CTS 2301
UNIX / Linux Administration I

Unix / Linux System Administration I course syllabus
View Weekly Course Schedule 

View Course Resources.

View Project 1 requirements.
View Project 2 requirements.
View Project 3 requirements.
View Project 4 requirements.
View Project 5 requirements.
View Project 6 requirements.
View Project 7 requirements.
View Project 8 requirements.
View Project 9 requirements.
View Project X requirements
    (project 1 for Admin II).
              Other interesting links:

Visit the Tampa-St. Pete Linux User's Group (SLUG).  This group holds monthly meetings.  See also the Pinellas Unix People (PUP) group. 
Most Unix and Linux software is actually GNU software (www.gnu.org), a project of the Free Software Foundation.  Search for RPMs and download updates from RPMFind.net.
A lot of Linux software can be found at www.FreshMeat.net.  You can get involved with open-source software at sourceforge.net.  You can download free distributions of Unix and Linux from distrowatch.com.
Download the PuTTY suite of Internet tools: SSH, scp, sFTP, and others, from www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/putty.  Download the WinSCP GUI wrapper for the PuTTY scp and sFTP tools from sourceforge.net/projects/winscp/.
Read the real History of Unix, by one of its inventors.
Visit www.unix.org for the Open Group's Unix site, including the Single Unix Specification.
View Solaris certification FAQ and Oracle's Solaris Certification information, including Sun Certified System Administrator (SCSA) exam objectives part 1 and part2.
View Linux Professional Institute (LPI) certification and View LPIC-1 exam objectives.
View Ubuntu certification and Ubuntu Certified Professional (UCP) exam objectives.
View Red Hat certification and Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) exam objectives.
View Novell Linux certification and Novell Certified Linux Administrator (CLA) exam objectives.

CTS-2301 Syllabus

Spring 2014

Course policies
Time & Place: Ref No. 51072: Monday, Wednesday, 5:30 – 6:45 PM, Dale Mabry Room DTEC–461
Instructor: Name:  Wayne Pollock
E-mail:  Internet:
Office & Phone:  DTEC–404, 253–7213
DM Office Hours:  Monday–Thursday, 3:55–5:25 & 8:30–9:00;
On-line Office Hours:  Tuesday–Friday, 12:00 PM (noon)–1:00 PMor by appointment.
Contact Information
Instant Messenger ID (Yahoo Messenger):  waynepollocklive
Homepage URL:  http://www.hccfl.edu/pollock/
          Yahoo Messenger on-line status - click to chat or leave a message
Texts: AEleen Frisch, Essential System Administration, 3rd Edition.  ©2002 O'Reilly & Associates.  ISBN: 0-596-00343-9.
Optional:  Hahn, Harley, Harley Hahn's Guide to Unix and Linux, ©2009 Harley Hahn, Pub. by McGraw-Hill.  ISBN # 978-0-07-313361-4.

HCC bookstore on-line

Description: (This course is 3 credit hours long.)  This course is a continuation of CTS 1106 (Introduction to Unix).  The focus is hands-on Linux system administration.  Topics include system administration concepts, system installation and configuration.  Additional topics include understanding the Unix filesystem, configuring basic system hardware and services, managing user accounts, basic system security, and backups.  Major Unix variants will also be covered.  This course continues with CTS 2322 (Unix/Linux Administration II).
Objectives: The student will demonstrate a knowledge of the following topics through objective tests, hands-on activities, and/or projects:
  1. Understand the role and common tasks of a system administrator, including job titles, salary, certifications, professional societies, and required soft skills
  2. Understand partitioning and disk layout, disk technology, including SCSI versus IDE, LVM (logical volume management)
  3. Understand booting, dual booting, boot managers
  4. Understand OS installation issues, install Linux, and troubleshoot common installation problems
  5. Understand and manage basic system hardware, including disk drive, NIC, and RAM installation, hardware disposal procedures, and basic safety issues (such as shock) and risks (such as ESD)
  6. Understand and manage disks and filesystems using tools such as fdisk, mount and umount (and the role of the fstab file), tune2fs, mkfs, fsck, and others
  7. Understand and use removable media
  8. Understand, use, and configure the graphic user interface
  9. Understand change management (including time management, help desk setup, and using a trouble-ticketing system), configuration management, and patch management
  10. Understand system startup and shutdown, run-levels
  11. Understand how to start and stop services manually and automatically at boot time, and how to use and configure inetd (and xinetd)
  12. Understand policies and procedures, such as a disaster recovery policy (DRP)
  13. Understand and use essential tools to perform system administrative tasks
  14. Install, manage, and update software packages using RPM and apt on Linux, and pkg on Solaris and BSD
  15. Understand kernel modules
  16. Understand and configure printing services, including local and remote printing using CUPS
  17. Understand basics of database servers (MySQL, PostgreSQL, and basic SQL), and how to configure them
  18. Understand how to add, remove, and manage user and group accounts
  19. Understand and manage passwords
  20. Understand and manage disk quotas
  21. Understand and perform basic network configuration, including TCP/IP and DNS, ISP connections using modems (PPP), cable modems (PPPoE), and DSL
  22. Understand backup and restore strategies and methods
Prerequisite: CTS 1106, or Permission of the Instructor.  Students enrolled in a degree or college credit certificate program must complete all prerequisites.  Note!  HCC registration computers may not check for prerequisites before allowing you to enroll.  Be certain you have all required prerequisites or you won't have much of a chance of success.  Also, you may be dropped from the class.
Facilities: Assignments can be performed on the Dale Mabry campus Linux computers, which can be accessed from the classroom, or from some computers in the last row of the DM open computer lab.  Each student will be assigned their own disk drive to work on.  If you phone the lab early on the day when you plan on working on your drive, the lab techs will have your drive ready.  YborStudent.hccfl.edu (a Linux server) can be accessed from on or off campus and can be used to practice, examine configuration files, read man pages, and do some parts of some assignments.  (Your user ID and password will be provided in class.)  From off-campus, you can also practice using any Unix/Linux system available (or install Linux at home).  However, projects must be completed using your assigned disk at HCC, using the assigned operating system.

