The 70-473 Designing and Implementing Cloud Data Platform Solutions certification exam was first published Oct. 27, 2015. A lot of things with Microsoft Azure have changed in the time since it was first published. For this reason Microsoft does publish updates to the various certification exams, and this past June 2017, Microsoft published an update to the exam to bring it in line with the current state of the Azure data platform. This article outlines the current state of this certification exam.

This exam is retired June 30, 2019.

Certification Target Audience

Being focused on SQL Server and relational databases, this exam and certification is definitely targeted more towards those who build and/or manage data platform solutions with Microsoft SQL Server. This certification will test and validate your skills in designing and implementing Microsoft data platforms solutions. This includes SQL Server running on a Virtual Machine in Azure, as well as Azure SQL Databases (the PaaS SQL Database solution within Microsoft Azure.)

Skills Measured

Here’s a high level list of the skills measured and exam objectives tested on this exam. The percentages represent how much of the exam questions will be focused on each of the high level exam objective areas.

  • Design and implement database solutions for Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Azure SQL Database (20-25%)
    • Design a hybrid SQL Server solution
    • Implement SQL Server on Azure Virtual Machines (VMs)
    • Design a database solution on Azure SQL database and SQL Server in Azure
    • Implement Azure SQL Database
    • Design and implement MySQL and PostgreSQL database solutions in Azure
  • Design and Implement Security (25-30%)
    • Design and implement SQL Server Database security
    • Design and implement Azure SQL Database security
  • Design for high availability, disaster recovery, and scalability (25-30%)
    • Design and implement high availability solutions
    • Design and implement scalable solutions
    • Design and implement Azure SQL Database data recovery
  • Monitor and manage database implementations in Azure (25-30%)
    • Monitor and troubleshoot SQL Server VMs on Azure
    • Monitor and troubleshoot SQL Database
    • Automate and manage database implementations on Azure

The official page for the Designing and Implementing Cloud Data Platform Solutions (70-473) exam lists out more details on the full exam objectives that are measured.

Training Material

In the previous post about the 70-473 exam, I listed out a couple training options available. The same primary study resources still exist, and many have been updated more recently to fit this new exam objectives update. Here’s a list of the training / study materials and options available for this exam

The Free Design and Implement Cloud Data Platform Solutions course available from Microsoft Virtual Academy (MVA) covers most of the objectives on this exam. However, it is a bit outdated as it was published Jan. 19, 2016, and as a result is a little out of date. However, many of the topics and objectives for this exam should still be covered adequately. This course should be able to be used in conjunction with other resources when studying.

As far as books, there still isn’t an official Exam Guide for the 70-473 Cloud Data Platform Solutions Specialist certification exam. This is 1 of a few exams that Microsoft Press hasn’t been publishing Exam Guides for. Thankfully, in addition to the above course resources, you can also use the official Microsoft Azure documentation as it does cover all the different objectives tested on this exam.

Practice Exams

In addition to using multiple training / study material sources for learning all about the exam objectives, there’s another very important companion when studying for any certification exam. This is a good practice test that will really help prepare you for taking the real exam.

MeasureUp one of the leading practice test vendors for Microsoft certification exams, and even though the 70-473 Designing and Implementing Cloud Data Platform Solutions exam is still relatively new (at the time of writing this) they already have a practice test available for purchase.

You can find it at the following link:


Happy Studying!!

Microsoft MVP

Chris Pietschmann is a Microsoft MVP, HashiCorp Ambassador, and Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT) with 20+ years of experience designing and building Cloud & Enterprise systems. He has worked with companies of all sizes from startups to large enterprises. He has a passion for technology and sharing what he learns with others to help enable them to learn faster and be more productive.
HashiCorp Ambassador Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT) Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect