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Knox Hutchinson
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Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert (AZ-400) FAQs: Cost, Training, Value

Is the DevOps Engineer Expert (AZ-400) worth it?

Yes, if you're serious about mastering the skills and tools that make DevOps possible within the Microsoft Azure ecosystem, the Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert is worth the time, effort and cost it takes to earn. Whether you're already working in DevOps and want to expand your organization's pipeline to leverage Microsoft's cloud resources, or you're laying the foundation toward a career as a Release Manager or DevOps Engineer, DevOps Engineer Expert is a prestigious validation of your abilities.

How much does the Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert cost?

The DevOps Engineer Expert certification only has one exam: the AZ-400, and it costs $165 to register for it. But the certification has prerequisites, so that's not the only cost associated with earning it. Before you can attempt AZ-400, you have to pass either AZ-104: Microsoft Azure Administrator, or AZ-204: Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure, both of which cost $165. So the total cost of the DevOps Engineer Expert cert is at least $330, before training and prep costs.

Is the AZ-400 exam for the DevOps Engineer Expert difficult?

Yes, by most measures, the DevOps Engineer Expert certification exam AZ-400 is a challenging test of your familiarity not just with DevOps principles, tools, and practices but also Microsoft Azure as a whole. The AZ-400 specifically tests your ability to design and implement custom DevOps solutions that fit an organization's particular workflow. You'll need to have a thorough understanding of the software, services and tools available in the Microsoft Azure ecosystem and be prepared to put them to creative use.

Does the Microsoft Certified: DevOps Engineer Expert expire?

Yes, all Microsoft role-based and specialty certifications are valid for only one year, and the DevOps Engineer Expert certification expires one year from the date you complete all its requirements. Fortunately, you can renew it for free. In an effort to ensure that tech professionals keep their skills up-to-date with evolving technology, Microsoft maintains certification renewal exams that you can take for free within six months of your cert expiring, DevOps Engineer Expert included.

How best to study for the DevOps Engineer Expert (AZ-400)?

The thing that makes AZ-400 so challenging is that you need to prove your skills and abilities related to DevOps while actually using Azure. It won't be enough to recite information – you'll need practical, real-world experience. If you're lucky enough to have that experience from work, congratulations! If you don't, the best way to study for the AZ-400 is with virtual simulations in a hands-on learning environment.
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