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Red Hat Software Businesses Education

Red Hat Certification Program For Education 209

Frank Caviggia writes "The Inquirer has a story up about Red Hat providing educational institutions with the ability to certify students as Red Hat Certified Technicians (RHCT) and Red Hat Certified Engineers (RCHE) how this will relate to Microsoft's MSCE program. You can find the story here. Red Hat has more information on the program here."
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Red Hat Certification Program For Education

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  • MSCE?! bzzzt! (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @07:06PM (#5227078)
    Maybe Microsoft developed a new course, because last time I checked it was "MCSE". It stands for Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer in case you were wondering.
  • by signe ( 64498 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @07:15PM (#5227158) Homepage
    No, RedHat never said they want to create a certification comparable to the MCSE. They know that MCSE is a useless certification that really only means that someone paid for a set of books for you, or someone paid for you to go to the week training.

    In fact, RedHat likens their certification more to Cisco's CCIE cert. A good chunk of the RedHat test for RHCE is practical. Meaning they sit you down in front of some computers and have you make them work. Or make them work in a particular configuration.

    I'm not big on most certifications, but I'm interested to see what RedHat has actually put together, based on what I've heard from them.

  • by hdparm ( 575302 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @07:18PM (#5227176) Homepage

    Well, for your information, you cannot be 'paper' RHCE. Two out of three parts of the exam are fully practical. You need to know where to look and how to fix the problem (1st part) and to be able to perform network install of the Red Hat system according to specs given + to configure most of the common network services on that machine (part 2). You have passed the exam only if your overall score is >80% with none of the 3 parts scored @ less than 50%. School kids who do this will be ready for entry support roles after finishing school.

    Much larger benefit of this I see in the fact that Linux/OSS will be introduced to greater school population, beating long time perception about Microsoft and Windows (yes - Apple too) being the only option out there.

  • Re:Both illegal (Score:5, Informative)

    by tomhudson ( 43916 ) <> on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @07:26PM (#5227241) Journal
    Just to point it out - both Microsoft and Redhat are in violation of the law in all 10 Canadian provinces, and most US States, when they use the term "engineer"

    A quick google search on "engineer certification illegal microsoft" turns this up as the first hit:

    A general rule, though, is that one must hold a PE to legally represent themselves as engaged in practice of "professional engineering". (Some states take it as far as making it illegal to use the word "Engineering" in the name of a company unless a PE is one of the principals. That sounds pretty strong, but it's not very well known, and can only be addressed after someone files a complaint about it with that state's Board of Registration for Professional Engineers.)

    (1) a four-year engineering degree in a program approved by the state engineering licensure board, (2) four years of qualifying engineering experience, and who successfully completes (3) the eight-hour Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Examination, and (4) the eight- hour Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) Examination will be licensed as a professional engineer.

    In Canada, you can't use the term "engineer" unless you have an engineering degree. The only exceptions are for train engineers, forestry engineers, and a few others. Software Enginner IS NOT a permitted term. I've met w. the local governing body to discuss this last year.

    Having said that, anyone paying $$$ thinking that having an "engineering cert" from RH or MS is fucking brain-dead anyway, and deserves to lose their money and their time.

  • by kableh ( 155146 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @07:29PM (#5227259) Homepage
    I got my RHCE last October. Took the RH300 course to bone up on the basics and the last day was the exam. And man, I was glad I took the course! The writeup here on /. [] about the RH300 course was right on the money.

    The exam is 3 parts: lab, written test, lab. The first lab involves doing an install of Red Hat that conforms to a set of specs you are given. After that your instructor comes over and breaks your system, then you get to fix it. I saw a lot of my classmates struggling well after I got done with that portion of the test. Granted, I have about 3 years of professional experience admining Red Hat so I considered myself well prepared, but some of these problems were a bitch to fix. The multiple choice test covered a broad range of questions. There was some debate over the correct answer to a couple of questions, due mostly to the fact that this was the first time they were giving a Red Hat 8.0 course, but I'm sure they have worked out those kinks. The final lab involved securing your machine, only allowing access for specific services to specific machines. All in all a very thorough test.

    I must admit though, I don't know how much I like the idea of a bunch of high school graduates with no security experience, or even real world experience, coming out of school RHCEs and bringing down median wages even lower. Not that I make median for what I do, but I digress.

    I've been doing MIS stuff for 4 years or so now, Red Hat for 3 years pro, much longer as a hobby, and all that has taught me is that I have a LOT to learn. =)
  • by GreatOgre ( 75402 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @07:37PM (#5227319)
    Actually, according to most state laws and regulations, an engineer is someone who has:

    (1) Completed a four year degree in "engineering."
    (2) Taken the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam and passed with a grade of 70 or better.
    (3) Worked for 7 years (I think) under a registered professional engineer.
    (4) Taken and passed the Professional Engineer (PE) exam.

