Microsoft Puts Passel of Exams on Chopping Block

Included on list: 70-098, Windows 98 and exams for Exchange 5.0/5.5.

On July 2, Microsoft announced it will discontinue the following exams on June 30, 2003:
  • 70-056: Implementing and Supporting Web Sites Using Site Server 3.0
  • 70-057: Designing and Implementing Commerce Solutions with Site Server 3.0, Commerce Edition
  • 70-080: Implementing and Supporting Internet Explorer 5.0 by Using the Microsoft Internet Explorer Administration Kit
  • 70-081: Implementing and Supporting Exchange Server 5.5
  • 70-085: Implementing and Supporting SNA Server 4.0
  • 70-088: Implementing and Supporting Proxy Server 2.0
  • 70-091: Designing and Implementing Solutions with Office 2000 and Visual Basic for Applications
  • 70-098: Implementing and Supporting Windows 98
  • 70-105: Designing and Implementing Collaborative Solutions with Outlook 2000 and Exchange Server 5.5

While the exams will be retired next year, any certifications earned by these exams will remain valid, Microsoft said.

Microsoft typically limits exam discontinuation announcements to once a year, usually in June. (See "Discontinuation of Exams" on the Microsoft MCP Web site.)

About the Author

Michael Domingo is Editor in Chief of Virtualization Review. He's been an IT writer and editor for so long that he remember typing out news items in WordStar.

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Reader Comments:

Thu, Mar 4, 2010 Mad Electrical Engineering Technologist Toronto Ontario.

Even though my intension was not to list every course I have taken in college or university in the past. I was just showing you how the Microsoft and the likes certifications are meant to devalue traditional educational institutions such as colleges and universities. I am sure most of you have background in electrical engineering, computer science, system analystis, and programmers. I think in Canada this is a delibrate attempt by the well-to-do and corporation to stonewell people that have the education but cannot afford to constantly upgrade certification in every two years. That dawned on me yesterday when I went to an IT recruiting firm for an interview and I had been preparing for the new MTCIP. But the test I got was on MSCE and when I checked out the news from microsoft and because I missed MSCE certification I was at a severe disadvantage with my competitors.MSCE was not offered in the school I went to. And when I decided to get certified I decided on MCTIP because it seems natural to me because I did not want to get certified by something that will expire in a year or two. My friends that are working for telecommunication firms and IT companies are telling me that most of them convinced their management to migrate to other more stable environments.

Thu, Mar 4, 2010 MAD Electrical Engineering Technologist Toronto, Ontario

In my industrial electronics classes and electronic circuits I have worked with diodes learned their basic operations and theory and implemented in working circuits such as rectifier circuits,clippers, and clampers. I worked with transistors drove the governing equations, biased them properly in the linear-region, used them as switch circuits too, built oscillators out of them.I then moved on amplifiers IC packages and built summers,adders,difference amplifiers,integrators, and differentiators out of them, made multivibrators and one-shot vibrators, colpitts oscillators, built with them buck-and-boost power-supplies with them too,variable volage and currrent power supplies with them, in a nutshell I build analogue circuits out of them.I have used wave-shape circuits such as crystals, oscillators,such as and IC circuits found in most electronics,electrical circuits, and telecommunications. For instance in my networking and operating systems. I have learned XP, WIN9X,Server 2000, and NT 4.00. I went to traditional community college with state-of-the art labs. I have set up servers, configured them, I have done cabling from thicknet to thin net Ethernet, UTP,Fiber optics. I have used off-the-shelf two.I have setup ghosts, I have setup unattended instations files for NT and server. We set up resources such as print and file-sharing, user accounts, previleges, and so on. We maintained and upgraded and configured those sofware in a lab environment. 2002. In my data communications classes. I actually build the cables, worked with NIC cards reconfigured them when the driver software was no longer available, layer one interpreting devices from the ground up based on ICs CMOS and TTL technologies such as 74LS151,74LS324, to see those signals. In school, in my telecommunicatins classes I have worked with cellular and radio technologies from the front-end down to the final stage power amplifiers. I have built wireless receivers and transmitters from discret component and analogue technologies too. I worked with mixers, demodulators, modulators, PLLs, VCO, pin-diodes. And I have used effecient Antenna design and theory for my final stages for the transmitters and receivers depeding on weather the specics called for wired or wireless medium. I have built the final state power amplifiers and circuits. The topology and the technological varied from AM, FM, QUAM, and so on.

