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Taking the LFCE exam (with LFS211 as prep guide)

cstern
cstern Posts: 3
edited June 2019 in LFS211 Class Forum

Hello all,

1) is the exam exclusively multiple-choice or not? If not, which topics should be focused on in detail?
2) Is it important to know processes (installation, configuration, logging, filter, etc.) of specific topics (e.g. configuration of DHCP, DNS, servers, database, etc.) in detail? If yes, please describe the details to focus on.
3) if one chooses e.g. Ubuntu as a system platform for the exam, do the audit tasks also exclusively base on Ubuntu?
4) in some course chapters tools (e.g. GUI tools, firewall tools, etc.) are only named without getting into more detail. Is it necessary to check these tools in detail (e.g. tools like Snort are quite complex) ?
5) How important are the lab parts from the course for the exam? Considering the exercises on what parts should be focused (mostly commands, installations, configurations, monitoring, logging, etc) ?
6) During the exam, do I have enough time to lookup commands etc.? Are there time limits for each objective as a hint how much time to spend on an objective?
7) If there are still further important things to consider on the exam besides the prep doc, please give me a hint.

Best Christopher

Answers

  • coop
    coop Posts: 773

    Questions about the LFCE exam are better posed to the certification people, as the training course developers do not have access to the exams and are not directly involved in their construction, and actually have the same public information as students do. Also the web site has detailed information about the exam format and guides to preparation materials. However, some well known facts:

    1) There are absolutely no multiple choice, true false, etc questions. The exam is completely performance based, you are given access to a virtual machine where you perform various tasks.

    2) Keep in mind there are limits to how complex a task you can ask someone to do in a relatively short time, say 20 minutes to a half hour at most.

    3) If you are on Ubuntu you will given ubuntu/debian based tasks, on centos, redhat/centos/fedora tasks. I.e, either .rpm or .deb as appropriate etc. Since the material is command line based you should not expect a lot of GUI.

    4) see 2)

    5) Labs are the important part, we believe in learning by doing and the exams are performance based. As for details as you ask, I do not know, but keep in mind 2)

    6) Ask certification people, but I"m sure you have full access to the on-machine resources, such as man and info and command helps. (You can't google I'm pretty sure.) I also (non-authoritatively) believe time management is purely your own, if you want to spend the entire two hours on the first problem, no one will stop you.

    7) see 1) to 6) :wink: Keep in mind you always get a free re-take, so try to limit your angst and view the first attempt as a learning exercise, this will often make it easier to pass rather than overthinking.

    I hope this is helpful, but please don't use my comments as a substitute for the certification help. I help design a lot of the course material, but we have a firewall between exam and course -- why is a subject for another discussion, but is a common practice in this arena

  • fcioanca
    fcioanca Posts: 989
    edited June 2019

    Please also check the publicly available resources for LFCE, including domains and competencies, prep guide, certification policies and candidate handbook, etc: https://training.linuxfoundation.org/certification/linux-foundation-certified-engineer-lfce/. If you have additional questions, please email [email protected]

  • AlessandroAffinito
    edited December 2020

    Hi,
    Do you think the theory explained in this course is enough for passing the exam?
    I'm concerned about how short and superficial are some chapters on important and deep topics like:

    • Systemd:
      There is a list on how to start/stop/enable disable a service and a list of paths. Nothing about how to create and manage a unit file, all their parameters, systemd-delta and systemctl daemon-reload.
      Here's an example of a good free Systemd article.

    • Level 2 Network configuration:

    The following commands are used to change the maximum transmission unit (MTU):
    ifconfig eth0 mtu 1492

    What is MTU? When and why should I change it? etc..
    Here's a random free better article.

    • Shouldn't be there a chapter on version control?

    There could be more examples, I'm concerned this is way too shallow for its cost and for passing the exam, sorry.
    Thanks

  • coop
    coop Posts: 773

    We have never stated that this is a course which is all you need to undertake to pass the LFCS exam; it prepares for the exam but it is not an "exam preparation" course, as the goal is to help people attain the skills to be a productive system administrator, not just pass an exam. Which is also why the exams are performance-based, not multiple choice games. We expect students will have in addition the equivalent experience of LFS101x at edx.org before taking this course, and will be stimulated to reach out to other sources of knowledge as they take the course, as you have indicated above you are doing. On specifics:

    How to create a systemd service is covered in the "startup" chapter (see "fake_service")

    An MTU is defined in the sentence you quoted. We could have picked many different parameters, this one is easy because you can find out with no trouble detailed documentation on it. How to tune the mtu is outside the scope of this course.

    On version control, git is covered in the chapter on packaging systems and there are labs with it. I doubt you will run into any other versioning control systems much these days as there are literally millions of git repos easily accessible.

    This course is humongous. Many many people have passed the exam after taking it on the first try, and probably most of those who fail on the first try, amortize that experience and pass on the second try. Don't be so gloomy. You had the opportunity to examine the complete outline for the course before you purchased it, so please don't act surprised at its contents.

  • stongench
    stongench Posts: 14

    @coop I did the exam today and the course will point you in the right direction to pass the exam, not with a 100% but you will pass if you deep further in the topics, the big problem with the exam are the tricky questions, reading the requirements is like solving a puzzle totally unfair given the amount of time, also the notepad tool on the website could hang the entire web browser it happens to me and that consumed me a lot of time.

  • stongench
    stongench Posts: 14

    I mean dig further

  • coop
    coop Posts: 773

    I hope you passed!

