AZ-305 Introduction
AZ-305 Introduction

This introduction to the AZ-305 learning path gives an overview of the requirements for the Microsoft AZ-305 Azure Solutions Architect Expert exam and how they will be covered.

The four major subject areas are:

  1. Design identity, governance, and monitoring solutions
  2. Design data storage solutions
  3. Design business continuity solutions
  4. Design infrastructure solutions

Hello and welcome to Designing Azure Infrastructure Solutions. The purpose of this learning path is to prepare you for Microsoft’s AZ-305 exam. If you pass both the Azure Administrator Associate exam and the AZ-305 exam, then you’ll earn the Microsoft Azure Solutions Architect Expert certification.

My name’s Guy Hummel and I’m a Microsoft Certified Azure Architect Expert.

The AZ-305 exam tests your knowledge of four subject areas. Here’s how we’ll cover them in this learning path.

We’ll start with identity, governance, and monitoring. In a large organization, there are many identities to manage. This includes not only users but also applications. To manage them effectively and securely, you need to design a proper identity management and authentication system. Not surprisingly, the most important service in this area is Azure Active Directory.

After a user or application is authenticated, it needs to be granted the right level of authorization to access Azure resources. This is mostly handled by Azure’s role-based access control system (or RBAC). You also need to know how to use Microsoft’s other governance solutions, such as subscriptions, resource groups, and Azure Policy.

Once you’ve given people access to your Azure infrastructure, you’ll need to monitor its performance using services such as Azure Monitor and Log Analytics.

The next section is on data storage. Microsoft has different solutions depending on whether your data is relational, semi-structured, or unstructured. The most important service for relational data is Azure SQL Database, which is essentially a cloud-native version of Microsoft SQL Server, although it isn’t 100% compatible.

The solution for semi-structured data is Cosmos DB, which is Microsoft’s globally distributed database service. It supports a variety of database models, including SQL, MongoDB, Cassandra, Table, and Gremlin.

The solution for unstructured data is Azure Storage. This might sound like a simple service, but it’s surprisingly complex. You’ll learn about its storage types, storage tiers, and access methods, among other details. You’ll also learn about Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2, which is built on top of Azure Storage and is designed for data analytics.

In this section, you’ll also learn how to perform data integration using services like Azure Data Factory and Azure Databricks.

The next section is on business continuity. The two most important concepts are high availability and disaster recovery. You can design for high availability using various levels of redundancy. For disaster recovery, the most important services to know are Azure Site Recovery, Azure Backup, and Azure Storage.

The final section is on designing infrastructure. First, you’ll learn how to design compute solutions using a variety of technologies, such as virtual machines, containers, and serverless application hosting.

Next, you’ll learn how to design an application architecture. You need to be able to recommend solutions for caching, messaging, API integration, and more, using services such as Azure Cache for Redis, Service Bus, Event Grid, and API Management.

Then we’ll cover how to migrate your servers, data, and applications from an on-premises environment to Azure.

Finally, you’ll learn how to design network solutions. This includes topics such as network security, routing, load balancing, on-premises connectivity, and more.

Bear in mind that the topics in Microsoft’s exam guide are not covered in the exact same order in this learning path. That’s because some courses cover topics in multiple exam sections.

Now, are you ready to become an Azure architect? Then let’s get started! To get to the next course in this learning path, click on the Learning Path pullout menu on the left side of the page. But please remember to rate this introduction before you go on to the next course. Thanks!


About the Author
Learning Paths

Guy launched his first training website in 1995 and he's been helping people learn IT technologies ever since. He has been a sysadmin, instructor, sales engineer, IT manager, and entrepreneur. In his most recent venture, he founded and led a cloud-based training infrastructure company that provided virtual labs for some of the largest software vendors in the world. Guy’s passion is making complex technology easy to understand. His activities outside of work have included riding an elephant and skydiving (although not at the same time).

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