Apple recently launched its first Mountain Lion training guide and certification for IT professionals. The certification is the Mountain Lion edition of the Apple Certified Associated – Mac Integration certification, which can be viewed as the introductory Mac IT certification. The Cupertino California company began offering these certifications following last year’s launch of Lion. Unlike the other certification options, Apple provides a free guide to the material on the Mac Integration Basics Exam on its training site. You can register and take the exam online for $65 and if you fail the exam, Apple lets you retake it at no additional charge. The guide and the exam are both focused on integrating a Mac into what is currently a predominantly Windows environment, such as a corporate network. The guide includes information on the following topics:
- Joining a Mac to an Active Directory domain
- Connecting to Windows file shares
- Configuring access to an Exchange Server using Apple Mail, Contacts, and Calendar apps)
- Setting up POP/IMAP email accounts
- Connecting to non-Exchange shared contacts and calendar systems
- Apple’s approach to security including Mountain Lion’s Gatekeeper feature
- Printer setup and sharing
- Messaging systems available from the Messages app (including iMessage)
- Migrating data from a Window PC to a Mac
- Backups using Time Machine
- And running Windows on a Mac using Boot Camp
One of the changes here is that the Mac Integration Basics 10.8 guidebook is now available as a PDF. The previous Lion edition was also available as a free ebook from Apple’s iBookstore. There still isn’t a word about Apple’s plans for other Mac IT certifications at this point. Apple’s certification site still lists the three available Lion Certifications. The list includes the Lion version of the exam, as well as the Lion versions of Apple’s OS X Support Essentials and OS X Server Essentials exams.
It was noted earlier that Apple has lowered the range of IT certifications it offers. While it’s possible that Apple will do away with the current certifications, this one is likely to be available because it requires less content changes and unlike other certification exams, it doesn’t include the option for classroom based training that would need to be updated. Apple typically doesn’t update its certification options and related training materials until a few months after a new OS X release.
For those of you who are in the industry, the certification seems like a quick and easy way to add something to your resume so check it out!