Being a Linux System Administrator can be a rewarding and challenging career path. Here are a few steps you can take to help you get there.
1. Get Familiar With Linux
Before you can administer a Linux system, you need to understand it. Working through Linux tutorials and setting up your own sandbox systems can be a great start. You can install a Linux distribution such as Ubuntu or CentOS on your system or even in a virtual machine. Try running commands such as ls, cd, mkdir, rm to navigate and manipulate the filesystem.
2. Learn Bash Scripting
In order to automate common tasks, a good Linux administrator needs to know how to write scripts. Bash, the default shell on most Linux distributions, is a good place to start. Here is a good hello world script example:
#!/bin/bash echo "Hello, World!"
3. Get Comfortable With Command-Line Editors
As a Linux administrator, you’ll spend a lot of time editing text files. Learning how to use command-line editors such as vi or emacs is essential.
4. Learn Networking
Linux servers often act as network hosts, so learning the basics of TCP/IP networking is very necessary. You should be comfortable with IP addressing, network troubleshooting using commands like ping and traceroute, and setting up networking on a Linux server.
5. Learn Server Software
Linux servers host a variety of applications, and knowing how to install and configure them is an essential part of a Linux administrator’s job. This often includes web servers like Apache or Nginx, database servers like MySQL or PostgreSQL, and mail servers like Postfix.
6. Get Certified
There are numerous Linux professional certifications that can help validate your skills and make you more appealing to potential employers. Examples include the CompTIA Linux+, Red Hat Certified System Administrator (RHCSA), and Linux Professional Institute Certification (LPIC).
Becoming a Linux System Administrator is a journey, and it takes time and practice. But with determination and a thirst for knowledge, you can definitely make it. Good luck on your journey!