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Coffee Chat Transcript Jan. 15, 2020 - New Relic Fundamental Certification Program

coffee-chat

#1

We had an informative coffee chat with special guests @courtneyphillips and @philweber. This chat covered New Relic Fundamental Certification. For those of you not able to join the conversation here are the key points:

  1. The certification program has been intentionally created to fit easily within your schedule and is structured into manageable sections.
  2. Resources to help you prepare for the certification assessments can be accessed through New Relic University and by using New Relic products.
  3. Did you know? If you use both New Relic Browser and Synthetics to monitor the same page, you can compare the data from the two products.

Full transcript of the coffee chat is below. Consider joining us next time!

Hross 10:59 AM

OK! It’s 11 am PST and the one thing I seem to succeed at is being prompt. SO LET’S START.

If you have a question about certification - the content or the process, now is the time to ask! Just jump in.

But to kick us off… @courtneyphillips - there are a few steps that need to be completed to earn your certification. Can you walk through what those are?

Courtney Phillips 11:02 AM

Yes, of course. We recognize it’s not always easy to find the time to dive into a big certification like this, so we’ve broken it up into smaller, more easily-digestible chunks.

Those looking to be certified will first work through the Performance Monitoring Fundamentals course, then take a certification assessment for that material.

After that, students can advance to the product-specific course of their choice (right now we only offer APM, but Infrastructure will be released very soon, keep an eye out!), then take the assessment for that.

Finally, students will complete a third course on Alerting, and…you guessed it, take the assessment on that.

We know this sounds like a lot of testing, but it’s three smaller assessments instead of one big huge one. :slightly_smiling_face:

Philweber 11:05 AM

People may wonder how the new Fundamentals certification differs from the Certified Performance Pro cert that we launched a couple of years ago…

Courtney Phillips 11:05 AM

Great point, @philweber!

Philweber 11:05 AM

The previous exam covered only APM and Alerts, and had only 35 questions

The new certification is much more comprehensive

Also, our products have changed significantly over the past two years

These exams are up-to-date on current features and capabilities (edited)

I think the exams draw from a pool of something like 180 questions

You get up to 3 attempts to pass each exam, so don’t worry if you don’t pass on your first attempt…

But also, don’t be surprised if you see different questions each time!

Hross 11:07 AM

Fancy!

Courtney Phillips 11:08 AM

I’d also love to mention that each course offers multiple practice tests, so students can get a feel for the general type and difficulty of questions on the assessment, and gauge their own preparedness.

Philweber 11:09 AM

Yes! You may begin the process at https://learn.newrelic.com/series/fundamentals

New RelicNew Relic

New Relic Fundamentals Certification Program

The New Relic Fundamentals Certification program will help you build the foundation you need to become an expert on the New Relic Observability Platform.

:point_up_2:3

Shawn Hitchings 11:11 AM

Hi all, I was working on the coursework “New Relic Insights + APM Fundamentals” for the certification. The section “LearnCast: Analyzing your APM data in Insights” won’t mark as complete even though I clicked Next and did the recorded section.

I just took it yesterday

Courtney Phillips 11:12 AM

Hey Shawn Hitchings , good catch! This is a bug we first noticed yesterday, and are in the process of troubleshooting.

Philweber 11:12 AM

The good news, I think, is that having an incomplete section will not prevent you from taking the certification exams, is that correct?

Courtney Phillips 11:13 AM

I’m working with our Learning Management System provider to resolve this issue, and we hope to have a fix soon.

Correct, this appears to be a UI issue. While it’s definitely a little dissatisfying not to see those check marks next to each lesson in the course :white_check_mark:, good news is that this will not prevent you from taking the assessment.

Philweber 11:15 AM

So, what is the best way to prepare for all these exams, you ask?

Shawn Hitchings 11:16 AM

great, thanks!

Courtney Phillips 11:16 AM

No problem, Shawn Hitchings, thanks for stopping by. :slightly_smiling_face:

Philweber 11:16 AM

As Shawn has pointed out, there is a wealth of self-study material on the New Relic University website: https://learn.newrelic.com/

When you enroll for the certification course, it looks like a thousand videos :slightly_smiling_face:

But it’s only a few, and each one is only a few minutes long

Again, designed to be in easily-digestible chunks

The best way to prepare, in my opinion, is to actually use New Relic products!

