience in using Windows Server.

The MCSA Windows Server 2016 credential can be gained by taking three exams which are 70-740, 70-741 and 70-742. Or there’s another way to get it, and that’s by passing only one exam, namely the 70-743 exam, but this will be discussed a further on in this article.

This article is focused mainly on taking 70-740 exam, but covers all other required exams as well. So, let’s start with 70-740 exam that you have to pass in order to earn your MCSA Windows Server 2016 credential.


This exam is for individuals who are familiar with Windows Server 2016 and can perform such tasks as installation, computing and storage within the Server. The major skills that are tested include implementation of Hyper-V of Windows containers, monitoring and maintenance of Server environment, and implementation of storage solutions. Some of the 70-740 exam key features are:

  • It contains about 40 – 60 questions in a variety of formats. Some of the formats to expect are multiple choice, active screen, drag and drop, and scenario-based questions.
  • You have a maximum of 2 hours to complete the exam.
  • The passing score for this exam is 700 of the possible 1000 truncating to 70%.
  • This exam is administered by Pearson VUE at a cost of $165.

It should be noted that failure to show up for the exam without prior cancellation is not subject to a refund. The candidates must adhere to the exam rules and regulations in order to successfully complete the exam testing process. Besides English, the exam is available in several languages, including Chinese, Portuguese, Japanese, German, and French.

Tips on how to prepare for exam 70-740

1. Take a training course

There is no better way to prepare for the exam than taking a training course. This is the most effective way since you are introduced to new concepts and the facilitators take time to explain those concepts. You also get a chance to ask questions, seek clarifications and perform the tasks yourself. Again, studying in a classroom or a designated area eliminates distractions and your focus is maintained.

Microsoft offers a specific course for exam 70-740. It is an instructor-led training course that takes 5 days to complete. This training is conducted by certified instructors who will equip you with knowledge and skills for this exam. Alternatively, you can opt for self-paced training which takes 30 days.

2. Use the Microsoft study guide in your revision

This guides you on which topics to focus on and helps identify the specific skills required for each topic. Study guides come in handy when you are planning your revision time. Through them, you can estimate the time taken to complete each topic. These study guides usually highlight the exam objectives and strategies you can apply during your exams. The official study guide for the 70-740 exam can be purchased on the official Microsoft website or Amazon platform.

3. Try the Microsoft Virtual Academy

This is an online training platform that offers free prep material from Microsoft. It contains videos, presentations, and demonstrations on how to operate Windows Server 2016. These materials give you a better understanding of what you have read or heard. Since it is free, you can take advantage of this platform to ace your exams. The content is authentic, so there is no need to worry about validity.

4. Join a focused study group

Studying with peers or other focused members can help you in a big way. It allows you to exchange ideas with others, seek clarification, and share challenges and tips on how to answer questions. The power of discussions should never be underestimated! You can learn new things and even memorize all the processes required for exam 70-740. It is proven that you understand something better when you explain it to someone else.

5. Practice tests

Using practice tests along with other study material is an excellent way to prepare. Practice tests usually resemble the real exam. This means that you get used to tackling questions, familiarize yourself with possible question formats, and learn to manage your time during the exam. Through this, you can assess yourself and identify your strong points and even the gaps in your knowledge. This enables you to work on your weak points and perfect your strengths.

6. Practice

It’s always easy to remember something you did practically than some random theory you have read. To pass this exam, theoretical skills alone are not enough. You need to know how to perform several tasks within the Server. This practice will also help you in your daily activities in the real world. You are free to make mistakes here so that you can learn how to solve issues that may arise when using the Servers.

One way to practice is to use the trial version of the Windows Server 2016 software. Use your study guide and practice the tasks that are relevant to this particular exam.

7. Work with an expert

A good way to equip yourself with knowledge is to work closely with an expert. Follow them closely and observe how they perform their tasks. This will give you an idea of the work you are required to do. Experts will guide you and give you the best insights that will help you ace your exam. Give it a try and you will soon be an IT expert too.

8. Join an online forum

Apart from study groups, online forums are best when it comes to preparation for the exam. You get to communicate with other individuals who will take the same exam as you. It allows you to interact with those who have done the exam and to share experiences. This can serve as motivation as you prepare for this exam.

Steps to complete Windows Server 2016 Certifications

After taking into consideration the tips of how to prepare for the 70-740 exam and succeeding in it, candidates need to take the 70-741 and 70-742 exams.

The 70-741 exam checks the networking skills of candidates with Windows Server 2016. They should be skilled in operating DNS, DHCP, VPN and RADIUS as well as be able to implement remote access solutions.

The 70-742 exam refers to identity with Windows Server 2016. Candidates should perfectly apply their knowledge in working with GOPs (Group Policy Objects), Web Application Proxy, AD CS (Active Directory Certificate Services), AD FS (Active Directory Federations Services) and AD RMS (Active Directory Rights Management Services).

One more way to get MCSA Windows Server 2016 certification

If you have already obtained MCSA Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2012 R2 certification, you should take the 70-743 exam to get the Windows Server 2016 credential. This exam covers all the topics included in the previous set of exams (70-740, 70-741 and 70-742) and will help you to upgrade your skills to Windows Server 2016. Though the skills you’ve gained from the previous certification exams will be of great help, you will need to deepen your knowledge concerning all the operations required to work with Windows Server 2016 (from installation, storage, to deploying and managing).

Final thoughts

Microsoft exams are not only known for their complexity but also for the benefits associated with their success. Certification exams (70-740, 70-741, 70-742 (or just 70-743) are necessary to get the MCSA Windows Server 2016 credential and are not an exception. They call for commitment and hard work.

There’s no need to panic though! The tips highlighted above will help you prepare adequately, and thus, score high marks when passing these exams. Take a deep breath, relax, and focus when sitting your exams. A bright future awaits when you pass!

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