Hi all, last week I took and passed the exam 3VO-21.21 which is based on VMware vSphere 7. Currently there is no VC(A)P exam available yet that is based on VMware vSphere 8.

This exam tests a candidate’s ability to apply design principles to develop a vSphere 7.x conceptual design given a set of customer requirements, determine the functional and non-functional requirements needed to create a logical design, and architect a physical design using these elements.

Personally, I found it a very great exam to take. You have to answer 60 questions focusing on several competencies. Your technical knowledge is important but there are also a lot questions focused on design requirements (Functional and Non-Nunctional) and sizing.

Understand the difference between Risks, Assumptions and Constraints.

To pass this exam, it is a important to have design experience with Enterprise environments at scale.

So what is the focus of this exam?

The VMware Certified Advanced Professional – Data Center Virtualization Design certification validates advanced knowledge of simplifying data center operations through virtualization with vSphere and its related components, and a candidate’s ability to recommend and design VMware solutions to meet specific goals and requirements. This industry-recognized certification verifies a deep understanding of data center virtualization design principles and methodologies.

This specific exam version consists only of multiple choice questions focused on deep knowledge involved in designing a vSphere (enterprise) environment.

There used to be a VCAP DCV Design exam (based on VMware vSphere 6.0) where you actually got some drag and drop questions and also had to draw on canvas. VMware has moved away from this exam format.

If you want to prepare well for this exam, it is very important to have a lot of hands-on experience in deploy and configure vSphere environments. Consider design choices related to high availability, costs, performance, licensing and sizing based on VMware best practices.

Overall, a candidate is expected to master VMware best practices and be able to translate them into a design.

How to prepare for the 3VO.21.21 exam (tips).

The resources below have helped me well with the preparation for this VCAP exam:

1: Exam blueprint.

2: vBrownBag – VCAP-DCV Design YouTube Channel

3: vSphere 6.7 Design Cookbook 

4: VMware vSphere Design 7 course.

5: VMware vSphere 7 Security Configuration Guide

To be eligible for a certificate or badge, you must meet specific criteria.

See the VMware Datacenter virtualization Certification path: for all related requirements.

You can take this exam at home or at an exam center by Pearson VUE.

Again: familiarize yourself with the functional and non-functional requirements:

There are two types of requirements: functional requirements and nonfunctional requirements. Functional requirements specify the objectives or functions that a design must meet. Nonfunctional requirements define how the design accomplishes the functional requirements.

Functional versus Non-Functional Requirements and Testing


The VCAP (Advanced) exams for vSphere 7 come in two types: Design and Deployment. Passing both exams makes the designation VMware Certified Implementation Expert (VCIX-DCV).

10/01/2023 update: The VMware Certification site has been updated, all the requirements for the VCA/VCP/VCAP/VCDX 2023 certification and badges are online now.

Good luck with preparing for this exam.

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