Thu, Mar 4, 2010 Mad Electrical Engineering Technologist Toronto, Canada

I think you guys have hit the nail on the head.I am a new grad. In my networking classes I have taken considerable circuit analysis,digital circuits and systems, wide area networks,and LAN technology and topology. In my digital circuits course or classes i worked with gates, worked with their logic operations as gates then developed equation from them be it in sequential or combinatorial fashion. I have taken in to account their frequency and voltage requirements, threshold voltage requirement for low and high, their fanout and fanin current levels. I analyzed their in put and outputs with scopes and digital voltmeters. I have examined and built operational circuits based on whatever my teachers wanted me to implement. Most of my teachers were working professional engineers and computer sceintist.

Thu, Apr 10, 2003 joshua india

send me a demo exam of 70-098 paper

Thu, Sep 12, 2002 Mike Kansas City

I also get tired of reading about retired exams but the one thing I know from 25 years in the business is that things change and you either adapt or go extinct. Quit grumbling and Watch for changes that will affect you.

Wed, Jul 31, 2002 Tochi London

I am constantly amazed as to why so many people stick to Microsoft. Not just skilled professionals but companies. Every company that uses MS technology is getting really shafted with license 6.0. You guys (MCSE) are really getting played for suckers.

When will it end ? you ask, sorry it will never end - its just the nature of the beast and the beast cannot change.
I decided I was not going to touch Microsoft technology and gave up an attempt to do MCSE. Now I am a Java and Linux professional and life could not be better. While my MCSE mates are out of a job and or getting shafted I am enjoying Linux and Java getting paid and Loved - NOT SHAFTED !

Sorry guys but if you dont like it then move. Stop acting like a wife that chooses to stay with an abusive husband - thats how I see MS affiliates.

Wed, Jul 31, 2002 Tochi London

I am constantly amazed as to why so many people stick to Microsoft. Not just skilled professionals but companies. Every company that uses MS technology is getting really shafted with license 6.0. You guys (MCSE) are really getting played for suckers.

When will it end ? you ask, sorry it will never end - its just the nature of the beast and the beast cannot change.
I decided I was not going to touch Microsoft technology and gave up an attempt to do MCSE. Now I am a Java and Linux professional and life could not be better. While my MCSE mates are out of a job and or getting shafted I am enjoying Linux and Java getting paid and Loved - NOT SHAFTED !

Sorry guys but if you dont like it then move. Stop acting like a wife that chooses to stay with an abusive husband - thats how I see MS affiliates.

Sun, Jul 21, 2002 Joe Illinois

Curt, you said it all! A cert is just an acknowledgement that you took the time to learn the basics, it has no implication as to your ability to do a specific job. Experience is the only indicator that an employer has to assess your skills. If you are going to do the best job for yourself and your employer, you take the certs to give yourself a boost in the learning process. Certifications are for YOU, not the employer. If you have a cert in Exchange 5.5 and your employer doesn't want to upgrade, whats the big deal? You should both be happy. If you want more money, YOU have to find the employer who will give it to you, and prove to them that you can handle the newer technology. A cert simply says you've started the process, not mastered it.

Fri, Jul 19, 2002 PacketPimp Seattle

These certs are almost a Necessary Evil in my area. The market is slow. I see MCSE's applying for Helpdesk possessions. The certs are requested in every posting. What is the benefit? It gets you past the HR rep who only knows that this cert maps to this skill or technology in their production environment. You will get the job based on your performance in a technical interview. But you will not get into the technical interview without the certs getting you past the non-technical HR rep. This makes the certs Necessary, the fact that they don't stay current long makes them Evil. djb

Thu, Jul 18, 2002 Glenn Rossi near Frankfurt, Germany

Does anyone know why it is so hard for folks over 50 to get into the IT field??? I have years of telecommunications experience (Motorola) & managerial experience (USAF) and adult teaching (at a community college). I invested over $12,000 to attend an almost year long IT school and earned my MSCE Win 2000, A+, and Network+. Still no job since last September when I completed my exams! I am back with my family in Germany, but jobs also looked slim in the Houston area! Any guesses when the IT market will pick up again???
Thanks & regards, Glenn (American in Germany)

