Top 10 Desktop Administrator Certifications
This article provides an overview of the top certifications for desktop administrators, highlighting their key features and benefits.
Published 16 min read
Certifications are important for a desktop administrator in the job market because they demonstrate to employers that the individual has a certain level of knowledge and understanding about their field. Certifications can be evidence of an individual's expertise and technical proficiency, which can give them an edge over other job applicants who lack such qualifications. Additionally, certifications provide a way for employers to quickly identify candidates who have the necessary skills and experience for a particular role. Finally, certifications provide validation of an individual's commitment to their profession, as they are typically acquired through rigorous study and practice.
This article reviews some of the top certifications for Desktop Administrators and explains how they can help to advance a desktop administrator's career.
What are Desktop Administrator Certifications?
Desktop Administrator Certification is a certification that validates an individual’s knowledge and skills in managing and supporting desktop systems, networks, and applications. It is designed to demonstrate that the candidate has a comprehensive understanding of the technologies used in today’s corporate IT environments. The certification also helps individuals show their employers that they are capable of providing technical support for users and systems.
Having this certification can help an individual stand out from other job applicants and make them more attractive to employers. It can also provide an edge when it comes to salary negotiations as the employer may be willing to give the certified candidate a higher salary than someone without the certification. Furthermore, having this certification will increase an individual's credibility when dealing with clients or customers who need assistance with their computer-related issues or problems. Finally, having this certification can open up opportunities for advancement within a company due to the increased expertise in desktop management and support.
Pro tip: Before pursuing a desktop administrator certification, make sure you have a good understanding of the technologies and processes required to manage desktops. Research the different certifications available and determine which one best fits your needs. Additionally, look for courses that offer hands-on experience in desktop administration to help prepare you for the certification exam.
Related: What does a Desktop Administrator do?
Top 10 Desktop Administrator Certifications
Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Desktop Administrators today.
1. CompTIA A+
CompTIA A+ is a certification program that validates the skills of IT professionals who work with computers and related technology. It is an entry-level certification that is vendor-neutral, meaning it covers multiple hardware and software vendors. CompTIA A+ is widely recognized as the industry standard for entry-level IT professionals.
The CompTIA A+ exam consists of two parts: Core 1 (220-1001) and Core 2 (220-1002). The exams cover topics such as hardware, networking, mobile devices, operating systems, security, troubleshooting, and customer service. Each exam takes 90 minutes to complete and contains 90 questions.
To get CompTIA A+, you must pass both Core 1 and Core 2 exams. You can take the exams at any Pearson VUE testing center or online through OnVUE. The cost of each exam varies depending on where you take it but typically ranges from $219-$299 USD per exam.
In total, it usually takes about 6 months to prepare for the CompTIA A+ certification if you are studying full time. However, this timeline can vary depending on your experience level and how much time you have available to dedicate to studying each week.
2. Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE)
Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) is a certification program that demonstrates an individual’s expertise in designing, implementing, and managing Microsoft-based solutions. It is designed to validate an individual’s ability to build innovative solutions across multiple technologies, both on-premises and in the cloud.
It typically takes between 6 to 12 months to complete the requirements for the MCSE certification. The process involves completing one or more of the following: passing exams, attending instructor-led training courses, completing online courses, and/or participating in hands-on labs.
To become certified as an MCSE, you must pass at least one exam from each of the four core technology areas: Windows Server, Office 365, Azure Solutions Infrastructure (including networking), and Data Platform (including database). You can find more information about which exams are required for each technology area on Microsoft's website.
The cost of obtaining the MCSE certification varies depending on how you choose to pursue it. If you choose to take instructor-led training courses or participate in hands-on labs, then the cost will be higher than if you simply take online courses or self-study for the exams. Generally speaking, though, it can cost anywhere from $1,000-$3,000 USD to obtain your MCSE certification.
3. Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA)
The Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA) is a certification program designed to provide IT professionals with the skills and knowledge needed to manage the Windows Server operating system. The MCSA certification requires candidates to have a minimum of one year of experience working with Windows Server, including installation, configuration, maintenance, and troubleshooting.
The MCSA certification can be obtained by passing three exams:
1. Exam 70-740: Installation, Storage, and Compute with Windows Server 2016
2. Exam 70-741: Networking with Windows Server 2016
3. Exam 70-742: Identity with Windows Server 2016
It typically takes around six months to complete all three exams depending on how much time you are able to dedicate to studying for them. To prepare for the exams it is recommended that you take an official Microsoft training course such as Microsoft Official Curriculum (MOC) or instructor-led training (ILT). Additionally, there are many online resources available such as practice tests and study guides that can help you prepare for the exams.
