Are Microsoft Certifications Worth It?

Have you ever thought that Microsoft certifications were a waste of time? Depending on where you are on the experience scale, certifications still play a large role in hiring and career development. You are probably in one of two camps–you either an employer and you want some peace of mind in the hiring process or you think the certifications are bunk.  The aren’t too many people in the middle ground it seems.  In Episode 64 of the SQL Data Partners Podcast I talk to Patrick Thomas the program manager for the Microsoft MCP and MCT programs and the role they play at Microsoft and in what way they continue to provide value, including what’s in store for data science learners and what he thinks of the Microsoft purchase of LinkedIn.

This week’s Tuning Review: Visualizing VLFs

This week’s tuning review is on Virtual Log Files, also known as VLFs. High VLF counts can slow down the transaction log backup, the crash recovery, and writing to the transaction log. Reducing the VLF count usually speeds up the crash recovery “In Recovery” time. This post on shows you how to visualize VLFs in your log file.

Listen to Learn

  • What being a Microsoft “MVP” will do for your job prospects
  • The history behind the Microsoft exams and why they became so popular
  • How to use certifications to your advantage in job hunting
  • The buzz around data science certifications
  • How Microsoft exam online proctoring works
  • Patrick’s thoughts on Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn
  • The story behind the now-extinct Master program
  • Plus, what’s coming down the pipeline to replace the master’s program

Our Guest

Patrick Thomas

Patrick Thomas is a Microsoft Program Manager for the MCT and MCP programs who has a background in aerospace. He has been with Microsoft for almost two years.  Connect with him on LinkedIn.

Right now, we don’t really have an equivalent of a Masters program, or that boot camp style learning. We did however, announce this summer, the Microsoft Professional program. It’s in pilot right now…

Patrick Thomas (Listen to hear more)

Meet the Hosts

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Carlos Chacon

With more than 10 years of working with SQL Server, Carlos helps businesses ensure their SQL Server environments meet their users’ expectations. He can provide insights on performance, migrations, and disaster recovery. He is also active in the SQL Server community and regularly speaks at user group meetings and conferences. He helps support the free database monitoring tool found at and provides training through SQL Trail events.

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Eugene Meidinger

Eugene works as an independent BI consultant and Pluralsight author, specializing in Power BI and the Azure Data Platform. He has been working with data for over 8 years and speaks regularly at user groups and conferences. He also helps run the GroupBy online conference.

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Kevin Feasel

Kevin is a Microsoft Data Platform MVP and proprietor of Catallaxy Services, LLC, where he specializes in T-SQL development, machine learning, and pulling rabbits out of hats on demand. He is the lead contributor to Curated SQL, president of the Triangle Area SQL Server Users Group, and author of the books PolyBase Revealed (Apress, 2020) and Finding Ghosts in Your Data: Anomaly Detection Techniques with Examples in Python (Apress, 2022). A resident of Durham, North Carolina, he can be found cycling the trails along the triangle whenever the weather's nice enough.

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