Tag Archives: 70-689

Windows 8.1: Supporting WindowsToGO

Provisioning and configuring of Windows To Go is a subject of 70-687 exam, but 70-688 touches upon supporting it. To create Windows To Go workspace you have to have Windows 8.1 Enterprise which shipped with Windows To Go Creator Wizard. It is also requires certified Windows To Go USB flash drive (list can be found here). It was a great disappointment to me when I was not able to use generic/non certified drive to create WTG workspace, but as I understand you can get away with any drive which reports itself as a fixed disk.

Key facts to be aware with regards to WTG:

  • You can create WTG workspace only from a Windows 8 Enterprise edition machine and Enterprise edition installation files are required for this (ISO/DVD/WIM)
  • You can use customized images
  • USB drive must be at least 32 GB or larger + WTG certified
  • You can’t use TPM with WTG. This is simple: TPM protects specific computer (bound to chip inside of it), but WTG intended for use on various machines. But you can use BitLocker + startup password.
  • Hibernate & Sleep are disabled by default, but can be enabled via group policy
  • Windows RE/resetting/refreshing are not available for WTG. Problematic drives have to be reimaged.
  • If WTG has Windows 8.1 Enterprise installed on it Windows Store apps can roam between multiple PCs with WTG drive.

Key facts about WTG host computer (one you started with WTG drive):

  • Must have hardware certified to work with Windows 7/8
  • Must not be Windows RT or Mac
  • Should be considered as temporary host
  • Meet addtional requirements: USB boot support, CPU architecture have to support WTG image architecture, USB 2.0 port or newer and no USB hub, meet minimum requirements of Windows 8 (1 GHz CPU, 2 GB RAM, DirectX 9 graphics card with WDDM 1.2 or newer driver).

Probably most valuable for certification exam is to wrap your head around this table which simply tells which image you need to have to for specific firmware/processor architecture.

WTG hosting requirements - image compatibility

It is worth noting that legacy 64-bit BIOS machine looks like maximum compatibility solution in the table above.

Somewhat unexpectedly WTG startup options located under Hardware And Sound > Devices And Printers in Control Panel.

WTG startup options

It is not so important for real life as you either use search to reach anything or CLI commands but exam may ask you about this.

There is some group policies related to WTG but I will describe them in separate post later.

Preparing to revisit 70-689 exam again

It has been a while since I wrote my previous blog post in general and quite a while since I wrote any blog post related to MSFT 70-689 exam, so now it is high time to do this. 🙂

I spend last week attending SharePoint 2013 training (to be more specific it was course 20332 Advanced Solutions of Microsoft® SharePoint® Server 2013) and you maybe surprised why I’m still bother about Windows 8.1 instead of working towards SharePoint 2013 certifications. Well SharePoint certifications as well as some related blog posts on mo to do list, no worries. To be honest I don’t have that sort of neat to do list, but rather loads of scattered notes and vague intentions and ideas, but I working towards the points and targets floating in this fluid list 🙂 On that list, apart from Windows 8.1 exam, there are some K2 and SharePoint related blog posts as well as re-take of K2 certifications and even more stuff…

Anyhow I failed 70-689 exam back in the spring (even twice – in April and June) and publicly announced that I will make it sooner or later, so now I’m announcing this again 🙂 I recently done listening to Rewire by Richard O’Connor, and according to qualified professional’s opinion, making public announcements about your targets makes you stick to them better, as it makes your failure conspicuous and a bit more painful, so I’m going to use this technique here… In case anybody would interpret this behavior as a sort of compulsive idea to do something I would say no to that, as I really made (though still working on this skill) a good progress on giving up/leave some projects and targets which I reconsidered as irrelevant to me either totally or at this point. If you wan an example: I used to be a PhD Economics student, but dropped this in the middle after passing some exams and writing some early drafts of that big work you supposed to write as a PhD student, but I’m perfectly OK with the fact that I removed this target from my to do list (it also doesn’t prevent me from enjoying good Economics books and I never regret about investing my resources into that attempt).

