Exam 70-457

Transition Your MCTS on SQL Server 2008 to MCSA: SQL Server 2012, Part 1

$150.00 USD*

Not in the United States?

Microsoft Certified Professional exams are provided by a third-party vendor. Register for an exam at Prometric's website.

Schedule now

* Pricing does not include any promotional offers or reduced pricing for Microsoft IT Academy program members, Microsoft Certified Trainers, and Microsoft Partner Network program members. Price is subject to change without notice. Price does not include applicable taxes. Please confirm exact pricing with the exam provider before registering to take an exam.
Microsoft SQL Server 2012 logo
  • Published: June 11, 2012
  • Languages: English, Japanese
  • Audiences: IT Professionals
  • Technology: Microsoft SQL Server 2012
  • Credit toward certification: MCSA, MCSE

Convince your boss email

Copy the following content into an email message to your boss and update [the bracketed text] with the appropriate content.

Dear [your boss's name]:

I'd like to expand and prove my technical skills by earning a Microsoft Certification. My next step is taking Exam 70-457. The registration fee is $150.00 USD.

When I pass this certification, you'll have proof of my ability to work with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 . Microsoft has training and online resources to help me prepare for the exam. I believe I'll be more effective and productive after achieving this valuable technical certification.

Let me know if you have any questions. In the meantime, you can find out more about this exam at http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en-us/exam-70-457.aspx. As you can see, the exam validates skills that are crucial to our team's success.

Thank you for your support,

[your name]

Skills measured

This exam measures your ability to accomplish the technical tasks listed below. The percentages indicate the relative weight of each major topic area on the exam. The higher the percentage, the more questions you are likely to see on that content area on the exam.

Please note that the questions may test on, but will not be limited to, the topics described in the bulleted text.

  • Create and alter tables using T-SQL syntax (simple statements)

    • Create tables without using the built-in tools; ALTER; DROP; ALTER COLUMN; CREATE

  • Design views

    • Ensure code non regression by keeping consistent signature for procedure, views, and function (interfaces); security implications

  • Create and alter DML triggers

    • Inserted and deleted tables; nested triggers; types of triggers; update functions; handle multiple rows in a session; performance implications of triggers

Preparation resources

  • Query data by using SELECT statements

    • Use the ranking function to select top(X) rows for multiple categories in a single query; write and perform queries efficiently using the new code items such as synonyms and joins (except, intersect); implement logic which uses dynamic SQL and system metadata; write efficient, technically complex SQL queries, including all types of joins versus the use of derived tables; determine what code may or may not execute based on the tables provided; given a table with constraints, determine which statement set would load a table; use and understand different data access technologies; CASE versus ISNULL versus COALESCE

  • Implement sub-queries

    • Identify problematic elements in query plans; pivot and unpivot; apply operator; cte statement; with statement

  • Implement data types

    • Use appropriate data; understand the uses and limitations of each data type; impact of GUID (newid, newsequentialid) on database performance, when to use which data type for columns

  • Create and alter stored procedures (simple statements)

    • Write a stored procedure to meet a given set of requirements; branching logic; create stored procedures and other programmatic objects; techniques for developing stored procedures; different types of stored procedure results; create a stored procedure for data access layer; program stored procedures, triggers, and functions with T-SQL

  • Modify data by using INSERT, UPDATE, and DELETE statements

    • Given a set of code with defaults, constraints, and triggers, determine the output of a set of DDL; know which SQL statements are best to solve common requirements; use output statement

  • Work with functions

    • Understand deterministic and non-deterministic functions; scalar and table values; apply built-in scalar functions; create and alter user-defined functions (UDFs)

  • Optimize queries

    • Understand statistics; read query plans; plan guides; DMVs; hints; statistics IO; dynamic vs. parameterized queries; describe the different join types (HASH, MERGE, LOOP) and describe the scenarios in which they would be used

  • Manage transactions

    • Mark a transaction; understand begin tran, commit, and rollback; implicit vs. explicit transactions; isolation levels; scope and type of locks; trancount

  • Evaluate the use of row-based operations vs. set-based operations

    • When to use cursors; impact of scalar UDFs; combine multiple DML operations

  • Implement error handling

    • Implement try/catch/throw; use set based rather than row based logic; transaction management

