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December 2nd, 2010 20:00

Announcing Cloud Architect and Data Center Architect Certification tracks

Today we announced two new EMC Proven Professional certifications tracks. These advanced level tracks are targeted toward architects, designers, and consultants who are, or will be, responsible for designing highly virtualized cloud-ready infrastructures leading to the design of IT-as-a-Service environments for Private Cloud as well as for Service Providers.

A well-designed and architected infrastructure is critical to an organization's sustainable cloud strategy. The journey to the cloud is largely enabled by a team of architects who can plan and design a seamless, automated, highly-optimized cloud computing environment representing the company's business plans.

  • Cloud Architect (EMCCA) certification is targeted toward architects who deliver virtualization and cloud designs based on business strategies encompassing all key technical domains (compute, storage, networking, applications, etc).

  • Data Center Architect (EMCDCA) certification is for architects and designers who provide detailed designs for information storage specific technical domains to complement, expand, and complete their overall virtualization and cloud design.

Both tracks are based on 'open' curriculum where the focus is on technology/principles rather than specific products (similar to ISM design).

We strongly believe that both these tracks meet a necessary requirement for organizations and individual professionals as they plan extensive virtualization and adoption of cloud computing...please do take some time and review the details of these new exciting tracks by visting the EMC Education Services Portal or downloading this brochure (pdf).

546 Posts

December 6th, 2010 11:00

So the secret is out of the bag....the reason I'm studying to get my EMCISA is because I want to pursue the EMCCA - EMC Cloud Architect. I can see that everything I learned to do in a data center is changing with the onslaught of virtualization and cloud technologies, and I want to be sure I keep my skills up to date.

Not only that, I think the skills I have right now are pretty my last job I lived and breathed change control and compliance. It will be interesting see how that domain changes as things go to the cloud.

I'm pretty excited about it!

In case you missed it, there has been a bit of blog coverage on the topic:

So what do you guys think about today's announcement?

23 Posts

December 6th, 2010 18:00

Over the last couple of weeks I had the opportunity to brief prominent analysts, bloggers, and reporters on this launch. It gave a sense that the announcement will be well received - and today the reactions exceeded that sense. It was an exciting day for everyone who has been working  (and continue to do so) so hard over the last months on this program.

Many companies do not have IT professionals who carry the 'Architect' title. Though there are highly capable individuals who play that role (architecting = science and art of designing a system) for their IT organizations. The new Cloud Architect and Data Center Architect tracks are ideally suited for them. Based on your company's requirements and your interest, consider Cloud Architect track If you possess strong cross-domain skills (Compute+Storage+ Networking+Apps++). If you are strong in storage and storage virtualization consider one or more specialties in the Data Center Architect track.

A team of architects (cloud and domain) is almost a necessity for a well thought out design for highly virtualized cloud environment. EMC-IT has a very strong team of architects leading EMC's journey to the cloud - and we have learnt a lot from them to build these tracks....

23 Posts

December 7th, 2010 17:00

EMCCA and EMCDCA tracks are based on "open" curriculum. What does it really mean?

We introduced the concept of 'open' curriculum with Information Storage and Management (ISM course, book) 4 years back. The thought process was very simple - focus on concepts, principles, standard architectures, best practices of technology instead of specific products. Once the concepts are well understood - learning about any product or solution becomes effortless. Since ISM was being designed to be introduced in universities and colleges as well, it made more sense - the theory content is 'open' with no mention of any vendor or products. To reinforce learning we used real life scenarios and case studies which included representative EMC products and technologies. It resulted in a course and the book which is liked by our customers, partners, employees, industry professionals as well as students from over 500 universities and colleges worldwide (so far, growing steadily). Many of you have also commented that you find it to be the best reference book for the storage industry.

When designing Cloud Architect and Data Center Architect content - we followed the same approach. Architects need to be creative thinkers and clear understanding of underlying concepts will help build that capability. For real life scenerios we are using representative technologies from EMC and its partners. One can say that once the concepts are very clear - it is less important which products are used as examples because the Architect, in addition to creating optimal designs,  should also be able to understand the functionality, strengths, or weaknesses of any vendor's technology and solutions with relative ease.

I am fortunate to have some of the best technical professionals in the industry on the team. These practitioners and subject matter experts will support me when I say that designing and developing 'open' content is much much harder than product specific training. It's even harder in case of Cloud Architect as the technology and standards are consistently evolving...

(I plan to share such details in small chunks with you over next few days/weeks - hopefully you find them useful...) Thanks.

23 Posts

December 9th, 2010 18:00

For both EMCCA and EMCDCA tracks the first step is to achieve EMCISA certification which is at foundational/associate level. The course/book titled 'Information Storage and Management' provides you the learning and preparation material. There are various options available - Instructor led training, Video-ILT (check out the Starter Kit promotion), book, eLearning from EMC's library or from Skillsoft's technical library. Those of you who took the ISM curriculum in your colleges and universities are probably already prepared to pass the exam. You also have practice tests to check if you are ready for the exam. Practice tests and other exam details are available at

274.2K Posts

December 10th, 2010 13:00

This week in Milford, MA twelve students attended the Data Center Architect (DCA) Storage Network Design (SND) course.  They will be among the first few eligible to certify under the new DCA track.

