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Old 06-12-2008, 04:59 PM   #1
dewy_2006
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linux admin interview


i'm a recent graduate & i'm supposed to have interviews for 2 companies a linux admin. & am an entry level candidate. any idea what kind of question tht might be asked? i mean, on which are they'll more focusing on? like network admin, system admin (user add... etc), shell programming or basic linux/unix commands?
 
Old 06-12-2008, 05:37 PM   #2
eddiebaby1023
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Probably all of them, and will likely accept varying levels of answers depending on what they're expecting you to be capable of. Answer to the best of your ability, and don't be afraid to elaborate if you know more than they're asking, and discuss the issues instead of answering if you know less. :-)

BTW, shell programming is mainly basic UNIX/Linux commands so you can conflate the last two items of your list. And don't let yourself down by not knowing how to pronounce "vi" - it's "vee-eye". I'd mark down anyone who calls it "vie".
 
Old 06-12-2008, 05:54 PM   #3
Hangdog42
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Quote:
I'd mark down anyone who calls it "vie".
And what kind of score would you give someone who pronounced it "pico"?
 
Old 06-12-2008, 06:02 PM   #4
ncsuapex
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They'll probably ask you some basic questions like how to list the contents of a directory, how to change passwords. How to read log files(cat,tail,etc), user creation/modifications. How to check for available space on a HD.

They might ask how to format a harddrive for a linux FS. How to connect to network machines(ssh). Might even ask you what ports certain applications run on, so study the port #s. If they have a windows and *nix they probably ask about Samba, so be prepared to know the basics.


They might even ask some more advanced questions about the network layer and routing tables and so on.. But if it's for entry level and they ask you those questions they are just doing so to see HOW you answer the question.. Not if you actually know it. Don't be afraid to say you'll use the man pages or google, co-workers/etc.
 
Old 06-12-2008, 07:44 PM   #5
chrism01
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IME (~ 15 yrs Unix/Linux, inc work with sysadmins) (almost) everybody pronounces it 'vie', prob because 1 syllable is easier than 2 ('v i' )

YMMV
 
Old 06-13-2008, 01:43 PM   #6
ncsuapex
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I don't think the pronunciation of something is going to keep you from getting a job. I pronounce Linux as Lyn-ucks but the guy that did my technical interview pronounces it as Lie-nucks. I got the job.
 
Old 06-13-2008, 02:09 PM   #7
salasi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dewy_2006 View Post
...any idea what kind of question tht might be asked? i mean, on which are they'll more focusing on? like network admin, system admin (user add... etc), shell programming or basic linux/unix commands?
Probably none of the above, directly. They may well ask what you claim you have experience with and then what you thought about it, what the difficulties/good points were. So, if you make up something that you have experience with, you'd better have a good story about it, and if the interviewer knows anything about it, the interviewer(s) may well ask you one or two very directed questions about it.

So claiming to be the world's greatest expert on, say, databases may work unless you come up against someone who knows more about databases than you. If the interviewer thinks that their knowledge of databases isn't very good, but they still know way more than you and you still believe that you are the world's greatest expert, well, that probably isn't going to work well.

In general, they will be trying to asses your character as much as anything; are you a quick learner, do you have a chip on your shoulder about everything being everyone elses fault, can you get on with other team members, etc, etc.

More directly to the point, in a junuior sys admin job you'd probably be looking for someone with the discipline not to screw stuff up unnecessarily (learning from your mistakes without making any!). And if you wanted to train to know stuff that you don't know now (say RHCE, for example, but it could be anything relevant) that would almost always be seen as positive.
 
Old 06-15-2008, 08:40 PM   #8
chrism01
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ncsuapex:
apparently eddiebaby1023 would mark you down....
 
Old 06-16-2008, 12:16 AM   #9
onebuck
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Hi,

Just be yourself! A good interviewer will pick up on somebody that is trying to present something that their not. You will be challenged to present yourself and if you do come off as a know it all then you've already struck out. Try to be direct but able to communicate your answers in fashions that anyone could understand. Tech jargon is good when used properly. But to over use then you will be creating a problem with communication. Companies want sys admins that can communicate between levels of company individuals or inter departmental. Your ability too adjust will be a plus.

Entry level is just that. You're experiences will accumulate in time. If you know general administrative techniques and present your self as someone that knows 'system administration' then watch out if the interviewer(s) are admins. Yes, some companies have two or more interviewers for first time interviews. If you make it to the call back list then you might have something that the company is interested in.

Set your goals for the interview session so that you can adjust them on the fly during the interview. Good interviewers will give you a lead as to where to go with the session. If you pick up on it then your one step closer. Good luck!
 
  


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