VCDX Skill Update

Originally posted in September 2015 on

Skill Update. What is that? It’s that thing you realize you need to do when you go through all the things you think you know and compare it with what you should know to be an great IT architect.

This little graph (seen at multiple location and tweets around the globe, thus I take no ownership of the idea. Not even sure about the origins of it) explains the VCDX skill update process very well:


Most people who decide that they will dedicate their time for a VCDX defense will most likely start near the top of the “how much I think I know%” line or on the downward slope at least. The thing is that there will always be something new to learn and study in the IT field, and there is no way for anyone that practices those things during work hours to keep yourself updated on all the things you should know or the new things that are coming to the market.

But lets not digress and just focus on the things the VCDX blueprint needs you to know. The blueprint itself, for each path you chose, will include the specific design qualities: Availability, Manageability (Scalability, Flexibility), Performance, Recoverability, Security. These qualities need to be mapped to the technology stack for the VCDX track you chose. The pictures from the blueprints show some examples:


As you might have guessed the top one is from VCDX-NV, middle one from VCDX-Cloud and the bottom one from VCDX-DCV. Even though the DCV image does not include the “risk management bubble” it should be included. These images are in no way exhaustive and should only be taken as an example for what the design should include.

As for skill levels the word “Minimally Qualified Candidate” is something that you will find when researching the VCDX process. It is both applicable for the architecture skills (soft skills, reasoning skills) in whole and for the specific sections of the underlying technologies (technical skills). The main focus of this section will be specific technological skills that are needed and what process I used to increase the skill level in each category before the defense.

In the following subsections I will be covering the main technological skills required in the DCV blueprint:

Also Rene Van Den Bedem has an excellent blog post on the matter, which I read and used in my preparations. Ps. This will not be the last time I send you towards Rene’s blog.