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About CompTIA Linux+ Certification

CompTIA Linux+ is designed to validate the proficiency of those IT professionals who utilize Linux in managing everything from smartphones and cars to supercomputers and servers. With the growth in the adoption of Linux in cybersecurity, web administration, mobile, and Cloud applications, the demand for the certified specialists is on the rise.

To get this certificate, the professionals have to pass a single exam, which is CompTIA XK0-004. Thus, the target audience for this test and the associated certification is the individuals with the relevant skills in Linux command line, installation & configuration of workstations, basic maintenance, as well as networking. The Linux+ certificate does not have any official requirements. However, it is assumed that the applicants have at least twelve months of experience working as Linux Administrators. It is also recommended to become familiar with CompTIA A+ and CompTIA Network+ before attempting the qualifying exam.

Exam Details

The CompTIA XK0-004 exam evaluates the candidates’ competence and skills in configuring, supporting, and monitoring devices that are running on Linux OS. This test focuses on a range of topics, such as Kernel modules, security, virtualization & storage, firewalls and networking, troubleshooting & SELinux, as well as device management at enterprise levels, server coverage, and command line & server-side.

This is a 90-minute test containing 90 questions that are presented in the multiple-choice, multiple-response, fill-in-the-blank, and performance-based formats. The exam is available in several languages, including English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Japanese. To register for the test, the applicants should go through the Pearson VUE platform. They can take the exam as online testing or at a designated Pearson VUE center. The registration fee for the exam is $338 that applies to a single attempt only. To earn the certification, the students need to attain the passing score of 720 points on a scale of 100-900.

To help the individuals to gain competence in the exam domains, CompTIA offers various resources, such as eLearning, study guides, virtual labs, instructor-led training courses, and others. Each prep option equips the candidates with knowledge and mastery of the exam content. Some of these materials are free, while some of them require that the learners have a study budget.

Exam Topics

It is recommended to read the exam blueprint to prepare for the CompTIA XK0-004 test. It contains the objectives and the detailed scope of the covered topics. All in all, this certification exam consists of five domains that are listed below:

Hardware & System Configuration (21%) – To ace this section, the test takers need to be able to do the following:

  • Installing, monitoring & configuring the Kernel modules in a given scenario;
  • Describing the concepts of the Linux boot process, including boot loaders, boot options, boot files & modules, file locations, and Kernel panic;
  • Verifying & configuring the parameters for network connections (diagnostic tools, bonding, and configuration files);
  • Managing storage within the Linux environment, including basic partitions, location, tools, device-mapper, file system hierarchy, and file system types;
  • Comparing and contrasting the Cloud and virtualization concepts and technologies, including templates, bootstrapping, storage, network considerations, tools, and types of hypervisors;
  • Configuring the options of localization within a given scenario.

Systems Operation and Maintenance (26%) – As for this topic, the candidates should have the knowledge of the following processes:

  • Performing software installations, updates, removals, and configurations, including package types, repositories, installation tools, acquisition commands, and build tools;
  • Managing groups and users (creation, quotas, queries, modification, deletion, profiles, as well as file contents & important files);
  • Creating, redirecting, and modifying files within a prescribed situation;
  • Describing and summarizing the server roles, including NTP, Web, SSH, Name server, certificate authority, DHCP, Authentication server, File servers, Proxy, VPN, Logging, Monitoring, Container, Database, Mail server, Print server, clustering, and load balancer;
  • Scheduling and automating jobs, such as usage of Ctrl+c, Ctrl+x, cron, at, fg, crontab, &, bg, nonhup, and kill in a given situation;
  • Explaining the operation and usage of Linux devices, including types of devices, hot-pluggable devices, file location, as well as configuration and monitoring tools;
  • Comparing and contrasting Linux graphical user interfaces (servers, accessibility, console redirection, remote desktop, and GUI).

Security (19%) – This subject area requires that the examinees demonstrate their expertise in:

  • Acquiring or applying the relevant group and/or user ownership or permissions, such as file & directory permissions, privilege escalation, context-based permissions, and user types;
  • Implementing and configuring the relevant access & authentication methods, such as SSHH, PAM, TTYs, PKI, PTYs, and VPN;
  • Summarizing the security practices within a Linux environment, including changing default ports, boot security, password-less login, No shared IDs, additional authentication techniques, and restricting cron access, among others;
  • Implementing the logging services in a given scenario;
  • Configuring and implementing the Linux firewalls in a prescribed scenario;
  • Compressing, backup, and restoring files within a given scenario.

Linux Troubleshoot & Diagnostics (20%) – To deal with this module, the applicants need to have skills in:

  • Analyzing and remediating the system properties, including configuration and monitoring of storage, network, memory & CPU;
  • Examining the system processes to optimize performance in a given scenario;
  • Analyzing and troubleshooting the user issues, such as permissions, authentication, access, file creation, environment & shell issues, as well as insufficient privileges for authorization;
  • Inspecting and troubleshooting hardware & application issues, including problems with the firewall, dependencies, permissions, storage, and SELinux context violation within a given scenario.

Automation and Scripting (14%) – The last domain evaluates the individuals’ expertise in the following processes:

  • Deploying and executing the basic BASH scripts within a given scenario;
  • Utilizing Git to perform version control in a given scenario;
  • Summarizing the orchestration concepts and processes, including agent, agentless, attributes, procedures, inventory, build automation, infrastructure as code, and automated configuration management.

Career Path

The professionals who pass the XK0-004 exam will obtain the CompTIA Linux+ certificate. Many reputable organizations trust this sought-after certification, so the certificate holders can explore and take up several job roles, such as a Linux Administrator, a Web Administrator, a Network Administrator, a Technical Support Specialist, and a Systems Administrator. The average salary outlook for these positions is $74,000 per annum.

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