    Only after the above four steps have been completed can one truely call themselve an engineer. Exceptions include when the position that a person holds is titled something engineer, such as county engineers who are usually former construction contractors.
  • by sowellfan ( 583448 ) <> on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @08:14PM (#5227563)
    You're right, except for the experience portion. That is different from state to state. Most require four years of experience, and it doesn't always have to be under a professional engineer. It just has to be the type of experience where you make "engineering" decisions. Also, you have to have the experience verified by a number of people (again, some states require PE's to do experience verification, some states don't, and the number of people varies, typically four or five).

    Regardless, getting a Professional Engineer license involves a lot more than taking a test (though the PE test wasn't necessarily easy, either).

    BTW, I just received my passing score and received my PE seal yesterday.
  • by dowdle ( 199162 ) <> on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @09:10PM (#5227851) Homepage
    Red Hat has had information on their web site regarding Red Hat Academy for some time... but they are just getting it rolling... and haven't really announced it in a big way.

    I passed the RHCE back in April of 2002 and I know that the RHCE program is a high quality program... especially the test.

    I happen to work for a college in Montana and I was interested in learning what it would take to get Red Hat Academy / RHCT training and testing in our area... hoping to eventually turn it into an RHCE training program (not currently in Red Hat's cards). After talking to Joel Jackson (I think that was his name) in the Sales department... he emailed me a PDF with the details.

    First year cost:

    $15,000 for training - 2 RHCE Instructors and 1 RHCE Administrator
    $22,000 for a year of Red Hat Academy curriculum, support, manuals, distribution, etc.

    So... the first year investment is $37,000

    Additional years are $22,000 (unless you lost your trained people and need to train more).

    I wonder if that $22,000 figure is negotiable? That is good for up to 5,000 students per year.

    They only allow non-profit educational institutions (high schools, colleges, universities, etc) in the Red Hat Academy program... and while they say you can charge the student a fee (call it whatever you want... book fee, lab fee, etc) they really don't give you any guidelines as to what you can charge... except that Red Hat wants $150 for each test administered. How much do you charge for tests? Again, that's up to your institution.

    Being from a small college in Montana, $37,000 is a sizable first year investment. It wouldn't be any big deal if we could get 500 students interested in the program... but that would be a real challenge. Considering the fact that Red Hat is "planting seeds" with the Academy program... you'd think the seeds would be cheaper... or that they'd have a program priced close to cost. I have no idea how much it will take Red Hat to administer. I'm sure it is a quality program, judging by the RHCE.
  • by LazloToth ( 623604 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @10:28PM (#5228230)
    Right on, my friend.

    Hey, I love to hear people crack on MCSEs, but maybe not for the reasons you'd expect. Yeah, I'm an MCSE. And yeah, maybe I'm no genius, because I had to work hard to pass those exams. But I won't apologize for being an NT admin, because it has paid me well. The fact is that I was doing Linux networking when Slackware ruled and nobody had heard of Redhat. When I took the NT classes, I had a better view of the "big picture" than most of my classmates, I think, thanks to the Unix exposure. But when it came time for interviews, the MCSE was what everyone wanted to talk about - - that, and Novell. So I took that first job as an NT admin making the usual $40k starter. And you know what? The training I'd had turned out to be totally worthwhile. Day after day, I was glad I'd been through the exams, because I was using what I'd learned.

    Lastly, let me say that it took me four years to take my boss's job - - a comfy little spot where I don't work weekends or nights unless I want to, and I put *nix wherever it makes sense. The money's just fine: I drive a nice car, live in a waterfront property, get four weeks of vacation, plus the usual perks. What got me through the door wasn't what I could do with Linux, comrades. It was the MCSE. And the ability to spell most words correctly. So laugh hearty - - I'll be laughing,too.

  • The Press Release (Score:2, Informative)

    by spac ( 125766 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2003 @11:56PM (#5228617) Homepage
    As a junior engineer, I'm not too happy with the loose use of the word "engineer"

    The title of engineer should only be bestowed upon those with enough knowledge, experience, and professional accountability to certify the proper performance of any system whether mission-critical or not.

    You don't acquire those skills in a strip mall, and Canadian Law sure as hell doesn't give you any professional accountability.

    Anyway, here is the press release that the parent post was referring to:

    For immediate release

    OIQ advises MCSE holders NOT to use the term engineer

    Montreal, August 13, 2002 - Due to Microsoft Canada's recent announcement that the company will continue to use the term engineer as part of its Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) designation, the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec (OIQ) is advising MCSE holders that they are subject to the laws of Quebec and will be prosecuted should they improperly represent themselves to the public as engineers.

