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Top 10 Desktop Technician Certifications

This article provides an overview of the best certifications for desktop technicians, including information on what they cover and how to obtain them.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 17 min read

Certifications for desktop technicians are important in the job market because they demonstrate an individual’s knowledge and experience. They also show employers that a technician is qualified to perform tasks related to specific hardware or software, and that they have the necessary skills to troubleshoot problems and maintain computers. Having certifications can make technicians more attractive candidates for jobs, as employers may be looking for someone with specific qualifications. Additionally, certifications can help technicians advance their careers, as they may be able to move up in the company or even switch companies with greater ease if they have these credentials.

This article reviews some of the most beneficial certifications for Desktop Technicians and explains how they can help advance a technician's career.

What are Desktop Technician Certifications?

Desktop technician certification is a professional certification that validates the knowledge and skills of an individual in the field of desktop technology. This type of certification is offered by many organizations, including Microsoft, CompTIA, and other IT-related vendors.

Having a desktop technician certification can help you stand out from the competition in the job market. It demonstrates to employers that you have a strong understanding of desktop technologies and are capable of performing technical tasks and troubleshooting problems with computers. The certification also shows employers that you are committed to staying up-to-date on industry trends and best practices.

This certification can be especially beneficial for those who are seeking employment in fields such as IT support, IT consulting, or computer repair. Having a desktop technician certification shows potential employers that you have the necessary qualifications to provide quality service in these areas. Furthermore, having this type of certification may open more doors for career advancement opportunities within your organization.

Pro Tip: Before investing in a desktop technician certification, make sure to research the different types of certifications available and consider which ones best fit your specific needs. Additionally, be sure to look into the cost of certification and any associated course or testing fees.

Related: What does a Desktop Technician do?

Top 10 Desktop Technician Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Desktop Technicians today.

1. CompTIA A+

CompTIA A+ is an industry-leading certification that validates the skills and knowledge of entry-level computer technicians. It is designed to provide a comprehensive understanding of hardware, software, networking, security, and troubleshooting fundamentals.

It typically takes between 60 and 90 hours of study to prepare for the CompTIA A+ exam. The exam itself consists of two parts: Core 1 (220-1001) and Core 2 (220-1002). Each part has a maximum time limit of 90 minutes and consists of 90 questions.

To obtain the CompTIA A+ certification, you must pass both parts with a score of at least 675 out of 900 points. You can take each part individually or both parts together in one sitting.

The cost for the CompTIA A+ certification varies depending on where you take it. Generally speaking, it costs around $320 for the two exams combined.

2. Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician (MCDST)

Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician (MCDST) is a certification program designed for IT professionals who provide technical support for Microsoft Windows operating systems. The MCDST certification validates the skills of desktop support technicians in troubleshooting, diagnosing and resolving problems on Windows operating systems.

To get the MCDST certification, you must pass two exams: Exam 70-271: Supporting Users and Troubleshooting a Microsoft Windows XP Operating System and Exam 70-272: Supporting Users and Troubleshooting Desktop Applications on a Microsoft Windows XP Operating System. You must have at least one year of experience working with Windows operating systems before taking either exam.

The cost of the exams varies depending on your country or region, but typically costs around US$125 per exam. The total cost to obtain the MCDST certification is therefore around US$250.

It usually takes between 1-3 months to prepare for each exam, depending on your experience level and how much time you are able to dedicate to studying.

3. HDI Desktop Support Technician (HDI-DST)

HDI Desktop Support Technician (HDI-DST) is a certification that validates the knowledge and skills of an IT professional in providing technical support for desktop computers, laptops, and other related devices. This certification is offered by HDI (Help Desk Institute), a global organization dedicated to providing training and certifications in the field of customer service and technical support.

To become certified as an HDI-DST, you must pass two exams: the HDI Support Center Analyst (HDI-SCA) exam and the HDI Desktop Support Technician (HDI-DST) exam. The HDI-SCA exam covers topics such as customer service, problem solving, troubleshooting techniques, communication skills, system administration basics, and more. The HDI-DST exam focuses on topics such as hardware installation and configuration, operating system installation and configuration, network fundamentals, security fundamentals, software installation and configuration, user account management, data backup/restore procedures, printer setup/troubleshooting procedures, mobile device setup/troubleshooting procedures.

The cost of taking both exams is $299 USD each. It usually takes around 2 to 3 weeks to prepare for both exams depending on your experience level. After completing both exams successfully you will receive your official HDI-DST certification.

4. Apple Certified Macintosh Technician (ACMT)

Apple Certified Macintosh Technician (ACMT) is a certification program offered by Apple to recognize individuals who have achieved the necessary skills and knowledge to diagnose, repair, and maintain Mac computers. The ACMT certification is designed to help technicians become more proficient in their work with Macs.

