How to ACE Certified Kubernetes Administrator aka CKA exam
This was the first two lines of the e-mail which I got from linuxfoundation.org On 13th of October 2018.
"Hello ANSIL HAMEED KUNJU, Congratulations, you have successfully completed the requirements needed to achieve CKA Certification!"
I leaped out of my seat and exclaiming “Yas I did it”. It was an exciting moment.
Months of sleepless nights and long weekend stretches were finally paid off.
Thought of writing this blog as many of my friends and colleagues asked about the tips to pass this exam
So here we go ;
Only 3 rules to ace the CKA exam
1. Practice what you read
2. Practice a lot
3. Read point 1 and 2.
The CKA exam is 100% hands-on where you have to complete a set of tasks and also need to fix a set of problems in a proctored environment.
You need to have well understanding of managing k8s imperatively.
If you are a beginner in container platform, then it would be easy if you start with Docker.
While playing with Docker, you can also refer different network plugins used for container networking.
Then you can move on to below;
– Docker Networking – Packt
– Mastering Kubernetes – Packt
– Kubernetes up and Running – O’Reilly
– Kubernetes in Action – Manning
- Video Materials
- Other training materials
– Linux Foundation announced CKA exam and Training material bundle together at the cost of the exam on Feb 2018 and I grabbed that too
Once you get the complete understanding of how k8s works, this is the time which you have to build your own k8s cluster manually.
- I’ve prepared a git repository so that you can do it from your own desktop or laptop system instead of relying on a cloud solution.
( This lab doesn’t have the capability to enforce “network policies”++ )
- GCP provides 12 months free tier access which can be utilized to practice everything.
- If you are interested in trying everything in Google Cloud then it’s better you follow the labs from Kelsey Hightower’s kubernetes-the-hard-way
- And finally, you need to go through the “TASK” session in kubernetes.io
Remember, you can open kubernetes.io during the exam and search for references to solve the questions
These tasks are very much important as other materials covered earlier (emphasizing the 3 rule which I stated in the beginning )
Once you are ready, book the exam
There is an “Exam Resources” section at the bottom of the CNCF exam registration page, which contains few PDF links
Read all, especially below ;
– Candidate Handbook
– Curriculum Overview
– Exam Tips
– Certification and Confidentiality Agreement
I stumbled on to below posts while looking for the tips when I was preparing for the exam
– A blog post from Ahmad H
(Some exceptions; you can access kubernetes.io only during the exam. No other sites or notes )
– There are plenty of tips shared in K8s slack channel by the candidates who passed the exam.
#cka-exam-prep ( Dive into pinned messages )
Good Luck .!
++ You can control pod to pod communication using network policies, but it needs support from the network plugin that you use in the cluster