Starting on LPIC, advise me on good references

Paul BozPaul Boz The Colosus of CloutMember Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
Hey guys,

I need to hone my weak Linux skills for the SANS GSE so after some research it looks like the tiered structure of the LPIC series is right up my alley. Last night I started preparing for the LPIC 101 and I'm actually pleasantly surprised that I know most of what I've gone over so far. That isn't saying much as its all been review of bash and package management. I definitely expect it to get more tough down the road but for now its all good.

I'm currently using the Sybex book published in 2009. I don't know how out-dated it is though since they updated the exams last year. I'm also using some links which I've gathered from the Linux board.

Book: Amazon.com Sybex LPI book

Link: GNU/Linux Manuals

Link: Linux Professional Institute (LPI) exam prep : Overview

Link:PenguinTutor - Linux Tutorials and LPI Certification Practice Exams Quiz Start Page

I'm also reading all of the man pages for all of the tools / programs referenced and making flashcards for the commands since it seems the general consensus is that that's important. I've also got several "entry level" Linux books at home which I'm going to read after the Sybex book. Beyond the resources which I've laid out so far does anyone have further recommendations which may be of help?

Thanks guys!
CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
[email protected]
http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
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Comments

  • Met44Met44 Senior Member Member Posts: 194
    There is a new "LPIC in a nutshell" book due to hit Amazon on 30 June (Amazon.com: LPI Linux Certification in a Nutshell (9780596804879): Adam Haeder, Stephen Addison Schneiter, Bruno Gomes Pessanha, James Stanger: Books). The old one was a glowing source of info for the old exam, so expectations are high -- I'm tentatively optimistic that the new authors will live up to it. You may be set book-wise though.

    Someone started up a public "web book" for the old 101 and 102 exams, which unfortunately has fallen out of maintenance, but may be useful where topics overlap:

    LPI Certification Self-Study Guide

    It would be useful to have an updated version of this, and organizing such an open "study wiki" for the LPIC was something I planned to do until some other projects got in the way. The LPIC is weak in this area, particularly since the 2009 update, compared to Cisco and MS certifications. I'll leave that thought with you and the community, with the idea that writing about it will help you think about the topics.

    Good luck with your studies.
  • Paul BozPaul Boz The Colosus of Clout Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I'm definitely not going to be challenging the tests any time soon so waiting for a book at the end of this month isn't a problem. Thanks for the recommendation :)
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
    http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
    Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I started studying for this exam this week. I suggest that you pick up this book
    Linux-Administration-Beginners-Guide
    I am going to make pdfs of my notes along the way for a few of us who want to go for these exams.

    FYI: I don't think that the IBM stuff is up to date for the new objectives. I know they are working on it but I am not sure if it is ready yet. Do you have any idea as far as when you want to sit the exams?
  • NightShade03NightShade03 Security Nut Member Posts: 1,383 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Ah Linux, my favorite topic. The book you are reading now is pretty good. Michael Jang wrote an LPIC-1 book recently that is good too (his RHCE book is still one of the best today).

    Amazon.com: LPIC-1 In Depth (9781598639674): Michael Jang: Books

    The new LPI Nutshell book is suppose to be good as already mentioned although it only covers LPIC-1:

    Amazon.com: LPI Linux Certification in a Nutshell (9780596804879): Adam Haeder, Stephen Addison Schneiter, Bruno Gomes Pessanha, James Stanger: Books

    This is the OLD nutshell which also included LPIC-2 material. It isn't as updated and very out of order for the current exam but still an awesome reference for like 80% of the material on the current exams.

    LPI Linux Certification in a Nutshell, Second Edition - O'Reilly Media

    This site is great for learning linux or trying to set something up for the first time:

    Linux Home Networking - Tutorials and Forums

    If you continue with the LPIC-2 exams or just want some more knowledge there is a good web-book (current):

    The LPIC-2 Exam Prep

    You can also check my blog, I've got tons of posts on LPIC and RHCE topics (some of which over lap between the exams). I also am in the process of writing a RHCE book which I hope to have out soon if you're interested icon_wink.gif
  • NightShade03NightShade03 Security Nut Member Posts: 1,383 ■■■■■■■□□□
    knwminus wrote: »
    I started studying for this exam this week. I suggest that you pick up this book
    Linux-Administration-Beginners-Guide
    I am going to make pdfs of my notes along the way for a few of us who want to go for these exams.

