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How the New Cloud+ Certification Compares to the Old One (It Doesn't)
Earlier this year, CompTIA released a new version of their vendor-neutral Cloud+ exam. Like the previous Cloud+ exam, the CV0-002 prepares IT pros to jump headfirst into the cloud. But this certification goes further (and deeper) than its predecessor. Namely, the new exam concentrates on performance-based questions and hands-on simulations.
Here's the rundown of why CompTIA calls the CV0-002 the ultimate cloud certification for the enterprise.
Why the change to the CV0-002
CompTIA recognizes that organizations are increasingly leveraging the cloud. By 2020, 83 percent of enterprise workloads will be in the cloud. But there's not just one cloud. Or even one type of cloud.
In most certification programs, IT pros are validating their knowledge about a single vendor's product. CompTIA sought to bridge the cloud skills gap in a way that addresses advanced cloud skills in the context of broader IT systems.
The previous exam focused on building cloud infrastructure as IaaS offerings. In 2015, when the exam was launched, IaaS was a big deal among the enterprise. However, CV0-002 has broader application. It is relevant for a wider variety of cloud configurations.
Hybrid cloud and multi-cloud environments are preferred among enterprises to run business systems, hence the CV0-002's focus on integrating the cloud within systems operations.
Whether an organization wants to move away from expensive legacy systems or wants to use the cloud to leverage customer data better, they need IT pros who can design and configure hybrid or multi-cloud environments.
At the same time, IT pros want to prove they have the skills to get those jobs. The Cloud+ CV0-002 certification bridges that gap by validating people's skills to implement cloud solutions.
CV0-002 vs. CV0-001: The Specs
Let's get a few similarities out of the way. The format of the exam hasn't changed that much. The CV0-002 has the same 90-minute time limit. It also features roughly the same number of questions. Both exams prerequisites recommend the CompTIA Network+ and/or Server+ certification, and familiarity with hypervisor technologies.
The two exams diverge with recommended experience. CompTIA now recommends that test takers should have two to three years experience in systems administration. Thus, Cloud+ is not an entry-level certification.
Rather than starting with defining concepts and terms, Cloud+ CV0-002 jumps right into configuration and deployment. They expect test takers to enter with the following familiarity:
- Knowledge of cloud service model (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS) definitions
- Knowledge of common cloud deployment model (Private, Public, Hybrid) definitions
- Hands-on experience with at least one public cloud IaaS platform
Twenty-four percent of the CV0-002 exam is devoted to configuration and management. It's the largest domain of the exam, which reflects CompTIA's aim to make sure learners can deploy successful cloud solutions.
The new exam features both multiple-choice and performance-based questions. The CV0-001 exam was strictly multiple choice.
The CV0-002 exam is also a little narrower, but deeper. Not only does it have five domains rather than the seven that comprised its predecessor, CV0-002's focus on real-world application takes it up a notch from its predecessor.
Basically, if you passed the last Cloud+, then you were sure to know about the cloud. If you pass this exam, then you should be able to maintain a cloud enterprise.
Cloud+ now prepares IT pros on-the-job performance
The new Cloud+ proves to employers that the certification holder can walk in the door and implement or maintain a cloud solution — regardless of vendor. CompTIA accomplished that lofty task by narrowing test material to address common operational situations.
For instance, Cloud+ test takers will run into questions where they're given a scenario, and they'll have to determine the appropriate allocation of cloud resources and even calculate the cost. In other instances, test takers might perform routine maintenance tasks or update cloud elements. CompTIA is being very direct about what it wants learners to know and do, and it's all outlined in the exam objectives.
There's no doubt the CV0-002 prepares cert holders to jump into the enterprise cloud world. CompTIA built the exam based on employer needs. That's why so much of the exam is scenario-based.
The CV0-002 is a rarity among cloud certifications due to its performance- and scenario-based nature. Similar certifications like CCSP or MCSA Cloud don't feature performance-based questions. Even the CV0-001 was entirely multiple choice. By using scenarios, CompTIA prepares learners to perform on the job.
As businesses seek to use the cloud in more complex ways, they need IT pros who can help them get there. The CV0-002 tests the skills IT pros need to be successful and ensures employers know what they're getting.