How to ace the CKA exam – The Nirmata Way
Nirmata is a cloud-agnostic platform that manages Kubernetes clusters and workloads. To build an awesome Kubernetes platform, our team is committed to keeping up with the rapid pace of innovation in the community. One such metric, is the Certified Kubernetes Administrator (CKA) exam. Nirmata requires that all engineers and technical team members are Certified Kubernetes Administrators. Nirmata even sponsors and trains interns for the exam. If you are preparing for the exam, you would absolutely know that the CKA exam is one of the toughest exams out there in the industry today. This post aims at sharing our secret recipe for acing the exam in one go.
Learn to navigate the documentation – This is one of the most important tips that most of the blogs don’t talk about. In a time intensive test, every second is vital and the last thing you’d want to do is to spend most of your time looking for things you need and not finding them. Spend time reading the documentation and know how to reach to the commonly used resources.
Vim – Master it
Not used to editing YAML files on the terminal? CKA might be a little frustrating for you. We advise you to practice copying YAML files from the documentation and editing them quickly on the terminal or typing them yourself quickly. Whatever works best for you.
Use the Notepad Provided
Most of the YAML files have a few lines in common. Many questions require you to write the YAML file from the scratch. Use the don’t repeat yourself policy and save yourself some time by archiving the content on the provided notepad.
Don’t practice on Minikube
We know it’s easy to spin off a cluster locally and practice on minikube. But we would suggest you create a cluster with multiple nodes yourself on any public cloud. This gives a close-to-real exam experience and will give you a chance to debug multi-node cluster issues. It’s tedious to do this (unless you are using Nirmata, of-course :-)), but it’s worth it.
‘Kubectl get pods -n namespace’ can be written as ‘k get pods -n namespace’ by creating an alias for kubectl. You may not think that this would make a huge difference, but as pointed out earlier, every second saved is like gold dust. You can use that time when you need it most.
Accuracy Matters. Verify Your Solutions
The test is evaluated programmatically, which means that you get points for accurate answers only. Sure you created the deployment asked for, but did you name it properly? Or did you size the volume accurately? These details may seem trivial but they matter. Verify your solutions after each batch and fix the errors if any. Batches can be divided according to the contexts.
Kubectl -h is your friend
Kubectl help is sometimes more useful than the documentation, and it saves time. For example, to run a Deployment, Kubectl run -h provides examples on how one can deploy easily. This means that you do not have to memorize the commands. Just know when to use which command.
Work hard and PRACTICE
Last but not the least, there is no shortcut to success. You have to buckle down and spend time with your VMs, Kubernetes cluster, documentation and practice as much as you can before the D-day.
Good Luck! 🙂