A class “wiki” has been set up for your use, at YborStudent.hccfl.edu/UnixWiki/.  To add or modify any content you must create a login for yourself.  Use an account name that clearly indicates your real name; avoid account names such as “The Linuxator”.  You can use this wiki to hold discussions, ask questions, and contribute information to the collaborative study guide.  You can create your personal page(s) to hold your system journal or class notes.  (All content on the wiki, including personal user pages, are publicly readable, and must adhere to HCC policies.)

You will need your own flash disk, writing materials, and three Scantron 882–E or 882–ES forms.  You can use HawkNet (WebAdvisor) or Florida Virtual Campus (Formerly FACTS.org) to obtain your final grade for the course.  You must use your assigned Hawkmail (Hawkmail365) email address if you wish to discuss your grades via email.  (Note, it may be possible to setup your Hawkmail account to forward all received emails to some outside email account; but you still must send mail from Hawkmail to discuss grades.)

Most college systems now use (or will in the future) a single sign-on user ID, known as HCC “NetID”.  Visit netid.hccfl.edu to register and to update your credentials.  (Your initial password is your uppercase first name initial, lowercase last name initial, and your seven digit student ID number.)  Note the quickest way to resolve login issues is the HCC Live Web Portal (hcclive.hccfl.edu).

Hawk Alert text messaging service allows you to receive important information regarding campus closures or emergencies.  You may also sign up for financial aid notifications and registration and payment deadlines.  This is a free service, although some fees may be applied by your cellular service provider or plan for text messages.  To sign up, or for more information, visit www.hccfl.edu/alerts/.

HCC DM Open Lab

Computers with PuTTY installed are located in the computer science department open lab in DTEC–462.  Additionally, the back-row has computers identical to the ones in our classroom.  So if you need to work on your projects and the classroom is in use, you can request a lab tech to put your hard disk in one of the open lab computers.  (You can call the open lab to determine if the classroom will be available, or to have them pull your hard disk in advance.  The open lab phone number is:  253-7207.)

Lab hours are:

Dale Mabry campus open lab hours
Monday – Thursday8:00 AM to 10:00 PM
Friday 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM
Saturday 8:00 AM to 2:30 PM

(Note:  Lab technicians (“Lab Techs”) are not teaching assistants or tutors, and shouldn't be expected to help you with your coursework.)

Rules for Using HCC Facilities

  1. No food or drinks near computer equipment.
  2. Students bringing their own laptops need to use the wireless network only.  Students cannot disconnect network cables from classroom's computers to connect their personal devices.
  3. Students are not allowed to disconnect monitors or computers to power their personal equipment.
Grading Policy
Projects (about 10): 50%
3 equally weighted closed-book multiple choice exams     50%
Wiki (class study guide) assignment: +5
Classroom participation: +5%

Grading scale:  A=90-100,   B=80-89,   C=70-79,   D=65-69,   F=0-64
(If you stop attending the course before it is 60% complete, you will be awarded an “FX” grade.)
(Or you can elect to “audit” the class during the add/drop period.)

(Collaborating on the class wiki counts as up to 5 points extra credit, as does active class participation.  See below for details.)