The class included customers and both EMC and VMware employees.  Work groups represented included: Advanced Protocol Group, EDL, Cross Platforms eLab, Powerpath QA and several members of both IT Tech Support (EMC and VMware) and Customer Services (Shared Management Services, GBS Contracts, GS Service Planning, Domestic Customer - Latin America).

The interest and enthusiasm in the new certification tracks from outside the business was also evident in the classroom!   The diversity of the student body made for a particularly interesting and enlightening class.  How do I know?  I was there!  I am one of the instructors in the DCA certification track and was teaching the course this week.

Next week, a second specialist class in the DCA track will be offered in Milford: Infomation Availability.  This class addresses backup, local and remote replication, continuous data protection and archiving technologies.  Nine (9) students are currently registered.

You can register for either the DCASND or DCAIAD classes.  They will be offered regularly throughout the year.

I will post again next week to let you know how the DCAIAD class went. 

1 Message

December 14th, 2010 00:00


I am interested to do the  EMCCAe - IT as a Service - Expert Level Certification. Please guide me with the next steps.



23 Posts

December 14th, 2010 20:00

This is great update... I am sure the students would have been very surprised and delighted as the press release coincided with their first day in the class!

23 Posts

December 14th, 2010 20:00

One can expect that the new and evolved IT roles that align to the 'cloud' will be in high demand and command higher rewards. Cloud Architect certification is obviously a great tool to achieve the level of skills and expertise that would benefit the companies as well as individual IT professionals.

Responding to Anand's question on what are the steps to achieve the expert level Cloud Architect certification:

Step 0 : Pre-qualifications: EMCCA is advanced level certification for IT Professionals (Systems, Storage..) who have 3+ years of planning and designing experience and cross-domain knowledge/skills covering compute/virtualization, storage/virtualization, networking/virtualization and a good exposure to middleware/applications. A measure of level of skills in different domains can be - VMware's VCP, Cisco's CCDA, or equivalent certifications.

Step 1: Achieve EMCISA certification which is based on "Information Storage and Management" curriculum (pl see my note above). This content not only covers storage but also introduces several key concepts around data centers, virtualization, security...This is Associate level certification and is requirement to achieve Specialist level EMCCA.

Step 2: Achieve EMCCA - Virtualized Infrastructure; the classes are open now (I think most in Q1 are already maxed out). Though attending the class is not required to get certified, the subject is new and dynamic and it is highly advised to plan and attend the class. The exam will be published by end of March and like with other EMC Proven Certifications, will be aligned to the course content. Please do read the course description at for details on topics covered.

Step 3: Achieve EMCCAe - IT as a Service expert level certification: EMCISA and EMCCA (previous 2 steps) are required to proceed to the expert level. The class and exam will be available in late Q2/Q3 2011 timeframe.

Hope this helps,


1 Message

December 15th, 2010 10:00

The ISM book and test are one of the best book/tests combinations that I have used (and I have taken maybe 40+ throughout a 30 year career). I hope that someone within EMC is being incentivized to prepare a commercially available book of a similar quality to the ISM textbook.

Either a purchaseable book or a free PDF would be great way to move the certification forward.

23 Posts

December 15th, 2010 20:00

Thank you for your comments. We saw a strong need for a comprehensive book on storage technology, a mature, advanced, and probably least understood technology segment of IT (outside of folks who live it everyday). Popularity of ISM course, book, certification along with great success of Academic Alliance program endorsed the need. An interesting 'secret' - most of the 40+ authors of ISM book wrote it out of their interest, passion and commitment (in addition to their day jobs!). None of us had ever written a book. Team's level of subject matter expertise and commitment to quality supported by publication experts from Wiley and NIIT helped shape a quality product...


274.2K Posts

December 17th, 2010 13:00

I received word yesterday from a student in last week's DCASND class that he had taken the certification test and passed!  That may very well qualify him as the first new Specialist in the new track.

Thought I'd pass along that he felt that the online practice exam was helpful in his preparations.

Best of luck to other recent students who plan to take the DCASND and DCAIAD exams!

274.2K Posts

December 17th, 2010 13:00

Today in Milford, seven students completed the five day course in Information Availability.  This makes them the first people eligible to take the DCAIAD certification exam to certify as a Data Center Architect with a specialty in Information Availability.

The DCAIAD course covers technologies and design considerations for backup, replication (local, remote, SAN-based, NAS) and archiving requirements.

It was an excellent group of students and great class.  Students came from IT Global Command and Enterprise Architecture, Global ISG Support, Advanced Design and Architecture, EDL, USD - MAKO and GSC Proof of Concept. 

546 Posts

December 20th, 2010 15:00

Thanks for all these real time updates! Do you think I could come and video some of the students?

274.2K Posts

February 8th, 2011 02:00

Hi Alok

That’s a very useful info. Really so much appreciated.

May I ask for EMCCA - Virtualized Infrastructure Materials ?? If you have it please


Moustafa Nasser

408 Posts

February 9th, 2011 08:00

Hello Moustafa,

Information regarding EMCCA - Virtualized Infrastructure Materials can be found by visiting the EMC Education Services Portal or by downloading this brochure (pdf).  The exam details and practice exam will be available online in April 2011.

Kind regards,


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