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Linux Professional Institute (LPI) offers three different certification tracks. The core certification program, Linux Professional, contains three different levels addressing distinct aspects of Linux system administration. The organization also offers an introductory Essentials program for beginners in Linux and open source, as well as an Open Technology track for professionals working with additional technologies such as DevOps and BSD.

This article will focus on the Linux Professional Certification Track.

Linux Professional Certification Track

The Linux Professional Certification Program consists of the LPIC-1, LPIC-2, and LPIC-3 Enterprise certifications.

LPIC-1 and LPIC-2 certifications are focusing on Linux System Administration. LPIC-3 level of certifications has several specialities: LPIC-3 Enterprise Security, LPIC-3 Enterprise Mixed Environments and LPIC-3 Enterprise Virtualization and High Availability

LPIC-1 and LPIC-2 certifications each require passing two exams, while each LPIC-3 level of certification requires passing a single exam.

Each exam has a series of topics that make up the exam objectives. Each objective has an associated weight that corresponds to the frequency of exam questions from that objective.

Linux Professional Institute LPIC-1

SEE: LPIC-1 Overview for details.

LPIC-1 was first published on 11 January 2000 and was originally called Linux Server Professional (LPIC-1).[1] The certification was revised in 2005, 2012, 2015, and 2018.[1]

To be awarded the LPIC-1 certification, the candidate must successfully pass two exams, 101 and 102. These can be taken in any order.

LPIC-1 certifies the ability to perform maintenance tasks with the command line, install and configure a computer running Linux, and be able to configure basic networking.

Current Version: 5.0 (Exam codes 101-500 and 102-500)
Prerequisites: There are no prerequisites for this certification
Requirements: Passing exams 101 and 102
Description: Each 90-minute exam is 60 multiple-choice and fill-in-the-blank questions.
Validity Period: 5 years

LPIC-1 Exam 101 Topics

SEE: LPIC-1 Exam 101: Detailed Objectives | Linux Professional Institute


Topic 101: System Architecture

101.1 Determine and configure hardware settings
  • Weight: 2
  • Description: Candidates should be able to determine and configure fundamental system hardware
  • Key Knowledge Areas:
    • Enable and disable integrated peripherals.
    • Differentiate between the various types of mass storage devices.
    • Determine hardware resources for devices.
    • Tools and utilities to list various hardware information (e.g. lsusb, lspci, etc.).
    • Tools and utilities to manipulate USB devices.
    • Conceptual understanding of sysfs, udev, and dbus.
  • The following is a partial list of the used files, terms, and utilities:
    • /sys/
    • /proc/
    • /dev/
    • modprobe
    • lsmod
    • lspci
    • lsusb
101.2 Boot the system
  • Weight: 3
  • Description: Candidates should be able to guide the system through the booting process.
  • Key Knowledge Areas:
    • Provide common commands to the boot loader and options to the kernel at boot time.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of the boot sequence from BIOS/UEFI to boot completion.
    • Understanding of SysVinit and systemd.
    • Awareness of Upstart.
    • Check boot events in the log files.
  • The following is a partial list of the used files, terms, and utilities:
    • dmesg
    • journalctl
    • BIOS
    • UEFI
    • bootloader
    • kernel
    • initramfs
    • init
    • SysVinit
    • systems
101.3 Change runlevels / boot targets and shutdown or reboot system
  • Weight: 3
  • Description: Candidates should be able to manage the SysVinit runlevel or systemd boot target of the system. This objective includes changing to single user mode, shutdown or rebooting the system. Candidates should be able to alert users before switching runlevels / boot targets and properly terminate processes. This objective also includes setting the default SysVinit runlevel or systemd boot target. It also includes awareness of Upstart as an alternative to SysVinit or systemd.
  • Key Knowledge Areas:
    • Set the default runlevel or boot target.
    • Change between runlevels / boot targets including single user mode.
    • Shutdown and reboot from the command line.
    • Alert users before switching runlevels / boot targets or other major system events.
    • Properly terminate processes.
    • Awareness of acpid.
  • The following is a partial list of the used files, terms, and utilities:
    • /etc/inittab
    • shutdown
    • init
    • /etc/init.d/
    • telinit
    • systemd
    • systemctl
    • /etc/systemd/
    • /usr/lib/systemd/
    • wall

LPIC-1 Exam 102 Topics

SEE: LPIC-1 Exam 102: Detailed Objectives | Linux Professional Institute

  • Shells and Shell Scripting
  • User Interfaces and Desktops
  • Administrative Tasks
  • Essential System Services
  • Networking Fundamentals
  • Security


  1. 1.0 1.1 LPIC-1: Linux System Administrator Certification

External links