    As far as any comments, questions etc about how the exam is conducted or technical problems taking the exam, please contact the certification people as the course developers and those of us monitoring this forum have nothing to do with the actual design or questions. I'm sure if you give specific points you will get a response. Raising these issues here will not get you the answers you may be looking for.

  • stongench
    stongench Posts: 14

    @coop Well it was my first attempt (at least this year) so I don't expect to pass, anyway I'll take revenge in 15 days.

  • @stongench - Anything you'll like to share about the exam experience? I plan to take the exam in 2 weeks. Any highlight will be appreciated

  • rranay
    rranay Posts: 6

    Took the free take... and still ouch! You'll really have to dig more stuff beyond the materials here that comes with the bundle and do plenty of hands on to make things second nature. And without further going into the detail, the exercises here leaves a lot to be desired to pass; and that exam needs to be at least 2.5 hours!

  • @rranay said:
    Took the free take... and still ouch! You'll really have to dig more stuff beyond the materials here that comes with the bundle and do plenty of hands on to make things second nature.

    Did you find LFS211 covered a lot of new-to-you material?

    And without further going into the detail, the exercises here leaves a lot to be desired to pass; and that exam needs to be at least 2.5 hours!

    Seems like several of us signed up for the LFCE and this as a bundle under the impression we were getting access to the training material for the LFCE. I thought so at the time...

    This course does seem to cover more than just Linux networking, so I was getting my hopes up as I progress through it (slowly).

    Now I officially wish I'd have gone with RHCE or even just settled for RHSA - study materials access and recognized certificates.

  • @RonaldBarnes said:

    @rranay said:
    Took the free take... and still ouch! You'll really have to dig more stuff beyond the materials here that comes with the bundle and do plenty of hands on to make things second nature.

    Did you find LFS211 covered a lot of new-to-you material?

    And without further going into the detail, the exercises here leaves a lot to be desired to pass; and that exam needs to be at least 2.5 hours!

    Seems like several of us signed up for the LFCE and this as a bundle under the impression we were getting access to the training material for the LFCE. I thought so at the time...

    This course does seem to cover more than just Linux networking, so I was getting my hopes up as I progress through it (slowly).

    Now I officially wish I'd have gone with RHCE or even just settled for RHSA - study materials access and recognized certificates.

    Well in order to pass LFCE you need LFCS, if you study lfs211 and lfs201 you are ready to pass the exam, I did my second attempt and passed today.
    A few tips for anyone interested:
    1- Take the advice of mentors when they say to take the first attempt as practice.
    2- Memorize as much as you can the questions, then make yourself a homelab to practice.
    3- Practice to beat the time that is the main issue with the exam you need muscle memory to type the commands or you will run out of time.
    After that you will pass not with a 100% score but you will pass, lfs211 will cover a good percentage on exam question.
    Good luck for anyone trying and lfs211 + lfs201 it's an awesome course, one give you the basic, while the other give you a summary of topics so you are not lose while looking for resources.

  • @TemiAworanti said:
    @stongench - Anything you'll like to share about the exam experience? I plan to take the exam in 2 weeks. Any highlight will be appreciated

    Try not to reboot any node if you do so don't wait until it's back again move on and mark the question to answer later, read carefully but really carefully the questions, don't waste your time to ask any question to proctor they don't know what you are doing, if you find something confusing move on and answer at the end, try to be calm.
    Your main enemy is the time

  • I can't give any inside of the exam due to certification policies but take lfs211 as a reference guide, look further any topic contained in the course, use the developers website for documentation and man pages for more info.

  • Thanks for the tips, @stongench - appreciated.

    I've spent several hours poking around with LXC to complete one of the LFS211 sections on it. And, I've done similar for several other sections. Hoping these deep-dives will give me decent background (and remove the rust that's built up on my skillset).

    Between having a bunch of fun with LXC and your posts, I'm feeling better about things.

    First test attempt will definitely be a trial run.

  • Are you talking about lxc section inside the course? to be exactly chapter 16 labs 16.1, 16.2?

  • I paid special attention to those chapter because I needed to move an elastix (asterisk) installation to Issabelpbx at work, I was trying to use docker but it doesn't work quite well with too many ports open, then tried with lxc using a container and using the netinstall but it didn't work either, ended up using lxd with a virtual machine and it worked like a charm.

  • rranay
    rranay Posts: 6
    edited February 20

    @RonaldBarnes said:
    Now I officially wish I'd have gone with RHCE or even just settled for RHSA - study materials access and recognized certificates.

    I wish I did the Red Hat route. I've been told that their materials preps you enough to pass the exam. When I got the LF bundle it's the impression that it is enough material to cover the exam objectives that got me hooked. The other thing is that you can take the exam remotely. But like, unfortunately as I said, you really have to dig some more or probably go check other vendors.

  • @rranay said:

    @RonaldBarnes said:
    Now I officially wish I'd have gone with RHCE or even just settled for RHSA - study materials access and recognized certificates.

    I wish I did the Red Hat route. I've been told that their materials preps you enough to pass the exam. When I got the LF bundle it's the impression that it is enough material to cover the exam objectives that got me hooked. The other thing is that you can take the exam remotely. But like, unfortunately as I said, you really have to dig some more or probably go check other vendors.

    Well, I'm really happy with this bundle, I've been buying it every time I can, to be honest I use the knowledge almost every day at work, this courses helps a lot as a coop says it really prepare you to work letting certification beside, but if you ask me I have LFCS LFCE certifications thanks to LFS201 and LFS211.

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