VCAP DTD Exam Experience and Study Tips

This post has been pending for some time , I sat for my VCAP DTD exam on 23rd September. I wanted to share my exam experience and preparation tips for any body preparing for this exam.

I was first scheduled for this exam on 17th July however I was late to appear in the exam and the exam was cancelled due to no show 😉 , the reason for no show was late night arrival from an official trip to Goa 🙂 I think that’s enough hint. I again scheduled the exam and got a time slot in September from Pearson , scheduling for VCAP exams are very difficult in Bangalore and we don’t get immediate exam slots.

Exam Overview

This was my 5th VCAP exam having passed VCAP 4/5 DCA and VCAP 4/5 DCD in past , I knew what I am upto , anybody who have given these exams will know that these exams require hard work and dedication and patience for 4 hours of exam time. Now on to the exam itself.

Exam Experience

Similar to the other advanced design exams this exams also has multiple choice questions and they are more complex and tougher than those set out in the VCP exams, as you would expect being the advanced certification.The drag and drop style questions are tricky too and require some working out, The Visio style diagram questions are again tough and in my opinion tougher than the VCAP5 DCD as they require calculations for drawing out Visio, however they contain all the information you need and more to successfully answer the question.

Tips and Tricks

Below are some of my recommendations for the people planning to write this exam.

  • Time is of the essence in the exam, I usually skip and keep the Visio styled questions to the last this helps me keep the momentum going and target the multiple choice and drag and drop questions first.
  • Take care to read the questions carefully and look for sections which you feel is providing more information for the questions, not every bit of detail is required for you to answer a question. You will save precious time by doing this.
  • Make sure that you have enough laminate sheets so that you can use it for making notes and do rough.
  • There is a calculator provided in this exam and for a better reason , be ready to do a lot of calculations. If you have done VDI design then this should not be a problem as you have to do this for every VDI design. Even with a calculator, be prepared to size your designs from raw numbers.
  • Know how to size environments of all sizes. Ensure you know how many infrastructure components (vCenter, Security Servers, Connection Servers, Load balancers) are required to support varying sizes of scenarios.
  • Understand the storage options available to you in VMware View, and be prepared to be questioned on all of them.
  • Be prepared to answer question on VMware ThinApp and ensure you understand Load Balancing concepts and methods of 2 factor authentication.
  • Read the exam blueprint, know it inside out. It’s there for a reason and covers everything you need to pass the exam.


Study materials I used for the exam preparation is below.

  • VMware View 5 Desktop Virtualization Solutions book by Jason Langone and Andre Leibovici
  • Materials referred in the blueprint

Final Thoughts

The quality of the exam is very good and I am proud to have passed the exam in my first attempt , next target will be to complete the VCAP DTA once it’s GA. Hope this helps other preparing for the exam. All the best and good luck for any one appearing for the exam.

10 Replies to “VCAP DTD Exam Experience and Study Tips”

  1. Great write up with some good advice. I wish the calculator had been available to me when I took the VCAP-DTD at VMworld. Alas it was not to be. I should have studied harder as well. I made an incorrect assumption that because I had been deeply involved in many designs that I just needed a last week of cram time.

    But I retake in a little over a week. I feel a lot better knowing there will be a calculator. My long division sucks.. haha

  2. Congrats Samir. This is great achievement.
    I am also planning to give my VCAP DTD Exam.
    I have some doubts.

    When planning for Total CPU requirement do i have to take Peak CPU or Average CPU of existing desktops. Will this be told in the exam.

    Secondly for memory do i have to take Peak memory or Average memory of existing desktops. Also do i have to take 30% memory benefit when virtualizing the desktops because of TPS and compression.

    The page file should be taken as Ram size or 1.5 times of ram size for the virtual desktops.


  3. Pingback: VCAP-DTD and VCAP-DTA Study Resources | Virtually Virtuoso

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


four + 2 =