Unless it's free,... It's a joke...

Story: LPI Announces Linux Essentials for North AmericaTotal Replies: 8
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Oct 01, 2012
2:10 AM EDT
I didn't read enough of this to see whether there is a cost involved, but from the course description, ... unless the thing is free, ... it's a pathetic joke...

Sorry, but LPI ' certs don't hold a candle to RedHat Certs...

Oct 01, 2012
3:20 AM EDT

Please note in the media release the final paragraph before the ### and the About LPI section following that. Obviously the individuals and organizations noted in those sections don't share your opinion.

Also note that LPI is both vendor and distribution-neutral.

Oct 01, 2012
4:15 AM EDT

You appear to be determinedly misinformed.

Everyone that I have met with first-hand experience of LPI coursework/exams have regarded them positively. In this country they are integrated into the national educational qualification system, and courses are available in higher education institutions.

As far as I know the only obligatory costs are to cover trusted examination invigilation etc., without which the certificate would be worthless.


Oct 01, 2012
10:12 AM EDT
I don't know, but seems to me $85! ....even $65.... is a lotta damn jingles for an "invigilation" babysitter. Multiply that by a dozen or so testees and were talking lucre waaay beyond justifying mere certification. IOW, pretty slimey I gotta pony up to prove I can drive the bus, a free bus at that.

It wouldn't be so bad if the cert fees were more in line with reality. ARRL (ham radio license) only charges $7 per exam and $.55 per mile travel expense each for the 3 examiners. They flying these LPI invigilators in from Gnome AL?

Oct 01, 2012
11:46 AM EDT
Misinformed?!,... Nah,... not according to what I've seen and read over the last 10 years I've been involved with Linux,...

Every experienced Linux Admin. I've heard speak about the LPI offerings is that they were on par with MSCE certs... Paper tiger fare... And I'm going back years with that... Not just my opinions...

Those who have been kind about those certs, are often doing so out of political correctness. And testimonials?! There are reasons why they are often restricted in regulated sales industries, like finance and insurance.

If it helps someone get a job,... Great. But you won't catch me dropping $65 or $85 on one of those... or any money on a LPI cert... Just my opinion (which I happen to share with others)...

Oct 01, 2012
12:46 PM EDT
Yes misinformed. The Red Hat Certificates cost many times the price of these, and are aimed at IT professionals. The LPI Essentials certificates are clearly aimed at users, not IT staff. To equate the two is disingenuous.

My clients regularly ask about certificated training for their admin/office staff, equivalent to the fork-lift, first-aid, and book-keeping training they provide for other employees. I see this syllabus as approximating that requirement.

College courses that I have seen have bundled the LPI stuff with vocational courses for librarians, office workers, etc. If anyone is doing this off their own bat, then the announcement clearly states that low-cost on-line exams will be available (This course seems new in the USA, but already available in Europe). Also LPI have frequently attended Linux conferences and offered their exams to attendees at no charge.

(P.S. 10 years makes you a relative newbie.)


Oct 01, 2012
1:54 PM EDT
The RHCSA and the RHCE each cost $400. A decent prep book can be had for under $40. It only costs more if you need classroom training. I would argue that if you need classroom training you probably have no business taking certs (unless you have an employer sponsoring you).

If you're talking about certifying users,... Let me ask... Do Windows users get certified to use Windows? (I'll assume the answer is, "no.") Why then would you certify someone to use Linux?

The only reason for certs are to help people get jobs... Certifying entry level skills in Linux plays into the Myth that it's difficult to learn to use Linux. It helps perpetuate a stereotype of Linux based OSes.

On top of that, do me a favor,... use you favorite search engine to search "LPI versus RedHat Certification," maybe without the quotes,... What you'll see is somewhere between 2/3 and 3/4 of the opinions being the same as mine. LPI certs are certainly not Comptia kind of bad, but they don't portray nearly the amount of respect and confidence in the cert holder as the RedHat certs. Should that be different? Sure. But it isn't.

Oh,... and by the way,... My 10 years using Linux isn't as a dual booter... If we count dabbling in Linux time,... That goes back 13 years... Back when to install SuSE 6.x (I think I started with 6.1), you had to know about your hardware intimately ... And if I recall right, you had to compile your kernel. No auto-mounting volumes in those days, either. I was just trying to set up a fax server, but both it, and I weren't up to it. If you have more experience with Linux than me,... great. I guess new-ness is relative.

Oct 01, 2012
3:19 PM EDT
Quoting:Misinformed?!,... Nah,... not according to what I've seen and read over the last 10 years I've been involved with Linux,...

