If you plan on getting your Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer Web Applications certification, you’ll most likely have to pass Microsoft Exam 70-487 Developing Windows Azure and Web Services. This exam is the last exam in the normal Web Applications track. If you’ve already achieved the previous MCPD Web certification, you can use an upgrade path to take a consolidated exam that includes both MVC 4 content as well as this exam’s subject. I already had my MCPD, but started the normal MCSD Web track before they released the upgrade exam. (I would have preferred to take the consolidated upgrade test!)

The exam had 42 questions in total. There were more than expected “drag-and-drop” style problems and even a couple “hotspot” style questions. It started off with two case studies and followed up with 20+ general questions. Be aware that once you complete a case study, you can’t go back and review the answers after moving on! There’s no language choice available; the code and case study examples were all in C#. Luckily for me, the exam definitely focused more on WCF, Web API and Entity Framework more than Azure. So, don’t be afraid if you haven’t got much real-world Azure experience… You can still pass this test. If that’s the case, just be sure you’ve got solid experience in WCF and Web API.

Here are my suggested study resources:

Are you planning on taking the exam this year? As usual, here’s my chart to focus your studies:

Data Access Data Sets vs. Entity Framework vs. WCF Services
Asynchronous Methods (async & await)
SSL & Security
LINQ & Query Expressions
SQL Database Isolation Levels
Caching & Buffering
Data Streaming
WCF XML Configuration
Data Contracts
Messaging Patterns
Bindings & Authentication
Instancing Modes
Handling Exceptions & Faults
Web API Action Methods
HTTP Verbs
REST Standards
Configuring Endpoints
Web App Deployment IDE & Command Line Deployment Tools
Sharing Libraries Using the GAC & NuGet
Deploying Azure Apps

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