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Thread: Failed 70-341

  1. Junior Member
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    #1

    Default Failed 70-341

    So I took the 341 exam on Friday and failed pretty miserably with a score of 513. The exam was tough but I felt confident at the end that I had done better. It started out with 4 case studies that I felt I answered pretty well. Then the remain 30-ish questions were a good mix of topics but some caught me off guard. There were quite a few on how to route email across AD sites and coexisting with previous versions of Exchange. Not as many PowerShell command as I expected, but you have to understand how to pipe commands to another command by "building" the command from drop-down menus.

    Anyway, I came here to see if anyone had advice on how to approach this exam the second time around. I have a lab currently set up with CU3 and plenty of books to read (Inside Out, Cookbook, PowerShell Cookbook). Haven't picked up the Mastering Exchange 2013 but thinking I should. My current job has me supporting Exchange 2013, and I have done some Exchange 2003/2007 administration in the past (with a migration from 2003 to 2007). Anybody that has passed this exam have any advice?
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    #2
    This is a really tough exam. Like you I felt confident at the end and was very disappointed (and perhaps surprised) to have not made it.
    I primarily work with AD and Exchange and felt like I was well armed for this. I have sat through all Scott Schnoll's sessions at TechED and completed the CBT Nuggets (Though it is a tad high level)
    Anyway, I've dropped it 3 times now.
    I did get the Exchange 2013 On Premise Help File from TechNet and read it... Last time I got a 653.

    If you thought 70-291 was the Beast Exam, well this one is just on steroids.

    Would be keen to hear about anyone that has passed.
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  4. Nidhoggr, the Net Serpent Claymoore's Avatar
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    #3
    I can't comment on the books as they were not available when I took the exams. Exchange on-prem experience is important, however you really should be familiar with Office 365 before you take these exams. I barely passed the beta exams and I think it was my Office 365 deployment experience that made the difference. An O365 migration is really a cross-forest migration with federation and organization relationships for free/busy sharing. You can sign up for a free trial and connect that to your lab environment if it is accessible.

    Also work through the migration process using the Exchange Deployment Assistant. You can work through the various 2007/2010 - 2013 and on-prem to cloud scenarios. I don't know if the exam reflects it, but the current version of O365 is based on Exchange 2013 so there is no direct migration path to anywhere from Exchange 2003.
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    #4
    Thanks for the info. I've gone back and studied some of the AD site routing information that I believe will help me the next time around. I also need to brush up on mobile device policies. I've got it scheduled again for April 4, I'll update with the results if anyone is interested.
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    #5
    How did you end up going with it next time around?
    My third attempt now (quite embarrassing with Exchange being my main thing) I scored a 650ish, yet the red bars were 95% all the way - in every single category.
    Not sure what it takes to get this one.
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    #6
    Thanks for asking! Thought I had posted a follow up. Took it a second time, failed with 668, so it's closer. I actually issued an exam challenge as I had 1-2 questions during a case study about replacing an Edge server with a Client Access Server with anti-spam agents installed. From everything I've read and understand, CAS does not do anti-spam; that's ran on the Hub Transport portion on the Mailbox server. I doubt it will be enough to raise my score but it ticked me off so much with this inaccuracy that I filled out the form and sent an email. I'm going to wait some time before I take it again. I believe you can only take an exam 5 times in a year! Next time....
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    #7
    Finally passed! Fourth time was a charm....passed with 740, not the highest but a pass is a pass. Little embarrassed about the number of attempts. Still a very tough exam, you really need to know a little bit of everything. I would recommend the Exchange 2013 Cookbook and the Inside Out books (just pick a chapter to learn more about a specific topic). This was my first Exchange exam so hopefully they go better in the future. Reply with any question and I'll answer at I can. Thanks!
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by UpStart Tech View Post
    Finally passed! Fourth time was a charm....passed with 740, not the highest but a pass is a pass. Little embarrassed about the number of attempts. Still a very tough exam, you really need to know a little bit of everything. I would recommend the Exchange 2013 Cookbook and the Inside Out books (just pick a chapter to learn more about a specific topic). This was my first Exchange exam so hopefully they go better in the future. Reply with any question and I'll answer at I can. Thanks!
    Upstart, I know your post is quite old, but seems Exchange exams are not popular here on techexams! I am taking the 70-341 this week or next, and I am in a similar situation - I'm an exchange engineer in an enterprise. I don't do any 2013 but we have a project for it. We do a mix of 2007 and 2010 and have nearly 200,000 mailboxes across hundreds of AD sites. I'm siloed in that I dont do any AD stuff, nor did I design any of the environment. I figured 2013 certification would be better than 2010 because we are deploying it soon. But after reading the notes and failure rate and realizing this was a case study exam, thinking this may have been a mistake.

