What I did to pass the RHCE exam

I took the RHCE exam this past week, and was fortunate to pass both the RHCT and RHCE sections with a score of 100%. While I can’t discuss what was on the test, I figured I would share the process I used to prepare for the test. When I decided to take the exam, I picked up a copy of the Red Hat Certified Engineer Linux Study Guide and read it from cover-to-cover. Michael Jang did a great job with the book, and it shed some light on things I never use (e.g., Linux printing).

Once I finished reading Michael’s book I printed the RHCE objectives. For each objective I did the following:

1. Researched which packages are needed to support each objective.

2. Installed the software from a local yum repository I created.

3. Read through the configuration files for each service and looked up each directive to see what it did.

4. Configured the service and integrated it with my home network.

5. Broke the service various ways and tried to figure out what I needed to do to fix it.

6. Figured out how SELinux integrated with each service. Also did a lot of SELinux debugging!

I used two virtual machines to study with, one acting as a server and the other a client. The items listed above took quite a bit of time to master, but I can definitely say I’m a better admin because of it. I learned a bunch of new things about RHEL/CentOS, and can definitely troubleshoot things faster now. Best of luck if you decide to take the exam!

16 thoughts on “What I did to pass the RHCE exam”

  1. Over the course of a month I spent maybe 1 – 2 hours a night reading and experimenting. On weekends I would spend approximately 4 hours reading and experimenting. All in all I probably spent 40 – 60 hours preparing for the test. This is way more than required, but I wanted to know every service inside and out. Studying this much will definitely help me in the future if I’m asked to work on a service we haven’t implemented yet.

  2. I thought the RHCE for RHEL 5 is no longer being given? I search the training options and all I have now is the exams for RHCE on RHEL 6? I’m stuck at RHCT at the moment until I go for the new RHCE requirements…

  3. @ camerad743 — I think it’s valid for the life of RHEL5. You can check the Redhat certification page to verify.

    @ maxnic — I didn’t read the new Redhat certification material, so I can’t answer your question. You can check the Redhat certification page to verify.

  4. Congrats on your perfect score.
    I’m going to write RHCE exam next week (26th April 2011) I also plan to write my exam experience in my blog, do check it out

  5. Im in the process of reading his book and Im also building a lab for the rhel kvm. Im having issues with the compatible HW due to virt limitations. What HW did you use for your VMs?

  6. Hi, is this still valid for RHEL 7? I noticed that the objectives have changed a bit. I’ve been using this study guide for RHCE https://www.lisenet.com/rhce/ – it’s comprehensive and well explained, I’ve also got Sander’s book. Do you think that it’s enough? Or should I book a RedHat course? They are quite expensive in my area…

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