Tag Archives: certifications

AWS Solutions Architect – Associate – Database Services

aws database


Getting ready for your Solutions Architect Associate exam? Let’s review the main database services of AWS as you will encounter many questions regarding these in your exam. Note that things will not get too detailed, and you can answer many questions right out of this post. You should also note that many of these technologies are not explicitly called out on the exam blueprint.

The Services

  • Relational Database Service (RDS) – optimized with various EC2 instance types, this relational database service supports Amazon Aurora, PostgreSQL, MySQL, MariaDB, Oracle, and Microsoft SQL Server.
  • Database Migration Service – used to take existing databases that are on-prem or with other clouds to the RDS service.
  • Aurora – a MySQL and PostgreSQL-compatible relational database for the cloud that seeks performance balanced with open source compatibility.
  • DynamoDB – a fast, flexible NoSQL database service for applications that need a single-second millisecond latency at small to large scale.
  • DynamoDB Accelerator (DAX) – a highly available, in-memory cache that reduces DynamoDB response times even further.
  • ElastiCache – used to create in-memory data stores (caches) in the cloud. This technology provides performance unheard of for disk-based databases and supports two open-source memory engines – Redis and Memcached.
  • Redshift – a high-performance, fully-managed data warehouse that provides data analysis using standard SQL and Business Intelligence tools.
  • Redshift Spectrum – allows running SQL queries against exabytes of unstructured data in Amazon S3 storage.


Unless you work with these everyday, it can be fairly difficult to remember the key principles of each one. I recommend making some handy flashcards to assist you in such areas! Be sure to subscribe to the blog where I will present many practice quizzes for you!
Pearson Education (InformIT)

200-150 DCICN Exam Contents for CCNA Data Center Version 6.0


In the previous post on this subject, we discussed the changes from the “old” DCICN exam to the “new” 200-150. In this blog post, I lay out the exact exam topics you need to master in order to pass this exam.

The 200-150 Exam Topics

Here are the exam topics. Note that the percentage shown for each major topic domain indicates the number of questions in your exam that will come from that section! I also resisted the temptation to do a bunch of formatting for this blog post on this list of topics. This is so that you can easily copy and paste this list into the tracking software of your choice as you study.

1.0 Data Center Physical Infrastructure – 15%
1.1 Describe different types of cabling, uses, and limitations
1.2 Describe different types of transceivers, uses, and limitations
1.3 Identify physical components of a server and perform basic troubleshooting
1.4 Identify physical port roles
1.5 Describe power redundancy modes

2.0 Basic Data Center Networking Concepts – 23%
2.1 Compare and contrast the OSI and the TCP/IP models
2.2 Describe classic Ethernet fundamentals
2.2.a Forward
2.2.b Filter
2.2.c Flood
2.2.d MAC address table
2.3 Describe switching concepts and perform basic configuration
2.3.a STP
2.3.b 802.1q
2.3.c Port channels
2.3.d Neighbor discovery
2.3.d [i] CDP
2.3.d [ii] LLDP
2.3.e Storm control

3.0 Advanced Data Center Networking Concepts – 23%
3.1 Basic routing operations
3.1.a Explain and demonstrate IPv4/IPv6 addressing
3.1.b Compare and contrast static and dynamic routing
3.1.c Perform basic configuration of SVI/routed interfaces
3.2 Compare and contrast the First Hop Redundancy Protocols
3.2.a VRRP
3.2.b GLBP
3.2.c HSRP
3.3 Compare and contrast common data center network architectures
3.3.a 2 Tier
3.3.b 3 Tier
3.3.c Spine-leaf
3.4 Describe the use of access control lists to perform basic traffic filtering
3.5 Describe the basic concepts and components of authentication, authorization, and accounting

4.0 Basic Data Center Storage – 19%
4.1 Differentiate between file and block based storage protocols
4.2 Describe the roles of FC/FCoE port types
4.3 Describe the purpose of a VSAN
4.4 Describe the addressing model of block based storage protocols
4.4.a FC
4.4.b iSCSI

5.0 Advanced Data Center Storage – 20%
5.1 Describe FCoE concepts and operations
5.1.a Encapsulation
5.1.b DCB
5.1.c vFC
5.1.d Topologies
5.1.d [i] Single hop
5.1.d [ii] Multihop
5.1.d [iii] Dynamic
5.2 Describe Node Port Virtualization
5.3 Describe zone types and their uses
5.4 Verify the communication between the initiator and target
5.4.a FLOGI
5.4.b FCNS
5.4.c active zone set

Pearson Education (InformIT)

Subnetting – Hosts Per Subnet


The Joys of Subnetting Knowledge:

Remember, while practicing just how fast you can ace subnetting questions in the certification environment is always worthwhile and fun, you do want to make sure you understand exactly why you are going through the exercise to begin with. You also want to be sure you understand how subnetting fundamentally works. This is often referred to as subnetting “longhand”. This is why a course like the CBT Nuggets IPv4 Subnetting – The Ultimate Guide is so critical.

ICND1 Sample Question:

You have run the ipconfig command and discovered your IP address and mask are and How many hosts are permitted on your subnet?

Step 1: I reference the Powers of Two chart I created on my scratch paper when I encountered the first question. Adding 128 + 64 + 32 = 224. There are 3 bits used for subnetting and that leaves 5 bits for hosts.

2^7=128  |  2^6=64  |  2^5=32  |  2^4=16  |  2^3=8  |  2^2-=4 | 2  ^1=2  |  2^0=1

Step 2: The equation for the number of hosts per subnet is 2^h – 2 where h is the number of host bits. From the chart I see that 2^5  = 32. 32-2 = 30 hosts per subnet! Too easy!

As always, let us know in the comments if you have a quicker approach.