We shall today discuss the Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400) exam format in brief. But before we begin, it is very important to understand what is Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400) exam is and who should take the exam? The Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400) exam measures the candidate’s ability to accomplish the technical tasks such as developing an instrumentation strategy; developing a Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) strategy; developing a security and compliance plan; managing source control; facilitating communication and collaboration; defining and implementing continuous integration, and defining and implementing continuous delivery and releasing management strategy.
If You are wondering who can take AZ-400 exam, then let us tell you- Candidates for the DevOps Engineer Expert certification should have subject matter expertise working with people, processes, and technologies to continuously deliver business value.
- Responsibilities for this role include designing and implementing strategies for collaboration, code, infrastructure, source control, security, compliance, continuous integration, testing, delivery, monitoring, and feedback.
- A candidate for this certification must be familiar with both Azure administration and development and must be an expert in at least one of these areas.
- Firstly, the Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400) exam consists of 40-60 questions.
- Secondly, all the questions will be multiple choice/ multiple response questions which need to be finished within a time frame of 150 minutes.
- Also, the candidate has to score at least 700 or more points in order to pass the exam.
- Further, the registration fee for the exam is $165 USD including all the additional taxes.
- Additionally, the exam is available in four languages, namely English, Japanese, Chinese (Simplified), and Korean.
The exam measures your ability to design a DevOps strategy and implement the following: DevOps development processes; dependency management; application infrastructure; and continuous integration, delivery, and feedback.
Pearson VUE: In order to appear in the Microsoft exam, the candidate has to schedule the exam and make themselves register with Microsoft. The candidate can schedule their exam with the Pearson VUE.
Certiport : The candidate also schedules the AZ-400 with Certiport. Schedule Your Exam Now!
Now, we have acquired all the information related to AZ-400. It’s time for you to understand the Course Outline. The Course Outline forms the most crucial aspect of the examination. So, let’s begin.
It is important to go through the whole course structure once and to understand and learn all the objectives.
AZ-400 Exam updates in the course outline as on July 13, 2022.
1. Configure processes and communications (10—15%)
Configure activity traceability and flow of work
- Plan and implement a structure for the flow of work and feedback cycles (Microsoft Documentation: How Microsoft plans with DevOps)
- Identify appropriate metrics related to flow of work, such as cycle times, time to recovery, and lead time (Microsoft Documentation: Lead Time and Cycle Time widgets)
- Integrate pipelines with work item tracking tools, such as Azure DevOps and GitHub (Microsoft Documentation: Use links to view dependencies and track related work)
- Implement traceability policies decided by development (Microsoft Documentation: End-to-end traceability)
- Integrate a repository with Azure Boards (Microsoft Documentation: Connect Azure Boards to GitHub (Cloud))
Configure collaboration and communication
- Communicate actionable information by using custom dashboards in Azure DevOps (Microsoft Documentation: About dashboards, charts, reports, & widgets)
- Document a project by using tools, such as wikis and process diagrams (Microsoft Documentation: Create a wiki for your project)
- Configure release documentation, including release notes and API documentation (Microsoft Documentation: Releases, Releases – List)
- Automate creation of documentation from Git history (Microsoft Documentation: Understand Git history simplification)
- Configure notifications by using webhooks (Microsoft Documentation: Set up notifications for changes in resource data)
2. Design and implement source control (15—20%)
Design and implement a source control strategy
- Design and implement an authentication strategy (Microsoft Documentation: Design authentication and credential strategies)
- Design a strategy for managing large files, including Git LFS and git-fat
- Design a strategy for scaling and optimizing a Git repository, including Scalar and crossrepository sharing (Microsoft Documentation: Git limits)
- Implement workflow hooks (Microsoft Documentation: Webhooks)
Plan and implement branching strategies for the source code
- Design a branch strategy, including trunk-based, feature branch, and release branch (Microsoft Documentation: Adopt a Git branching strategy)
- Design and implement a pull request workflow by using branch policies and branch protections (Microsoft Documentation: Branch policies and settings)
- Implement branch merging restrictions by using branch policies and branch protections (Microsoft Documentation: About branches and branch policies)
