A couple of weeks ago I took and passed the Microsoft Azure Architecure exam, 70-535.
At work we are doing more and more Azure development and I wanted the qualification to make sure I knew all off Microsoft's offering on Azure ( and there are a well over a hundred of them ).

It's a hard exam and I found little advice on the Internet, so here are some notes for others taking the same exam.

My revision approach was:

  • Watch Udemy video on by Scott Duffy
  • Random youtube videos on particular subjects I was struggling with ( e.g. Azure B2B vs B2C )
  • MeasureUp Test exams
  • Lots of playing around in Azure itself, creating resources, trying things out ( essential in my opinion )

I'd guess my total time studying was about 80 hours.

Be aware the exam used to be called 70-534. It was recently updated at the start of 2018 and got the number bumped to 70-535.

Udemy videos

I purchased access to Scott's 535 videos for about £20, which was pretty good for 13+ hours of content. Generally I found it good, although with the fast pace of Azure he's obviously challenged with keeping it all up to date.

Scott seems to add new content all the time, so if you go this route, make sure you check for updates regularly.

Test exams

I purchased the exam through Microsoft with a voucher for a month's access to the MeasureUp.com test exams.

I found multiple issues with their test exams:

  • Questions that ask you for two answers, but then mark you down for not answering 3
  • Answers that were plain wrong ! (e.g. It claims Web Jobs can't use Powershell scripts)
  • Questions and Answers with inconsistent data (e.g. different IP addresses between the question and correct answer)
  • Lots of pretty outdated questions around things like Cloud Roles
  • Links to blog articles from 2014 that are hopelessly out of date
  • Versions of services that don't exist anymore, or are depreciated (lots of the old AD sync stuff)

Even logging on was problematic !

Very frustrating, but in the end I was glad I used them, just to get use to the format of the questions, and the explanations of the answers are reasonable good. Just double check anything that doesn't ring true !

On the day

One thing to get into the habit of: don't think of the questions as you would in real-life with all the complex requirements and tradeoffs, think what is the correct answer given the very minimal info in the question they have given you.

This took me a while, but you just need to answer how Microsoft want you to answer, not necessarily what you would do in a real situation.

The exam was 2.5 hours, but I finished within 1.5. Be aware some questions allow you to go back and review, but some do not.

I'm not allowed to go into details on any of the questions, but here are the subjects that I remember coming up:

  • Security Centre, Security Policies (lots of security and encryption questions)
  • Cognitive services
  • CosmoDB
  • On prem to Azure networking
  • Azure storage
  • Search
  • Service Levels of Redis
  • Routers ( Traffic Manager, Load Balancer, Application Gateway )
  • Data factory, Logic apps, Function apps
  • Batch
  • AD authorisation
  • Web jobs
  • Queue types and which to use - read this

I don't remember many questions of the following (but your mileage may vary):

  • Sql Server (except TDE)
  • VM types
  • API management

Good luck !