  • No makeup exams will be offered without the prior approval of the instructor.  If a make-up exam is offered, you can take the exam in my office during my regular office hours, or from the Dale Mabry Testing Center.  (Check for their hours of operation, and make sure to give yourself sufficient time to complete an exam.)
  • Exams will be closed book and closed note multiple choice exams.  While the exams are non-cumulative, each does build upon knowledge acquired earlier.  Exams are based mostly upon material presented in class.  However some questions may be from assigned readings (the textbook and on-line resources).
  • Exams will only cover material discussed in class or assigned as reading, before the exam.  Should the class fall behind the course schedule, some topics shown on the syllabus due for an earlier exam will be tested on the following exam instead.
  • Regular attendance is imperative for the successful completion of this class.  The textbook and on-line resources should be considered as required course supplements; in other words, the course is not based on the text.
  • All phones, pagers, and beepers must be turned off during class time, except with prior permission of the instructor.  No food or drink is permitted in HCC classrooms.
  • Attendance will be taken within 5 minutes of the start of class; after 4 unexcused absences and/or lateness, the student will lose 2 points off the final grade for each additional occurrence.
  • If you miss a class, you are still responsible for the material covered in that class.  All students should exchange contact information (name, email address, phone number) with at least one other student in the class.  If you must miss a class, you should then contact another student and request they take class notes for you.  (Note, Hawknet has Hawkmail365 email for HCC students.)
  • Credit for class participation includes attendance, preparedness, and adding to class discussions by asking questions and participating in discussions.  Playing computer games, surfing the Internet, or working on assignments for this or other classes during class time will lose you credit.
  • Additional time outside of class will be required.  For typical students an average of between 6 and 10 hours each week outside of class are required for preparation, practice, projects, and homework assignments.  Note some projects will require you to complete them from our classroom (or the open lab).
  • Students are expected to prepare for each class by completing all reading assignments, reviewing examples and model solutions provided, and practicing outside of class.  This is important — you can't learn a skill such as system administration only by attending class and reading books.  You must practice, several hours a few days each week!  If you won't have enough time available, consider auditing the course.
  • Students are expected to check the class website regularly.  Any syllabus changes, class cancellations, project assignments, and homework assignments are announced in class and posted to the website and the RSS feed for this class.
  • A student shall not, without my express authorization, make or receive any recording, including but not limited to audio and video recordings, of any class, cocurricular meeting, organizational meeting, or meeting with me.  Further, you do not have my permission to post on the web or otherwise distribute my class lectures and other course materials.  (You can distribute freely any materials I make publicly available from the HCC (or the wpollock.com) website, without asking permission, provided you give me credit for the work and don't alter it.  Any other use will require expressly given permission.)
  • Working together on individual assignments is considered as cheating!  Turning in someone else's work without giving them credit is also considered cheating (plagiarism).  Cheating will result in an automatic F (zero) for the project for all parties.  Also, you can only earn credit for your own work and not someone else's, even if you do cite your sources.  Note that some projects may be group projects, where each member of a small group works together on a project.  It is also okay to ask a fellow student for class notes (in the event you miss a class) or for help in understanding the text or material given to the class (e.g., examples on the class website).  You are encouraged to study together as well.
  • You must abide by the HCC Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) for computers and services.  In particular, you must not run network scanners, or attempt to obtain administrator (“root”) privileges or otherwise disrupt HCC computers and services.  In some explicitly stated circumstances, some parts of the AUP may not apply.  If in any doubt, ask!
  • You must follow the academic honesty policy and the student code of conduct for HCC.  A second cheating offense will result in an “F” for the course, and your name will be turned over to the dean for further handling.  I take these matters very seriously.  You have been warned!
  • Every effort will be made to stick to the weekly schedule for our course.  However it may happen that we will fall behind the schedule at some point.  If so, no topics will be skipped.  Instead we will attempt to catch up over the following weeks.
  • Please be aware that if we fall behind on the weekly schedule, the topics discussed may not match what shows on the syllabus.  The weekly schedule may (but probably won't be) updated in this case.
  • In case we do fall behind, homework assignments are automatically postponed until the next class (i.e., homework assignment that show on the schedule as due the same day we discuss some topic, will be due the day we will discuss that topic in class).  Projects and exams will not be automatically postponed.  Should your instructor deem it necessary, projects and exams may be rescheduled; this will be announced in class and on the RSS feed.
  • Communications Policy:  I will respond to your emails within 48 hours or two business days.  HCC policy is that grades can only be discussed in person during office hours, or via email only if you use your assigned HCC HawkNet (Hawkmail365) email account.
  • No appointment is necessary to see me during my scheduled, on-campus office hours.  You can just “walk-in”.  You can make appointments for other times as long as I'm available.
  • Occasionally my office hours will be canceled on short (or no) notice, for example if the dean calls me for a meeting.  Before driving out to campus just for my office hours, you should contact me the day before to make sure I still plan to be there.
  • Late Policies:  Late assignments (homework assignments, projects, or exams) generally will not be accepted.  An assignment is late if not turned in by the start of class on the day it is due.

    Late assignments will be accepted late only if you obtain the instructor's permission prior to the due date of the assignment, or for a documented serious medical reason.  All late assignments are subject to a late penalty of at least one letter grade (10%) regardless of the reason for the delay.