Configure and manage repositories
- Integrate GitHub repositories with Azure Pipelines, one of the services in Azure DevOps (Microsoft Documentation: Azure DevOps and GitHub integration overview)
- Configure permissions in the source control repository (Microsoft Documentation: Set Git repository permissions)
- Configure tags to organize the source control repository (Microsoft Documentation: Set Git repository settings and policies)
- Recover data by using Git commands (Microsoft Documentation: Git command reference)
- Purge data from source control (Microsoft Documentation: Remove access to version control files)
3. Design and implement build and release pipelines (40—45%)
Design and implement pipeline automation
- Integrate pipelines with external tools, including dependency scanning, security scanning, and code coverage (Microsoft Documentation: Securing Azure Pipelines)
- Design and implement quality and release gates, including security and governance (Microsoft Documentation: Deployment gates)
- Designing integration of automated tests into a pipeline (Microsoft Documentation: Design a CI/CD pipeline using Azure DevOps)
- Design and implement a comprehensive testing strategy (Microsoft Documentation: Testing strategy)
- Implement orchestration of tools, such as GitHub Actions and Azure Pipelines (Microsoft Documentation: Compare and contrast GitHub Actions and Azure Pipelines)
Design and implement a package management strategy
- Design a package management implementation that uses Azure Artifacts, GitHub Packages, NuGet, and npm (Microsoft Documentation: Get started with NuGet packages in Azure Artifacts)
- Design and implement package feeds, including upstream sources (Microsoft Documentation: Upstream sources)
- Design and implement a dependency versioning strategy for code assets and packages, including semantic versioning and date-based (Microsoft Documentation: Implement a versioning strategy, Package versioning)
- Design and implement a versioning strategy for pipeline artifacts (Microsoft Documentation: Implement a versioning strategy)
Design and implement pipelines
- Select a deployment automation solution, including GitHub Actions and Azure Pipelines (Microsoft Documentation: Deploy to App Service using GitHub Actions)
- Design and implement an agent infrastructure, including cost, tool selection, licenses, connectivity, and maintainability
- Develop and implement pipeline trigger rules (Microsoft Documentation: Trigger one pipeline after another)
- Develop pipelines, including classic and YAML (Microsoft Documentation: Create your first pipeline)
- Design and implement a strategy for job execution order, including parallelism and multi-stage (Microsoft Documentation: Task Parallel Library (TPL), jobs.job.strategy definition)
- Develop complex pipeline scenarios, such as containerized agents and hybrid (Microsoft Documentation: Define container jobs (YAML))
- Configure and manage self-hosted agents, including virtual machine (VM) templates and containerization (Microsoft Documentation: Run a self-hosted agent in Docker)
- Create reusable pipeline elements, including YAML templates, task groups, variables, and variable groups (Microsoft Documentation: Define variables)
- Design and implement checks and approvals by using YAML environments (Microsoft Documentation: Release deployment control using approvals)
Design and implement deployments
- Design a deployment strategy, including blue/green, canary, ring, progressive exposure, feature flags, and A/B testing (Microsoft Documentation: Progressive experimentation with feature flags)
- Design a pipeline to ensure reliable order of dependency deployments (Microsoft Documentation: Add stages, dependencies, & conditions)
- Plan for minimizing downtime during deployments by using VIP swap, load balancer, and rolling deployments (Microsoft Documentation: Swap or switch deployments in Azure Cloud Services)
- Design a hotfix path plan for responding to high-priority code fixes (Microsoft Documentation: Using a hotfix production environment)
- Implement load balancing for deployment, including Azure Traffic Manager and the Web Apps feature of Azure App Service (Microsoft Documentation: Traffic Manager)
- Implement feature flags by using Azure App Configuration Feature Manager (Microsoft Documentation: Manage feature flags in Azure App Configuration)
- Implement application deployment by using containers, binary, and scripts (Microsoft Documentation: App Service overview)
Design and implement infrastructure as code (IaC)
- Recommend a configuration management technology for application infrastructure (Microsoft Documentation: Configuration Manager)
- Implement a configuration management strategy for application infrastructure, including IaC (Microsoft Documentation: infrastructure as code (IaC))
- Define an IaC strategy, including source control and automation of testing and deployment (Microsoft Documentation: infrastructure as code (IaC))
- Design and implement desired state configuration for environments, including Azure Automation State Configuration, Azure Resource Manager, Bicep, and Azure Policy guest configuration (Microsoft Documentation: Desired State Configuration extension with Azure Resource Manager templates)
