On October 11th I was reading my email as usual when I opened one which stated something so unbelievable that I had to read it three times. I will admit news was nothing compared to events going on in rest of world (the September 11th terrorist attack and aftermath). However, it was very welcome nonetheless.
Microsoft has changed their policy on retiring certifications.
If you will remember, over a year ago Microsoft had announced that Windows NT 4.0 certifications were being retired on December 31st, 2001. This meant that everyone who had slaved for months or even years to pass their exams had to rush to take new exams for newest operating system (Windows 2000).
Needless to say, this announcement caused quite a stir in much of computer industry. There were hundreds of thousands of MCSE's, and all of them were effected by this decision. What made it even worse was fact that most of us were not even upgrading to Windows 2000 anytime in near future. Thus, we had to get certified yet we didn't really need to get certified to do our jobs.
There were quite a few annoucements. The two regarding MCSE's state exactly what I had suggested in a previous article "Microsoft's ^@&^#&@ W2K MCSE Policy", so I was very happy indeed.
...on Windows NT 4.0, which designates related certification as based on Windows NT 4.0. This designation applies to following certifications: MCP, MCSE, MCSE+I, MCP+I, and MCP+Site Building. Thus, this MCSE would formally be called "MCSE on Windows NT 4.0."
...on Microsoft Windows 2000, which designates related certification as based on Windows 2000, Windows XP Professional, or Windows Server .NET. This designation applies to following certifications: MCP, MCSE, MCSA, and MCDBA (except for latter, it's called "MCDBA on SQL Server 2000" instead). Here, this MCSE would formally be called "MCSE on Microsoft Windows 2000."
The bottom line is simple. Those of us who have MCSE certification do not need to worry about losing it at end of year. It also makes things much easier for me as an employer - now I will be able to look at a certification and get a little more information. Instead of just finding out someone is an expert on Microsoft operating systems, I will now find out exactly which operating system.
Microsoft also added a new certification, called MCSA, or Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator. This certification is great news, as it provides something between MCP and MCSE. Why is this necessary? The new MCSE for Windows 2000 is a very tough exam and it might take someone (especially those of us who work for a living) quite some time to get it done.