How to Pass Certified Kubernetes Application Developer (CKAD) 2024

This CKAD Exam study guide is here to help you get ready for the CKAD Certification exam. It includes all the stuff you need. CKAD is a top Kubernetes certification that focuses on how to develop with Kubernetes.

In this guide, I’ll share all the resources you’ll need to prepare for the CKAD exam. Plus, I’ll give you tips that helped me pass the CKAD exam with a score of 92 out of 100.

What is the Certified Kubernetes Application Developer (CKAD) exam?

The Certified Kubernetes Application Developer (CKAD) certification stands as one of the most sought-after credentials in today’s industry landscape. Geared towards engineers with a passion for conceiving, creating, constructing, and overseeing applications within Kubernetes.

This program, the Certified Kubernetes Application Developer (CKAD), serves to validate the aptitude, understanding, and proficiency of individuals in fulfilling the role of Kubernetes application developers.

Register for the CKAD Certification [Save 20% Today]

To begin your journey of becoming a Certified Kubernetes Application Developer (CKAD) – start by registering for the CKAD exam on the Linux Foundation portal. When you register you get free access to two sessions of killer.sh CKAD practice exams that will help you clear the CKAD exam.

Register today and use our exclusive coupon code TECK20 for the CKAD exam to get a 20% discount on CKAD (and KCNA, CKA, and CKS certifications ). This code expires soon.

CKAD Exam Voucher: Use coupon Code TECK20 at checkout

Hurry Up: Offer valid or Limited Time  ⏳

  • Upon registration, you have ONE YEAR to schedule and complete the exam.
  • The CKAD exam is conducted online and remotely proctored.
  • To pass the exam, you must achieve a score of 66% or higher.
  • CKAD Certification is valid for 3 years. If you give the exam after April 1st 2024, it will be valid for only two years
  • You are allowed a maximum of 2 attempts to take the test. However, if you miss a scheduled exam for any reason, your second attempt will be invalidated.
  • Free access to killer.sh for the CKAD practice exam.

Note: You can always check the latest Kubernetes Certification Voucher Codes to save costs on the CKA, CKAD, and CKS certification registration

Certified Kubernetes Application Developer (CKAD) Exam Preparation Guide

This section will go over the complete resources and official CKAD kubernetes documentation pages that can help you prepare for the exam better.

CKAD Exam Prerequisites

CKAD does not require any candidate to have any other certification before appearing for the CKAD exam. The only thing required to clear the exam is practice, practice, and practice.

CKAD Exam details

Exam Duration2 hours
Pass Percentage66%
CKAD Exam Kubernetes VersionKubernetes v1.29
CKAD Validity3 Years Starting from 04/01/2024, CKAD and CKA Kubernetes certifications will have a validity period of 2 years
Exam Cost$395 USD ( GET 20 % OFF using Coupon TECK20)

CKAD exam is an open book exam i.e. you can use the following websites while you are taking the exam (Resources Allowed):-

  1. https://kubernetes.io/docs/
  2. https://github.com/kubernetes/
  3. https://kubernetes.io/blog/ and their subdomains. This includes all available language translations of these pages (e.g. https://kubernetes.io/zh/docs/)

The online proctored exam is taken on PSI’s Proctoring Platform “Bridge”, using the PSI Secure Browser (a web browser created to guarantee a secure exam delivery over a virtual connection). Read more about the system and testing environment requirements.

Read more about the CKAD Exam user interface here.

CKAD Exam Syllabus

The following are the domains and competencies part of the CKAD syllabus along with their respective topics and weightage.

TopicConceptsWeightage
Application Design and Build1. Define, build, and modify container images
2. Understand Jobs and CronJobs
3. Understand multi-container Pod design patterns (e.g. sidecar, init, and others)
4. Utilize persistent and ephemeral volumes
20 %
Application Environment, Configuration, and Security1. Discover and use resources that extend Kubernetes (CRD)
2. Understand authentication, authorization, and admission control
3. Understanding and defining resource requirements, limits, and quotas
4. Understand ConfigMaps
5. Create & consume Secrets
6. Understand ServiceAccounts
7. Understand SecurityContexts
25%
Services & Networking1. Understand API deprecations
2. Implement probes and health checks
3. Use the provided tools to monitor Kubernetes applications
4. Utilize container logs
4. Debugging in Kubernetes
20%
Application Deployment1. Use Kubernetes primitives to implement common deployment strategies (e.g. blue/green or canary)
2. Understand Deployments and how to perform rolling updates
3. Use the Helm package manager to deploy existing packages
20%
Application Observability and Maintenance1. Understand API deprecations
2. Implement probes and health checks
3. Use provided tools to monitor Kubernetes applications
4. Utilize container logs
4. Debugging in Kubernetes
15%
CKAD Exam topics

We will look at each section in detail below.

CKAD Preparation Course

Purchasing a CKAD course will make it easier for you to comprehend every concept required for the CKAD exam. I strongly advise you to enroll in a top-notch guided CKAD course of your choosing if you are a novice with no prior experience working with Kubernetes environments.

I advise enrolling in Mumshad’s CKAD preparation course. There are many quizzes in his course, and they are of the highest caliber.

CKAD Practice Exams

To practice for the CKAD exam, you can try the Mock exams. It will help you build confidence and practice many scenarios for the exam.

Personally, I think that this course is the only thing necessary to pass the exam.

CKAD Exam Practice Labs

The best way to prepare is to practice a lot! The below setups will give you a Kubernetes cluster where you can do all the required practice. The exam expects you to solve problems on a live cluster.

CKAD does not have any MCQ-type format – so hands-on practice is a must.

