So just before Xmas 2021, I finally got around to sitting the Azure Admin exam. I originally planned to sit it back around April 2020 (the exam was AZ-103 at that point and AZ-104 was due to come in over the summer). I’d done a lot of reading around the exam topics and had just started attempting some practice exams to find my weaknesses…and then Covid-19 put us all into lockdown.

I didn’t have a place to take the exam at home, and work actually got really busy so it was put on hold till things opened up later. Fast forward to October 2021 and I decided to book the exam and fit it in around everything else.


I’d love to say experience is all you need…but Azure is big. I’ve been using it for 3-4 years on various projects. But even then, there are area’s that I have no practical experience of. For example, Azure AD - just not been an admin for that. I’ve used the built in roles to limit access a little, but never done any kind of on premise to cloud sync magic. VPN set up - never done it, where needed, it’s been configured by someone else. Kubernetes, I’ve never used this on Azure (used on Google Cloud years ago), so no familiarity with the Azure offerings.

Lets face it, one person rarely has sole responsibility for all the things. Everything is silo’d off so people don’t have to know everything about everything. It’s one of the things that all these exams kind of fail at, so you just have to accept the fact that there will be questions that don’t relate to things you have used (and if you have, great!).

The best place to start is with the MS Learn page. You get a breakdown of what is covered in the exam and can evaluate what you need to cover. Also, you have the learn modules for the topics that can give some practical experience. The learn modules give you plenty of information and link off to MS docs for even more.

Scott Duffy’s course on Udemy covers everything. It’s a little dry, but covers all the topics. I’d already watched most of these before (early 2020), but there was a lot of updated and new content.

For practice exams, Whizlabs were good enough for me. The questions are similar enough to the actual exam questions. I just wish that you could generate your own tests from the question pool rather than the fixed four tests.

The actual exam

The exam was around 60 question (honestly can’t remember the exact number) and you have 120 minutes to do it. There were roughly three types of questions: case study, multiple choice and multiple choice were you can’t go back. That last one was kind of like the case study, but once you answer one part, you can’t go back and review it/change your answer.

The first question was a case study. The case study just threw me. Not the actual case study, but the way it was formatted. Let me explain, there were different sections that you had to click on to view, but you couldn’t view the whole case study in one go. So you click through each section and then go back to the question. But I missed that the question became the first section of the case study, I ended up moving to the next question and back. Which got frustrating, very quickly. The two case studies contained 8-10 questions and cost me 30 minutes right at the start of the exam.

The next few questions were the ones you can’t go back to change. And after that, it was back to the normal multiple choice questions. Usually, I have more than enough time to finish the exam and review everything. But thanks to those wasted minutes struggling with the case study, time was very tight.

I won’t say too much about the questions, but they covered the expected areas: resource locks, roles, storage, compute resources, powershell/cli, etc. If you have run through some practice tests, you have a good idea of the kind of questions to expect and the topics covered.

Only valid for one year

The exam is now only valid for one year. So at some point this year, I’ll have to complete a MS Learn path to re-certify for another year. There is some info here but not much. I’ll see what happens in six months time.