The cost of the MCSA certification depends on which route you choose to take in order to obtain it. If you opt for an official Microsoft course then the cost will range from $500-$3000 depending on the type of course chosen. If you choose to self-study then the cost will depend on what materials and resources you use but can range from $100-$1000 depending on what materials you use and how much time it takes you to prepare for the exams.
4. Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA)
Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) is a certification offered by Cisco Systems that validates an individual’s knowledge and skills in networking. It is designed to help network professionals understand the fundamentals of routing, switching, and troubleshooting networks. The CCNA certification is intended for those who have at least one year of experience working with Cisco products.
The CCNA exam typically takes about two hours to complete, and consists of multiple-choice questions. To get certified, you must pass the exam with a score of 80% or higher. The cost of the exam varies from country to country, but typically ranges from $200-$400 USD.
In order to prepare for the CCNA exam, you should take a course or use self-study materials such as books or online resources. You can also find practice tests online to help you prepare for the actual exam. Once you have passed the exam, you will receive your CCNA certification which is valid for three years. After three years, you must recertify in order to maintain your certification status.
5. CompTIA Network+
CompTIA Network+ is a certification that validates an individual's knowledge and skills in networking. It is designed to provide a foundation of networking knowledge and skills, enabling individuals to further their career in the field of IT.
The CompTIA Network+ certification exam consists of 90 multiple-choice questions and takes up to 90 minutes to complete. The exam covers topics such as network technologies, installation and configuration, media and topologies, management, and security.
To get the CompTIA Network+ certification you must pass the Network+ exam with a score of at least 720 on a scale of 100-900. You can take the exam at any Pearson VUE or Prometric testing center.
The cost for the CompTIA Network+ exam varies depending on where you take it, but typically costs around $300 USD.
6. Linux Professional Institute Certification (LPIC)
Linux Professional Institute Certification (LPIC) is a globally recognized certification program for Linux system administrators and engineers. The LPIC program is designed to validate the skills and knowledge of professionals working with Linux systems. It consists of four levels, each of which can be taken separately or combined into a single certification.
Level 1: LPIC-1 covers basic Linux administration tasks such as installation, configuration, maintenance, and security.
Level 2: LPIC-2 covers more advanced topics such as networking, system performance tuning, and scripting.
Level 3: LPIC-3 covers enterprise-level topics such as virtualization, high availability clustering, storage management, web services, and security.
Level 4: LPIC-4 focuses on advanced topics such as DevOps automation tools and cloud computing technologies.
It typically takes between 6 months to a year to complete all four levels of the LPIC certification depending on your experience level and study habits. To get certified you will need to pass two exams per level; each exam consists of multiple choice questions that are based on real world scenarios.
The cost for each exam varies depending on your location but typically ranges from $200-$300 USD per exam. You can also purchase practice tests or study guides from third party vendors to help you prepare for the exams.
7. VMware Certified Professional (VCP)
VMware Certified Professional (VCP) is a certification program that recognizes IT professionals who demonstrate the skills and knowledge required to install, configure, and manage VMware vSphere environments. VCP certifications are vendor-neutral, meaning they are not specific to any one product or technology.
To become a VCP, you must first complete a VMware-authorized training course and then pass an associated exam. The training courses can be taken in person or online, depending on availability. After completing the training course and passing the exam, you will receive your VCP certification.
The amount of time it takes to get your VCP certification depends on how quickly you complete the training course and pass the exam. Generally speaking, it should take about two weeks for most people to complete both requirements.
The cost of getting your VCP certification varies depending on which training course you choose and where you take it. The cost of the exam itself is typically around $250 USD. Additionally, some courses may require additional fees for materials or other services.
Overall, becoming a VCP is an excellent way to demonstrate your expertise with VMware products and technologies and can open up new career opportunities in the IT field.
8. Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA)
The Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) is a certification program designed to provide individuals with an introduction to the fundamentals of technology and help them develop the skills necessary for a successful career in IT. It is an entry-level Microsoft certification that provides a foundation for further study and certifications in specific technology areas.
The MTA certification covers topics such as Windows Operating System Fundamentals, Networking Fundamentals, Security Fundamentals, Software Development Fundamentals, Database Fundamentals, and Mobility and Device Fundamentals. The exam consists of multiple choice questions that test your knowledge of basic concepts in each subject area.
It typically takes around two weeks to prepare for the MTA exam. You can find free online resources such as practice tests and tutorials to help you prepare. Additionally, there are many books available on the subject that can help you understand the material better.
To get your MTA certification, you must pass one or more exams depending on which track you choose. Each exam costs $127 USD and can be taken at any authorized testing center worldwide. After passing all required exams, you will receive your official MTA certificate from Microsoft.
The cost of getting an MTA certification varies depending on how many exams you take and where you take them. However, it generally costs between $200-$500 USD for all the exams required to get certified.