    Projects and homework assignments later than one week will receive a more severe late penalty; very late assignments without adequate excuses will receive a grade of “F” (0).  However if you have a very good reason your instructor may waive any or all of the late penalty.  (Examples of good reasons include extended illness that prevents working, being out of town for work, or military service.  Remember, documentation will be required.)

  • The dangers of the flu or another contagious disease require some changes to normal policies.  HCC is implementing the recommendations for institutions of higher learning of the CDC.  (See www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/guidance/ and www.flu.gov/ for guidance from the CDC.)  You won't need documentation if you miss class due to the flu.  (But if you think you have the flu, you should see a doctor as soon as you can.)  In the unlikely event of a school closure due to the flu, some plan to make up the missed work will be made.

    If you think you have the flu, stay home.  Do not come to HCC until 48 hours after your fever has broken as you are still infectious.  Also, people are infectious to others for a day or so before they have any symptoms.  Flu is spread by touching doorknobs, computer keyboards, railings on stairs, etc., that were touched by someone with the flu.  Avoid shaking hands; use the “fist shake” (touching of fists) if you must use a physical greeting.  The most effective way to avoid catching the flu is to wash your hands frequently, especially after touching something that was touched by others.  Avoid unnecessary touching of eyes, nose and mouth.  While not as good as properly washing hands, hand sanitizers have been installed throughout the campus; use them often.

Projects: Projects will be assigned from the class web page at various times.  You will have sufficient time to complete the projects, at least a week but usually two weeks.  Although there may be in-class group exercises, you must work individually on projects, typically outside of regular class hours, except when a project is designated as a group project.  (Currently, all projects are designated group projects.)  You may work together in small (two to four people) groups on group projects, provided the names of all who worked together are listed.  Each student must still submit their own copy of the assignment.

Projects in system administration require you to have root (administrator) access to you own computer.  The computers in the classroom have removable hard disks, and you have complete control over that disk.  Unfortunately this means you must work on projects at HCC.  If the classroom is in use, you can request to have your hard disk put into one of the identical computers in the back row of the open lab.  You will probably want to phone the lab in advance, to check of the classroom is available, and to set your disk aside (so it can be put into one of the open lab computers) if the room will be busy.

(You can, of course, install the same system on your own computer, and practice the projects there.  Then it shouldn't take long at all to repeat the steps on your assigned hard disk at HCC.)

Projects are graded on the following scale:

A = 95% (Excellent: Good design with good comments, style, and extras)
B = 85% (Good: Good design, some comments, readable style, and it works)
C = 75% (Acceptable: Project objectives are met or are close to being met)
D = 65% (Unacceptable)
E = 10-64% (Variable credit: At least you tried)
F =  0% (Didn't hand in the project)

Minor extras worth +5 points, minor omissions or poor design worth -5.

Projects are not graded when turned in.  They are graded all at once, sometime after the project deadline has passed (usually the following weekend).  Every effort will be make to grade projects within a week of the due date, or as soon thereafter as possible.  (See also submitting assignments below.)

Extra credit can be earned by updating the study guide on the class wiki with a substantial contribution based on the material covered in class, from assigned readings, or from other resources you have studied.  A substantial contribution means adding new material, adding references (links), or elaborating (or correcting) some previous submission.  You should use wiki formatting and not HTML formatting when possible, and be sure to spell-check your work.  The wiki will automatically send your instructor an email for each update, so there is no need to add your name to your contribution.  However, you must ensure you use an account name that reflects your real name, or the instructor won't know who did what.

Your instructor is the editor and moderator of this study guide (and for all material posted on this wiki site).  While some time will be given for students to correct postings, in order to ensure an accurate study guide the instructor may edit, add to, or remove material posted by students.

The wiki assignment will be graded on or after the following week (so you have through the weekend to post something for the previous week).  Your contributions will be graded based on correctness, completeness, and clarity.  Note regular posting is required to earn extra credit; one large post the last week of the term will not earn much (or any) extra credit.

Submitting Assignments: Projects should be submitted by email to .  Please use a subject such as “Unix/Linux Admin I Project #1 Submission” so I can tell which emails are submitted work.  Send only one assignment per email message.  Email your projects by copy-and-paste into your mail program.  Please do not use email attachments, except when noted in the assignment directions.  If possible, use the “text” and not the “HTML” mode of your email program.

Do not send any email to wpollock@YborStudent.hccfl.edu.

In the event a student submits more than once for the same assignment, I will ignore all but the last one received up to the deadline.  Assignments submitted after the deadline will not count toward your grade except as allowed by the course late policy.  Also, you cannot resubmit an assignment once it has been graded.

The HCC email server automatically accepts and silently discards email with certain types of attachments.  If you must send email to my Internet (non-YborStudent) email account please avoid using any attachments, but especially “zip” files.  To send email with a “.zip” attachment you must first rename the file extension to “.zap” and then send the renamed file as an attachment.

