Saturday, December 11, 2004

Certified Linux Professional

The room was cold and remote access to the servers was excruciatingly slow. Four or five times I actually lost my connection to the servers. The minutes ticked by and I still had two items left undone. The clock hit zero...

Still some minutes grace period left. My fingers typed furiously. Finally, the system stopped responding. Time was really up.

On the screen: "Congratulation! You passed..."


Okay, now that I've done gloating, I am now going to post some tips for the brave souls who are going to take the exam over the coming days.

A. General tips

1. The exam is centered around system administration so candidates need to be very familiar with the relevant topics. Focus on user and group management, file system management, network configuration, and network services. See the Novell CLP certification roadmap for more information.

2. It's important to get to know Yast, the SuSE system administration utility, but by no means should you just limit your learning on it. Yast simplifies a lot of the tasks, but knowing the underlying configuration files is still best.

3. Use the Linux help files! You're not allowed to refer to external materials, either written or web-based, in the course of the exam. However, the Linux environment you're working with has all the man and info pages. Plus, take a look at /usr/share/doc....

B. The Test Environment

1. The test environment runs in a web browser, with a Java applet providing remote access to the servers. Access is excruciatingly slow. You will have to compensate for the slowness: try not to move windows around too much, and try to do everything with as few window dialogs as possible.

2. If you do lose access to the servers, don't panic. Your environment is still active, and when you reconnect, all your work will still be there. However, you'll start with a clean environment, i.e., all the windows you were working with will be gone.

3. Autocomplete doesn't work in the terminal environment, at least, not during my exam.

C. Review Materials

It is best to get a copy of SuSE Linux Enterprise 9 and play around with it. If that is not possible, you can refer to the SuSE administration manual which I've put up in my web site. You should also refer to the how-tos in The Linux Documentation Project.

Good luck, and have fun!


  1. Omedetou!^_^
    I read about it in Sacha's blog.

    Oh yeah, I am Clair. I met you in Sacha's party last August.

  2. Congrats Dom! :) Hmm... makes me want to try my luck, boost my credentials... :)

  3. Thanks, Claire and JM!

    Claire: yes, I remember you from the party. Thanks for dropping by. I also dropped by your site: pretty neat!

    JM: yup, you should get certified. It'll open more doors for you.

  4. Heya, Dom! I was quite surprised that you remembered. I am glad you do^_^

    I have posted my cacti related stories on my Livejournal account. Keyword: cacti

    This link ought to work:

    If it doesn't, e-mail me: happy.eclair(at)
    You'll see that it is now an obssession!^_^