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How to prepare for exam LFCS? How it's look like?

How do you think it is best to prepare for the LFCS exam? For me, it looks like I have been working as a programmer for over 7 years and plan to change direction to sysadmin.

Regarding my experience with linux, it's like this:

  • I configured about 200 www servers, including apache / nginx, bind, postfix, dovecot and many more + simple bash scripts e.g. for backup
  • I have been administering exactly 5 dedicated servers for over 2 years, where there are over 1500 wordpress blogs, but there is a lot of work on them
  • I completed the LFS-201 course
  • I am currently finishing the "Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator (LFCS)" path with pluralsight
  • I spend about 2-3 hours everyday on exam exercises, on weekends a lot more and I do things like find, sed, grep, storage configuration, etc. Exam tasks

Everything trains in the home laboratory, which consists of 3 servers on CentOS, including one with a graphical environment, the second command line, and the third for testing scripts.

Despite all this, I still have a lot of fears about taking the exam. When do you think is the best time to take the exam?

What does such an exam look like? I don't mean questions, but that's what he does. I mean, do we need to talk to the protector or do we just log in to the terminal, get a pdf with tasks and do tasks?

Regards Pawel


  • coop
    coop Posts: 915

    Wow :)

    For exam-specific questions (such as what you can or cannot do): Please reach out to [email protected] for assistance on all exam-related issues (that's an FAQ response) This is the training side, and we neither run or support exam procedures. There also many preparation resources on the certification website, and I'm sure you have seen those.

    Otherwise, you seem very very prepared. In fact you might be over-prepared in the sense you may freeze with anxiety when you take the exam! Keep in mind you get a free retake (as far as I know) so always try to relax when you take the exam the first time, it leads to a better result. You have done much more preparation (and probably have more experience) than almost all candidates, so I don't see what else you can do.

    Good luck!

  • pawel33
    pawel33 Posts: 26

    Hi @coop
    Thank you for your reply, so I will write to the e-mail address provided. Regarding the exam, I have a free repetition, and despite what I can do, I still have very high concerns about taking the exam because I'm afraid I won't pass it. I was looking for a job as a Junior Linux Administrator to gain some commercial experience before the exam, but they rejected me everywhere because of experience. As for the conversation with the protector, I meant that I knew English at the level of writing and reading, but I have a problem with saying :smile:

    Currently, I spend a lot of time on networks and storage, because in this I feel a big shortage, in addition find, sed and grep because, somewhere from people's opinions, I read that even very advanced rules are found and there are quite a lot of tasks from it.

  • juliovn
    juliovn Posts: 5

    Hi @pawel33,

    Let me share my 2 cents since I am in a similar situation. First of all I am also a developer that is transitioning to sysadmin work since I started enjoying it through the work of configuring webservers, automation scripts and command line work.

    I was studying much less than you were and had much less experience than you have but I still passed the exam on the first try. Now, I don't want for you to get complacent so I would keep the regime but I think you are very well prepared. As prepared as one can be honestly, I would keep up the good work and perhaps if you are able put in some extra hours the week before the exam and rest the day just before just doing light reading and touch up on your notes.

    I won't say anything about the exam itself as everything I can say is on the documentation given to you, but as a general exam taking tip for any type of exam is if you don't immediatelly know what to do from a first reading of a task then skip to the next one. Finish all questions that you know for certain first, then take your time going through the next one.

    Remember you do have access to man pages so you can (and definitely will) consult those. So taking time to familiarize yourself with man pages and how to navigate them will most certainly be very beneficial. I myself had trouble with that because I am so used at just googling stuff on my day to day work life and if you are at all like me I recommend forcing yourself to not google next time you find yourself the need to (at least where doing linux work of course).

    Anyways, wish you good luck on the exam and all the best on your carrer!

  • pawel33
    pawel33 Posts: 26

    Hi @juliovn
    Thank you for your answer :) I have been enjoying the administration of linux systems for a long time and at the beginning of my work as a programmer, I had more pleasure in configuring the server with the development environment than in programming itself. And there is nothing better than striving to fully automate the operation of the server using bash / python scripts.

    As for my level of preparation, I still have the impression that, despite everything, I know too little to pass such an exam and to approach it at all. Although I do not know what knowledge I had, in the situation of such exams I never fall into the car to the point that I take the exam loosely or stop learning at all. Currently, every week I devote about 30 hours to study for the exam, including a lot of practice and the longer I sit and spend time on it, the more I start to doubt my skills and experience.

    As for dealing without using google, for some time I stopped using google solution search and try to use the man manual more, but it is very hard because of work as a programmer, where google and stackoverflow are the first places where problem's solution.

    For now, I am still looking for a job as a junior linux administrator, unfortunately I fall out everywhere because of lack of experience, despite passing the test which the recruiting company sends me. Another obstacle is earnings, because as a programmer with 8 years of experience, I am not able to afford about 90% less earnings after changing to a junior administrator, so here is a very big problem.

    I had nothing left to do to study for the exam and count on luck :)

  • luisviveropena
    luisviveropena Posts: 1,128

    Hi @pawel33 ,

    I think you may improve your career for the side of DevOps, as you are a developer already. I found this URL about IT salaries, it's interesting:


    Many regards,

  • pawel33
    pawel33 Posts: 26

    Hi @luisviveropena
    Thank you for the reply. I program in backend technologies such as PHP and .NET Core. As for DevOps, in my current work I sometimes configure Jenkins + GitLab or TeamCity.

    My priority is passing the LFCS exam, then I will know what to do next and in what direction :)

  • coop
    coop Posts: 915

    You need to take the exam. When I was a professor I had a number of students who over-prepared so much they crumpled and fell when they took the exam. This exam is not that difficult and you have a free re-take. I have said this before but I have seen plenty of people who prepare much less do just fine. No matter how hard you prepare you can always get hit with a question in another area you don't know so well, and you will also do a ton of work on other subjects that is way over the line. You don't need a perfect score, you can get quite a bit wrong and pass (people tell me). Just don't get hung on a question -- do all the ones you understand first and then cycle back, which is just good experience on any exam.

    Just take the exam instead of being terrified of it ;)

  • luisviveropena
    luisviveropena Posts: 1,128

    Hi @pawel33 ,

    It's a pleasure! Well, you'll see more of DevOps in the bootcamp (LFS261), that will be very good.


  • pawel33
    pawel33 Posts: 26
    edited June 2020

    Hi @coop @luisviveropena
    I think you have right, but first of all i need buy webcam for exam :D The problem with me is that I doubt my capabilities all the time when I look at the scope of Service Configuration or Storage Management: D I am already sitting on such topics as configuring and using SELinux, ACL, docker, virtual machine

    @luisviveropena Your're right devops is amazing, i will check LFS261


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