To become an ACMT, you must first complete the Apple Service Fundamentals course. This is a two-day course that covers topics such as Mac hardware components, troubleshooting techniques, and system maintenance. After completing the course, you must then pass the Apple Service Certification Exam. This exam tests your knowledge of Mac hardware and software as well as your ability to troubleshoot issues with Mac systems.

The cost of the Apple Service Fundamentals course is $1,299 USD plus applicable taxes. The cost of taking the Apple Service Certification Exam is $150 USD plus applicable taxes.

Once you have passed both the course and exam requirements for becoming an ACMT, you will receive an official certificate from Apple recognizing your accomplishment. You will also gain access to exclusive resources from Apple such as technical support forums and product updates.

5. 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 an entry-level certification that demonstrates competency in the installation, configuration, and operation of small to medium-sized networks.

It typically takes around 6 months to prepare for the CCNA exam. To get the certification, you must pass a single 90-minute exam with a score of at least 825 out of 1000 points. The exam covers topics such as network fundamentals, routing protocols, switching technologies, IP addressing and subnetting, WAN technologies, and troubleshooting.

The cost of the CCNA exam varies depending on where you take it but typically ranges from $250 to $300 USD. Additionally, there are study materials available online or through vendors like Cisco Press that can help you prepare for the exam which may cost anywhere from $50 to $200 USD.

6. CompTIA Network+

CompTIA Network+ is a certification program designed to validate the knowledge and skills of IT professionals working in network administration. It is an internationally recognized certification that validates a technician's ability to design, configure, manage and troubleshoot wired and wireless networks.

The CompTIA Network+ exam takes about 90 minutes to complete, with a maximum of 90 questions. To get the certification, you must pass the exam with a score of at least 720 out of 900 points. The exam covers topics such as network technologies, installation and configuration, media and topologies, management, security and troubleshooting.

To get the CompTIA Network+ certification you need to register for the exam at Pearson VUE or Prometric testing centers. The cost of the exam varies depending on your location but generally ranges between $200-$300 USD.

7. Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA)

Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator (MCSA) is a certification program designed to validate an individual’s skills and knowledge in managing and maintaining Microsoft-based systems. The MCSA certification is the foundation for more advanced certifications such as Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE).

The MCSA certification requires passing three exams: one for Windows Server, one for networking fundamentals, and one elective exam. The exams cover topics such as installation, configuration, security, network infrastructure, Active Directory, virtualization, storage solutions, and more.

It typically takes around six months to prepare for the MCSA certification exams. However, this time frame can vary depending on the individual's experience level and the amount of time they are willing to dedicate to studying.

To get the MCSA certification you must pass all three required exams within two years of starting the program. You can take each exam at any Microsoft Testing Center or through a Pearson VUE testing center.

The cost of taking each exam varies depending on your location but generally ranges from $125-$165 per exam. Therefore it would cost approximately $375-$495 to get an MCSA certification.

8. Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE)

Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) is a certification program for IT professionals who design and implement Microsoft-based solutions. It is designed to help IT professionals demonstrate their ability to develop, deploy, and maintain solutions using the latest technologies from Microsoft.

The MCSE certification typically takes up to one year to complete. To get the MCSE certification, you must pass several exams that cover different areas of expertise such as Windows Server, Desktop Infrastructure, Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, Messaging, Productivity, and Data Management & Analytics. Each exam has its own cost which can range from $100-$200 USD per exam. You can also purchase study guides or take online courses to help prepare for the exams.

The total cost of getting an MCSE certification depends on how many exams you need to take and how much preparation you need for each exam. Generally speaking, it can cost anywhere from $1,000-$2,000 USD in total depending on your individual needs.

9. Linux Professional Institute Certification (LPIC)

Linux Professional Institute Certification (LPIC) is an internationally recognized certification program that demonstrates a professional’s level of expertise in the Linux operating system. The LPIC is administered by the Linux Professional Institute, which was founded in 1999 and is based in Canada. It offers four levels of certification: LPIC-1, LPIC-2, LPIC-3, and LPIC-4.

LPIC-1 is designed for entry-level Linux professionals who are familiar with basic concepts such as command line usage, file management, and networking. This certification requires passing two exams: a core exam and one elective exam. The core exam covers topics such as installation and configuration of the Linux operating system, using the command line interface to manage files, users, and groups; configuring basic network services; and troubleshooting common issues. The elective exam covers topics such as administering software packages, system security, scripting with Bash or Python, or other related topics.

LPIC-2 is designed for more experienced Linux professionals who have mastered the basics of the operating system and are ready to take on more advanced tasks such as configuring network services like DNS or DHCP; setting up web servers; managing user accounts; creating scripts; or configuring storage devices. This certification requires passing two exams: a core exam and one elective exam. The core exam covers topics such as installing and configuring a Linux server from scratch; configuring network services like DNS or DHCP; managing user accounts; setting up web servers; creating scripts; or configuring storage devices. The elective exam covers topics such as administering software packages, system security, scripting with Bash or Python, or other related topics.

