AZ-103 Study Guide

Exam AZ-103 Azure certificate study guide

Preparing for AZ-103 Azure Administrator exam? Don’t know where to start? This post is the AZ-103 Study Guide (with links to each exam objective for the Azure Certification).

I have curated a list of articles from Microsoft documentation for each objective of AZ-103 Azure Administrator exam. I hope this article will be your AZ-103 Study Guide for the exam. Also, please share the post within your circles so it helps them to prepare for the exam.

 

AZ-103 Preparation Options

Pluralsight (Free Trial)Microsoft Azure Administrator AZ-103 Path
LinkedIn Learning (Free Trial)Exam Tips: Microsoft Azure Administrator (AZ-103)
UdemyAZ-103 Azure Administrator Exam Certification

 

AZ-103 Practice Tests

Whizlabs Practice Tests5 Practice Tests for AZ-103 (275 questions)
Udemy (Labs + Practice Tests)Exam AZ-103 Labs + 180 Practice Tests

 

AZ-103 Exam Reference Books (PDF)

 

To view other Azure certificate study guides, click here

AZ-103 Exam Details

 
  • Total 210 minutes; 60 questions; pass score 700/1000; no negative marking
  • Question types: 2 labs (with several tasks), 2-4 Case studies & Multiple-choice questions
  • Multiple-choice questions are of following types:
      • Single-correct answer
      • Up to ‘n’ correct answers (they tell how many answers to choose)
      • Fill in the blanks
      • Order statements in the right order
  • The exam is divided into sections. You can go back and update the answer but only within sections. Once you are out of a section, you cannot go back

AZ-103 Exam Tips

 
  • Don’t worry memorizing PowerShell/CLI. Understand the structure of the syntax
  • For PowerShell, focus on the new ‘AZ’ module, not the older ‘AzureRM’
  • Between PowerShell and CLI, the focus is more on PowerShell commands
  • Labs don’t mandate the use of CLI or PowerShell; Only the result matters
  • Don’t fret about ARM templates. You just need to understand its layout. You will not be required to create one but will be asked to pick the missing syntax
  • Don’t worry about memorizing trivial information like CDN features, SKU details, etc., as these can change too often and cannot be meaningfully tested
  • Expect questions on cost optimization/effectiveness
  • Take an Azure subscription & practice the labs from Microsoft Learning
  • Definitely, do a practice test to gauge your preparedness before the exam
  • Other common questions on Azure Certification & study tips are covered here
  • Preferably, avoid taking the exam from home. There have been a lot of issues
  • Expect the labs to be very slow. It will test your patience

Full disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. I receive some commission if you purchase through them. This way you can support my blog at no extra cost to you!

 

Manage Azure subscriptions and Resources (15-20%) 

Manage Azure Subscriptions

Assign administrator permissions

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/billing/billing-add-change-azure-subscription-administrator

Configure cost center quotas and tagging

LinkedIn Learning: Configure Cost Center quotas (check with a free trial)

Configure Azure subscription policies at Azure subscription level

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/governance/policy/assign-policy-portal

 

Analyze Resource Utilization and Consumption

Configure diagnostic settings on resources

Linkedin Learning: Configure Diagnostic Setting (check with a free trial)

Create a baseline for resources

LinkedIn Learning: Creating a Baseline for Resources (check with a free trial)

Create and test alerts

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/platform/alerts-metric

Analyze alerts across subscription

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/platform/alerts-managing-alert-instances

Analyze metrics across subscription

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/platform/metrics-charts

Create action groups

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/platform/action-groups

Monitor for unused resources

https://docs.bmc.com/docs/btco113/reclaiming-the-unused-and-overallocated-azure-virtual-machines

Monitor spend

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/billing/billing-getting-started

Report on spend

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/billing/billing-download-azure-invoice-daily-usage-date

Utilize Log Search query functions

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/log-query/search-queries

View alerts in Log Analytics

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/platform/alert-management-solution

 

Manage Resource Groups

Use Azure policies for resource groups

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/governance/policy/samples/enforce-tag-on-resource-groups

Configure resource locks

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-resource-manager/resource-group-lock-resources

Configure resource policies

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/governance/policy/tutorials/create-and-manage

Identify auditing requirements

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-resource-manager/resource-group-audit

Implement and set tagging on resource groups

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-resource-manager/resource-group-using-tags

Move resources across resource groups

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-resource-manager/resource-group-move-resources