Thu, Jul 18, 2002 Curt Spanburgh San Diego

So many have entered this industry in the past five years and many have entered for money. That is why they were willing to pay large sums of money to enter the field. There are others before them who entered it before there were GUIs, who wanted to create and be innovative in problem solving. In the process their worth was recognized by the world and they made a good living.
If others leave because they do not have a thirst for knowledge, well they were in the wrong line of work. The certification process has given some direction and standards to the industry.
It makes you learn and gives us a goal.
Anyone who is going to really get a job knows he needs to do more than pass a test. Do you want doctors who are only in it for the money? So, why do we want techs who want to make 80k a year by age 25? How much experience could such a person bring to the buisness world. How much experience would they have in creating and implenting solutions in the real world? I now work with a "seasoned " group of top developers. Some have their Certs, some do not. But we do a great job for clients. We work hard to keep our skills up so that the dollar chases us. All those complaining about "learning" about more Microsoft Products should have to wade through four different operating systems on different hardware platforms. Get the WAN to work in the days of 56k lines. Man, you folks have nothing to complain about. Forget that old technology now and get going with the new stuff. Would you have stuck with CPM?, Novell 2.2? OS400 3R1? DB3 Plus? Cobol? EDI?
Whoops!!!!!!, I caused brain damage. Sorry!!!

Wed, Jul 17, 2002 edward chicago

A few years ago i studied to get my certifications thinking that this would get me into the computer field.What a big joke i have A+,CNA,MCP,MCP+I,MCSE,CCNA and CCNP.Companies are usually looking for experience of at least five years with certifications.Even help desk is looking for experience.Please if you do not have any verifiable experience do not waste your money and get sucked into these schools,its all just a bunch of lies.

Wed, Jul 17, 2002 MMguru home

Hi Gurus, if you know what MS is doing, then no need to talk about those damn things here. MS is trying to sell it's new product by discontinuing older versions so that ppl will get certified only newer versions and when they got the job they can recommend the employers to use their certified newer versions. Does it make sense?

Tue, Jul 16, 2002 gh germany

learning new Windows Operating Systems that change every 18-24 months, this is bills tactik, not to learn
linux.................or an other OS

Tue, Jul 16, 2002 CLpz Industry, CA

I am an MCP considering my MCSA. I agree with many of the posts. Many small companies like what works!! If the system works... then life goes on. Microsoft is too geared towards the bigger and better and forgeting about everyone else. However, they are also very business smart in doing what their doing. There will always be people that feel that they need to be at the top of their cert even if they're using 2 versions of OS before. For this fact, Microsoft will continue to do what their doing and doing it successfully. Microsoft will NEVER consider the people getting certified they will only look at their bottom line and continue doing what their doing. Now wouldn't it be something if everyone boycotted the exams and woke Microsoft up!!!! Dream on....

Tue, Jul 16, 2002 Everton US

I absolutly agree with all the assesments made here thus far, Microsoft is a Bloddy joke. This whole idea of Certifications is nothing more than a ploy to generate money. That is their premise. Every so often come up with a new OS and change the certs. Take for instants MS word 97 and Word 2002 how many of the bells and whistles does the average person use daily, let alone weekly. Practicly none if u ask me. Most people bairly do nothing mroe than type up a document and print it out, yet MS want you to think you need office 2000, or even office 2002. I think the market stinks..

Mon, Jul 15, 2002 Dan Des Moines

News Flash - Business IT departments value MS certs about as much as they value a $3 bill. I have recently made the switch from a MS Partner training/consulting firm to a mainstream IT job. While conducting my job search, it was made very clear to me by numerous companies that my MCT, MCSE (NT4 & W2K), MCP+I, & MCP meant squat. I for one am leaving the certification game in the past. After all, everyone knows that MS certs are 90% geared towards features and marketing and 10% based on actual technical skill. The paper MCSE is not a myth folks! I had hundreds of them come through my classes. My advice: Get experience and leave the certs for the sales people within the MS system.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Amos Malaysia

Microsoft is cheating the public by retiring the exams. We have to pay through our nose and the fees are not low. Then our past results will be a waste. Right?