  • Plan installation

    • Evaluate installation requirements; design the installation of SQL Server and its components (including drives and service accounts); plan scale up vs. scale out basics; plan for capacity, including if/when to shrink, grow, autogrow, and monitor growth; manage the technologies that influence SQL architecture (including service broker, full text, and scale out); design the storage for new databases (drives, filegroups, partitioning); design database infrastructure; configure a SQL Server standby database for reporting purposes; Windows-level security and service level security; Core mode installation; benchmark a server before using it in a production environment (SQLIO, Tests on SQL Instance); choose the right hardware

  • Install SQL Server and related services

    • Test connectivity; enable and disable features; install SQL Server database engine and SSIS (not SSRS and SSAS); configure an operating system disk

  • Implement a migration strategy

    • Restore vs. detach/attach; migrate security; migrate from a previous version; migrate to new hardware; migrate systems and data from other sources

  • Configure additional SQL Server components

    • Set up and configure Analysis Services (AS), Reporting Services (RS), and SharePoint integration in a complex and highly secure environment; configure full-text indexing; SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) security; filestream; filetable

  • Manage SQL Server Agent

    • Create, maintain, and monitor jobs; administer jobs and alerts; automate (setup, maintenance, monitoring) across multiple databases and multiple instances; send to "Manage SQL Server Agent jobs"

  • Manage and configure databases

    • Design multiple file groups; database configuration and standardization: autoclose, autoshrink, recovery models; manage file space, including adding new filegroups and moving objects from one filegroup to another; implement and configure contained databases; data compression; configure Transparent Data Encryption (TDE); partitioning; manage log file growth; Database Console Commands (DBCC)

  • Configure SQL Server instances

    • Configure and standardize a database including autoclose, autoshrink, recovery models; install default and named instances; configure SQL to use only certain CPUs (for example, affinity masks); configure server level settings; configure many databases/instance, many instances/server, virtualization; configure clustered instances including Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator (MSDTC); memory allocation; database mail; configure SQL Server engine including memory, filffactor, sp_configure, and default options

  • Implement a SQL Server clustered instance

    • Install a cluster; manage multiple instances on a cluster; set up subnet clustering; recover from a failed cluster node

  • Manage SQL Server instances

    • Install an instance; manage interaction of instances; SQL patch management; install additional instances; manage resource utilization by using Resource Governor; cycle error logs

  • Identify and resolve concurrency problems

    • Examine deadlocking issues using the SQL server logs using trace flags; design reporting database infrastructure (replicated databases); monitor via Dynamic Management Views (DMV) or other Microsoft product; diagnose blocking, live locking, and deadlocking; diagnose waits; performance detection with built-in DMVs; locate and if necessary kill processes that are blocking or claiming all resources

  • Collect and analyze troubleshooting data

    • Monitor using Profiler, collect performance data by using System Monitor, collect trace data by using SQL Server Profiler, identify transactional replication problems; identify and troubleshoot data access problems; gather performance metrics; identify potential problems before they cause service interruptions; identify performance problems, use Extended Events (XEvents) and DMVs; create alerts on critical server condition; monitor data and server access by creating audit and other controls; identify IO vs. memory vs. CPU bottlenecks; use the Data Collector tool

  • Audit SQL Server instances

    • Implement a security strategy for auditing and controlling the instance; configure an audit; configure server audits; track who modified an object; monitor elevated privileges as well as unsolicited attempts to connect; policy-based management

Who should take this exam?

This exam is intended for candidates who have already earned any one of the MCTS certifications on SQL Server 2008 and who wish to transition their skills to MCSA: SQL Server 2012.

More information about exams

We recommend that you review this exam preparation guide in its entirety and familiarize yourself with the resources on this website before you schedule your exam. See the Microsoft Certification exam overview for information about registration, videos of typical exam question formats, and other preparation resources. For information on exam policies and scoring, see the Microsoft Certification exam policies and FAQs.

This preparation guide is subject to change at any time without prior notice and at the sole discretion of Microsoft. Microsoft exams might include adaptive testing technology and simulation items. Microsoft does not identify the format in which exams are presented. Please use this preparation guide to prepare for the exam, regardless of its format. To help you prepare for this exam, Microsoft recommends that you have hands-on experience with the product and that you use the specified training resources. These training resources do not necessarily cover all of the topics listed in the "Skills measured" section.