I spent (a lot of) time preparing AZ-302 Microsoft Azure Solutions Architect Certification Transition  and passed it. It is time now to share my preparation notes for those who are interested to pass this exam and get certified. This article is just one another preparation guide to Microsoft exam AZ-302 but I hope it will be useful 🙂

[Update : 30th of january – what as been removed from preview exam]

[Update : 22th of february 19 : AZ 302 Exam includes now some hands on labs with an Azure Portal !!! be carefull with your keyboard if it not an QWERTY US Layout !! ]

Before starting studying, you must know very well what this certification is about and what are the prerequisites

This exam is intended only for those candidates who have taken exam 70-535 (Architecting Microsoft Azure Solutions). This will provide an upgrade path to earn the new Azure Solution Architect certification.

This transition exam tests and validates the skills and objective areas that are covered on the AZ-300 and AZ-301 exams, but are not covered on the older 70-535 exam.

The topics included in this transition exam are the following :

  • Develop for the Cloud (45-50%)
  • Implement Authentication and Secure Data (5-10%)
  • Implement Workloads and Security (5-10%)
  • Design a Business Continuity Strategy (15-20%)
  • Design for Identity and Security (5-10%)
  • Determine Workload Requirements (15-20%)

More details : https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/learning/exam-az-302.aspx

Important : following the preview phase of this certification, few changes have been done to make the exam more an architect exam than a developer exam (there was a lot of C# code to read in preview). So don’t spend to much time reading my slides that include C#).

All updates of the certification are explained in the following Microsoft official document : https://query.prod.cms.rt.microsoft.com/cms/api/am/binary/RE2MRod so READ IT.

Following are my preparation notes and urls to documentation you MUST READ to well prepare your exam.

— Develop for the Cloud (45%-50%) —

Develop long-running tasks
Implement large-scale, parallel, and high-performance apps by using batches
https://www.pluralsight.com/courses/microsoft-azure-batch-fundamentals

Implement resilient apps by using queues
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/service-bus-messaging/service-bus-azure-and-service-bus-queues-compared-contrasted

Choose a message-based delivery with queues (/!\ with practice questions)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/choose-a-messaging-model-in-azure-to-connect-your-services/3-choose-azure-storage-queues

Choose whether to use messages or events (/!\ with practice questions)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/choose-a-messaging-model-in-azure-to-connect-your-services/2-choose-whether-to-use-message-queues-or-events

Implement code to address application events by using web hooks
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-functions/functions-bindings-http-webhook

Address continuous processing tasks by using web jobs
https://app.pluralsight.com/library/courses/microsoft-azure-web-jobs/table-of-contents (Good Pluralsight course)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/app-service/web-sites-create-web-jobs
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/best-practices/background-jobs

Configure a message-based integration architecture

Choose between Azure services that deliver messages
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/event-grid/compare-messaging-services

Configure an app or service to send emails, Event Grid, and the Azure Relay Service

How to Send Email Using SendGrid with Azure
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/sendgrid-dotnet-how-to-send-email
How to Create a message using Sendgrid
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/sendgrid-dotnet-how-to-send-email#how-to-create-an-email
How to Send an Email
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/sendgrid-dotnet-how-to-send-email#how-to-send-an-email

Choose Azure Event Grid
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/choose-a-messaging-model-in-azure-to-connect-your-services/4-choose-event-grid

Events, Data Points, and Messages – Choosing the right Azure messaging service for your data
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/events-data-points-and-messages-choosing-the-right-azure-messaging-service-for-your-data/

Choose a messaging model in Azure to loosely connect your services (/!\ with practice questions)
https://azure.microsoft.com/blog/events-data-points-and-messages-choosing-the-right-azure-messaging-service-for-your-data/

Create and configure a Notification Hub, an Event Hub, and a Service Bus https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/choose-a-messaging-model-in-azure-to-connect-your-services/index

Implement message-based communication workflows with Azure Service Bus
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/implement-message-workflows-with-service-bus/1-introduction

Choose a messaging platform
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/implement-message-workflows-with-service-bus/2-choose-a-messaging-platform

How to accomplish FIFO with Azure service bus topics
https://stackoverflow.com/questions/28702033/how-to-accomplish-fifo-with-azure-service-bus-topics

Configure queries across multiple products http://bit.ly/2y2q6tn

Configure an app or service with Microsoft Graph

Overview of Microsoft Graph
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/graph/overview