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Montalvo Harris Detroit, MI

It's very funny how certifications exams are always expiring with Microsoft. The new issue of Microsoft Certified Professionals talks about salaries and how Win2k Mcse's salaries has dropped. Microsoft needs to stop forcing people to upgrade their MCSE status every 12 months or so. Companies are moving slower and becoming more wiser now which makes the market more better for us experience professionals out her

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 ComputerDude Hawaii

I've received my Win2000 MCSE by using TCP/IP and IIS Exam for my electives . I don't feel that by Microsoft Retiring Exams it makes my Cert Any less Valid.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Joel from Orlando

I am a MCSE for NT4.0 and 2000 and certified in other things not pertaining to Microsoft. My employers both require and appreciate someone with certs. Passing the exams gave me confidence and studying for the exams made me dig deeper in the understanding of Microsofts products. Of course experience is a big plus, as anyone knows, when mixed with certs.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Jason London, UK

the comment by John from Alaska 7/11/02 hits the nail right on the head.

Most companies in the UK are SME's with less than 50 employees and don't need the extra functionality of new technologies. NT 4 and Exchange 5.5 will still be around for the considerable future.

Microsoft is making life difficult by trying to force users to upgrade and in doing so alienates the MCP community with the constant certification process.

I'll still go for my MCSE in Win 2000 but at a pace that both my clients and I feel confortable with. I think the whole certification program needs a bit of a re-think.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Psy-Ops England

At the end of the day certification means nothing, i know people who left school with no qualifications, have no IT qualifications and are system admins, very good ones at that, I feel the attitude needs to change towards certification, its all well and good having a piece of paper saying you can do something but can you do it in real life? i think people should be employed on what they know and can do......anyway roll on the big Linux take over :)

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Mel Salt Lake City, Utah

It's not that retiring tests is that big of deal, it's just when they think it needs to be a year or two-yearly thing. Why can't they just stay with what they have and improve a little on it, add a test here or there, instead of going out and making a whole new set of tests and certifications. And making what you have no longer applicable. It's hard to keep up with it when it is moving so fast. Especially when the company you work for is perfectly happy with what they have and have no intention of changing. Where's the motivation? If Microsoft would worry more about the MCSE's and not about the money they are making off them, we wouldn't be so upset about keeping up with things, in a timely manner, every 18 to 24 months is not timely, just hasty. I have a couple more tests to pass and I often wonder what the point is. I have a good job that doesn't require it and every day Microsoft does something else to piss me of and so it kills my desire to become certified.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Christopher Arlington, VA

My last certification was MCSE 4.0, back in 1998. Since then, I have been riding the MCSE name recognition to further my career. I took the full class, and passed all the exams. When I went to my first networking job, I realized that I knew very little. During the course of the job, I learned a lot more than I learned in class. The class material really helped. Now that I am a seasoned vet, I see a lot of new entries into the networking market. The certifications help in landing that initial job, but the rest is up to the individual. My personal opinion is that the certifications are a nice standardized measuring stick to which you can validate your knowledge in the subject matter. Importantly, after you receive your MCSE on paper, you don't want to remain a paper MCSE, do you?

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Jim Colorado

What's the big deal!, if you just finished your MCSE and chose to certify on Exchange 5.5 and IE 5.0, then, you put yourself behind. Perhaps you should have chosen to certify in Exchange 2000 instead. it seems to me that if your looking to market your skills you will want to have the latest greatest certs available. I think it's a good practice to discontinue these tests. a good reason might be to get them now because when they are discontinued then you end up with certs that can no longer be obtained.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 MG Anonymous

What's the big deal. These tests aren't going to be retired until the end of next June. How many people will really want to take the Exchange 5.5 test NEXT JULY?? Is this really a problem? The tests are still valid for certification if you've taken them by then. I haven't heard of anyone being turned down for a position because they weren't certified on Windows 98. I also haven't seen any job postings requiring certification on Proxy 2.0 or IE 5.0 using IEAK. As for Exchange, either you have experience as an admin, or you don't. I doubt any Fortune 500 companies will hire you as an Exchange 5.5 admin just because you passed Microsoft's test.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Will Dallas

Bob, "passel" is kind of like saying "a whole bunch of". Hope that helps.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Bob Duffield UK

What does "Passel" mean?

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Kevin Tulsa, OK

In the 10+ years I've been in the industry I met few employers who reward for certs and even fewer that demanded it. I have met alot of paper tigers though. Learn the materials - YES, Gain the EXPERIENCE - YES, Pay Micro$oft for the Privelage? of holding certs? - NO THANKS. I'm earning 8X what I did 10 years ago when I entered this industry, and doing just fine without certs.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 GSmith Anonymous

Come on - who'd be griping if they went to class to get a MCSE and the training center used, say, Proxy 2 and Exchange 5.5 as the electives - and by the time class was done, the tests were no longer offered? Oh, that's right - a BOATLOAD of people had this happen at the end of the NT4 exams.

