Articles, Blog

I FAILED TO TAKE Microsoft Windows 10 (MD-100) Certification Exam

February 10, 2020


Last year I bought the “Exam Replay” certification
voucher with a one-year expiration date, a free retake exam and a 30-day practice test
for $265 USD. My initial plan was to take the retiring Microsoft
Windows 7 exam before April 2019. When that exam came and went, my revised goal
was to take the new Windows 10 exam. I had to wait until summer for the new study
guide to come out. That left about six months to get Windows
10 certified. Plenty of time, right? Uh, no. Due to circumstances beyond my control, I
failed to show up at the testing center to take the exam before the voucher expired last
month. That flushing sound you hear in the background
was $265 USD going down the toilet. (cinematic music) When I bought the voucher a year ago, I thought having a deadline would be enough to motivate
me to take the exam. Not having a deadline didn’t get me certified
in anything in recent years. Not the Cisco network certification, CWNP
Certified Wireless Network Administrator certification, CompTIA Security+ certification, or the Microsoft
Windows 7 certification. All these certifications have been on my “to
do” list for years. Those certifications were relevant to whatever
job I had at the time. When I did PC refresh projects eight years
ago, it was Windows 7. At Cisco six years ago, it was network and
wireless. When I started my government IT job five years
ago, it was Security+. I’m studying for Windows 10 because its
replacing Windows 7 at my work, fundamentally different than Windows 2000 that I certified
on 15 years ago, and the Microsoft exams are relatively inexpensive. A video that I made about buying the voucher
had accumulated 3,200 views, 121 hours of watch time, and 36 new subscribers over the
past year. In fact, one-fifth of my current subscribers
came from watching of my Microsoft—or, lack thereof—certification videos over the last
two years. A big thank you for everyone who watched my
videos and subscribed to my channel. With a public commitment to getting Windows
10 certified in 2019 or January 2020, it should have happened. I could blame my government IT job
in Silicon Valley. A coworker transferred to a different department
after training his replacement for six months. When the replacement figured out that he wasn’t
going to collect a paycheck for doing nothing, he quit the same day that my coworker transferred
out. My workload doubled from 18,000 workstations
to 36,000 workstations. I still delivered a 95% or better completion
rate, month after month. With that many workstations to attend to at
work, I don’t have much time to study for the exam. Having a YouTube channel doesn’t help either. Each video takes about eight hours to script,
record, edit and post. I went from making 1+ videos per week for
the last two years to 2+ videos per week in 2020. All I do on the weekends is make YouTube videos. And then there’s the retro computer I’m
building based on Ben Eater’s 6502 videos. Let me know in the comments below if you want
me to make videos about my own efforts with the 6502. With all that going on, I really don’t have
much time for anything else. But being busy wasn’t my real problem. I could have simply changed my priorities
at any time. No, it was my mindset: My last certification exam was 15 years ago. I’m 50 years old and getting older. Learning large amounts of technical material is difficult. That’s correct—but also wrong. It made it easy for me to want to do anything
else than study for a certification exam. My mindset should have been: Windows paid my bills for the last 25+ years. My current job has been exclusively Windows for
the last 5+ years What I’m unfamiliar with on the exam I’ve
touched upon at work This mindset focuses on what I do know about
Windows and I just need to fill in the gaps of what I don’t know. What does this mean for getting Windows 10
certified in 2020? I’m planning to take the exam in about two
months. I just recently activated the 60-day practice
test that I bought on Black Friday that I should have done sooner. I won’t be getting a voucher this
time around. I’ll just pay $165 USD for the certification
exam and schedule the appointment. This time I should get it done. Please comment, like and subscribe, and click
on the notification bell to see more videos like this. Thank you for watching! (cinematic music)

2 Comments

  • Reply C.D. Reimer February 10, 2020 at 12:56 am

    I had a four-hour power outage from high winds after I uploaded this video. That was fun.

  • Reply ungratefulmetalpansy February 10, 2020 at 12:58 am

    Well… takes guts to admit failure.

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