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Old 05-02-2004, 11:22 PM   #1
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Question How do you obtain your first AIX position?

Greetings All!

I have been a Linux Administrator for about 4 years, and have recently been laid off (please no tears). I applied for several AIX positions, and when I do get a call, they ask if I ever had experience with the AIX brand itself. When I say

So here is the question... How does one get a job as an AIX Administrator, if you've never used AIX??? I've worked around AIX Administrators, and I understand enough to know that Linux and AIX Unix are similar in many aspects, and I'm sure disimilar in others. Were AIX Administrators born by IBM? Were they grain fed from birth? Surely there has been some training along the line for AIX Administrators to be AIX Administrators!

I love IBM Servers and hardware. With 8 years of Windows Server Administration, many of which on IBM servers, I've grown to love being able to telnet into the system when it is hard-locked and telling the power supply to recycle. IBM Servers really make life as an Administrator easier.

Now that I have been a Linux Admin for the last 4 years, I would like to go AIX. I've studied AIX for sometime and been hopefull to get a position. Which also means (since AIX runs on proprietary hardware) I would be using IBM Servers again.

Thanks for the Info,

Old 05-03-2004, 12:58 PM   #2
Registered: May 2004
Location: Boston, MA
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> they ask if I ever had experience with the AIX brand itself. When I say

Here is your problem. You need to make this answer a yes. Just within the last year and a half I became a full-time AIX administrator having similar background as yourself which was mostly Linux. My AIX experience came from helping a UNIX administrator out in a past job, but this experience does not have to be work experience to make the question above a yes.

Recently, I purchased from ebay an RS/6000 43P 140 for $116.99 which includes shipping. You'll also need to get a copy of AIX 5.1 or earlier ($60 on ebay), do not get AIX 5.2. IBM is dropping support for a number of older architectures and 5.2 will not run on most older systems. You may also need a SCSI hard drive, but for way less than a PC (heck, less than the cost of a copy of Windows) you have your own personal RS/6000 hardware and AIX OS running which should give you enough experience to get your foot in the door for at least an interview.

If you don't wish to spend money to learn a commercial UNIX, download a copy of Solaris 2.9 for i386 from Sun free of charge.

There are also plenty of books around, to get you up to speed with the buzz words interviewers are going to want to hear about AIX. For this I suggest "AIX 5L Administration" by Randal K. Michael.

Again if you don't want to spend money on books, go IBM Redbook web site for free pdf's and of coarse there's the Rosetta Sone for UNIX.

I've used all the above avenues quite successfully.

I was a Windows NT/Linux Administrator for 2.5 years then became a Solaris Administrator for 3 years after having purchased a copy of Solars 2.7 from Sun for $10, and an AIX Administrator for 1.5 years after having purchased the above listed book and an RS/6000 43P 140 (the one listed above is my second RS/6000). Each of these roles were for different companies.
Old 05-03-2004, 01:28 PM   #3
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AIX Admin

Thanks for your advice... I have been training myself AIX, but didn't think that would qualify as a yes. I'm familiar with alot of the common commands like smitty and entstat (why don't thy just call it netstat like the rest of the world does?) and other commands unique to AIX.

I will take your advice and hope for the best!


Old 05-03-2004, 01:37 PM   #4
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@zegos : netstat is also an AIX command, isn't it ?
Old 05-03-2004, 01:44 PM   #5
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entstat and netstat

I guess your right, just seems odd they would call a utility entstat, so close to netstat....


Old 05-03-2004, 03:46 PM   #6
Registered: May 2004
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>> they ask if I ever had experience with the AIX brand itself. When I say
> I have been training myself AIX, but didn't think that would qualify as a yes.

The use of the word experience is very general here, perhaps if they were to say "work experience", even still if I read what your saying correctly, your out of work and need a job, the person who probably put this question to is just a head hunter, not the interviewer or even the person who is going to hire you in the end and most certainly does not understand that AIX and Linux are not all that different, especial when compared to AIX and Windows or AIX and OS/2.

What ever the experience you have be it work, education, or personal, it is all experience.

Education experience is expensive, 1 5 day AIX 5L class can cost $2,500 and what do you get? Less than 40 hours of machine access time and book which isn't usable outside the class you just took. For less than $300 (book, machine, OS, and hard drive) you could have 24/7 AIX system access and a book usable for any AIX installation.

