Monthly Archives: April 2018

ITIL certification for DBAs – Part 2


In my previous post I did my best explain a little bit what ITIL is and how important is for DBAs to understand better about this framework.

Now let’s talk about how to get prepared to pass the ITIL foundations certification test. After spending quite some time researching about what was the best training path to take I figured out there was a few options.

The most common approach:
If you are lucky enough to get sponsorship from your current employer, there are multiple ITIL training providers that offers all-inclusive training packages in a formal classrooms.

In some cases these training packages includes the certification exam to be taken on the 4th day; which in my opinion is a really great because you will have all the information still fresh in your mind.

My approach:
In case you autodidact, like me, you will find a great amount of free\paid resources you can use to best the ITIL certification test.

Based on my research and personal experience I can recommend to use the following resources:


  • ITIL Foundation Exam Study Guide by Liz Gallacher & Helen Morris (1st edition):
    This is an excellent book you case use to establish a base knowledge of ITIL for the foundation tests but be careful it does not cover all the areas evaluated in the exam.

  • Passing Your ITIL Foundation Exam: 2011 by Axelos:
    This is the official exam reference book and updated in line with the 2011 syllabus, this i s by far the best study aid you will find, it contains every single area (and more) evaluated on the exam. It also include some mockup exams you can use to get an idea of the difficulty of this exam.

Online IT training (videos)
I have no question about how great these online trainings from Pluralsight and CBT nuggets are and how much they can help you to understand better all the concepts and scenarios described on the books.

If I have to choose, in my opinion the two courses from Chris Ward are the best in any aspect, the scenarios are really easy to understand and the way he walk through all the topics is just great.

ITIL Foundations by Lowell Amos
ITIL Foundation: Lifecycle Phases and Processes by Chris Ward

ITIL Foundation (November 2016) with Keith Barker
ITIL Foundation (June 2015) with Chris Ward

Practice Exams:

  • AXELOS’ ITIL Foundation app (Android and iOS):
    This mobile\table application is the perfect complement to AXELOS’ book, it helps to identify any subject areas where you are still weak and focus study time and practice in those areas specifically. Once you see your results from the practice exams , you can select the area of the lifecycle you need more practice on.


  • Simply Learn exam preparation test:
    This is a free online source you can use to get an idea how you are progressing while studying for the certification exam. The questions are not that difficult but it will definitively helps you to practice. Go ahead a give it a try here.

Hopefully this post will guide you to choose the best option to pass the ITIL certification exam.
Stay tuned for more DBA mastery tips.

ITIL certification for DBAs – Part 1


In some point of your career as DBA you might have interacted with ITIL or at least your heard about it. ITIL is very common in the DBA workplace nowadays (moreover in larger companies) but no matter what level of involvement you have had I’m pretty sure at some point in you might asked yourself one of the following questions:

  • Do I need to get an ITIL certification? even if I’m not in a managerial position?
  • It is worth it to get an ITIL certification?
  • How a DBA fits in the ITIL framework?

In these two blog posts,  I will do my best to share my personal experience on how I got my ITIL v3 Foundations certification and also how this certification helped me to advance in my career.

First thing first, in order to make things a little bit clear I will down this post in two different areas:

  • What is ITIL and why is so important for DBA’s
  • How to prepare for the ITIL v3 Foundations certification exam

What is ITIL and why is so important for DBA’s:
ITIL stands for Information technology infrastructure library, and is a set of detailed practices for IT service management (ITSM) that focuses on aligning IT services with the needs of business.

ITIL Service Management Service Lifecycle, is split into 5 distinct lifecycle stages:

  • Service Strategy
  • Service Design
  • Service Transition
  • Service Operation
  • Continual Service Improvement

Each stage relies on service principles, processes, roles and performance measures, and each stage is dependent on the other lifecycle stages for inputs and feedback

More and more companies nowadays are (or did already) adopting this service management framework as part of the IT organization.

The day to day DBA activities maps perfectly within the ITIL processes; incident management, request fulfillment and change management are the most common areas where a DBA will be involved and that’s why it’s so critical and important for us to understand the ITIL framework in great detail.

Please stay tuned for the part 2 of this post.