OSBN/Ubuntuusers Planet RHEL / CentOS

Red Hat Certified Professional (RHCP) of the Year 2013

Since a few years Red Hat is awarding a free ticket (incl. flight and hotel) for their own “Red Hat Summit” exhibition in Boston/Massachusetts in line with the “Red Hat Certified Professional (RHCP) of the Year” promotion. Every administrator who holds a valid certification can apply – valid certifications include:

  • Red Hat Certified System Administrator (RHCSA)
  • Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE)
  • Red Hat Certified Virtualization Administrator (RHCVA)
  • Red Hat Certified Security Specialist (RHCSS)
  • Red Hat Certified Datacenter Specialist (RHCDS)
  • Red Hat Certified Architect (RHCA)
  • JBoss Certified Application Administrator (JBCAA)
  • JBoss Certified Developer in Persistence (JBCD)
  • Red Hat Certificates of Expertise

I’m proud to hold the first two certificates and so I – naturally – also applied for the price:

My interest in Linux started 2005 at the age of 15 when I discovered Ubuntu Linux. After being upset about my slow and always virus attacked computer I decided to try out something completely new.

I never had Linux on my computer before and wanted to have a look at it. After some first trials with OpenSuSE I got into Ubuntu and made my first experiences with the open operating system.

After exclusively using Ubuntu for almost two years I had a look at several other distros including Debian, CentOS and Fedora. To learn more about Linux I built my own private “Lab” using old spare computers. All these computers ran Linux and so I started to learn about network services including Apache, DHCP and Samba.

In 2009 I started an apprenticeship as “Computer Science Expert” in a middle class company. Beside Windows servers they also had some Linux servers but no guidelines for them. Some of them were running unsupported RHEL versions, other were running other non-enterprise distros, many systems were unpatched and not clearly documented. It became my task to consolidate this scenario to a clean and supported server landscape.

Motivated and interested in improving my Linux knowledge I started autodidactic learning the required skills. During this I achieved the LPIC-1 certification and decided to use RHEL for my consolidation project. I spent a lot of my free time on learning Red Hat and so I also wanted to have my expertise certified. Last year I achieved the RHCSA certification – this year I successfully passed the EX300 exam and so I’m a RHCE now.

I’m proud of achieving these goals with autodidactic learning. Those certifications helped me a lot with elementary understanding RHEL, my consolidating project and my daily business as a Linux administrator at all. My next goal is achieving the RHCSS certification to improve my Linux knowledge – I’m already learning for the first exam.

One of my project goals was to enhance security by enforcing SELinux which wasn’t done before. It took several weeks to built the needed rules to get custom web applications and special service configurations running – but it was worth the effort, SELinux is a massive security enhancement for our systems. Thanks to AIDE and Auditing I’m able to ensure that my systems are always at a consistent and fully working state.

Using RHEL for my consolidation project was the right choice – it’s a solid, easy to configure operating system with great patch management. I’m really satisfied with RHEL and also started using it at home on one of my private servers. Recently I just started my next project – Implementing a RHN server to optimize software and configuration management. Another benefit I want to accomplish is limiting download times and traffic for patches by serving a RHN proxy so that our servers don’t need a direct internet connection. Deploying new servers will also be more comfortable using the RHN satellite.

Maybe I’m lucky and take one of the first 5 places. The first price gets a free ticket for the Red Hat Summit – the other ones are mentioned on the Red Hat website.

Wish me luck! 🙂

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