    If you're still around, or if anyone wants to comment - I've been in microsoft land for 10+ years but in exchange land specifically for about 2. Any advice for a "novice" senior exchange admin before taking this exam?
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    #9
    Took the 70-341 yesterday and passed with flying colors - 919. This exam is by far the most difficult IT exam i've ever taken, from any vendor (including CCNA, VCP, any other MS exam, etc). How I scored a 919 is beyond me, as I was confident on only about 70% of the questions and had just too many 5 step RBAC drag and drops.

    I guess I just got the "hard" version of the exam and either I just guessed right the majority of the time, or more likely, was graded easier because it was the hard version.

    Also, I really do hate Case study exams but kudos to microsoft for improving it on this one. In the 2008 exams I would read a question and have to spend sometimes 3 to 4 minutes finding where the information was in the case study pertaining to the question. This time microsoft really made it easier with questions like "The marketing users need a solution to resolve the business requirements" and all I really had to do was go find the section entitled business requirements. So much better.

    Now on to 70-342 and MCSE: Messaging!
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    #10
    Wow that's awesome! Great score! Sorry I did not reply sooner. This is the first Exchange exam I've taken so I wasn't used to a lot of the questions. If you've been supporting Exchange for awhile this is probably an easier exam than it was for me.
    Just recently took the 70-342, failed it as well, although I felt it was easier due to my experience with UM and the easier topics (retention policies, DLP, etc.). Keep us posted on your 342 exams success, maybe we can swap notes.
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    #11
    Quote Originally Posted by UpStart Tech View Post
    Wow that's awesome! Great score! Sorry I did not reply sooner. This is the first Exchange exam I've taken so I wasn't used to a lot of the questions. If you've been supporting Exchange for awhile this is probably an easier exam than it was for me.
    Just recently took the 70-342, failed it as well, although I felt it was easier due to my experience with UM and the easier topics (retention policies, DLP, etc.). Keep us posted on your 342 exams success, maybe we can swap notes.
    Upstart - I applaud your persistence in keeping on. Failing an exam can really be spirit crushing and i've seen many threads where people just say they give up and will try again in several months.

    I just started 70-342 cbt nuggets videos and so far I'm thinking 342 has to be easier than 341. I found the pro exam (design exam as well) for server 2008 (70-647) to be easier than some of the previous exams in the MCITP track. So i'm hoping this is also true.

    Unfortunately I really dont have much work history with design of exchange. I'm currently an OPs support engineer on Sharepoint, Exchange and lync - and am required to get my MCSE in at least one of these. Since about 75% of the volume of incidents that come into me are exchange or exchange/lync integrated, I went down this path... but hell the 341 was crazy hard.

    As far as my notes, i'm doing CBT nuggets videos and I take extensive notes on them. For 70-341 I had about 90 pages but a lot of it is screen caps of powershell commands, etc. What are you using to study for 342, anything you recommend?

    My VM environment now mimics the CBT 70-342:

    2 AD sites, 6 VMs:

    1 DC in each site with writable GC running server 2012 R2

    2 MBX in a DAG (one per site)
    2 CAS using WNLB clustering (one per site)

    Oh and I have my file share witness for the DAGs on the host.

    Let me know your thoughts and what you are using to (re)prepare for the 70-342!
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    #12
    Right now for 342 I'm doing the same thing I did for 341 - copy the exam objectives and work through each one with documentation from TechNet and other sources. I find that I'm not hitting every topic for 342 since some are.....boring? I am also more familiar with the topics, such as UM, hub transport rules, and some of the stuff is carried over from 341 (DAG related).

    How do you like CBT Nuggets 342 so far? I don't have a subscription but was thinking about it for that course. I took the Microsoft 342 course through New Horizons earlier this year, it was a pretty good class.

    From failing the test the first time here is what I would recommend studying up on:


    UM Ports, including what is TCP and UDP
    Retention Tags - different types and when to use them
    RBAC cmdlets
    DataCenter Activation Coordination and how to perform datacenter switchovers
    Enabling IRM in OWA and other AD RMS topics
    Public Folder Migration - technet goes into a lot of detail, I think a high level overview is sufficient
    Organizational Relationships


    The instructor for the course also gave this website to use as a study guide, said it was really helpful:
    Microsoft – Exchange 2013 exam preparation notes for 70-341 and 70-342 | blog.bjornhouben.com
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    Default Passed 70-341

    I came across this thread just prior to taking my 70-341 exam yesterday. I passed the exam at first attempt...scored 857. The materials I used where the videos on www.pluralsight.com (formerly Train Signal)for Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 by J Peter Bruzzese and the Mastering Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 by David Elfassy. Both resources excellent for preparing for 70-341. Most importantly a lot of lab time is needed.

    Hope the materials help for anyone that's preparing for the exam.
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    #14
    tbangura Congrats, you did well!

    I sat this again yesterday, which was my 4th attempt. Quite depressing as an MCT that works mostly with Exchange. I will say though that the updated content with SP1 seemed more achievable, though it could be because I had a few months away from it. I scrapped in there with a 700

    Definitely the toughest one I've sat. Congrats to all that have got there!
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