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May 25, 2010
By Doug Allen
In another move to spur cloud services adoption, virtualization powerhouse VMware is launching a new certification program called VMware Certified Advanced Professional (VCAP) for virtualization partners, end-users and consultants.
Currently, the company offers two tiers of certification; the standard VMware Certified Professional class, and the elite VMware Certified Design Expert. VCAP is designed to bridge the gap, and act as a stepping stone to higher-level training. VCAP offers two certification tracks: VMware Certified Advanced Professional Datacenter Administration for system administrators, senior consultants and technical support engineers who are already familiar with fairly complex virtualized environments such as VMware vSphere technologies; and VMware Certified Advanced Professional Datacenter Design, for IT architects and consulting architects with proven skills in crafting multi-site virtualized solutions for the large enterprise. To achieve certification, trainees must demonstrate a core understanding of VMware components, their relation to storage and networking, and data center design. VMware is offering several courses to prepare VMware Certified Professionals candidates for the VCAP exams.
The VCAP program will differentiate between those that know the core VMware product line versus those that fully understand and can architect an end-to-end virtualization infrastructure, said Ernest Nichols, Virtualization Consultant, from premier partner, SHI International. This raising of the bar will keep value for the VCP who works inside of a customers organization, but allows VMware partners to show that we bring additional skills which can further add to their organizational tool belt.
Its part of VMwares strategy to expand the field of virtualization experts who can show business customers how to improve efficiencies while lowering costs through cloud computing, a space many still find confusing, if not daunting. Despite widespread industry interest in such network-based services and the widespread adoption of virtualization technologies in the enterprise, putting together all the disparate elements of cloud computing or services in a virtualized environment remains a challenge.
VMware seems to be acknowledging as much; while the company claims more than 50,000 VMware Certified Professionals worldwide, there are only 50 of the more highly trained VMware Certified Design Experts. With more top-certified IT experts in the field, VMware not only increases its feet on the street for its particular virtualized solutions an important strategic point as Microsoft ramps up its own high-profile virtualization offerings but also the number of qualified partners, systems integrators and network architects who can indirectly grow the overall market for cloud services.
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