Remove resource groups

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-resource-manager/resource-manager-quickstart-create-templates-use-the-portal

 

Managed Role-based Access Control (RBAC)

Create a custom role

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/role-based-access-control/tutorial-custom-role-powershell

Configure access to Azure resources by assigning roles

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/role-based-access-control/role-assignments-portal

Configure management access to Azure

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/role-based-access-control/role-assignments-portal

Troubleshoot RBAC

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/role-based-access-control/troubleshooting

Implement RBAC policies

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/role-based-access-control/conditional-access-azure-management

Assign RBAC Roles

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/role-based-access-control/quickstart-assign-role-user-portal

 

Implement and Manage Storage (15-20%)

Create and Configure Storage Accounts

Configure network access to the storage account

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/common/storage-network-security

Create the storage account

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/common/storage-quickstart-create-account

Configure the storage account

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/common/storage-account-manage

Generate shared access signature

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/common/storage-dotnet-shared-access-signature-part-1

Install and use Azure Storage Explorer

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vs-azure-tools-storage-manage-with-storage-explorer

Manage access keys

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/common/storage-account-manage

Monitor activity log by using Log Analytics

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/platform/activity-log-collect

Implement Azure storage replication

MSDN Blog: Azure Storage Replication Implementation

 

Import and Export Data to Azure

Create export from Azure job

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/common/storage-import-export-data-from-blobs

Create import into Azure job

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/common/storage-import-export-data-to-blobs

Use Azure Data Box

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/databox/data-box-quickstart-portal

Configure and use Azure blob storage

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/blobs/storage-quickstart-blobs-portal

Configure Azure content delivery network (CDN) endpoints

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/cdn/cdn-create-a-storage-account-with-cdn

Configure Azure Files

Create an Azure file share

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/files/storage-how-to-create-file-share

Create Azure File Sync service

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/files/storage-sync-files-deployment-guide?tabs=azure-portal

Create Azure sync group

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/files/storage-sync-files-deployment-guide?tabs=azure-portal

Troubleshoot Azure File Sync

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/storage/files/storage-sync-files-troubleshoot

 

Implement Azure Backup

Configure and review backup reports

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/backup/backup-azure-configure-reports

Perform backup operation

https://azure.microsoft.com/en-in/blog/microsoft-azure-block-blob-storage-backup/

Create Recovery Services Vault

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/backup/backup-create-rs-vault

Create and configure a backup policy

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/cli/azure/backup/policy?view=azure-cli-latest

Perform a restore operation

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/sql-database/sql-database-recovery-using-backups

 

Deploy and Manage Virtual Machines (VMs) (15-20%)

Create and Configure a VM for Windows and Linux

Configure high availability

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/tutorial-availability-sets

Configure monitoring, networking, storage, and virtual machine size
deploy and configure scale sets

Monitoring

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/tutorial-monitoring

Networking

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/tutorial-virtual-network

Storage

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/managed-disks-overview

Size

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/sizes

Scale set

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machine-scale-sets/quick-create-portal

 

Automate Deployment of VMs

Modify Azure Resource Manager template

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/architecture/building-blocks/extending-templates/update-resource

Configure the location of new VMs

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/azure-to-azure-tutorial-migrate

Configure VHD template

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/create-vm-specialized

Deploy from template

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/ps-template

Save a deployment as an Azure Resource Manager template

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/download-template

Deploy Windows VMs

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/ps-template

Deploy Linux VMs

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/linux/create-ssh-secured-vm-from-template

 

Manage Azure VM

Add data discs

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/attach-disk-ps

Add network interfaces

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/virtual-network-network-interface-vm

Automate configuration management by using PowerShell Desired State Configuration (DSC) and VM Agent by using custom script extensions

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/automation/automation-dsc-getting-started

https://gallery.technet.microsoft.com/Remoting-into-Azure-ARM

Manage VM sizes

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/sizes

Move VMs from one resource group to another

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/move-vm

Redeploy VMs

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/troubleshooting/redeploy-to-new-node-windows

 

Manage VM Backups

Configure VM backup

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/backup/quick-backup-vm-portal

Define backup policies

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/backup/backup-azure-vms-encryption

Implement backup policies

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/backup/backup-azure-arm-vms-prepare

Perform VM restore

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/backup/backup-azure-arm-restore-vms

Azure Site Recovery

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/site-recovery/azure-to-azure-quickstart

 

Configure and Manage Virtual Networks (30-35%)