To avoid having your submitted work rejected as “spam”, you can use Hawkmail365 to send email to professors.  This doesn't always work either!  If you are having difficulties with this email address, ask me for an alternate email address you can use.

If you have an email problem, you may turn in a printout instead.  Be sure your name is clearly written on the top of any pages turned in.  Please staple multiple pages together (at the upper left).

Always keep a backup copy of your submitted projects, until you are certain they have been received and graded correctly.

Academic Calendar
HCC Academic Calendar:
Classes Begin: Wednesday  1/8/2014   (First class meeting: Wednesday 1/8/2014)
Add-Drop Ends: Tuesday   1/14/2014
Last Day to Withdraw:  Tuesday  3/18/2014
Classes End: Wednesday  5/7/2014  (Last regularly scheduled day of class: Wednesday 5/7/2014)
Grades Available:  Monday  5/12/2014 (from Florida Virtual Campus (formerly called FACTS.org), or from HawkNet)
HCC is closed on: Monday  1/20/2014 (Martin Luther King Jr. Day),
Monday  2/17/2014 (Presidents' Day),
Monday–Sunday  3/10/2014–3/16/2014 (Mid-Term Break),
Thursday  4/10/2014 (Faculty In-Service Day),
Friday–Sunday  4/18/2014–4/20/2014 (Spring Day)

Request For Accommodation

If, to participate in this course, you require an accommodation due to a physical disability or learning impairment, you must contact the Office of Services to Students with Disabilities, Dale Mabry campus: Student Services Building (DSTU) Room 204, voice phone: (813) 259–6035,  TTD: (813) 253–7035,  FAX: (813) 253–7336.  Brandon campus: voice phone: (813) 253–7914.

HCC has a religious observance policy that accommodates the religious observance, practices, and beliefs of students.  Should students need to miss class or postpone examinations and assignments due to religious observances, they must notify their instructor at least one week prior to a religious observance.


Quotes on learning
Quotes:         Tell me and I'll listen.
Show me and I'll understand.
Involve me and I'll learn.
    — Lakota Indian saying
        Learning is not a spectator sport!     — Chickering & Gamson

Course schedule for CTS 2301

Day by day course schedule
Dates Mon       Wed Topics and Assigned Readings
  1/8   Course introduction, syllabus review.  Wiki overview.  Common SA tasks.  LAN use.  Assign User IDs, discuss passwords.  Basic procedures (removable disks), HCC network login (using WebAdvisor for passwords, grades).  Open Lab procedures and hours.  Professional societies and certification.  SA Job titles and descriptions, salaries, ethics and politics, job interviewing tips, and soft skills required.  IT management overview (ITIL).  SI units.
Readings Due:  Chapters 1, 18 (a.k.a. the afterword, pages 1069–1071), certification links, System Administration Common Tasks, IT management resources, System Administrator's Code of Ethics, and soft skills
1/13     1/15 Review Computer system (buses and word size, power supply, CPU, memory, controllers, peripherals, firmware (BIOS), and POST).  Virtual memory (swapping and paging, COW, deduplication, page faults, page tables and MMU), physical memory (use, zones, caches, NUMA, performance).  Swap space (uses, how much to allocate).  Keyboard input, networking hardware (NIC) configuration (static, dynamic).  System clock, tickless kernels.  Power-on boot cycle and OS loading.
Readings Due:  Chapters 4 (pages 127–130), 15 (pages 978–981)
  1/20 Martin Luther King Jr. Day  —  HCC Closed
1/22   In-class demo of OS install.
Boot managers:  [e]lilo, grub2 (and grub legacy).  unameLOM (IPMI) and tboot.  System startup: initial RAM disk, starting daemons.  System shutdown: shutdown, /etc/nologin, halt, reboot.  Booting in rescue (and similar) modes.  Using grub to set or change boot/kernel parameters.  Disk partitioning overview.  Unix and Linux device (especially disks and partitions) naming schemes.
Readings:  Chapters 2 (pages 60–66, 68–73), 10 (pages 623–624 and 634–637), 16 (pages 1036–1044), Partitioning, LVM resources
Project #1 (Partitioning) Due 1/22
1/27     1/29

Installing Linux:  Pre-install questions to answer, install versus upgrade, basic DHCP IP network setup, common installation issues, dual-boot issues.  Post-install tasks, Maintaining site documentation.  Managing storage (including logical volume management).  Disk technology (IDE, SCSI, ATA, MBR, RAID, SANS/NAS, RAM disks, SSDs, ...). 
Readings:  Chapter 4 (pages 130–137), p. 305 (/etc/nologin), 10 (pages 616–626, 657–663, 677–684), LVM, pre-/post-install resources, Disk and hardware resources
Project #2 (Install) Due 1/29