  1. Killercoda
  2. Minikube

CKAD Exam Study Resources

Here, I will be discussing official Kubernetes resources that can be used to prepare for each topic of the CKAD exam. You can use these documentation pages during the exam for reference.

CKAD Kubernetes  Syllabus

Kubernetes Objects Shortcuts

Use the following Kubernetes object shortcuts to save time:

ObjectsShortcuts
podspo
deploymentsdeploy
servicessvc
serviceaccountssa
nodesno
configmapscm
namespacesns
ingressesing
persistentvolumespv
persistentvolumeclaimspvc
replicasetsrs

Top 5 Tips for CKAD Exam

Practice , Practice , Practice …

This exam is hands-on in nature, emphasizing the importance of proficiency with the Kubernetes command line interface (kubectl).

It is essential to cultivate a high level of comfort and familiarity with kubectl, practicing the art of typing commands swiftly and accurately.

As mentioned earlier, please ensure that you review the practice exam provided in Mumshad Mannambeth’s Udemy course. It is highly recommended to enroll in the two killer,sh, hands-on sessions and aim for outstanding scores in order to thoroughly prepare yourself before attempting the actual exam.

Time Management

Since you will be executing the kubectl command multiple times, setting up aliases can save you valuable seconds with each entry. For instance, assigning an alias like ‘k’ for ‘kube-control’ can potentially grant you an additional minute or two towards the end of the exam

alias k=kubectl

In the exam, you have the privilege to access and consult the Kubernetes documentation pages for obtaining crucial information. This unique aspect sets the Kubernetes certification exam apart from others, as it assesses your capability to effectively utilize the documentation rather than relying solely on memorization.

To excel in the exam, it is essential to become well-acquainted with the documentation’s structure and practice efficient searching techniques. Please be aware that using bookmarks is not allowed during the exam, so it is advised to refrain from attempting to do so.

During the exam, managing your time efficiently is crucial. With approximately 15 to 20 questions of varying difficulty levels, it’s essential to make strategic decisions regarding time allocation. Don’t get trapped on a single challenging question and exhaust all your time.

Do not begin your exam from Question 1! Each question has a Task Weight and you should aim to complete higher score questions first.

Remember that achieving a perfect score is not necessary to pass the exam. A minimum score of 66% or above is sufficient

Review Completed Tasks

After each question, it is crucial to review your work meticulously to ensure accuracy. Avoid the risk of spending 10-15 minutes on a question and unintentionally overlooking potential errors

For example, if you have created a pod , it is highly recommended to check its status before moving on to another task. This verification step ensures that the pod is created and started.

kubelet get pod <podName>

Stress Management

You will be able to complete the exam in 2 hours.
PLEASE DON’T get panic because :

  • First: if it is your first attempt then you have the other left.
  • Second: is that you only need 66 % to crack the exam 🙂

Configuration Management during the Exam

As mentioned previously, the CKA exam environment consists of six clusters, each with its own dedicated set of nodes. It is essential to emphasize the significance of switching contexts correctly between these clusters before attempting any tasks in the exam.

One common mistake individuals make is performing actions on the wrong cluster. To avoid this, ensure that you carefully switch the context to the intended cluster before executing any commands or tasks. Paying close attention to this detail will help maintain accuracy throughout the exam and prevent errors caused by working on the wrong cluster

At the start of each task you’ll be provided with the command to ensure you are on the correct cluster to complete the task , for example :

kubectl config use-context k8s

An example of command to ssh to a master node :

ssh mk8s-master-0 

Us elevated privileges on the master node :

sudo -i

CKAD Exam Question

CKAD EXAM QUESTION 

# Create a Pod named nginx-ckad in the existing "teckbootcamps-namespace" namespace.

# Specify a single container using nginx:stable image.

# Specify a resource request of 400m cpus and 1G1 of memory for the Pod’s container.

CKAD Exam Solution

kubectl config use-context ckad-k8s

controlplane $ kubectl run nginx-ckad --image=nginx:stable --namespace=teckbootcamps-namespace  --dry-run=client -o yaml > solution-ckad.yaml

vi solution-ckad.yaml

Change the solution-ckad,yaml to add resources request ( cpu & memory )

apiVersion: v1
kind: Pod
metadata:
  creationTimestamp: null
  labels:
    run: nginx-ckad
  name: nginx-ckad
  namespace: teckbootcamps-namespace
spec:
  containers:
  - image: nginx:stable
    name: nginx-resources
    resources:
      requests:
        cpu: 400m
        memory: 1Gi
  dnsPolicy: ClusterFirst
  restartPolicy: Always
status: {}
controlplane $ k apply -f solution-ckad.yaml 
pod/nginx-ckad created

controlplane $ k get pods -n teckbootcamps-namespace 
NAME         READY   STATUS    RESTARTS   AGE
nginx-ckad   1/1     Running   0          8s

Conclusion

Congratulations on finishing our in-depth CKAD exam study guide. You’re well on your way to becoming a Certified Kubernetes Application Developer if you stick to the roadmap we’ve provided and master the key concepts.

Remember to practice on a regular basis, look into additional resources, and keep up with the latest Kubernetes developments. Best wishes on your CKAD exam journey!

Do check out the CKA & CKS certification guides as well.

Author

  • Mohamed BEN HASSINE

    Mohamed BEN HASSINE is a Hands-On Cloud Solution Architect based out of France. he has been working on Java, Web , API and Cloud technologies for over 12 years and still going strong for learning new things. Actually , he plays the role of Cloud / Application Architect in Paris ,while he is designing cloud native solutions and APIs ( REST , gRPC). using cutting edge technologies ( GCP / Kubernetes / APIGEE / Java / Python )

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