LPIC-3 is designed for senior Linux professionals who have mastered all aspects of the operating system and are ready to take on complex tasks such as designing large scale networks using multiple servers running different distributions of Linux; configuring virtualization technologies like KVM or Xen hypervisors; setting up high availability clusters using HAProxy or Corosync/Pacemaker technologies; creating custom scripts to automate tasks across multiple systems; deploying software applications in production environments; or troubleshooting complex problems involving multiple components across different systems. This certification requires passing three exams: a core exam and two electives exams covering topics such as designing large scale networks using multiple servers running different distributions of Linux; configuring virtualization technologies like KVM or Xen hypervisors; setting up high availability clusters using HAProxy or Corosync/Pacemaker technologies; creating custom scripts to automate tasks across multiple systems; deploying software applications in production environments ;or troubleshooting complex problems involving multiple components across different systems .

LPIC-4 is designed for expert level professionals who have mastered all aspects of the operating system including design principles for large scale deployments involving multiple servers running different distributions of Linux along with virtualization technologies like KVM or Xen hypervisors , setting up high availability clusters using HAProxy or Corosync/Pacemaker technologies , creating custom scripts to automate tasks across multiple systems , deploying software applications in production environments ,and troubleshooting complex problems involving multiple components across different systems . This certification requires passing four exams : a core exam plus three elective exams covering topics such as designing secure networks , implementing enterprise storage solutions , developing cloud computing solutions , deploying containerized applications , automating IT operations with DevOps tools , managing IT infrastructure with Puppet , Ansible & SaltStack etc .

The time it takes to get an LPIC certification varies depending on your experience level but typically it takes anywhere from 3 months to 1 year to complete all required exams depending on how much time you can dedicate towards studying each day .

To get an LPIC certification you need to register for the appropriate level at lpi . org which will provide you access to study materials & practice tests . You will then need to schedule & take your official LPI exams at Pearson VUE testing centers located around the world .

The cost for taking an LPI Exam varies depending on where you are taking it but typically it costs around $200 USD per Exam .

10. ITIL Foundation Certification

ITIL Foundation Certification is an industry-recognized certification that provides a comprehensive understanding of the ITIL framework and its processes. It is designed to help IT professionals understand how to effectively use the ITIL framework in their organizations. The certification is based on the ITIL 4 version, which was released in 2019.

The certification process consists of a two-hour exam, which tests your knowledge of the ITIL 4 best practices and processes. The exam consists of 40 multiple choice questions and you must score at least 65% to pass. The exam can be taken online or at an accredited testing center.

The cost of the certification varies depending on where you take it and who is providing it, but typically ranges from $150-$250 USD.

It usually takes about 3-4 weeks to get certified once you have completed the exam, as you will need to wait for your results to be processed by the examination provider before receiving your certificate.

Do You Really Need a Desktop Technician Certificate?

Yes, a desktop technician certificate is an important credential to have if you are interested in working in the field of desktop support. Having a certificate shows employers that you have the knowledge and skills necessary to work as a desktop technician. It also demonstrates that you have taken the time to gain the specialized training needed for this role. With a certificate, you can prove your commitment to excellence and provide evidence that you are capable of providing quality customer service and technical support.

In addition, having a desktop technician certificate may help you stand out from other candidates when applying for jobs. Employers often look for candidates who possess certifications or other qualifications which demonstrate their knowledge and abilities in the field. A certificate can give potential employers confidence that you are qualified for the position and will be able to handle any technical issues they may encounter.

Overall, having a desktop technician certificate is an invaluable asset when it comes to finding employment in this sector. Not only does it show employers that you are dedicated to your profession, but it also provides proof of your knowledge and experience in the area. If you want to maximize your chances of success in this competitive industry, then obtaining a certification is essential.

Related: Desktop Technician Resume Examples

FAQs About Desktop Technician Certifications

1. What is a Desktop Technician Certification?

A Desktop Technician Certification is an industry-recognized certification that demonstrates an individual's knowledge and proficiency in the installation, maintenance and troubleshooting of computer hardware and software.

2. What are the benefits of getting a Desktop Technician Certification?

Certification as a desktop technician can help demonstrate your technical skills to employers, potentially increase your salary and open up more job opportunities in the IT industry.

3. How long does it take to get a Desktop Technician Certification?

The length of time it takes to obtain a desktop technician certification will vary depending on which type of certification you pursue. Generally, most certifications require completing a series of tests or courses and may take several weeks or months to complete.

4. What are the prerequisites for becoming a Desktop Technician?

To become a desktop technician, you typically need at least an associate's degree in computer science or related field, although some employers may accept relevant experience in lieu of formal education. You should also have hands-on experience with computers and be knowledgeable about operating systems such as Windows or Mac OS X as well as networking principles and technologies.

5. Are there any special requirements for taking the exam?

Yes, each certification has its own set of requirements that must be met before being allowed to take the exam. This may include having certain levels of experience or completing prerequisite courses or exams prior to registering for the exam itself.