    FYI: I don't think that the IBM stuff is up to date for the new objectives. I know they are working on it but I am not sure if it is ready yet. Do you have any idea as far as when you want to sit the exams?

    The IBM site is a complete let down as far as content goes...they only provide bits and pieces of different material. Completely pointless.

    I have a bunch of study notes already if you are interested.
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    The IBM site is a complete let down as far as content goes...they only provide bits and pieces of different material. Completely pointless.

    I have a bunch of study notes already if you are interested.


    I'm interested.


    BTW I will second NightShade's blog. It is pretty good :)
  • Paul BozPaul Boz The Colosus of Clout Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Great, thanks for the references. I've heard conflicting reports about the Jang book - namely that there are lots and lots of errors that may do you more harm than good.

    Your blog is great man, thank you for this resource.
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
    http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
    Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
  • rogue2shadowrogue2shadow Member Posts: 1,501 ■■■■■■■■□□
    knwminus wrote: »
    I started studying for this exam this week. I suggest that you pick up this book
    Linux-Administration-Beginners-Guide
    I am going to make pdfs of my notes along the way for a few of us who want to go for these exams.

    FYI: I don't think that the IBM stuff is up to date for the new objectives. I know they are working on it but I am not sure if it is ready yet. Do you have any idea as far as when you want to sit the exams?

    Indeed! I shall be aiding in this endeavor :). I'm focusing alot on Security+ and CCNA Security (after great advice) right now but I'm dedicating at least one day a week to LPIC studies.
  • Paul BozPaul Boz The Colosus of Clout Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    What is the timeframe most people follow for the LPIC 1 exams? Do people generally take them both on the same day or space them out a bit? The Sybex book has them both covered in separate sections.
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
    http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
    Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
  • NightShade03NightShade03 Security Nut Member Posts: 1,383 ■■■■■■■□□□
    If you are comfortable enough with the material you could sit and pass both exams back to back. After all they are multiple choice and intro level exams. They cover everything a Jr. Linux Admin should know and expect 0 - 12 months experience. Even if you broke them apart you could take one and follow up with the second one within a month or so. I will tell you that the LPIC-1 exams are the only level you can get away with this at. When you do LPIC-2 they are MUCH harder.
  • Paul BozPaul Boz The Colosus of Clout Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Oh I'm sure they are. I don't want to disrespect the realm of the Linux/Unix admins here and claim that I can squash the LPIC 1 in a month or two if that's completely beyond the realm of possibility.

    another question: I have printed out the exam objectives and I'm trying to do my best to stick to them, all be it in the order of the Sybex book. If I stick closely to the exam outline should I expect any surprises? Are there any "gotchas" that I should know about?
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
    http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
    Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
  • NightShade03NightShade03 Security Nut Member Posts: 1,383 ■■■■■■■□□□
    If anything I would say know your command line options. I think it's stupid (like the M$ exams) that they question so deeply on the options because in the real world you have the man pages, --help, and google so knowing all of the options is just retarded. That being said however these are not labs, but multiple choice exams and that's where they get many questions from.

    Make sure you look at the weight of the exam topics to get a good sense of where the heavier tested subject areas are too. IE. If you are weak in the disk quota area notice it is only 1 question on the exam so don't worry.

    I'd also point out that the exam objectives are laid out in a logical "learn this first" fashion where as some authors don't always follow that. Don't have your particular book on me at the moment, but if it is way off from the exam objectives order I'd recommend jumping around in the book and follow the outline of the exam objectives then the other way around.
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Paul Boz wrote: »
    Oh I'm sure they are. I don't want to disrespect the realm of the Linux/Unix admins here and claim that I can squash the LPIC 1 in a month or two if that's completely beyond the realm of possibility.

    I had the same question. There as a post in this section that gave me a good timeline. I think it came down to 3 months or so for both exams (assuming you can give a decent amount of time per day). I am going to try for 2-4 hours a day for basically 3 months. I think that is more than enough time.
  • Paul BozPaul Boz The Colosus of Clout Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    My usual study effort is anywhere from 1-4 hours a day with an average of probably 1.5-2. I'm going to go through this Sybex book completely then move on to a few other resources and see where I stand.

