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Bhodi
Dec 9, 2007

Oh, it's just a cat.


Pillbug

A new certification megathread! Here's my short linux admin summary.



For Linux certifications, there is only one thing companies care about - Red Hat. Canonical offers something called the Ubuntu Professional Certification but I have literally never heard of anyone wanting it ever. If you're fairly new to linux but think you might need to become versed in ubuntu or another flavor, these certs still provide useful grounding which is easily ported while being a great resume booster. A lot of the knowledge even carries over into the other *NIXes like HPUX, Solaris, and *BSD, since they all have similar roots.

Basic Red Hat Certs are offered at basic (Administrator) and senior (Engineer) levels, as well as a third level which is given after passing separate exams for all the various middleware / software offerings that Red Hat provides. Notably different from other certs such as CompTIA, the RHCSA & RHCE exams are taken within a lab format where you install/configure/troubleshoot a real system. Because of this and limited test time, you need to be familiar with linux and have put in some *NIX OS time to have a chance at passing. It would be difficult to get a study guide and rote-memorize your way through it. The tests aren't grueling but they are most definitely hands-on.

RHCSA

Basic sysadmin stuff that is comparable to 1-2 years or junior admin experience. Be able to install, boot, configure the OS. Use the command line. Start & stop processes, install packages, handle files/directories/users, quotas, local and logical volumes, partitions, networking, ACLs, SELinux & iptables. Be able to use VI and edit config files. Basically, know your way around /etc and be able to troubleshoot configuration file fat fingering.

RHCE

Senior level admin stuff that is comparable to 3-5 years or mid-senior level admin experience. It builds on the RHCSA but gets into more specifics. Expect basic kernel tuning, building RPMs, static routes, NAT, system logging, cron, installation and configuration of common services (apache, squid, SSH, samba, NTP, SMTP, cups). Additionally, basic shell (bash) scripting. Notably absent is postfix/sendmail and bind because they are split off into a separate test at the RHCA level. Basically, know your way around /var and /proc as well as /etc.

RHCA

It's not CCIE difficulty, but it's still a fairly rare thing to come across because you have to pass 5 separate exams (network services, enterprise systems management, enterprise clustering & storage management, system monitoring & performance tuning, directory services & authentication, and virtualization). I've never taken it so I can't speak, but there's more info at that link. I've never seen it as a job requirement. A lot of it is RH-centric and uses their clustering service, their package management service, stuff like that.

Someone else will have to give resources since I got sent to a 5 day boot camp and didn't get a study book.

Bhodi fucked around with this message at 21:13 on Dec 10, 2012

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Bhodi
Dec 9, 2007

Oh, it's just a cat.


Pillbug

luminalflux posted:

How hard are the RedHat exams? I've been using Linux for almost 15 years (redhat with some Gentoo, Debian and OpenBSD thrown in), been a sysadmin on and off for a while, can set up a Kerberos realm & AFS cell, deployed Solaris 9 on U1s and run a shitload of CentOS on VMware at work. What certs should I shoot for just for shits and giggles?

Go for the RHCE, the only thing you'll need to study for are the weird edge cases that you might not have to gently caress with on a daily basis, specifically selinux configs, quotas, cups, rpmbuild, or whatever. Get a book, take the test, and remember that it's extremely time limited - skip to the next task if you start fumbling or don't remember exactly how to do it.

Bhodi
Dec 9, 2007

Oh, it's just a cat.


Pillbug

The most important thing to do is stop stressing about S+. 90% of the test is term memorization, like knowing different encryptions and whether they are symmetric or asymmetric. Memorize the listed protocols and their ports and be able to regurgitate that.

It's all multiple choice, and not the Microsoft kind where they trip you up - the answer is clear and obvious. It really is a straightforward test of memorization.

Bhodi
Dec 9, 2007

Oh, it's just a cat.


Pillbug

FYI the way I skirt the line is by putting the year I received the cert next to it on my resume. It's a good balance between being totally honest about expiration and lying by omission about it.

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