Microsoft Certified System Administrator on Microsoft Windows Server 2003 (MCSA 2003)

Microsoft’s Windows 2003 MCSA (Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator) certification is for “professionals who implement, manage, and troubleshoot existing network and system environments based on the Microsoft Windows 2000 and Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Operating Systems. These individuals typically do not deploy new networks and systems as part of their job function, as is expected of individuals holding the MCSE credential. Unlike MCSEs, MCSAs are not expected to have design skills.”

The Windows 2003 MCSA got its start back in the summer of 2003, two years after the introduction of the Windows 2000 MCSA. This certification does not retire but newer versions of it are released every few years as Microsoft upgrades their core server technologies. There are no specific prerequisites for the MCSA, although Microsoft says that: “candidates should have 6-12 months of experience administering client and network operating systems.“ As soon as candidates pass their first qualifying exam for the MCSA program, they achieve a Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) certification.

Job roles of those pursuing this certification typically include: systems administrator, network administrator, information systems administrator, network operations analyst, network technician, or technical support specialist.

To achieve the Windows 2003 MCSA, a candidate must pass a total of four exams. There are three core exams and one elective exam.

There is a one exam upgrade path to this certification for those who hold the Windows 2000 MCSA: 70-292 - Managing and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Environment for an MCSA Certified on Windows 2000.

For more information:

  • 70-290 - Managing and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Environment
  • 70-291 - Implementing, Managing, and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Network Infrastructure