    Other than the practice questions I linked to earlier, are there any vendors with good practice exams? Often the free online questions are off-base or out-dated, as evidenced by the CISSP online exam engine @ CCCure.
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
    http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
    Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
  • Paul BozPaul Boz The Colosus of Clout Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I didn't do much studying this weekend, I just did a few small projects that I laid out for myself. I set up user permissions with sudo, did some basic hardware administration, and got a bunch of security tools set up. I read in NightShade's awesome post that the new O'Reilly book is for sale @ Amazon so picked it up for $26. I may buy the Jang book after I finish the Sybex and O'Reilly books but it may be over-kill to read three books when I've got man pages and other supplements (also linked to in NightShade's thread).

    This wikibook he linked to is really great: LPI Linux Certification/Junior Level Linux Professional - Wikibooks, collection of open-content textbooks

    I think the best part of this LPI stuff is the detail it goes into to tell you where to view what they're talking about. I'll probably NEVER have to change anything related to the IRQ but knowing where they're listed makes a lot of sense
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
    http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
    Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Do you have test date in mind now?
  • earweedearweed Still a noob Member Posts: 5,192 ■■■■■■■■■□
    knwminus wrote: »
    I started studying for this exam this week. I suggest that you pick up this book
    Linux-Administration-Beginners-Guide
    I am going to make pdfs of my notes along the way for a few of us who want to go for these exams.
    How far are you on that book and how does it look like it'll aid you on this exam? I'm not quite half through it yet but it's helping me to learn a few things. The only other Linux book I've been using is the Linux Pocket Guide which is ok when I want to look up something quick.
    No longer work in IT. Play around with stuff sometimes still and fix stuff for friends and relatives.
  • Paul BozPaul Boz The Colosus of Clout Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    knwminus wrote: »
    Do you have test date in mind now?

    Nope, no way. I'm just taking my time trying to really learn this stuff. I don't really even care about the cert so much as the knowledge it represents. I can't say that about several of the certs I currently hold... I'd like to maybe have the 101 and 102 done by September 1st? That's just a guess though.
    knwminus wrote: »
    I started studying for this exam this week. I suggest that you pick up this book
    Linux-Administration-Beginners-Guide


    Just ordered this as well, thanks for the tip.
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
    http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
    Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    earweed wrote: »
    How far are you on that book and how does it look like it'll aid you on this exam? I'm not quite half through it yet but it's helping me to learn a few things. The only other Linux book I've been using is the Linux Pocket Guide which is ok when I want to look up something quick.

    I have about 2 chapters in. I think it will help out plenty. I think it is more real world than anything else.
    Paul Boz wrote: »
    Nope, no way. I'm just taking my time trying to really learn this stuff. I don't really even care about the cert so much as the knowledge it represents. I can't say that about several of the certs I currently hold... I'd like to maybe have the 101 and 102 done by September 1st? That's just a guess though.

    So it soulds like you do have a test date in mind lol. Thats good. I think that will be enough time for you. That's right around the time when I want to get them done as well.


    Just ordered this as well, thanks for the tip.
  • NightShade03NightShade03 Security Nut Member Posts: 1,383 ■■■■■■■□□□
    The books that focus on the LPIC exams them selves, but like some have pointed out they are severely lacking in the "real world" department. I would suggest to anyone that is working toward or with the LPIC-1 material that you try to put it to use in your daily work (automation, creation, etc..), otherwise you may find it harder to implement when the time comes...even with a solid theory of how things work.
  • dynamikdynamik Senior Member Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    knwminus wrote: »
    I have about 2 chapters in. I think it will help out plenty. I think it is more real world than anything else.

    After you get the basics down, I really like the books that are like the Linux Cookbook, 100 Linux Hacks, etc. They don't waste you time with basic explanations and teach you how to do things. Hardening Linux is another one I've just scratched the surface of, but I am liking it so far.
  • NightShade03NightShade03 Security Nut Member Posts: 1,383 ■■■■■■■□□□
    dynamik wrote: »
    Hardening Linux is another one I've just scratched the surface of, but I am liking it so far.

