When to start working on VMware Cert?

When is the best time to start learning how to set up virtual servers and the like? I'm currently in the middle of getting my Networking+ cert and my professor at my school says that VMware is the big thing right now. I'm going to take a few Unix classes next semester and I think I'll use VMplayer to host whatever distro they want me to use for the class. Setting up VMplayer is pretty straight forward, everything worked out of the box when I installed a Ubuntu appliance.

I was reading on the VMware site about all the different types of software they use and it was pretty confusing. Is it best to wait and learn more about regular server software then learn some specific VMware stuff?


  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,314 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I think you should get more *nix/Windows experience under your belt before you go for your VCP. It would be very rare for you to find a position where you didn't have to do other server-related tasks as well. It doesn't make sense to get it until you're in a position where you can use it because the version you were certified on might become outdated by the time you're ready to actually use it.

    It's not too early to start acquainting yourself with the technology though. While their player is a great app, it's not really representative of all they have to offer. You should download VMWare Server (which is free) to get a better idea of what their products can do. Their other products have free 30-day trials, so go ahead and experiment with those as well.
  • blargoeblargoe Self-Described Huguenot NC, USAMember Posts: 4,174 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Don't worry so much about the "next big thing". By the time that you are at the level to work on whatever the "big thing" is, the big thing will probably be something else. That doesn't mean to not use VM software to set up your learning environment for your other studies, but don't focus on VMWare at the expense of the other stuff that you need to focus on right now.

    First, no one is going to hire you to take charge of their virtual data center if you can't administer most of what is running on the VM's, or service the hardware that VMWare runs on. Second, don't put quite so much stock in what instructors tell you about the real world either. They're not the ones out there working in the trenches.

    The best thing you can do to help your future career is to 1) continue your education and get the foundation stuff like tcp/ip networking and Windows OS down cold; 2) go ahead and try to get a job, any job, IT related ASAP. Even if it is a call center job or some kind of unpaid internship or volunteer work. Or working on stuff for your friends. 3) get the basic certs like A+.
    IT guy since 12/00

    Recent: 11/2019 - RHCSA (RHEL 7); 2/2019 - Updated VCP to 6.5 (just a few days before VMware discontinued the re-cert policy...)
    Working on: RHCE/Ansible
    Future: Probably continued Red Hat Immersion, Possibly VCAP Design, or maybe a completely different path. Depends on job demands...
  • HeroPsychoHeroPsycho Inactive Imported Users Posts: 1,940
    blargoe wrote:
    Don't worry so much about the "next big thing". By the time that you are at the level to work on whatever the "big thing" is, the big thing will probably be something else.


    The only thing I would disagree with is pursuing A+, Network+, etc. If you don't have that knowledge already, it might be worthwhile, but if you have the knowledge that accompanies those certs, go for certs in the next tier above those, such as MCSE, CCNA, CCNP, etc.

    You should have a solid understanding about at least one OS before you should pursue VCP, and arguably, Windows would be the better bet considering Virtual Center runs on Windows. Good linux knowledge is helpful, too. Although it's not required for the cert, it is helpful for actually managing and installing ESX.
    Good luck to all!
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