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Microsoft Azure Administrator: AZ-103 vs AZ-104 Exam

Microsoft Azure is one of the noticeable names among leading public cloud service providers. The role-based certification model of Microsoft Azure aligns perfectly with various emerging job responsibilities in cloud computing. If you are aspiring to become a Microsoft Azure Certified Administrator, then you must know about the AZ-103 vs AZ-104 comparison.

AZ-103 is the existing certification exam for the role of Microsoft Azure Administrator and would be available till August 31, 2020. Microsoft Azure introduced a replacement of the AZ-103 exam in the form of AZ-104 exam on April 2, 2020.

As a result, many aspiring candidates are facing confusions about the ideal choice among AZ-103 and AZ-104. The following discussion presents a comparison between the exams to help you decide according to your career aspirations.

The Difference in the Basics of the Exams

One of the first aspects of the AZ-103 vs AZ-104 comparison refers directly to the basic details of both exams. The registration cost for both the exams is $165 USD. However, the AZ-103 exam is available in four different languages such as English, Korean, Simplified Chinese and Japanese. On the other hand, AZ-104 certification is available presently in the English language only.

The Difference in Target Audience for the Exams

The next pointer in comparing AZ-104 vs AZ-103 certification exam refers to the target audience for both exams. As a matter of fact, readers can find this section presenting an explicit similarity between the two exams. Both the exams are ideal for aspiring Azure administrators.

However, it is essential to note that Microsoft introduces new certifications for validating the skills of candidates in addressing the new requirements from specific job roles. Therefore, the AZ-104 exam is comparatively comprehensive than AZ-103 certification exam as it would focus on skills required for emerging changes in the job of Microsoft Azure administrators.

Differences in Exam Prerequisites

Candidates could also find notable differences in the AZ-103 vs AZ-104 comparison while reflecting on the exam prerequisites. First of all, you should know that there are no specific prerequisites to appear for the AZ-103 or AZ-104 exam. However, the AZ-104 certification exam presents the following knowledge and experience requirements that are comprehensive than that of AZ-103 certification exam.

  • At least six months of hands-on experience in Azure administration.
  • Comprehensive knowledge of core Azure Services.
  • Detailed understanding of Azure governance, workloads and security.
  • Promising skills in cloud infrastructure, operating systems, networking, storage structures and virtualization.
  • Hands-on experience in utilization of Azure Portal, Command Line Interface, ARM templates and Azure PowerShell.

Comparison of Domains in AZ-103 and AZ-104 Exams

Readers can strengthen their knowledge of AZ-103 vs AZ-104 comparison by reflecting on differences in domains covered in the exams. Let us outline the domains covered in AZ-103 and AZ-104 exams before investigating the differences between them.

The AZ-103 certification exam contains the following domains.

  • Managing Azure subscriptions and resources.
  • Implementation and managing storage.
  • Deployment and managing virtual machines.
  • Configuration and management of virtual networks.
  • Identity management.

Preparation Guide for AZ-103 Exam

The AZ-104 certification exam contains the following domains.

  • Management of Azure identities and governance.
  • Implementation and management of storage.
  • Deployment and management of computing resources.
  • Configuring and managing virtual networks.
  • Monitoring and backup for Azure resources.

For starters, you can establish some similarities in the AZ-103 vs AZ-104 comparison, based on the above-mentioned information. Both the exams include the domains of implementation of and managing storage and the configuration and managing of virtual networks.

However, we can also notice the difference in domains of AZ-103 and AZ-104 certification exams. The AZ-104 certification exam focuses on deployment and managing of computing resources while AZ-103 focuses on deploying and managing virtual networks. Here are some of the other differences between AZ-103 and AZ-104 exams we can find by comparing the exam domains.

  • The AZ-104 certification exam emphasizes more on identities and governance rather than subscriptions and resources.
  • In the second domain, we can notice further differences in the AZ-103 vs AZ-104 comparison. Although the domain is similar in both exams, the focus on data management is prominent in AZ-104.
  • Readers could also find a specific domain dedicated for backup and recovery in the new AZ-104 certification exam. The new domain reflects specifically on utilizing Azure Monitor for implementation of backup and recovery and monitoring resources.
  • Finally, the AZ-104 certification exam has taken the attention of virtual machines towards compute resources.

So, Which Exam are You Going to Take?

So, based on the understanding of above-mentioned differences, you can make a decision now. You can clearly notice the multiple opportunities that AZ-104 certification exam brings for aspiring Azure administrators. On the other hand, it has also brought many new challenges for candidates to prepare for the exam.

With a clear impression of the domains covered in the new exam, candidates can choose ideal learning resources for their preparations. Most important of all, readers can compare the differences between AZ-103 vs AZ-104 with the emerging responsibilities of Azure administrator. As a result, you can choose the right exam for a long promising career ahead!

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