Red Hat Certified System Administrator (RHCSA) Study Notes


Understand and use essential tools

Access a shell prompt and issue commands with correct syntax

Run Gnome Terminal or xterm or access the console.

Use input-output redirection (>, >>, |, 2>, etc.)

See REDIRECTION in bash(1) (or OpenBSD sh(1)).

Most processes have at least three numbered file descriptors, to which input or output can be redirected:

[n]>file writes output from file descriptor n (1, by default) to file, like:

$ echo "My file contents." > /tmp/foo.txt

Or redirect stderr like:

$ cc hello.c 2> /dev/null

By default, > truncates and overwrites (i.e., clobbers) any previously-existing output file. Set the noclobber shell option to prevent > from cobbering existing files.

$ echo "My contents." > /tmp/bar.txt
$ set -o noclobber
$ echo "New contents." > /tmp/bar.txt
bash: /tmp/bar.txt: cannot overwrite existing file

[n]>>file appends output form file descriptor n to file, like:

$ echo "Add this!" >> /tmp/bar.txt

Input can also be redirected. [n]<file writes file to file descriptor n (0 by default).

$ echo "One.\nTwo.\nThree." > /tmp/lines.txt
$ tac < /tmp/lines.txt

Using << for input acts as a “here document” to read input until and end-of-file delimiter is reached.


Duplicate file descriptors with <& or >&. Here, when the shell executes ls, it closes the standard error file descriptor (2) and gives ls a copy of the standard out file descriptor (1) to use for errors:

$ ls 2>&1

A pipe (|) connects the standard output of one command to the standard input of the next command. See the Pipelines section of bash(1).

🐚  fortean  ~ $ echo " charlie \n alpha \n bravo \n delta" | sort

Use grep and regular expressions to analyze text

Access remote systems using SSH

Log in and switch users in multiuser targets

Archive, compress, unpack, and uncompress files using tar, star, gzip, and bzip2

Create and edit text files

Create, delete, copy, and move files and directories

List, set, and change standard ugo/rwx permissions

Locate, read, and use system documentation including man, info, and files in /usr/share/doc

Create simple shell scripts

Conditionally execute code (use of: if, test, [], etc.)

Use Looping constructs (for, etc.) to process file, command line input

Process script inputs ($1, $2, etc.)

Processing output of shell commands within a script

Processing shell command exit codes

Operate running systems

Boot, reboot, and shut down a system normally

Boot systems into different targets manually

Interrupt the boot process in order to gain access to a system

Identify CPU/memory intensive processes and kill processes

Adjust process scheduling

Manage tuning profiles

Locate and interpret system log files and journals

Preserve system journals

Start, stop, and check the status of network services

Securely transfer files between systems

Configure local storage

List, create, delete partitions on MBR and GPT disks

Create and remove physical volumes

Assign physical volumes to volume groups

Create and delete logical volumes

Configure systems to mount file systems at boot by universally unique ID (UUID) or label

Add new partitions and logical volumes, and swap to a system non-destructively

Create and configure file systems

Create, mount, unmount, and use vfat, ext4, and xfs file systems

Mount and unmount network file systems using NFS

Extend existing logical volumes

Create and configure set-GID directories for collaboration

Configure disk compression

Manage layered storage

Diagnose and correct file permission problems

Deploy, configure, and maintain systems

Schedule tasks using at and cron

Start and stop services and configure services to start automatically at boot

Configure systems to boot into a specific target automatically

Configure time service clients

Install and update software packages from Red Hat Network, a remote repository, or from the local file system

Work with package module streams

Modify the system bootloader

Manage basic networking

Configure IPv4 and IPv6 addresses

Configure hostname resolution

Configure network services to start automatically at boot

Restrict network access using firewall-cmd/firewall

Manage users and groups

Create, delete, and modify local user accounts

Change passwords and adjust password aging for local user accounts

Create, delete, and modify local groups and group memberships

Configure superuser access

Manage security

Configure firewall settings using firewall-cmd/firewalld

Create and use file access control lists

Configure key-based authentication for SSH

Set enforcing and permissive modes for SELinux

List and identify SELinux file and process context

Restore default file contexts

Use boolean settings to modify system SELinux settings

Diagnose and address routine SELinux policy violations

Manage containers

Find and retrieve container images from a remote registry

Inspect container images

Perform container management using commands such as podman and skopeo

Perform basic container management such as running, starting, stopping, and listing running containers

Run a service inside a container

Configure a container to start automatically as a systemd service

Attach persistent storage to a container