What about work experience? Like you stated above you have no AIX work experience. Why? Because you were being paid to do something else. With your personal time you can learn what you want when you want.

If you had an AIX machine you would have known that:
man entstat
Shows ethernet device driver and device statistics.
man netstat
Shows network status.

AIX generally does not rename commands, they just add more, a lot more than other Unixes.
Old 05-03-2004, 04:08 PM   #7
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Re: entstat and netstat

Originally posted by zegos
I guess your right, just seems odd they would call a utility entstat, so close to netstat....
Roughly speaking, all UNIXs share a common set of commands (with some minor variations) for users and have a different set for administrators.

Netstat in AIX does pretty much what netstat does everywhere else. entstat has some things in common but is especially useful because it shows the link status of a network connection. Many times I'm a few hundred miles from the server I'm managing and when networking isn't working, I need to figure out where the problem is. Entstat tells me whether I'd be seeing a link light if I was looking at the server and what speed the link is running at.
Old 05-03-2004, 10:02 PM   #8
Registered: Dec 2003
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Shameless promotion alert!!

If any of you are interested, I managed to get my grubby little hands on a couple of older 43P machines. Neither a spectacularly equipped, but are capable of being a test box for demolition, er, learning your way around AIX.

Drop me a message if you're interested.

End of the shameless promotion.
Old 11-23-2007, 12:55 AM   #9
Mohammed Maqsood
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I want to learn more and more on Aix, and i want to get job on AIX,

please give me some materrial and training guide on AIX,

Old 11-29-2007, 10:22 PM   #10
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you'll have to know smitty or smit, which is not hard, a centralized management for aix. smitty is preferred because it's command line.

it's like sam with hp or yast2 with suse9 or up. red hat/solaris are hard to use because you need to know all the commands for each functions.

i hope you will not be using ssa disks or even ran ports because those are hard to manage when they break. most of the companies are using new hardware but many are still keeping legacy server or applications.

if you have printer on ran ports, you might have problem after each reboot.

if one of the devices has problem, run diag and certify it. there's no stupid company running aix without support so you'll have to send some images after running certify on aix. you cannot understand, it's for second level support, you don't need to know it.

don't be afraid, if you're afraid when systems fail, then you have a hard time with the solutions. the best solution is google and forums like this, so if you always have spare time, ask the questions a head. read some topics on archive forums.

be sure to turn on the audit which is off by default turned off and also the ftp logs. but don't audit everything, it will slow down your system if it's running stupid applications in one tier.

by the way, oracle linux is easy to download from oracle site unlike red hat.

most companies that run aix, run db2 too. so you'll have to read on db2 administration too.

good luck
Old 01-30-2008, 11:16 AM   #11
Michael AM
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Shameless adverts....

Well, not a product but free advice.

I am webmaster for - and AIX, rs6000, pSeries, System P, eserver (as they change names) portal since 2001 (I have been invloved since it's beginning, but webmaster only since 2006).

AIX dedicated forums, Guides, Howtos, and "Love and Attention" from myself and the owner - John Peck.

Come take a peek, read at least - maybe register and contribute! Questions and Answers are both welcome.

Old 03-04-2008, 02:27 PM   #12
Registered: Nov 2007
Location: GMT -5, who wants to know
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I got AIX thrown at me as part of doing support. Man - it's the damned strangest system ever. And yes, I'm pretty biased being all Linux-y and nerdy and hippy, but come on man - a multi-proc system that takes 10-20 minutes to boot? What's up with that...

Old 03-04-2008, 09:24 PM   #13
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hey guys, I want to learn AIX. And I want to intall and run it on my AMD system. I should ask these questions, my AMD PC is an x86 64-bit, can I install and run it on this paltfrom? what version of AIX is it 5.1? I'm planning to multi-boot it another OSes. Which should I install first, I'm using IDE HD, not SCSI.
Old 03-31-2008, 01:14 AM   #14
Registered: Sep 2007
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aix only runs on ibm hardware

it seems like not that many people are fan of aix ..
any way i am a newbi to linux and aix. but i know alot in general. and specially when it comes to installing a new os. well to ur question
no AIX can not run on an intel or amd boards. you need ibm rs/6000 or other workstation / servers that is manufactured by IBM to run AIX.


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