:point_up_2:1:heavy_plus_sign:2

In high school, I had a teacher who, when students would ask, “What’s going to be on the final?” he would say, “If you have been paying attention in class, you will have no trouble with the final.”

Hross 11:19 AM

@Philweber What are some of the features covered in certification that you find are underused by customers?

Philweber 11:20 AM

And he was right! Our certification is the same: If you use the products, you will have no trouble with the exams

Great question, Holly! Here’s an example…

Did you know that if you use both New Relic Browser and Synthetics to monitor the same page, you can compare the data from the two products in the UI?

Hross 11:22 AM

WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT PHIL?

Philweber 11:22 AM

Haha, I’ll pay you later

New Relic Browser monitors performance in your end-user’s browser…

Your site may load slowly on their machine for a variety of reasons: slow Internet connection, busy CPU, etc.

New Relic Synthetics eliminates those variables and monitors performance in a “clean” environment

So you may want to compare the data and say, “OK, my users are seeing an average load time of 10 seconds, but how does the site perform if I control for these variables?”

We find that a lot of customers know APM and Infrastructure fairly well, but know very little about Browser, Synthetics, and Mobile

The first exam, “Performance Monitoring Fundamentals”, covers basics of New Relic’s entire platform

Here’s another one…

Anyone care to take a guess?

I mean, not a guess… of course you know this!

Hross 11:29 AM

This is a great one. Alerts are like logic puzzles…

Philweber 11:30 AM

Here’s a hint: Do warning violations create incidents?

Courtney Phillips 11:30 AM

They really are! The structure of an Alert Policy is pretty complex, but once you understand what each component does (and why), it’s easier to master your alerts, and make sure you’re not getting too many or too few.

Hross 11:30 AM

I like how we’re all avoiding answering Phil’s question. :wink:

Courtney Phillips 11:30 AM

(Normally I would love to take a guess at a question, but being the author of that question probably disqualifies me…)

Philweber 11:31 AM

[Looking for a GIF of Ben Stein in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off]

Anyone… anyone…?

Hross 11:31 AM

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:grin:2

Philweber 11:31 AM

Haha, YES!

OK, well I am not giving the answer :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

But be aware that there can be both Warning and Critical thresholds; only one of those creates a violation

And there are both violations and incidents; only one of those will send a notification

Hross 11:34 AM

See - logic puzzle! Bonus - if you pass certification, you may also score really well on the LSAT.

Philweber 11:34 AM

Does anyone here give their application multiple names?

I call mine Steven, Steve, and Stewey

You may have several applications, and you want to aggregate their data in various ways

You can specify up to 3 names for each application. Data from applications with common names will be aggregated in APM

“Wait”, I hear you saying, “I use Labels to organize my applications. Why would I also need to use multiple names?”

(Does anyone else hear voices?)

Hross 11:39 AM

Just yours

Philweber 11:40 AM

Hross 11:40 AM

But I hear where you’re going with this Phil. It’s cool that there are so many ways to organize all the entities you are monitoring.

Philweber 11:40 AM

Labels are another useful feature, but they affect only the applications list, not the data from those applications

I feel a dad joke coming on…

I have a friend who is a roadie in Poland. And I have a Czech one too (“check, one two…“)

Hross 11:46 AM

You two have been so great. And - though our customers were a little shy this go around, we’ll be posting this transcript in the Explorers Hub, so it will help many more folks. There are some great tips in here!

Courtney Phillips 11:46 AM

Happy to be here!

Philweber 11:47 AM

Last chance for certification questions!

Courtney Phillips 11:48 AM

Well, as @Philweber mentioned above, you can always check out our certification program, and the courses it contains, right here:

New RelicNew Relic

New Relic Fundamentals Certification Program

The New Relic Fundamentals Certification program will help you build the foundation you need to become an expert on the New Relic Observability Platform.

Hross 11:49 AM

Perfect! I think we can wind down right there. For all you folks who are working on your certification - we’re hosting the next US based session on January 29. So take those practice exams and bring your questions

Courtney Phillips 11:49 AM

See you all then! :wave:

Hross 11:49 AM

Full schedule of coffee chat session are here: January & February Coffee Chats: NRU Certification