2/10     2/12
Hard disk administration (fdisk, parted, mkfs, mkswap, df, du, fsck, mount, umount, tune2fs), /etc/fstab.  Working with removable media.
Readings:  pages 61–65, 202–221, Chapter 10 (pages 626–634, 637–656, 688–694), 1001–1016.
  2/17 Presidents' Day  —  HCC Closed
2/19   Exam #1
  2/24   Understanding the X Window GUI:  window managers, xterm, using mouse for copy & paste; basic configuration of desktop environments (kde, gnome).
Readings:  pages 245–246, 878–884, X window overview, man page for X.
Project #3 (Hard Disk Admin) Due 2/24
Configuration management, patch management (Solaris).  Package management:  RPM (and yum), DEB (and apt), Solaris/BSD packages.  Using alternatives/opt versus /usr/local.  Using source code:  tar archives (tar-balls), make.
Readings:  Chapter 3 (pages 115–126), configuration, patch, and package management resources.
3/5   Change management.
Readings:  Change Management resource.
Project #4 (Filesystem Admin) Due 3/5
  3/10 – 3/16 Mid-Term Break  —  HCC Closed
  3/17   Help desk setup, time management, trouble-ticketing.
Administrative policies and procedures.  Review disaster recovery plans (will not be covered during class, but you are responsible for the reading assigned).  Centralization versus decentralization.
Readings:  Help Desk resources, Disaster Recovery Outline (see also these other, not required DRP readings).
3/19   Adding RAM, NIC, and disk to IA.  Danger of shock, ESD.  Maintenance, supplies.  Virtualization (virtual hardware) overview.  Adding and configuring hardware and drivers: /dev/*, major and minor device numbers.  mknod.  Understanding udev and D-BUS. 
(Not required for this class, but useful to know if we have the time and student interest: Managing and monitoring hardware: UPS, RAM, clock, serial ports, parallel ports, USB ports, NICs (and basic networking setup), sound cards, video cards.)
Readings:  pages 65–66, 175, 766–769, 772–777, 784–790, 807–808, 810–813, 180–190, 202–219, Chapter 10 (pages 626–634, 637–656, 688–694).  Working with HardwareOptional: pages 966–968, 978–986, 992–993, 995–1000, 1017–1018
3/24   Configuration overview (webmin, using command line tools, vi, /proc).  Defining port numbers, service names, and /etc/services.  Brief overview of other security features/subsystems: concepts for files and directories, Unix/Linux permissions, ACLs, properties, PAM, TCP Wrappers, Firewalls).
Readings:  Chapter 4 (pages 137–179), on-line configuration, network, and init resources
The Sys V init boot process (initrd, /etc/inittab, runlevels, telinit, /etc/rc?.d, /etc/init.d, chkconfig, ...).  who -r.  Other init systems: Systemd concepts and commands, Upstart, Solaris 10 SMF.  Manually starting and stopping services.  Managing network on-demand services (inetd, xinetd).  TCP Wrappers and firewalls.
Readings:  Chapter 4 (pages 137–179), on-line configuration, network, and init resources
Project #5 (Disaster Recovery Plan) Due 3/26
  Fri 3/29 Spring Day  —  HCC Closed
  4/2   Exam #2
4/7     4/9  
Database and SQL basics, configuring MySQL and PostgreSQL.
Readings:  Database Basics, Database, MySQL, and PostgreSQL resources
Project #6 (Service Administration) Due 4/14
  Thu 4/11   (Thursday)   In-Service Day  —  HCC Closed
4/16   Printing (local and network via samba): concepts, tools (for CUPS).
Readings:  Chapter 13 (pages 814–844, 858–867, 874–884) On-line Printing resources
Project #7 (Database Administration) Due 4/16
4/21   4/23 Adding, managing, removing users and groups ({user,group}{add,mod,del}, managing passwords (shadow, MD5), enabling accounts, /etc/skel, /etc/login.defs, vipw, pwck, ...).  Disk quotas.  Disabling accounts.
Readings:  Chapter 6 (pages 222–302)
Project #8 (Printer Configuration) Due 4/21
4/28    4/30
Backups and archives: restore issues, policies, tools, and techniques.
Readings:  Chapter 11
Project #9 (User Administration) Due 5/5
  5/7   Exam #3
Project (Backups) Due next term  (This is a project for Admin II course, but you might want to start it early.)



  1. What is docking?  If you have ever looked closely you may have noticed some small icons near the date on the taskbar (in the system tray).  These are connected to an application, for example a modem monitor program.  This can be useful for applications which are intended to run in the background, often iconified, or on another virtual desktop, yet still want to have a little representation on the desktop.  The icon allows an application to indicate something or to be controlled.  (e.g., An application can show a popup-menu with the right mouse button to do some tasks.)