    Hardening Linux is an obnoxious topic because there are like 10,000+ ways to do the same thing and everyone will have different advice on how to do it...so it really means trial and error till you figure out what works.

    I can recommend that if you REALLY want to know how Linux works and secure it well you do a "Linux From Scratch". For those that haven't heard of it...you basically take the Linux kernel and build a generic distro from the ground up. Very intense, but very helpful in learning how to tweak the system and secure it.

    Welcome to Linux From Scratch!
  • dynamikdynamik Senior Member Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Hardening Linux is an obnoxious topic because there are like 10,000+ ways to do the same thing and everyone will have different advice on how to do it...so it really means trial and error till you figure out what works.

    I don't see that as a valid reason to not research and study the topic.
    I can recommend that if you REALLY want to know how Linux works and secure it well you do a "Linux From Scratch". For those that haven't heard of it...you basically take the Linux kernel and build a generic distro from the ground up. Very intense, but very helpful in learning how to tweak the system and secure it.

    Welcome to Linux From Scratch!

    The Gentoo guide walks you through something similar too: Gentoo Linux Documentation -- Gentoo Handbook
  • NightShade03NightShade03 Security Nut Member Posts: 1,383 ■■■■■■■□□□
    dynamik wrote: »
    I don't see that as a valid reason to not research and study the topic.

    Fair point, just noting that it's a large undertaking.


    dynamik wrote: »
    The Gentoo guide walks you through something similar too: Gentoo Linux Documentation -- Gentoo Handbook

    Was not aware of that! Learn something new everyday icon_wink.gif Thanks.

    I would point out that Gentoo does use a different package management platform then RHEL/Centos and Ubuntu/Debian so using Linux From Scratch you can choose your package platform, but with Gentoo I'd image they want you to use their's.
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    dynamik wrote: »
    After you get the basics down, I really like the books that are like the Linux Cookbook, 100 Linux Hacks, etc. They don't waste you time with basic explanations and teach you how to do things. Hardening Linux is another one I've just scratched the surface of, but I am liking it so far.


    You mean this book? I saw that book and I am interested in it.
    this book looks like it could be a good LPIC-1/2 read as well. This book looks interesting as well. I may pick up all three.
    I can recommend that if you REALLY want to know how Linux works and secure it well you do a "Linux From Scratch". For those that haven't heard of it...you basically take the Linux kernel and build a generic distro from the ground up. Very intense, but very helpful in learning how to tweak the system and secure it.

    Welcome to Linux From Scratch!

    That seems intimidating but exciting. After I get further in my *nix studies (after I do the Security+ that is) I may do this. I think you should put that on the thread you made eariler. This could be a good resource.
  • dynamikdynamik Senior Member Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    That's the one knwminus. The second looks good, and the same author worked on that one as well. That and the FW book are both on my wish lists.
  • Met44Met44 Senior Member Member Posts: 194
    knwminus wrote: »

    The most interesting piece of Rash's Linux Firewalls are the sections on port knocking and single packet authorization. If you haven't run into SPA before, it's worth checking out his site (cipherdyne.org) for his implementation: fwknop.
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□

    With fwknop deployed, anyone using nmap to look for sshd can't even tell that it is listening; it makes no difference if they have a 0-day exploit or not.

    This sounds awesome.
  • LinuxG33kLinuxG33k Member Member Posts: 33 ■■□□□□□□□□
    knwminus wrote: »
    This sounds awesome.

    Interesting trickery. Call me ol'fashioned but I always limit administrative ports to specific source IPs. I have a dynamic IP at home so I have a script that updates iptables anytime that IP changes. In cases where a port must be publicly available I usually use the limit module to rate limit connections:

    -A INPUT -d IPADDRESS -m tcp -p tcp --dport 21 -m state --state NEW -m limit --limit 4/min --limit-burst 4 -j ACCEPT

    Limiting by source IP isn't as cool as SPA though. ;)

    In other news I'm scheduled for the LPIC-202 exam this Friday so I will be sure to report back! I'll be happy to be done with the LPI certs and happier still to begin studying for the RHCE. Still deciding whether I should wait till the new RHCE exam is released. I'd really hate to have my cert status expire too soon.
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