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Learn how to build and deploy applications with cloud services

The latest version of the online IBM Cloud Essentials course is now available. Through the activities of this free course, you learn about the many offerings and services on IBM Cloud that make it the most open and secure public cloud for business. For version 3, we made the following updates to the cloud training course:

  • Refreshed all sections to match the latest changes of IBM Cloud.
  • Added videos to each section to supplement reading material and quizzes.
  • Expanded the Services on IBM Cloud section to include blockchain, Internet of Things, DevOps, and databases.

The IBM Cloud Essentials course is available for free through the following three education sites:

By completing this course, you gain foundational knowledge to build and deploy applications using cloud services. You learn about cloud technologies that are available across all major cloud vendors, such as cloud object storage, virtual machines, containers, managed Kubernetes services, database as a service, and artificial intelligence (AI). While you experience the IBM Cloud offerings, you receive theoretical and practical knowledge about the cloud technologies, which enables you to apply the knowledge regardless of cloud vendor.

Course structure

The 20-hour course is a composed of four sections. It begins with an introduction to the IBM Cloud platform, moves on to infrastructure as a service (IaaS) options, covers deploying applications, and provides an overview of popular IBM Cloud services. In addition to videos, there are also demos of various IBM Cloud features and services in action, and you perform hands-on labs to gain practical experience with IBM Cloud at no charge.

The following table provides a complete breakdown of the topics covered in the course.

1. Introduction to IBM Cloud 2. Infrastructure 3. Deploying applications 4. Services on IBM Cloud
1.1 High-level overview 2.1 Virtual servers 3.1 Containers and Kubernetes 4.1 Databases
1.2 Locations and regions 2.2 Block and file storage 3.2 Red Hat OpenShift 4.2 Integration
1.3 Account types and support plans 2.3 Object storage 3.3 Cloud Foundry 4.3 AI
1.4 Billing and usage 2.4 Network services 3.4 Serverless 4.4 Analytics
1.5 Cost estimator 2.5 Virtual private cloud 4.5 DevOps
1.6 Identity and access management 2.6 VMware services 4.6 Blockchain
4.7 IoT
4.8 IBM Cloud Paks

Badging and certification

If you complete the course on the platform, you can earn the IBM Cloud Essentials badge, which you can then share with your social media networks for public recognition of your new skills. Additionally, this course can help you prepare for the IBM Cloud Foundations V2 certification.

Example IBM Cloud Essentials certification Example IBM Cloud Foundations V2 certification
Screen capture of an IBM Cloud Essentials course completion certification notice. Screen capture of Steve Martinelli's IBM Cloud Foundations V2 certification notice.

Sneak peek

The following screen capture images show samples of the various course topics.

IBM Cloud availability zones Virtual server configuration options
Screen capture of a world map that shows IBM data centers in various global locations: Dallas (`us-south`), Washington DC (`us-east`), London (`eu-gb`), Frankfurt (`eu-de`), Tokyo (`jp-tok`), and Sydney (`au-syd`) Screen capture of a graphical table containing the geographic regions, types (public, dedicated, transient, and reserved), images (CentOS, Debian, Microsoft, Red Hat, and Ubuntu), and capacity and volume sizes of various virtual servers.
Containers Cloud object storage lab
Screen capture of the What are Containers presentation slide, which is a visual representation of packaging up code, runtimes, and dependencies into a container. An arrow points from the container box to an image registry box. Screen capture of the introductory slide for the Hands-on Lab: Get to know cloud object storage, with Lab overview, Objectives, and Lab instructions sections.

You can also preview two of the course lesson videos on YouTube. The first video is from Section 2.1, specifically, the Virtual servers lesson of the Infrastructure section:

The second video is from Section 3.1. It shows the Containers and Kubernetes lesson of the Deploying applications section:


We tried to make this version the best course possible to learn about IBM Cloud and did not skimp on the finishing touches. As the instructors, we often challenged each other to make modifications that we knew would be extra work for us, but provide a better experience for you. By taking this course, we hope that you enjoy learning about IBM Cloud.