Create Connectivity between Virtual Networks

Create and configure VNET peering

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/tutorial-connect-virtual-networks-portal

Create and configure VNET to VNET

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vpn-gateway/vpn-gateway-vnet-vnet-rm-ps

Verify virtual network connectivity

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vpn-gateway/vpn-gateway-verify-connection-resource-manager

Create a virtual network gateway

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vpn-gateway/create-routebased-vpn-gateway-portal

 

Implement and Manage Virtual Networking

Configure public IP addresses

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/virtual-network-public-ip-address

Configure private IP addresses

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/virtual-networks-static-private-ip-arm-pportal

Configure network routes

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/tutorial-create-route-table-portal

Configure network interface

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/virtual-network-network-interface

Configure subnets

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/virtual-network-manage-subnet

Configure virtual network

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/manage-virtual-network

 

Configure Name Resolution

Configure Azure DNS

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/dns/dns-getstarted-portal

Configure custom DNS settings

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/dns/dns-custom-domain

Configure private and public DNS zones

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/dns/private-dns-getstarted-powershell

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/dns/dns-delegate-domain-azure-dns

 

Create and Configure a Network Security Group (NSG)

Create security rules

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/manage-network-security-group

Associate NSG to a subnet or network interface

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/manage-network-security-group

Identify required ports

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/security-overview

Evaluate effective security rules

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-network/virtual-network-network-interface

 

Implement Azure Load Balancer

Configure the internal load balancer

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/load-balancer/tutorial-load-balancer-basic-internal-portal

Configure load balancing rules

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/load-balancer/configure-load-balancer-outbound-cli

Configure a public load balancer

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/load-balancer/load-balancer-get-started-internet-availability-zones-zonal-powershell

Troubleshoot load balancing

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/load-balancer/load-balancer-troubleshoot

 

Monitor and Troubleshoot Virtual Networking

Monitor on-premises connectivity

https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/canitpro/step-by-step-monitoring-on-premise-active-directory-via-azure-ad-connect-health/

Use Network resource monitoring

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-monitor/insights/network-performance-monitor

Use Network Watcher

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/network-watcher/network-watcher-create

Troubleshoot external networking

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vpn-gateway/vpn-gateway-troubleshoot-site-to-site-cannot-connect

Troubleshoot virtual network connectivity

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/network-watcher/diagnose-communication-problem-between-networks

Integrate On-premises Network with Azure Virtual Network

Create and configure Azure VPN Gateway

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vpn-gateway/vpn-gateway-tutorial-create-gateway-powershell

Create and configure site to site VPN

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vpn-gateway/vpn-gateway-howto-site-to-site-resource-manager-portal

Configure Express Route

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/expressroute/expressroute-howto-circuit-portal-resource-manager

Verify on-premises connectivity

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vpn-gateway/vpn-gateway-verify-connection-resource-manager

Troubleshoot on-premises connectivity with Azure

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/vpn-gateway/vpn-gateway-troubleshoot-site-to-site-cannot-connect

 

Manage Identities (15-20%)

Manage Azure Active Directory (AD)

Add custom domains

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/fundamentals/add-custom-domain

Azure AD Join

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/user-help/user-help-join-device-on-network

Configure self-service password reset

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/authentication/quickstart-sspr

Manage multiple directories

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Azure-Active-Directory-Identity/Creating-and-Managing-Multiple-Windows-Azure-Active-Directories/ba-p/243428

 

Manage Azure AD Objects (Users, Groups, and Devices)

Create users and groups

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/fundamentals/add-users-azure-active-directory

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/fundamentals/active-directory-groups-create-azure-portal

Manage user and group properties

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/fundamentals/active-directory-users-profile-azure-portal

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/fundamentals/active-directory-groups-settings-azure-portal

Manage device settings

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/devices/device-management-azure-portal

Perform bulk user updates

https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/poshchap-active-directory/bulk-user-modification/

Manage guest accounts

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/b2b/b2b-quickstart-add-guest-users-portal

 

Implement and Manage Hybrid Identities

Install Azure AD Connect

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/hybrid/how-to-connect-install-express

Implement password hash with Azure AD Connect

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/hybrid/how-to-connect-password-hash-synchronization

Implement pass-through synchronization with Azure AD Connect

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/hybrid/how-to-connect-pta-quick-start

Use Azure AD Connect to configure federation with on-premises Active Directory Domain Services (AD DS)

https://www.codetwo.com/admins-blog/how-to-sync-on-premises-active-directory-to-azure-active-directory-with-azure-ad-connect/

