As I’ve previously talked about I am currently working towards the VCAP-DCD. I found with the VCAP-DTD that, posting my exam notes online was not only a simple quick reference for myself, it also helped others with their studies. Whilst I’m well aware that many others have posted their study guides before me, different people have different methods of studying so I will replicate what I did with the VCAP-DTD but now with the VCAP-DCD in the hope I will keep up my 100% pass rate with VCAP exams and hopefully help others with their preparations also.

Firstly, head over to the VMware Education page for the VCAP-DCD exam and get registered for the exam. I’m not going to cover pre-reqs of the exam, you can find these on the VMware Education page, also many others have blogged about this previously. Secondly, download the exam blueprint from the same page. Study the exam blueprint, to ensure you understand the format of the exam, timings etc, then read through objectives (I’ll blog about each of these in turn) marking which items you think need the most work.

VMware Documentation:

A number of documents are listed in the exam blueprint which are essential reading. Once again, Jason over at Virtual Langer has kindly downloaded them all and put them in one place for the rest of us to grab!

Text/Kindle Books:

VMware Press Official Cert Guide – VCAP5-DCD by Paul McSharry

VMware vSphere Design 2nd Edition by Forbes Guthrie and Scott Lowe 

VMware vSphere 5.1 Clustering Deep-dive by Duncan Epping and Frank Denneman

VMware Press Managing and Optimising VMware vSphere Deployments by Sean Crookston and Harley Stagner 


The team over at vBrownBag have started covering off the VCAP-DCD, top quality as always! Take a look and subscribe on iTunes

Video Training:

Pluralsight/TrainSignal have a number of great video series including vSphere Design by Scott Lowe which is a must view! Take a look, at the site and register for a free trail

One stop shop:

Whilst I could list every great resource out there from the awesome VMware community, I would be here for days. My colleague Gregg Roberston has put together an awesome resource collection for the VCAP-DCD (and DCA) on his blog TheSaffaGeek, be sure to check it out and bookmark it!

The Blueprint!

Section 1 – Create a vSphere Conceptual Design

Objective 1.1 – Gather and analyse business requirements

Objective 1.2 – Gather and analyse application requirements

Objective 1.3 – Determine risks, constraints and assumptions

Section 2 – Create a vSphere Logical Design from an Existing Conceptual Design

Objective 2.1 – Map business requirements to the logical design

Objective 2.2 – Map service dependencies

Objective 2.3 – Build availability requirements into the logical design

Objective 2.4 – Build manageability requirements into the logical design

Objective 2.5 – Build performance requirements into the logical design

Objective 2.6 – Build recoverability requirements into the logical design

Objective 2.7 – Build security requirements into the logical design

Section 3 – Create a vSphere Physical Design from an Existing Logical Design

Objective 3.1 – Transition from a logical design to a vSphere 5 physical design

Objective 3.2 – Create a vSphere 5 physical network design from an existing logical design

Objective 3.3 – Create a vSphere 5 physical storage design from an existing logical design

Objective 3.4 – Determine appropriate compute resources for a vSphere 5 physical design

Objective 3.5 – Determine virtual machine configuration for a vSphere 5 physical design

Objective 3.6 – Determine data center management options for a vSphere 5 physical design

Section 4 – Implementation Planning

Objective 4.1 – Create an execute a validation plan

Objective 4.2 – Create an implementation plan

Objective 4.3 – Create an installation guide





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