9. Citrix Certified Professional – Virtualization (CCP-V)
Citrix Certified Professional – Virtualization (CCP-V) is a professional certification program that validates an individual’s knowledge and skills in virtualizing Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop solutions. CCP-V is designed to provide IT professionals with the technical expertise needed to design, deploy, manage, and troubleshoot virtualized enterprise environments using Citrix technologies.
To get the CCP-V certification, you must pass two exams: 1Z0-968 - Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15 Assessment, Design and Advanced Configurations (ADC), and 1Z0-969 - Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 Advanced Administration (CWA). The exams can be taken at any Pearson VUE or Prometric testing center.
The cost of the exams varies depending on your location but typically ranges from $200-$300 USD per exam. It usually takes about 4-6 weeks to prepare for the exams, although some people may take longer or shorter depending on their experience level. After passing both exams, you will receive your official CCP-V certification.
10. Red Hat Certified System Administrator (RHCSA)
Red Hat Certified System Administrator (RHCSA) is a certification program that validates the skills and knowledge of system administrators to manage Red Hat Enterprise Linux systems. The exam focuses on core system administration tasks such as installation, configuration, maintenance, and troubleshooting.
To get the RHCSA certification, you must pass the Red Hat Exam EX200. This exam typically takes two hours to complete and consists of 60 multiple-choice questions. The exam covers topics such as basic system administration tasks, user management, storage management, network services, security settings, and troubleshooting.
The cost for the RHCSA exam varies depending on your location and other factors. Generally speaking, it costs around $400 USD to take the exam. Additionally, you may need to purchase additional materials such as books or practice tests in order to prepare for the exam.
Overall, getting certified as a Red Hat Certified System Administrator can be a great way to demonstrate your knowledge and experience with managing Red Hat Enterprise Linux systems. It can also open up new job opportunities or help you advance in your current career.
Do You Really Need a Desktop Administrator Certificate?
A desktop administrator certificate can be a valuable asset for anyone looking to pursue a career in the IT field. The certificate is an important credential that demonstrates your knowledge and experience with desktop systems. It provides employers with assurance that you have the necessary skills to manage and maintain their computer networks.
The primary benefit of having a desktop administrator certificate is the ability to obtain higher-level positions in the IT field. With this certification, you’ll be able to demonstrate your understanding of server and network administration, as well as security protocols. You’ll also have access to more complex tasks such as troubleshooting hardware or software issues and setting up user accounts.
Additionally, having a desktop administrator certificate can lead to higher salaries and better job opportunities. Employers are often willing to pay more for someone who has the knowledge and experience necessary to handle their IT needs. This certification will also make you stand out from other applicants, making it easier for you to find a job in the competitive IT market.
In conclusion, obtaining a desktop administrator certificate can be beneficial for anyone interested in pursuing a career in IT. Not only does it give you access to higher-level positions, but it also increases your earning potential and makes you more attractive to employers. Therefore, if you’re serious about advancing your career in the IT field, obtaining this certification may be worth considering.
Related: Desktop Administrator Resume Examples
FAQs About Desktop Administrator Certifications
1. What is a Desktop Administrator Certification?
Answer: A Desktop Administrator Certification is a credential that demonstrates an individual’s knowledge and expertise in managing and configuring desktop computers. This certification is typically obtained by completing a program or course at a college or university, or through industry certifications from vendors such as Microsoft, CompTIA, HP, and Cisco.
2. What are the benefits of having a Desktop Administrator Certification?
Answer: Having a Desktop Administrator Certification can help you stand out in the job market by demonstrating your technical capabilities to employers. It also allows you to keep up with the latest technologies and trends in the IT field, giving you an edge over other non-certified professionals. Furthermore, it may qualify you for higher salaries and better job opportunities.
3. What type of jobs can I get with a Desktop Administrator Certification?
Answer: With a Desktop Administrator Certification, you can pursue roles such as IT Support Specialist, Network Engineer, System Analyst, and Technical Support Technician. Depending on your level of experience and certifications held, some positions may require additional qualifications or experience beyond the certification itself.
4. How long does it take to earn a Desktop Administrator Certification?
Answer: The amount of time it takes to earn a Desktop Administrator Certification depends on the institution offering the program or course as well as the type of certification being pursued (e.g., vendor-specific vs generic). Generally speaking, many programs offer flexible schedules that allow students to complete their studies within 8-12 weeks if studying full-time; however, some may take longer depending on individual circumstances.
5. Is there an exam required for obtaining a Desktop Administrator Certification?
Answer: Yes – most certifications require passing an exam in order for individuals to become certified. Exams vary depending on which organization is offering the certification; however they usually involve multiple choice questions covering topics related to desktop administration such as network infrastructure design and management, troubleshooting techniques and security protocols etcetera