Why? because they didn't look into the program - Microsoft is making it a little easier and trying to show that they're "current" - but by not requiring recertification, they prove the opposite.

BTW, I'm MCP since '95, MCSE+I, MCSE 2000, and MCSA. If you stay current, it's not terribly hard.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Gruf Anonymous

I dont get it, everyone complains about Microsoft making more money by retiring the exams??? If they retire them doesn't that mean it just limits what exams you can then sit for...? And when people complain about retraining every 12-18, no one is forcing you to retrain, your certification is still valid... IMHO in this industry continual education is essential, be it technical certifications/uni/business courses whatever. Trees dont grow if they stand still.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Dee Dallas

Soon the MCSE will be an exclusive 'club' for the Microsoft die-hards. I have been upgrading these certs for almost 7 years now - already feel like an overqualified amateur trying to master XP so soon after 2000, just as I was becoming proficient in NT and 98 shortly after I became an expert in 95. No rest for the weary as I climb back onto the certification treadmill - sometimes it just sucks to be a trainer.

Fri, Jul 12, 2002 Jean-Lee England

I have am a NT4 & W2K MCSE+I, and it has taken me years to get where I am today, and I am getting sick and tired of keeping up-to-date with Microsoft Certification changes, I won't be updating anymore, as it's getting stupid every 12-18 mths you have to have an updated exam, just to keep up-to-date with the way Bill Gates wants you to think, I will now be looking to go over to Linex, then I don't have to keep worrying about if my certification is current or not, it's becoming a big con.

Thu, Jul 11, 2002 Joe Los Angeles

At this point who cares, as soon as you get certified, there is another OS either just arrived or around the corner. W2K is the last cert. that I am going for. Doing anymore is a waste of time and money. I haven't finished W2K and right now I am currently supporting XP Pro, no one asked if I was certified on XP when I got hired. Bill ain't getting any more of my $ for learning new Operating Systems that change every 18-24 months!

Thu, Jul 11, 2002 Terry Dallas

Its a never ending cycle of exam after exam. I guess it's part of MS's plan to keep forcing the latest and greatest down business's throat. More money for Bill and the boys at the top that way. I worked hard for several years to get my MCSE only to have the exams retire a few months after I got it. Now I'm laid off and can't afford to go back to school again for the new stuff. I'm really discusted with the whole thing. There should be more to life than this. Not only am I stuggling to keep a high tech job these days without being laid off but having to go to school and training year after year after year. I think I'll go after a more stable career.

Thu, Jul 11, 2002 Carlise Los Angeles

I don't see many companies upgrading their systems to 2K anytime soon. In fact there are a lot of small to medium to large sized companies still running Win95 and are reluctant to upgrade. The theory being..if it ain't broke.....

Exchange 5.5 isn't going away anytime soon and neither is proxy 2.0. Some companies are switching to Apache web servers because of the security problems with IIS.

MS still hasn't figured out how to run their certification program. They seem bent on making everyone go to W2K. Some companies won't hire MCSE2Ks feeling they won't stay around long to run an antiquated system such as 95 or NT. Some companies won't hire MCSEs period. They want BSCS who will work for $20/hr.

Thu, Jul 11, 2002 John Alaska

There are still a lot of companies out there that are still using old technologies and I think there is too much of a rush to retire exams. These companies are reluctant to upgrade for these simple reasons: what they have works, they have things the way they want them and they dont need any more functionality. The skills that are required to pass the older exams are still valid and in-demand in the marketplace even with the addition of new technologies. Microsoft should slow down and stop trying to cram new stuff that hasn't even been perfected yet down everyone's throats.

Thu, Jul 11, 2002 jim j mpls

I agree---its a pretty transparent attempt by Microsoft to keep the volume up on cert anxiety. Let 'em fade, don't hold public executions. Knowledgeable clients and employers will know what they need to know.

Thu, Jul 11, 2002 Matty Re Olympia, Wa

I have recieved my MCSE 2000 cert pretty recently . Exchange server 5.5 and Proxy Server 2.0 are two of the seven exams I had taken to get MCSE. I can see how older products and there co existing exams will eventualy fade away. I just wish that Microsoft wouldn't make such a big deal about these retired exams because it makes our certifications seem tainted.
I say let the exam go as the product that is no longer in use and leave it at that.

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