Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Exam 70-431

Had a great exam yesterday.  Took me the full 2.5 hours.  I've never done Simulation questions before.  They were... interesting.  I found them quite easy.  The simulator only allowed certain actions to be performed in the SSMS IDE, so finding the right sequence was relatively simple.
35 ordinary questions and 12 simulations.
My study technique this time worked really well.  Each number below stands for the date in February:

  1. Picked up the self-paced study kit on February 1st.  Completed Chapter 1: Installing SQL Server 2005
  2. Chapter 2: Configuring SQL Server 2005
  3. Chapter 3: Creating Tables, Constraints, and User-Defined Types
  4. Chapter 4: Creating Indexes
  5. Chapter 5: Working with Transact-SQL (very light)
  6. Chapter 6: Creating Partitions
  7. Chapter 7: Implementing Views
  8. Chapter 8: Managing XML Data (very important)
  9. Chapter 9: Creating Functions, Stored Procedures and Triggers
  10. Chapter 10: Working with Flat Files
  11. Chapter 11: Backing Up, Restoring and Moving a Database
  12. Chapter 12: Using Transact-SQL to Manage Databases
  13. Chapter 13: Working with HTTP Endpoints
  14. Chapter 14: Working with SQL Server Agent Jobs
  15. Chapter 15: Monitoring and Troubleshooting SQL Server Performance
  16. Chapter 16: Managing Database Snapshots
  17. Chapter 17: Implementing Database Mirroring
  18. Chapter 18: Implementing Log Shipping
  19. Chapter 19: Managing Replication
  20. Chapter 20: Working with Service Broker
  21. Chapter 21: Creating Full-Text Catalogs
  22. Concentrated (using practice exam questions) on Exam Objective 1: Installing and Configuring SQL Server 2005
  23. Objective 2: Implementing High Availability and Disaster Recovery
  24. Objective 3: Supporting Data Consumers
  25. Objective 4: Maintaining Databases
  26. Objective 5: Monitoring and Troubleshooting SQL Server Performance
  27. Objective 6: Creating and Implementing Database Objects
  28. On February 28th sat the exam

Name: TS: Microsoft SQL Server 2005 - Implementation and Maintenance
Required score: 700
My Score: 876


  1. Comment by uma, on 6-MAR-2008 10:16 ( IP: , user id: )

    hi james

    can you pls tell me, which service pack you used to prepare for this exam.



  2. Author's note by JamesHip, on 6-MAR-2008 10:26 ( IP: , user id: 29914)

    Kiaora Uma,

    Since the book didn't mention any service pack, then I don't think it matters. The book was probably written for the Beta of SQL Server 2005, because there were a few interesting screen shots that don't quite marry up the the RTM version.

    However, I was running SP2 (version 9.0.3042).


  3. Comment by bhl, on 1-JUL-2008 02:42 ( IP: , user id: )

    Hi, James:

    How much time is allowed for the 35 ordinary questions and how much time is allowed for the 12 simulations? Or is the time shared?

    When you study for the test, did you work on the practice exams came with the book? What was the correct percertage you got before you went to the actual test?

  4. Author's note by JamesHip, on 1-JUL-2008 08:45 ( IP: , user id: 29914)

    Kiaora BHL:

    I'm wracking my brain to remember exactly, but it was in the order of 2 hours for the 35 questions and 0.5 hour for the simulation. The time is not shared.

    Yes, I found the Practice Exams in the book to be very valuable. Every time I set the option to give me new questions, I was consistently failing to get over 50%, which pointed me in the right direction for further reading and understanding. By the time I had completed all 400 questions and started to recycle through them, then I was getting over 80%.

  5. Comment by virantha, on 18-MAY-2009 11:02 ( IP: , user id: 30481)

    Kia ora James,

    Where did you order the 70-431 Microsoft learning resource book from? Was it done online? How long does it take once ordered?


  6. Author's note by JamesHip, on 18-MAY-2009 11:37 ( IP: , user id: 29914)

    Kiaora Virantha,

    As a Kiwi, a useful online bookshop is