- Monitor pipeline health, including failure rate, duration, and flaky tests (Microsoft Documentation: Manage flaky tests)
- Optimize pipelines for cost, time, performance, and reliability (Microsoft Documentation: Tradeoffs for performance efficiency)
- Analyze pipeline load to determine agent configuration and capacity (Microsoft Documentation: Azure Pipelines agents)
- Design and implement a retention strategy for pipeline artifacts and dependencies (Microsoft Documentation: Set retention policies for builds, releases, and tests)
4. Develop a security and compliance plan (10—15%)
Design and implement a strategy for managing sensitive information in automation
- Implement and manage service connections (Microsoft Documentation: Manage service connections)
- Implement and manage personal access tokens (Microsoft Documentation: Use personal access tokens)
- Implement and manage secrets, keys, and certificates by using Azure Key Vault, GitHub secrets, and Azure Pipelines secrets (Microsoft Documentation: Use Azure Key Vault secrets in Azure Pipelines)
- Design and implement a strategy for managing sensitive files during deployment (Microsoft Documentation: Azure data security and encryption best practices)
- Design pipelines to prevent leakage of sensitive information (Microsoft Documentation: Design a data loss prevention policy)
Automate security and compliance scanning
- Automate analysis of source code by using GitHub code scanning, GitHub secrets scanning, pipeline-based scans, and SonarQube
- Automate security scanning, including container scanning and OWASP ZAP (Microsoft Documentation: Develop secure applications on Azure)
- Automate analysis of licensing, vulnerabilities, and versioning of open-source components by using WhiteSource and GitHub Dependency Scanning (Microsoft Documentation: DevSecOps with GitHub Security)
5. Implement an instrumentation strategy (10—15%)
Configure monitoring for a DevOps environment
- Configure and integrate monitoring by using Azure Monitor (Microsoft Documentation: Azure Monitor overview)
- Configure and integrate with monitoring tools, such as Azure Monitor and Application Insights (Microsoft Documentation: Application Insights overview)
- Manage access control to the monitoring platform (Microsoft Documentation: Manage access to Log Analytics workspaces)
- Configure alerts for pipeline events (Microsoft Documentation: Azure Monitor Alerts task)
- Inspect distributed tracing by using Application Insights (Microsoft Documentation: distributed tracing)
- Inspect application performance indicators (Microsoft Documentation: Application Insights overview)
- Inspect infrastructure performance indicators, including CPU, memory, disk, and network (Microsoft Documentation: Supported metrics with Azure Monitor)
- Identify and monitor metrics for business value (Microsoft Documentation: Using business metrics to design resilient Azure applications)
- Analyze usage metrics by using Application Insight (Microsoft Documentation: Application Insights overview)
- Interrogate logs using basic Kusto Query Language (KQL) queries (Microsoft Documentation: Log queries in Azure Monitor)
AZ-400 Study Guide and Learning Resources
The followings are some learning resources which a candidate can refer to in order to prepare for the Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400) Exam.
- Microsoft Learning Platform – Microsoft offers various learning paths, the candidate should visit the official website of Microsoft. The candidate can find every possible information on the official site. For this exam, the candidate will find many learning paths and documentations. Finding relatable content on the Microsoft website is quite an easy task. Also, you can find the study guide for Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400) on the official website of Microsoft.
- Microsoft Documentation – Microsoft Documentations are an important learning resource while preparing for Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400). The candidate will find documentation on every topic relating to the particular exam.
- Instructor-Led Training– The training programs that Micorosft provides itself are available on their website. The instructor-led training is an essential resource in order to prepare for the exam like Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400). For this exam, Microsoft suggests Course AZ-400T00-A: Designing and Implementing Microsoft DevOps solutions.
- Testprep Online Tutorials– Microsoft Azure DevOps Solutions (AZ-400) Online Tutorial enhance your knowledge and provide a depth understanding of the exam concepts. Additionally, they also cover exam details and policies. Therefore learning with Online Tutorials will result in strengthening your preparation.
- Try Practice Test– Practice tests are the one who ensures the candidate about their preparation. The practice test will help the candidates to acknowledge their weak areas so that they can work on them. There are many practice tests available on the internet nowadays, so the candidate can choose which they want. We at Testprep training also offer practice tests which are very helpful for the ones who are preparing.