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Validity of the Windows 2000 certification

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When Microsoft made the jump from NT to Windows 2000, the NT certifications expired. One of the Excuses was the number of ?Paper? certified SEs. Having milked the exam cash cow before, can we trust Microsoft to not do it again by determining there are too many Windows 2000 ?Paper? SEs or DBAs?

I don't think so. They've made some serious efforts to toughen up the program for Windows 2000. The word on the street is that pass/fail rates for exams bear this out completely. NT 4.0 exams enjoyed a 65-plus percent passing rate across the board for exams toward the end of its life cycle. Even the easiest (e.g. 70-210) Win2K MCSE exams have pass rates at or below 50 percent, and the hardest (70-240 and 70-216 keep coming up as real toughies) have pass rates between 20-30 percent (this is based on anecdotal evidence, but I hear a lot of anecdotes, if you know what I mean).

I think they've done a good job of designing exams that test real-world skills and hands-on experience this time around. I don't think this credential will be as likely to become debased as was the Windows NT 4.0 MCSE. I have to take some of that blame, in fact, for having originated the Exam Cram series...


This was first published in April 2001

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