Manage Azure AD Connect

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/hybrid/how-to-connect-post-installation

Manage password sync

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory-domain-services/active-directory-ds-getting-started-password-sync-synced-tenant

Manage password writeback

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/authentication/tutorial-enable-writeback

 

Implement Multi-factor Authentication (MFA)

Configure user accounts for MFA

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/authentication/howto-mfa-userstates/user-accounts

Enable MFA by using a bulk update

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/authentication/howto-mfa-userstates/bulk

Configure fraud alerts

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/authentication/howto-mfa-mfasettings/fraud

Configure bypass options

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/authentication/howto-mfa-mfasettings/bypass

Configure Trusted IPs

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/authentication/howto-mfa-mfasettings/Trusted-Ips

Configure verification methods

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/active-directory/authentication/howto-mfa-mfasettings/Verification

This brings us to the end of AZ-103 Study Guide

What do you think? Let me know in the Comments section if I have missed out on anything. Also, I love to hear from you how your preparation is going on!

In case you are looking for other Azure certification exams check out this page

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24 Comments

  1. May i know if the question will be multiple choice questions& multiple answer questions only or lab will be there during the exam(AZ-103)

  2. Hi, I am a test automation engineer. I don’t have any experience with administration activities. I thought of shifting my career to Azure devops. I have completed Azure fundamentals and started preparing AZ-103(a prerequisite for AZ-203), through udemy skylineacademy 8hr udemy course, but I feel they are not covering the required deep content needed for the exam. Which learning path should I follow to successfully complete the exam? I checked some sample plural sight videos,some videos are not up to date with the current azure portal.

    1. Hello Gopi, you can try the Exam ref book, which walks you through all the PowerShell commands.

      But since Azure receives rapid updates, you may feel even the book might be outdated. So, if you want to be 100% sure that the content is not outdated, the best solution is to follow the Microsoft documentation links in the study guide (that’s the first place to receive updated information)

      1. Thanks Ravi for quick update. Please let me know which learning path should i follow(videos, labs, documentation etc) . Where should I start first? Sorry, I am just trying to find the best learning path(order)

        1. Hello Gopi,

          There are no prerequisites for az-203 that I am aware of (you mentioned that in the last comment)

          And a better strategy would be to take more than 1 path.

          First, take 1 module.

          Start with the docs (links in this post). Also have free trials of Pluralsight, LinkedIn Learning or Linux Academy. Cross-refer them. The content is too exhaustive, so do a switch between them. Learning the same concepts from different people will give you different perspectives and help you in understanding the concepts better.

          It is similar to 5 blind men who never knew about the elephant, trying to conceptualize an elephant. If you only learn from a single source, then you touch an elephant’s tail and think the elephant is like a snake

          Go through the labs Microsoft has provided and do them with a free Azure subscription.

          Repeat for other modules

          Once done, verify your understanding with practice tests

          This will be the perfect strategy. Honestly I wanted to follow this way but am rarely able to do, but still manage to pass.

          So follow this strategy. Even if you are not able to follow meticulously, since the process is there, you will do well

          All the best

    1. Pluralsight’s content is more in-depth, so chances are every aspect of the exam is covered. But focussing on long hours will be a challenge. If you can get the Azure subscription, and follow along, it will be much more enjoying.

      I recommend Pluralsight as they also have Role IQs for the Azure administrator role, so you can validate what you know. I don’t think I saw any of them in Lynda. Check the below link

      AZ-103 assessments

  3. Hello,
    I have taken the instructor-led AZ-103cource. I am going to prepare for the exam. Do you recommend reading the book? What about mock exams?

    Thanks

    1. Reading the book should always be the first option, along with practice. To fill your gaps, use video courses. Mock exams, you can do after your preparation, if you have time

  4. Hi ravikirans,

    I needed the full course. Labs and presentation. can you provide me that information. If you have it that will be great.
    Let me know i just need full course material.

        1. Sorry, I missed your message. The powerpoint material will be available to download if you can login to Pluralsight

  5. Hi Ravi,

    Great content and lots of link.

    I was planning to start with the certification preparation. Will the pluralsite certification content be sufficient for the preparation?

    1. Pluralsight content will be able to fill gaps in your understanding. Or to get started with concepts. Or in-depth explanations that give a different perspective. On top of that, I really suggest you take a free azure subscription and practice the labs

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