Webhooks in Microsoft Graph
https://github.com/microsoftgraph/aspnet-webhooks-rest-sample

Develop for asynchronous processing

Implement parallelism, multithreading, processing, durable functions, Azure logic apps, interfaces with storage, interfaces to data access, and appropriate asynchronous compute models

Asynchronous programming with async and await (C#)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dotnet/csharp/programming-guide/concepts/async/

Azure Durable Function
https://app.pluralsight.com/library/courses/azure-durable-functions-fundamentals/table-of-contents (very good Pluralsight course)

Creating Durable Functions in the Azure Portal
http://markheath.net/post/create-durable-functions-azure-portal

Azure functions durable extension
Https://github.com/Azure/azure-functions-durable-extension

Introducing Azure Logic Apps
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ksU5OCf3cn0

What is Azure Logic App ?
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/logic-apps/logic-apps-overview

Microsoft Azure Developer: Creating Enterprise Logic Apps (good course)
https://app.pluralsight.com/library/courses/microsoft-azure-enterprise-logic-app-creating/table-of-contents

Deploy Azure Logic Apps with Terraform
https://www.terraform.io/docs/providers/azurerm/r/logic_app_workflow.html

Serverless Integration
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=12&v=Uz4wXm-RBHg

Chain Azure functions together using input and output bindings
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/chain-azure-functions-data-using-bindings/index

Connect your services together
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/paths/connect-your-services-together/index

Develop for autoscaling

Implement autoscaling rules and patterns (schedule, operational/system metrics, code that addresses singleton application instances, and code that addresses transient state

Web Development Best Practices
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/aspnet/aspnet/overview/web-development-best-practices/

Transient Fault Handling (Building Real-World Cloud Apps with Azure)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/aspnet/aspnet/overview/developing-apps-with-windows-azure/building-real-world-cloud-apps-with-windows-azure/transient-fault-handling

Implement distributed transactions

Identify tools to implement distributed transactions (e.g., ADO.NET, elastic transactions, multi-database transactions); manage transaction scope

Understanding transactions in Azure https://docs.particular.net/nservicebus/azure/understanding-transactionality-in-azure

Distributed transactions across cloud databases
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/sql-database/sql-database-elastic-transactions-overview

Transactions accross multiples servers
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/sql-database/sql-database-elastic-transactions-overview#transactions-across-multiple-servers

Implementing an Implicit Transaction using Transaction Scope
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/dotnet/framework/data/transactions/implementing-an-implicit-transaction-using-transaction-scope

Connecting to on-premises data sources with Azure On-premises Data Gateway
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/analysis-services/analysis-services-gateway

Managing Concurrency in Microsoft Azure Storage
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/managing-concurrency-in-microsoft-azure-storage-2/

Develop advanced cloud workloads

Develop solutions by using intelligent algorithms that identify items from images and videos

Cognitives Services Directory
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-gb/services/cognitive-services/directory/

Process images with the Computer Vision service (course 32 minutes with sandbox test environment + 3 knowledge questions)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/create-computer-vision-service-to-classify-images/index

Classify images with the Microsoft Custom Vision Service (course 40 minutes)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/classify-images-with-custom-vision-service/index

Develop solutions by using intelligent algorithms related to speech, natural language processing, Bing Search, and recommendations and decision making

Speech Service Documentation
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-gb/azure/cognitive-services/speech-service/
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-gb/azure/cognitive-services/speech-service/overview

Bing Web Search API Documentation
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/cognitive-services/bing-web-search/
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/cognitive-services/bing-web-search/overview

What is Custom Decision Service?
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/cognitive-services/custom-decision-service/custom-decision-service-overview

Create and integrate bots with Azure Bot Service
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/bot-service/bot-service-overview-introduction?view=azure-bot-service-4.0

Add natural language understanding to your bot
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/bot-service/bot-builder-howto-v4-luis?view=azure-bot-service-4.0&tabs=cs

Language Understanding (LUIS)
https://www.luis.ai/home

Create a Luis App
https://www.wintellect.com/building-language-intelligent-apps-microsofts-luis/

Integrating Microsoft LUIS into the Bot Framework
https://www.wintellect.com/integrating-microsoft-luis-bot-framework/

Add natural language understanding (LUIS) to your bot
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/bot-service/bot-builder-howto-v4-luis?view=azure-bot-service-4.0&tabs=cs