    These icons are considered docked onto the panel, and this feature is called dockingBack



Class Resources
System Administrator Tasks Common tasks required of system administrators     IT Management Overview Describes IT management and ITIL
Human Resource Management for IT Describes issues for IT management     MIS Links MIS web resources
PMO Overview Describes Project Management Office (PMO) governance     ITIL The official ITIL website; see also the companion Best Management Practice website
Code of Ethics System administrator's code of ethics     Soft Skills A discussion of certifications, job interviewing tips, and required “soft skills”
Salary Surveys Annual IT salary survey results from www.dice.com  (A fuller PDF report for 2013 is also available)     YborStudent System Journal A snap-shot of the official YborStudent System Journal
Fedora 16 System Administrator's Guide One of several system administration guides available from docs.FedoraProject.org     tldp.org The Linux Documentation Project: how-tos, guides, and more
FreeBSD man pages Searchable man pages in HTML format for many versions of Unix and Linux     HP-UX system administration manuals Includes man pages and guides  (See also IBM's AIX documentation)
Oracle Solaris 11 library A collection of Solaris man pages, administrator guides, and more (formerly called “docs.sun.com”).  See also the migrated content from the old Sun BigAdmin library     Standard International (SI) Units Defines standard units and prefixes, such as “kilo” and “mega”  (See also the ISO/IEC binary standard prefixes for information technology such as “kibi”)
RFC number search plugin Download this XML file and put it in the Firefox “searchplugins” directory  (also this RFC keyword search plugin)     Unix Standard search plugin Download this XML file and put it in the Firefox “searchplugins” directory
Graphic of Computer Hardware Classic Von Neumann computer hardware architecture diagram from www.infoq.com/presentations/click-crash-course-modern-hardware     www.PurpleMath.com Good site for basic math and algebra tutorials (something all technology workers need to know)
Computer Bus Info Some information about computer buses     How to destroy old hard disks A 2-minute YouTube video  (Once destroyed, you should dispose or recycle old electronics; for non-commercial users, see your local county solid waste department)
Disk Partitioning Guide Describes when and when not to create disk partitions     Dual Booting Shows how to set up a dual boot system
File Systems Comparison and Description of many Filesystem types (Wikipedia.org)     Intel Architecture Shows IA32 (traditional) architecture.  See also Intel's P55 architecture
RAID information and levels Describes RAID issues along with Hard Disk Technology, from www.PCGuide.com     PCTechGuide.com An overview of PC hardware (including disks)
Filesystem Hierarchy Standard A description of the standard directories on Linux (See latest draft)  See also hier(7) for Linux, and filesystem(5) for Solaris     Pre Install Questions Questions you need to answer before installing anything, such as capacity planning
Storage Technology Hard disk and related technology     Fedora install video (Flash version) Screencast of Fedora 16 install on VMware  (MP4 version)
LVM Guide Linux Logical Volume Management Guide  (See also the Red Hat LVM Administration Guide)     Post Install Task List Lists and briefly describes many post install tasks
Dell Support Lookup System inventories of Dell computers by service tag     fcc.gov ID Search Look up hardware using FCC-IDs
X Window System Overview How to use and configure the GUI system     Solaris LOM Documentation for Solaris 11 LOM (lights out management)
Configuration, Patch, and Package Management An overview of configuration management, patch management, and package management (lecture notes)     Infrastructures.org An collection of automated systems configuration best practices
Centralization and Decentralization A brief overview of Centralized policy and control issues     yum.conf A sample yum.conf file for Fedora Linux
CheckInstall Link to checkInstall homepage, a program that builds RPM packages by watching builds via make install     Patching the Enterprise Detailed discussion of patch management issues and solutions from ACM Queue Magazine, March 2005 issue
alien home Link to homepage of alien, the package converter     Understanding Patch Management An overview of patch management from ACM Queue Magazine, March 2005 issue
RPM options A summary of frequently used rpm command-line tool options        
Change Management An overview of change management for system administrators     Help Desk Organization An overview of help desk setup
        Help Desk Chat Log An actual on-line help session, showing best practices in action
Hardware Components Some graphics of various computer hardware components     Hardware Management Lecture notes on physically managing ESD while adding or removing hardware such as RAM, NICs, and disks, and software concepts of managing hardware (major and minor numbers, udev and devfs, HAL, D-BUS, ...).
udev-info Some notes on Linux udev subsystem for managing devices    
Sensor Statistics Some graphics of various hardware probe values, over time     ISA Plug-and-Play A short how-to on configuring legacy ISA-PnP devices
