Studying for the Redhat Certified Engineer (RHCE) Exam

I have no idea what the examiner will give me to install Linux. I only know I will be ask to install it. Because I need to install Linux several times to learn what I need I have chosen to installing Linux over the network.  This is also part of what you need to know for the test.

This can be done with NFS, FTP or HTTPD.  I decided to do all three. Here are the steps I used.

You will need to get your hands on a set of Redhat Enterprise 5 CDs. (good luck) I have my set because I work with Redhat Linux for years and have several accounts.  A good substitute would be CentOS version 5. This is a free clone of Redhat Enterprise 5. You might also try Fedora Core. I'm not sure which version is closest to RHEL 5.


Create a share directory
    mkdir /mnt/inst

Create an iso image from the installation disk(s) using the following command:

  • For DVD:

    dd if=/dev/dvd of=/location/of/disk/space/RHEL5.iso

    where dvd refers to your DVD drive device.

  • For CD-ROMs:

    dd if=/dev/cdrom of=/location/of/disk/space/diskX.iso

    where cdrom refers to your CD drive device, and X is the number of the disk that you are copying, beginning with 1 for the first disk, and so on.

Setup NFS – edit /etc/exports
    /mnt/inst   *(ro,sync)

Export the share
    exportfs -a

Check iptables

Restart NFS service
    service nfs restart

Check the setup
    showmount -e

    HTTPD installs the same as NFS except you should copy files to /var/www/html/inst and then restart the httpd server. I created a simlink to this directory.
       ln -s /mnt/inst /var/www/html/inst

    This also works like the NFS process except you copy the files into /var/ftp/pub/inst and restart the vsftpd service. I created a simlink to this directory.
       ln -s /mnt/inst /var/ftp/pub/inst

Studying for the Redhat Certified Engineer (RHCE) Exam

I have created a new domain to track my studying

After 30 years of working in the computer industry I have decided to get certified. I'm studying for my RedHat Certified Engineer (RHCE) exam.

The RHCE is an all day, hands on test requiring the test taker to configure and trouble shoot Linux systems as directed by the examiner.

I have worked with Linux for ten years. I starting with version 0.98 and I have written Linux applications and kernel patches.  I use Linux to run my own websites. I worked for large corporations with hundreds of Redhat Linux servers.  You might think with all this experiences the exam should be easy. I don't want to risk the $750 cost to take the test.

My study guide is the "Red Hat certified Engineer Linux Study Guide – Forth Edition" by Michael Jang.  This guide is based on Redhat 3. The current RHCE test is given with Redhat 5. If anyone knows of a newer study guide, or is writing one, I'd be happy to buy or review it.

I'll be posting what I learn on this website, as I go along. I've learned you retain more if you read it, write it and do it. This website is where I'm writing it all down.  If you find something wrong or if you don't understand something, email me at

I'm not going to cover every detail in the book. There are a lot of Linux commands I know by heart and so I don't need to study them.  If you don't know vi, ls, ssh or tar already this website study along is not for you.   I've read only 50% of the people taking the test pass. If you don't know these commands already you might want to take one of the expensive courses.

I'm also not going to follow the book page by page. There are a few things that will make studying easier. Installing Linux over a network is faster then using CDs. So on day one, I'm going to setup network installation.

The computer I'm installing RHEL5 on is an old ? with a ? hard disk, keyboard, mouse, network connection and monitor.  I also have a second RedHat (Fedora Core 6) system to load the Linux installations CD's on.  You will also need to get your hands on a set of Redhat Enterprise Linux 5 CDs. I got my copy from a friend at work. 

Feel free to follow along and learn Redhat Linux yourself. Maybe I will see you at my testing center.

Totally Secure

MyPW Key-bobI have been waiting for years a computer security company to pull their head out of their ass and make a security device that's easy to use and cheap.  It has happened. 

MyPW is making a one time password token affordable to anyone for an  affordable price.

Most people use the same or similar passwords for all they online accounts. There is almost no way anyone can guess your password because it changes very time you use this token.  Every time you push the button on the key-bob it displays a new random number. You use this random number as your password. Anyone trying to guess your password has exactly a 1 in a 1,000,000 chance of getting it right. Add a password to this and the odd become fantastically high.

With a MyPW token you can access any MyPW enabled services and thousand of OpenID enabled web sites. Here is how it works.

When you login to a MyPW enabled website or one using OpenID, your password authentication request is redirected to a MyPW server. verified your random number and returns a good or bad signal back to the requesting process.

Let us say you have a Linux system at home and you'd like to access it from work.  You know they monitor the office network. They could capture your network traffic and capture your password. You might even be using SSL to encrypt your data but if you don't check the ID of the certificate you get back you may be going through a company proxy and they are decrypting your traffic.  This is legal because you are using their network.

Order your token. You install the MyPW PAM module. (I've had a little trouble getting this part done.  You have to compile the code.) You then edit the file /etc/pam.d/xmlrpc.conf and add your ID and token info to the file.  It will look like this.

mark mysite aslk1u401da2901 5999999

After you compile and install the PAM Module you'll need to sign-up for our Free API access account and a Token or MyPW for your Mobile Phone. Now when you login using this account, your server will use MyPW to verify your password (the random number).  If your anyone from your office tries to use the password it will not work a second time.

I haven't ordered a token from MyPW yet. I will.  I have ordered a PayPal token for $5 and I'm guessing they are the same. I'm hoping PayPal and services like them wouldn't require you to carry around a token for each web service you use.  This is what OpenID is all about. In a perfect world, I should be able to use one token to access all my accounts. This can be done today if everyone used OpenID as their login.