Use QnA Maker to answer questions
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/bot-service/bot-builder-howto-qna?view=azure-bot-service-4.0&tabs=cs

Q&A Maker
https://www.qnamaker.ai/

Integrate machine learning solutions in an app
Machine Learning documentation
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/machine-learning/

Create and implement IoT solutions
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-gb/overview/iot/build/

Provisioning million devices with Azure IoT Hub Device Provisioning Servic
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/iot-dps/about-iot-dps
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/iot-dps/
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/iot-dps/tutorial-set-up-cloud (Lab to do)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/iot-dps/tutorial-group-enrollments
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/iot-dps/concepts-device /!\

— Implement Authentication and Secure Data (5-10%) —

Encrypt and decrypt data at rest
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/design-for-security-in-azure/5-encryption

Azure Storage Encryption

Azure Drive Encryption

Azure Key Vault

Manage secrets in your server apps with Azure Key Vault (course that includes a sandbox)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/manage-secrets-with-azure-key-vault

Manage cryptographic keys in the Azure Key Vault
https://azure.microsoft.com/fr-fr/resources/videos/azurecon-2015-encryption-and-key-management-with-azure-key-vault/

Always Encrypted (Database Engine)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sql/relational-databases/security/encryption/always-encrypted-database-engine?view=sql-server-2017

Encrypt with Always Encrypted & Key Vault
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/sql-database/sql-database-always-encrypted-azure-key-vault

Azure Confidential Compute
Introducing Azure confidential computing
https://azure.microsoft.com/fr-fr/blog/introducing-azure-confidential-computing/

Azure Confidential Computing updates with Mark Russinovich | Best of Microsoft Ignite 2018
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qu6sP0XDMU8

— Implement Workloads and Security (5-10%) —

Configure serverless computing
Overview Serverless computing
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-gb/overview/serverless-computing/
Manage a Logic App resource
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/logic-apps/h

Create conditional statements that control workflow actions in Azure Logic Apps
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/logic-apps/logic-apps-control-flow-conditional-statement

Manage Azure Function app settings
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-functions/functions-how-to-use-azure-function-app-settings

Manage Event Grid
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/event-grid/

Azure Event Grid event schema
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/event-grid/event-schema

Event Grid subscription schema
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/event-grid/subscription-creation-schema

Manage Service Bus
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-gb/azure/service-bus-messaging/

Azure Command Line Interface to manage Azure Service Bus resources
https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/servicebus/2018/03/15/azure-command-line-interface-to-manage-azure-service-bus-resources/

Use PowerShell to manage Service Bus resources
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/service-bus-messaging/service-bus-manage-with-ps

— Design a Business Continuity Strategy (15%-20%) —

Azure Architecture Center
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/

Azure Reference Architecture https://docs.microsoft.com/azure/architecture/reference-architectures/

Cloud design patterns https://docs.microsoft.com/azure/architecture/patterns/

Valet Key pattern
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/patterns/valet-key
https://codingcanvas.com/azure-shared-access-signatures-and-valet-key-pattern/

Get started with Autoscale in Azure
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/monitoring-and-diagnostics/monitoring-autoscale-get-started

Pillars of a great Azure architecture (course 54 min 10 questions)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/pillars-of-a-great-azure-architecture/

Designing resilient applications for Azure
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/resiliency/index

Design a site recover strategy

Replicate Azure virtual machines to another Azure region
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/azure-to-azure-how-to-enable-replication

Set up disaster recovery to Azure for on-premises physical servers

Plan capacity for Hyper-V VM disaster recovery
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/site-recovery-capacity-planner

Set up network mapping and IP addressing for VNets
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/azure-to-azure-network-mapping

About networking in Azure to Azure replication
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/azure-to-azure-about-networking

Fail over and fail back Azure VMs between Azure regions
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/azure-to-azure-tutorial-failover-failback

Design for availability

Make all things redundant
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/guide/design-principles/redundancy

Windows N-tier application on Azure with SQL Server
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/reference-architectures/n-tier/n-tier-sql-server

Always On availability groups: a high-availability and disaster-recovery solution
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sql/database-engine/availability-groups/windows/always-on-availability-groups-sql-server?view=sql-server-2017

Use the best data store for the job
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/guide/design-principles/use-the-best-data-store

Availability checklist
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/checklist/availability