Anyhow I finally started reading “MCSA Microsoft Windows 8.1 Complete Study Guide: Exams 70-687, 70-688, and 70-689” which I’ve only skimmed before attempting 70-689 exam back in the spring and going to schedule my exam as soon as I done reading and will be getting 100% with MeasureUP practice test. And for those who can’t imaging blog post without pictures:

Ready to rivisit 70-689

Revisiting assessment test from the beginning of aforementioned book – 30 out of 40, not the best result but… As you can see at times it is possible to do your learning at coffee shop with help of napkins 🙂 If you look at the picture really carefully you may read funny answer B to question 33:

Q: Your computer’s application has stopped responding. What should you do?

One of the potential answers: “Start backing up like crazy”

I really appreciate authors trying to inject some fun into dry materials, but a bit concerned about people selecting this as a right answer 🙂

P.S. For those who think this exam is too easy for experienced IT Pros I would suggest not to use dumps and also read through the torrents of laments of experienced folks in comments below this blog post – in short people really find that recent Microsoft exams: had too much out of scope stuff injected, excessively broad for primary technology/topic, require you to memorize ton of trivia, know the right answer prescribed by MSFT and in general “it seems that somebody on the top at MSFT said let’s make exams harder” 🙂 But really it’s not a problem for those who really wants to pass this exam, right? 😉

70-689 exam – another attempt

So last weekend I failed my second shot attempt for 70-689 exam. I knew that I’m slightly missing the mark with my preparation but tried to make it before 31st of May to participate in that “Step up to Windows 10” challenge. I’m failed and it means that 697 exam won’t be free of charge for me. I guess something like 1 more week for preparation would be enough for me to pass. How you can knew in advance that you are not ready for exam? Let’s say you have some preparation questions/test (I used one from MeasureUP) and your results in exam simulation mode look something like this:

70-689 MeasureUP 01

This is clear sign that you are not ready – you want to have 100% here to be on a safe side. 🙂

So my results from first and second attempt looks as follows:


Exam attempt 2-2

So I improved my results (from 781 to 836 in configuring domain, and from 630 to 665 in supporting domain), and pleased with it, but alas again slightly missed the passing threshold of 700 for support domain. 🙁 Anyhow I will make it eventually, I know 🙂

Microsoft Intune Core Skills Jump Start Recordings on MVA

In case you are interested to learn more about Microsoft Intune, there is a very recent addition to MVA resources which you may be interested in – recording of live “Microsoft Intune Core Skills Jump Start” which was conducted live on 23rd of April. I had plans to tune in into this live event but eventually end up sitting in Moscow Microsoft Technology Center listening couple of other presentations 🙂 (those two touched on what’s new in Sever vNext Hyper-V storage subsystem and end of extended support for Windows Server 2003). Instructors for this Intune Jump Start are Microsoft Director of Program Management Michael Wallent & Technical Evangelist Simon May, and Microsoft engineers. If you wondering about this course’s agenda you may see it on the picture below.

Intune Jump Start Agenda

Video recordings available for downloading as well as related slide decks. I should also note that Intune is now part of Microsoft management stack and their primary MDM device management offering and you will see it included even in Windows client certification exams, such as 70-689, which I about to re-take tomorrow 🙂

CLI tools for managing storage in Windows 8.1

There is a number of command line tools for managing storage in Windows 8.1 which allow you to do the same things as Disk Management MMC (diskmgmt.msc) and even more :). We have the following at our disposal:

fsutil.exe – allows you manage reparse points and sparse files, dismount a volume

fsutildiskpat.exe – this is full CLI substitute to Disk Management, full list of stuff it can do doesn’t fit into a screenshot, as it takes multiple screens 🙂


And last, but not least – PowerShell. With that you can do… Well what you cannot do with PowerShell? 🙂 For managing storage you may use cmdlets from Storage module, to perform different operations on disks, partitions and volumes.



 This is a good idea to be familiar with those, and not only for your Microsoft exams.