Brief: In this guide, we explore reasons why you should consider a career in Linux in 2023 and beyond.
Linux turned 31 last year, as you can imagine it’s been an eventful journey. It grew from a pet project under the stewardship of Linus Torvalds who became known as the Father of Linux to become one of the most widely adopted operating systems by IT professionals, small and medium businesses, and large enterprises as well.
Nowadays, Linux is ubiquitous. Chances are you own a device running a Linux or Linux-based OS. Android OS, the system that primarily runs in most smartphones, tablets, and other smart devices is based on Linux. In fact, Android leads with 71.9% in the mobile OS market share followed by iOS with 27.4%.
According to Canonical, more than 96.4% of server applications are on Linux. In Public clouds such as AWS and Azure, 90% of the workloads are underpinned by Linux, with Ubuntu being the most widely used Linux distribution.
It also powers about 40% of all the websites whose operating systems are known. The percentage of professional developers running Linux as their preferred OS stands at 47%. These are just but a few usage statistics that underscore the significance of Linux in not just the tech industry, but also in our everyday lives.
So, Should you consider taking up a career? A big YES.
There is an explosive demand for Linux talent and there is no letup. IT professionals with Linux are some of the most sought-after candidates today. And it doesn’t end there. Being a Linux professional will open doors for you in some of the fastest-growing and in-demand IT careers such as Cloud computing, Data Science, DevOps, CyberSecurity, and software engineering to mention a few.
According to the 2021 9th Annual opensource jobs report by Linux Foundation and EdX, Linux came second as the most in-demand skills preceded only by Cloud skills.
In addition, a vast majority of AWS, Azure, and GCP instances run Linux, and it becomes clear why you cannot firmly grasp the underpinnings of the Cloud without having solid Linux skills.
There are countless examples of other technologies such as IoT, AI, and networking that rely on Linux. The point here is that if you intend to build a career in modern technology, you will definitely need a firm grasp of Linux skills.
How to Go About a Career in Linux System Administration?
With these telling statistics of how prevalent Linux is as you go up the IT career ladder, it goes without saying that getting a Linux certification should be a top-of-mind agenda as you look forward to the future.
So how do you get started with Linux? Let’s find out.
Part I: Getting Linux Certified
If you are looking to kick start your career as a Linux Administrator, getting certified by the right Professional Institute is what will give you the competitive edge. A Linux certification course is a holistic course that equips you with both theoretical and hands-on skills in Linux.
There are Linux certification exams for all skill levels – from beginners to Engineers. As a beginner, there is an array of choices to choose from. Here are some of the certifications you should consider.
LPI (Linux Professional Institute)
LPI (Linux Professional Institute) is a global certification standard and career support organization for open-source IT professionals. It offers the following Linux courses starting from Junior to Senior level.
- LPIC-1: Junior-Level Linux Administration
- LPIC-2: Pro-Level Linux Administration
- LPIC-3: Senior Linux Administration
Linux Foundation Certifications
Linux Foundation is a non-profit consortium geared towards the promotion and growth of Linux as well as accelerating its commercial adoption. The foundation is a merger between Open Source Development Labs and the Free Standards Group.
For IT professionals seeking to get started with Linux, here are a few courses that will come in handy:
- Linux Foundation Certified IT Associate (LFCA)
- Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator (LFCS)
Red Hat Linux Certifications
Taking Red Hat certifications is yet another way of spurring your IT career and becoming more marketable in the face of a dynamic and competitive industry.
At a beginner level, you can get started with the following Red Hat Linux certifications.
Thereafter, you can upskill by taking the following courses which are considered to range from intermediate to advanced level.
- Red Hat Certified Architect (RHCA)
- Red Hat Certified Engineer in Red Hat OpenStack
- Red Hat Certified Enterprise Microservices Developer
- Red Hat Certified Specialist in Security: Linux
- Red Hat Certified Specialist in Ansible Automation
- Red Hat Certified Specialist in OpenShift Administration
We’ve written the certification preparation guides on RHCSA and RHCE.
Part II: Getting Acquainted with Interview Questions
After acquiring the right set of skills and getting certified, the next course of action would be to start applying for a Linux job. Admittedly, a candidate with a Linux certification stands a better chance of landing a job, even a technical-related job.
This is premised on the fact that they have acquired additional skills, and are certified in managing and administrating an Operating system that is the most dominant in the IT industry.
Interviews are usually the entry point to landing any job, and a Linux job is no different. When it comes to technical jobs, hiring managers will usually gauge the theoretical and practical knowledge of the potential candidate.
With that in mind, here are some of the most commonly asked questions in Linux interviews that will give you a heads-up on what to expect during the interview.
Part III. Job Responsibilities
As a Linux Administrator or the career path that you have chosen, you will be tasked with the diagnosis, troubleshooting, and resolution of various hardware and OS-related issues. In addition, you will find yourself working alongside other professionals such as network and database administrators.
Demand for Linux remains incredibly high and is set to go up in the coming years with an increase in the number of technologies that require Linux skills. If a career in Linux is the path that you wish to chart, then taking a Linux certificate is the first step towards getting started.
We have provided a road map of the Linux beginner courses and certification authorities that will help you get Linux certified and provide guidance as you make your way up the IT ladder.