Resiliency Checklist (Azure Services)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/checklist/resiliency-per-service

Resiliency Checklist (Azure Services)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/checklist/resiliency-per-service

— Design for Identity and Security (5-10%) —

— Determine Workload Requirements (15-20%) —

Azure App Service plan overview
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/app-service/azure-web-sites-web-hosting-plans-in-depth-overview

Cost Optimization on Azure
https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/cloud_solution_architect/2018/02/23/cost-optimization-on-azure/

Prepay for Virtual Machines with Azure Reserved VM Instances
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/prepay-reserved-vm-instances

Azure Hybrid Benefit for Windows Server
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/hybrid-use-benefit-licensing

Enterprise Dev/Test or PAYG Dev/Test Subscription
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/offers/ms-azr-0148p/ https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/offers/ms-azr-0023p/

BYOL SQL Server Licenses
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/easily-bring-your-sql-server-licenses-to-azure-vms/

Azure Cost Management (Cloudyn)
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/services/cost-management/ https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/cost-management/overview

Advisor Cost recommendations
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/advisor/advisor-cost-recommendations

Optimize virtual machine spend by resizing or shutting down underutilized instances
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/advisor/advisor-cost-recommendations#optimize-virtual-machine-spend-by-resizing-or-shutting-down-underutilized-instances

Reduce costs by eliminating unprovisioned ExpressRoute circuits
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/advisor/advisor-cost-recommendations#reduce-costs-by-eliminating-unprovisioned-expressroute-circuits

Predict costs and optimize spending for Azure (course 59 min, 8 questions)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/predict-costs-and-optimize-spending/

Pricing calculator
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/pricing/calculator/

Azure billing and cost management documentation
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/billing/

Design for efficiency and operations in Azure (course 40 min, X questions)
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/learn/modules/design-for-efficiency-and-operations-in-azure/

Azure Active Directory pricing
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/pricing/details/active-directory/

Hope this preparation guide will be useful for you. Don’t hesitate to post a comment or send me a message on Twitter @squastana

Last but not least, don’t forget to spend time on http://microsoft.com/learn where you can find additional materials to prepare your certification.

— Stanislas Quastana —

  1. Gian Dilawari

    Hi Stanislas,
    Thanks a million to help others. I am trying to get my hands around AZ 302 and found your site. I have downloaded the slides and plan to go through them. I know this is lot f work for you to make these slides but you did a great job.

  2. This post is amazing. It contains absolutely everything what is required in order to pass the exam.
    I am taking AZ-302 exam ending January 2019. I will share the result!!
    The only thing I can say is Thanks!!

  3. Very useful and thorough. I did pass my 70-535. Do we need to know to write code as part of the test? For e.g., will there be a question in AZ-302 to show how to send an email using SendGrid?

    • As far as I know, since GA of AZ302 exam, there is no more c# code. But you need to know what is SendGrid and how to use it 😉

  4. Thanks for this very helpful link (and I have the same remark for the one related to AZ-102) and the time spent to summarize all of this material. It was of a huge help for me. There is an important point to note down : I’ve got 2 labs during the exam of AZ-302 and it was quite hard to realize all the actions required in such a short amount of time (and also due to the lag of the RDP session but I assume it will be improved soon :)).

    • Thanks for this feedback. My colleagues passed exam last week and yes they got also some labs exercices during exam. You need to be carefull with the labs because they are designed for US QWERTY Keyboard !!

  5. Thanks so much, I will have the test next week and I want to do some practice at this weekend, can you recommend some for me?

  6. Alexandre Nedelec

    Nice article and really interesting slides that can also help for AZ202 exam :). Thanks !
    By the way if you happen to have the same slides for preparaing the AZ-202 exam, I would be glad to have them.

    • AZ-202 has been depreciated. now it is AZ-203 with some change. I am not sure I will be motivated to update my previous content. But I am sure that a Preparation Guide for AZ 500 will be available soon 😉

  7. Hello Stanislas,

    Do you have any idea about the actions we have to perform on the new labs ?
    I’m looking for some practice training but I can’t find anything.

    Thank you in advance

    • Labs are basic exercice to create Azure resources or apply some parameters. You need to practice on Azure Portal that is all

  8. Great website. It looks like the curriculum includes topics that are not assessed in the 300 and 301 exams. I feel confident I could pass those two, but some of the topics on 302 freak me out. Is this just a hangover from the beta exam?

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