Disaster Recovery Outlines major issues for disaster recovery policies and procedures  (Take this Red Cross quiz and learn how to prepare yourself for disaster)     Disaster Recovery Planning: Preparing For The Unthinkable by Jon Toigo.  Sample chapter posted by InformIT, courtesy of Prentice-Hall PTR (now Pearson Education)
www.webmin.com A GUI administration tool for all Unix and Linux systems     find command tip Shows how to use find to locate files modified by an administration tool
StartupScript.txt Sample startup shell scripts (/etc/init.d/foo) for a foo server     System V init files From /usr/share/doc/initscripts-7.42.2 on Fedora
/etc/inittab Sample System V /etc/inittab file        
Upstart documentation From the Ubuntu website     Systemd documentation systemd man pages and system admin tutorials  (See also the systemd home and the original systemd home)
Solaris SMF quick start guide An overview of Solaris 10's service management facility, the replacement for “Sys V init     Solaris 10 Introduction to SMF A complete description of SMF from the Solaris 10 Administrator's Guide
Description of /etc/sysconfig files Describes the files and options for Red Hat-like systems (e.g., Fedora)     Networking Basics Reviews the concepts of networking addresses, port numbers, and services
modules.conf Sample /etc/modules.conf file showing some complex features     Changing Kernel Parameters shows using /proc and sysctl
Unix file permissions More than you wanted to know about Unix permissions     Octal Number Chart Shows how to use octal numbers with chmod and umask
/etc/sudoers A sample /etc/sudoers file     RBAC Solaris Role Based Access Control Demo
PAM Tutorial Shows how to configure and use PAM.  (See also Solaris 10 PAM Guide     Linux PAM Sys Admin's Guide Shows how to configure and use PAM
sFTP Reference Guide for using cmd line secure FTP program     Public key encryption A tutorial on encryption, digital signatures, Internet security, etc.
RCS Demo A sample session using RCS with a shell script        
Database Basics Lecture notes on Databases and SQL     PostgreSQL.org PostgreSQL database website
MySQL installation Directions to install MySQL on Solaris 10     MySQL MySQL database website  (See also MariaDB and Percona)
Interactive SQL Tutorial sqlzoo.net is one of the best SQL tutorials you can find on the Internet     SQL Tutorial Another SQL tutorial, from w3schools.com
About ping The real story of the ping utility     www.cisco.com/.../SNMP.htm A tutorial on SNMP
Printing System Overview Shows how printing works.  (See also LinuxPrinting.org.)     Solaris 8 Printing Setup Shows how to setup a local printer using cmd-line admin tools
International Paper Sizes An overview of ISO-216 paper sizes        
User Account Policies A list of questions to ask before creating new user accounts     Group management Describes Unix group policies and management strategies
Deleting user accounts Procedures, policies, and issues for removing accounts        
crontab reference Shows crontab file syntax     at command syntax Some at samples of entering times and dates, and other info
Regular Expressions Shows Regular Expression (“regex”) syntax     AWK FAQ AWK Frequently Asked Questions
Anonymous FTP Site Setup Shows how to setup and configure WU-FTP     Backups and Archives A tutorial on backup and archive policy, procedures, and tools
Shell Scripts (and Other Demos)
LDP: Bash scripting guide and reference) Shows how to write Bash shell scripts.  Complete Bash man page     SSC's Bash shell reference card (Posted here by permission of SSC, Inc.)
fancyio Shows how to write interactive shell scripts     fortune A fortune cookie script (plus some sample fortunes)
nusers Shows a simple shell script     nusers.1 Sample man page for nusers, using troff/man macros
backup-etc.sh A simple shell script to backup /etc directory     httpd.sh Apache script for use in rc.d/init.d
.bashrc Some useful bash shell aliases and functions     .bash_profile A simple Bash login script
.procmailrc A sample .procmailrc that auto-replies and filters spam     find-world-writable A security script that shows all dangerous world writable files
add-users A complex script used to add users in batches     rmusr remove user accounts in a batch
todo A simple "todo list" shell script     didit Simple shell script, used with “todo” script
didit2 Shell script, used with “todo” script     didit3 Fancy shell script, used with “todo” script
pick interactive selection script     watch Shows how to write shell and awk scripts
suidDemo.tgz Shows how suid can be used to control access to files     hellotk.pl A Perl/Tk GUI script (Hello, World)
RPMs and Other Packages
recode.rpm A package that easily converts files between DOS and Unix     PerlTk.rpm A package that adds a GUI module to Perl.  (Original package name: PerlTk-8.15-1.i386.rpm.)
gcal.tgz A tar-ball (compressed tar archive) of the gcal-3.01 package (from www.gnu.org)     Andalemo.TTF The Andale Mono TrueType font
webmin.tgz A tar-ball of a generic GUI system admin package     xchomp.rpm A small Pac-man clone
alien The alien package converter, with all required packages and directions for Fedora, including a sample Debian package to convert     apt for Fedora Core Apt is an obsolete alternative package management system for Fedora, found at FreshRPMs.net
www.sunfreeware.com/ A popular site for various Solaris software (and ports of Gnu)     openCSW.org Community SoftWare packages (formally hosted at Blastwave.org), installed with pkg-get

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