Tuesday, April 28, 2009

305 exams taken at the UC, new crop of DBAs and Developers on the loose!

Over 300 exams were taken at the 2009 MySQL Users Conference. Many more DBAs were certified this year then last and the Developer cert was not as popular.

We had problems with network bandwidth (Thanks to Patrick at O'Reilly for getting us more as soon as he could) and some software glitches with the new software. Some folks asked to take their exam at a location with better bandwidth and their results are still trickling in to the Certification Team.

The new 5.1 DBA exam was offered and the general review is that it is a much more realistic test of a DBA's skills than the older version. There were a few edits that did not make it into the system that cause some confusion but those taking the exam carried on bravely.

Thanks for all who made the journey to the Magnolia room, especially those who made it through the 1,200 teenagers who showed up for the conference after ours!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Cert Exams finished at the UC

Around 300 certification exam were given this year at the MySQL Users Conference! That is 50% more than last year. Much of that is due to having the exams online. But the biggest part is from the dedication of Ricky Ho who not only did a fantastic job keeping the exams running smoothly but will spend most of the next week printing up certificates and getting them in the postal system.

Last chance for $25 UC certifications

Today is the final day to take a MyQL Certification exam at the Users Conference. Save money with the special $25 price from the regular $200.

Are you new to MySQL -- try the associate exam? It is designed for those with 6 weeks to 6 months of experience with MySQL.

Or do you consider yourself at Guru level but do not have your Cluster DBA cert? Today is your chance to prove your skill.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Day two winding to an end

The penultimate day of UC exams is slowly coming to an end. A fresh crop of Developer, DBA, and Cluster DBAs certifications have been earned in the eighty plus exams taken today. Tomorrow is the last day for the deeply discounted price of $25 for the examinations. Your Certification Team will be ready at eight tomorrow!

Certification first day - 110 exams

110 exams delivered on the first day of the UC! That was despite Wifi Saturation. O'Reilly has provided a few more 'hard line' to help fight the problem.

Exams are in the Magnolia room (opposite the Hyatt registration desk, jut past the escalators) from 8:00 AM to 3:00PM. And the cost is still $25!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Certification at the UC start

Your intrepid MySQL Cart Team opened the doors thirty minutes early to the Magnolia room and Robert Bochenski was the first one to start an exam this morning. Exams are $25 and we will be letting folks into until 3:00PM. Some come by and take a certification exam.

And at 1PM, I am hosting a 30 minute Certification Q&A session about current exams, future exams, and anything else you want to cover.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Cert Team at the UC

Ricky Ho and I are busy at the UC ... pulling our hair out. There are no certification exams on Monday but we found all sorts of network glitches. The Hyatt had some network ports blocked that just happened to be the ones we use for online exams. And the Sun Remote Lab Data Center had a glitch over the weekend that kept the virtual images from starting.

The picture is from Kai Voigt's tutorial on DBA certification. The room is full and I pop n and out between 'hair pulling' sessions. The attendees are asking good questions and I am sure we will have some new certified DBAs by the end of the conference.

Monday, April 6, 2009

MySQL Certification in first quarter of 2009

The first quarter of 2009 was very good for MySQL Certifications. 496 Exams taken and 208 certifications earned. But in regards to the current economic problems, how does this compare?

1st three months of each year

Not too badly, as it turns out!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

MySQL Certification Exams at the Users Conference

There will be big changes for those taking certification exams at the MySQL Users Conference. Once again we are offering $25 MySQL exams which is a big discount from the regular $200 price.

Last year we ran the exams as a drop-in service and it was well received. So we will continue to run it as a drop-in service. No need for an appointment. We will be in the Magnolia Room from 8:30 AM to about 4:00 PM but will not let anyone start an exam later than 3:00PM.

Be sure to bring your WiFi enabled laptop! Last year we killed a lot of trees and got a big workout printing thousands of exams and moving them around. This year the exams will be online. We will be reserving some hard lines for those taking the hands-on DBA 5.1 exam as they need to connect to the virtual servers in Colorado (that is if the O'Reilly folks can get the network gear) but everyone else will be using the wireless connections. Last year the wireless was heavily saturated at lunch and break times but the O'Reilly folks say that is a thing of the past (but please note this as a warning that the wisest of the exam takers will plan their exam times not to overlap major breaks and lunch).

What exams are offered? The Associate exam, the 5.1 Cluster DBA exam, the 5.0 DBA exams (both I and II), the 5.0 Developer exams (both I and II), and the new DBA 5.1 hands-on exam. We will not have study guides on hands so plan accordingly. And Kai Voight is presenting a DBA Certification tutorial on Monday and I highly recommend it to those taking any of our exams.

I had hope to offer the new 5.1 Developer exam but it is still being incubated.

If you have never taken a MySQL exam before, please go to http://www.pearsonvue.com/mysql and create an account. We hand the exam records off the information you enter there and not having and account will slow down processing for your exam. So take it easy on the MySQL Certification Team and your results will be sped to you.

And I am supposed to talk on Tuesday in the Magnolia room (where we have the exams) on MySQL Certification. If you have questions or want to help plot the future, please be there.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

DBA 5.1 Exam Contents, Part 3 of 3

The optional section of the MySQL 5.1 DBA exam is a series of ten tasks and the candidate has to complete at least five of them. The five mandatory tasks are tests of core MySQL skills and the optional section is a test of other skills a candidate may have acquired.

All of these tasks can be completed in many different ways. For instance the first mandatory task includes removing three accounts. This can be done in one or more SQL statements. The candidate is graded on IF they accomplished the task and not the method used to accomplish the task.
The Optional Tasks

  1. Copy a database

  2. Create a fulltext search

  3. Create a view to select certain data from a table

  4. Alter a table

  5. Update a compressed table

  6. Create a recurring event

  7. Update a global variable

  8. Use the INFORMATION_SCHEMA data in views to return instance information

  9. Import a CSV file

  10. Partition or repartition a table

Once again, do at least five of these optional tasks. It is suggested that a candidate do more that just in case the task is a little more complex or has a subtle twist not apparent at first site.

What the heck does that mean? For instance, one early tested created an event following the information from the help command on the mysql command line client. But it was not a recurring event, just a one time event. That was a simple mistake but costly.

Next up: Getting ready for exams at the User Conference! Yes, there are short cuts to make your testing experience EASIER at the UC.