Every experienced Linux Admin. I've heard speak about the LPI offerings is that they were on par with MSCE certs... Paper tiger fare... And I'm going back years with that... Not just my opinions...
And within the selfsame "last 10 years", there have apparently been remarkably similar such discussions concerning the comparative value of IT certifications. E.g., within the LXer Features' Editorial 'Are Vendor Certifications Worth It?', found at http://lxer.com/module/newswire/view/29605

Quoting:... That goes back 13 years... Back when to install SuSE 6.x (I think I started with 6.1), you had to know about your hardware intimately ...
13 years ago would have been just about the time when Novell's own Certified Novell/NetWare Engineer certification program would have still been fairly popular. For further information on this, see the 'Certified Novell Engineer' Wikipedia piece found at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Certified_Novell_Engineer. Soon after Novell's CNE certification program fell much further into decline, of course, Novell made the historic purchase of SuSE Linux for $210 million and subsequently became more intimately involved with CompTIA's own Linux program, the Linux+ certification.

For further information on the latter, please refer to the postings by one of the original founders of LXer:

- Novell Completes Acquisition of Leading European Linux Distributor'

- Taking the Linux+ Exam

- Novell launches new training course to promote education on Linux


Oct 01, 2012
3:33 PM EDT
First off, if you don't like what you see out of the not-for-profit, volunteer-heavy Linux Professional Institute (LPI), then volunteer yourself! Everyone from Scott Lamberton to Matt Rice running the Objectives and Exam Development, they are always looking for input. To complain about LPI is like complaining about an Animal Shelter, they are doing good works. So if you don't agree, the way to change things is to volunteer.

Secondly, the "Essentials" program is the result of a long-standing desire to create a "LPI Certified Level 0 (LPIC-0)" for stakeholders and non-admins. It's been talked about for most of the past decade. The idea to expose IT directors and major decision makers to Open Source and Essential Linux concepts is only going to be a favorable one.

Third, I'm honestly tired of this LPI v. Red Hat non-sense. They both have their own, respective, industry-leading programs. That's why I advocate *BOTH* LPI Certified and Red Hat Certified, *NOT* "versus"!

LPI has built not just a non-profit and vendor neutral program, but doesn't go out and make money on the "cash cow" of training like a lot of allegedly vendor neutral programs. Even CompTIA, after years of having barely 1/10th the number of Linux+ certified individuals versus LPI Certified Level 1 (LPIC-1), just adopted LPIC-1 as the Linux+. Even LPIC-1 goes into far more depth than the Linux+ ever did, and it's not an user cert. LPI's main limitation is funding, which limits it to the entry-level Prometric/Vue (and now just Vue) formats. If you don't like that then lobby your employers to become sponsors so they can offer other testing options.

The 101 and 102 objectives of LPIC-1 cover a broad range of tools and solutions, and is a great program for teaching people CLI and elementary system administration. That's why Novell endorsed it long ago. I've personally always liked 101 because it covers both APT-DPKG as well as YUM-RPM. LPIC-2 and LPIC-3 expand the coverage into seasoned and senior Linux administration, deployment and even some engineering-architecture. Matt Rice has done an excellent job in taking a lot of input and getting the LPIC-3 program off-the-ground with many options (4 exams), and is now in the middle of revising the LPIC-2 program to merge in some LPIC-3 foundations into LPIC-2 (for the next refresh of LPIC-3). The depth of the LPI programs are completely unheard of in the IT world for a non-profit, vendor-neutral program.

Red Hat goes in a completely different direction. Red Hat decided to build a vendor-centric certification and model it after the Cisco CCIE, 100% hands-on, performance-based testing in front of real systems. That costs over $1,000/day for both Cisco and Red Hat to do. Unlike many "remote" or "simulation" approaches, hands-on systems right in front of you allow you to hammer through compounding objectives that are non-trival. Red Hat then decided to subsidize examination costs by running them on Fridays, preceded by training Monday - Thursday. At the same time Red Hat built one of the most respected training programs that goes to various depths (especially post-RHCE), all while sticking to hands-on examination for lower-level as well (e.g., RHCSA, unlike Cisco CCDP/CCNP/etc...).

From my viewpoint, the broadness of LPI objectives and examination with Red Hat's hands-on format are the perfect 1-2 combination. If you are both LPI Certified and Red Hat Certified, you get the "first look" from me. The two are extremely complementary, taking the non-profit and vendor-centric programs to the best of their development and format approaches. Besides, the concept of "versus" and "marketing" is why I left the non-community world, and I really have a great distain for when people drag it over to our community. Please don't. I've been through no less than ten (10) different certification programs, most to the expert and mastery level, and there's no comparison.

-- Bryan J Smith, LPI Certified Level 3 (LPIC-3), Red Hat Certified Architect (RHCA)

DISCLAIMER: I do not speak for LPI or Red Hat, and anyone who knows me knows I've been saying this for the past decade too, regardless of who I may work with or for.

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