Red Hat Study Buddy Group – Let’s End 2012 With Style

Do you work with Red Hat based operating systems? When you go to a car show, and people talk about RPMs, do you get discouraged when you realize that they’re not talking about Linux? Are you inordinately fascinated by gaudy headwear? Do you want to make more money? Sure! We all do!

Certifications, love them or hate them, do have a tendency to help you earn more money and get noticed for positions. Sure, inside connections, professional network relationships, and public community projects are awesome and arguably better resources for ensuring employment opportunities, but having a few respected letters after your name won’t hurt matters any.

If you answered yes to any of the questions in the first paragraph, then consider the goal that I’m about to set forth. I’m gathering some names together to start a simple Red Hat certification study buddy group. Nothing crazy and nothing terribly structured. It’s just a place to publicly state your intentions, and then each person involved will have some names and faces to help get motivated.

Here are the Rules:

There are no rules.

Here is the (Loose) Plan:

First, pick your goal and put your name on it in the comments below. RHCSA? RHCE? A certificate of expertise or two (or three)? The RHCA?! Just name it.

Second, set the goal to pass whatever exam(s) you have in mind by Dec 31, 2012. You want to start 2013 with a shiny new piece of paper to be proud of, and hopefully some leverage for a better job or more money in your current job. Or maybe you just want the certification for your own personal development and satisfaction. Whatever your reasons, plan to make Dec 31 your do-or-die date.

Third, pick your study material. You could simply check out the official RHCSA exam objectives, or the RHCE objectives, or the objectives of the certificates of expertise that you’re interested in most. You could also pick up a book. I recommend the book RHCSA/RHCE Red Hat Linux Certification Study Guide (Exams EX200 & EX300), 6th Edition for those interested in the RHCSA/RHCE certs. Because the book mashes up the two certifications into one text, it is a bit confusing to follow at times, but I’ve perused it casually and it’s generally understandable if you focus. There are also several video courses out there as well as in-person classroom training. What you choose to use is of no consequence.

Fourth, buckle down, make some time, and get learnin’.

Fifth, we’ll all keep in touch, even if just loosely. How? I don’t know. Primarily, my plan is to make a loose reading schedule from the McGraw Hill RHCSA/RHCE book that I listed above. I’ll post updates every week or so and we’ll just fan out into a fairly unstructured body of people with the same goals in mind. Stay active in the blog comments. If things get too chatty, I can always spin up some kind of simple community site or we can shift over to the SysAdmin Network for more forum-style interaction.

Name It and Claim It

Hi my name is Wesley and I am going to work towards getting my RHCSA certification before 2013. I’ve been working pretty consistently with RPM based distributions for about a year and a half now, and it’s time to get lettered.

How about you? What Red Hat cert do you think could help out your professional life? Make your bold claim to a Red Hat certification in the comments below. I’ll make a follow up post listing those who have stated their intentions.

Share this post around! Let’s get some people motivated to end 2012 with some hard earned paper and start 2013 with, hopefully, some more money and better options for the future.


  1. Kenny

    October 1, 2012 at 4:34 am

    Hi, my name is Kenny. I took EX200 a month ago and am now an RHCSA.
    I plan to take the EX300 (the RHCE exam) within the next 6 months. A study group sounds like a great idea! You have my sword.


    • Wesley David

      October 1, 2012 at 7:50 am

      Together we shall slay yon dread bit dragons!


  2. Noe Gonzalez

    October 1, 2012 at 5:58 am

    So crazy that you’re doing this, I just started looking into getting a Red Hat cert last weekend and haven’t really been sure where to start. So here goes:

    Hey, my name is Noe and I’m going to work on getting my RHCSA vertification before 2013. I work mostly with Mac and Windows at work, and have been using ubuntu/rhel a a little at home and work. So yeah, let’s do it!


    • Wesley David

      October 1, 2012 at 7:51 am

      No better time than now! To your RHCSA and beyond.


  3. Simon

    October 2, 2012 at 5:57 am

    You have my sword too! What a good idea. I took the online assessment test and was recommended RH190. I think I’d rather go for the RHCSA. We’ll see how it goes :)


    • Wesley David

      October 2, 2012 at 10:29 am

      Good to have you on board, Simon! An update with the initial list of participants will be shortly forthcoming.


  4. Cole

    October 2, 2012 at 10:46 am

    My name is Cole – and I’m awesome.

    Totally onboard.


    • Wesley David

      October 2, 2012 at 10:47 am

      The EX200 won’t know what hit it.


  5. Barry Morrison (@esacteksab)

    October 2, 2012 at 11:55 am

    I SO should do this! But 2 months != time :(


    • Wesley David

      October 2, 2012 at 11:58 am

      Technically it’s three months, unless you take the entire month of December off for Christmas / Hanukah. =)


  6. Jeff C

    October 2, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    I’ve taken EX300 3 times. I passed RHCSA on the first try, but RHCE has eluded me 3 times thus far


    • Wesley David

      October 2, 2012 at 12:15 pm

      Then it shall be your fourth time as the charm. =)


    • Wesley David

      October 2, 2012 at 12:16 pm

      Oh, and stay tuned to the blog for more news this Friday and beyond.


  7. Shashi

    October 3, 2012 at 4:15 am

    I am experienced Linux administrator, but did not managed to attempt the RHCE certification yet. My goal is to clear RHCE exam by this Dec. 2012. My day job is on RHEL systems.


    • Wesley David

      October 3, 2012 at 9:18 am

      So are you going to take both the EX200 and the EX300 exams?


  8. […] this week, I asked if anyone was interested in a loose-knit Red Hat study buddy group to finish 2012 with some Red Hat certifications. The response was positive and so far we’ve […]


  9. Mathew

    October 5, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    My name is Mathew. I have an LPIC-1. It’s a bit of a weak cert, though. multiple-choice and fill in the blanks is easy to pass. My original goal was to pass the RHCSA exam by June and the RHCE by Dec. I’ve fallen behind, though. Time to pick up again. Hopefully this group will help me stay motivated.


  10. […] you’re following along at home with the 2012 Red Hat Study Buddy Group, there’s a handful of folks (myself included) who have decided to nab some Red Hat […]


  11. Webster

    October 12, 2012 at 2:17 am

  12. Marc

    July 30, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    Hi, I just ran across the site. Does anyone know of such group happenings here in 2013? I know I am late to the party but have been through these materials for many years including the Jang book for RHCE, but I have yet to get up the nerve to gamble my money on the exam fees, so I am looking for a good way to review and build confidence while doing it. You’d think having many years of working with RH would alone give me confidence, but trust me, I can blow exam money all too quick! Any info would be appreciated – thanks Marc


    • Wesley David

      July 30, 2013 at 8:12 pm

      I had hoped to start a 2013 edition of this challenge, but life has caught up to me and I don’t have the time to really do any justice to the idea. If I do, however, I’ll be sure to blog about it. You can also head on over to The Sysadmin Network and see if anyone is interested in helping you out:


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