    "Microsoft Canada has left us no choice," says OIQ president, Gaétan Lefebvre, Eng. "The term engineer and the engineering profession itself are strictly regulated across Canada - just like the legal and medical professions. Last year, Microsoft agreed to advise their Canadian holders of the MCSE certification not to call themselves engineers or use the full title. Now that they've reversed their decision, we will enforce the Province's Engineers Act and Professional Code. These two laws are very clear and were in force long before Microsoft ever existed. In Québec, the OIQ is responsible for their enforcement."

    According to section 22.2 of the Engineers Act (R.S.Q., c. I-9):
    22. Any person not a member in good standing of the Order who:
    (1) [...];
    (2) assumes the title of engineer alone or qualified, or makes use of any abbreviation of such title, or of any name, title or designation which might lead to the belief that he is an engineer or a member of the Order,
    (3) advertises himself as such,
    (4) acts in such a manner as to lead to the belief that he is authorized to fulfil the office of or to act as an engineer,
    (5) [...],
    is guilty of an offence and is liable to the penalties provided in section 188 of the Professional Code (chapter C-26).

    And, according to sections 32 and 188 of the Professional Code (c. C-26):

    32. No person shall claim in any manner to be an advocate, notary, physician, dentist, pharmacist, optometrist, veterinary surgeon, agrologist, architect, engineer, land-surveyor, forest engineer, chemist, chartered accountant, radiology technologist, denturologist, dispensing optician, chiropractor, hearing-aid acoustician, podiatrist, nurse, acupuncturist, bailiff or midwife, or use one of the above titles or any other title or abbreviation which may lead to the belief that he is one, or initials which may lead to the belief that he is one, or engage in a professional activity reserved to the members of a professional order, claim to have the right to do so or act in such a way as to lead to the belief that he is authorized to do so, unless he holds a valid, appropriate permit and is entered on the roll of the order empowered to issue the permit, unless it is allowed by law.

    The prohibition relating to the use of any titles, abbreviations or initials mentioned in the first paragraph or in an Act constituting a professional order extends to the use of such titles, abbreviations and initials in a feminine form.

    188.Every person who contravenes a provision of this Code, of the Act or letters patent constituting an order or of an amalgamation or integration order is guilty of an offence and is liable to a fine of not less than $600 nor more than $6 000.

    "Engineers have an enormous responsibility to the public" explains Mr Lefebvre. "When engineers create a design and build such things as superstructures, airplanes, computerized control systems and highways, public safety and confidence are at stake. People trust engineers because they have a permit to practice engineering, and such trust is vitally important. The public has a long history of respect for professionals with a reserved title. It's also why governments across Canada have entrusted the responsibility of regulating the practice of the engineering profession to the organizations that govern the profession in each province, and for Québec, that is the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec."

    The OIQ President continued: "Becoming an engineer is not just a matter of completing a few days or weeks of studies, as Microsoft suggests when it promotes its MCSE certification. In fact, at a meeting in their offices in Seattle, Microsoft officials openly admitted to officials from the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers (CCPE) that their MCSE training program is in no way comparable to an academic engineering program. In Quebec, there are a number of laws and regulations governing the engineering profession. All this extensive legislation is based on the principle of protecting the public. That is the OIQ's principal function, and its primary concern is to verify the skills of those who apply for admission to its ranks."

    Only persons who hold a permit to practice issued by OIQ and are registered on its membership roll as engineers can use this strictly reserved title. Once engineers receive their permit to practice and thus the right to use this professional title, they are required to adhere to a professional code of ethics and demonstrate continued competency in their field of expertise.

    To date, in all cases where OIQ has taken legal action against the unlawful use of the title of engineer, the individuals charged have been found guilty. The OIQ President concluded: "When the OIQ learns of people violating the Engineers Act by not being registered on the roll of members, we see that they are prosecuted. They are not entitled to use the title of engineer, which has been strictly reserved for the members of OIQ. These violators run the risk of being fined."

    The Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec (OIQ) regulates and governs the practice of engineering in the province in accordance with the Engineers Act. OIQ has over 45,000 members and is affiliated with the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers (CCPE,) which represents some 160,000 engineers across Canada.

    The full text of the Engineers Act and the Professional Code of Québec can be consulted on the OIQ Web site at

    For information:
    Danielle Frank, ARP
    Conseiller en communications
    Direction des affaires corporatives
    Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec
    Tel. (514) 845-6141 or 1 800 461-6141, ext. 111 ht ml
  • by christophersaul ( 127003 ) on Wednesday February 05, 2003 @03:55PM (#5233454)
    ...have differing levels of importance.

    I recently moved from the UK to the Middle East. The situation in the Gulf States such as Qatar, Oman, the UAE, etc, is that the local citizens of each state make up, on average, about 20% of the population of the country. 'Locals', meaning the indigenous Arab population, generally work for the government in managerial positions and the majority of hands on IT work is performed by people from every country in the world, from Kyrgystan to South Africa, to Great Britain, to Somalia, to India and everywhere in between.

    Certifications in this region are extremely important. As a manager looking to employ someone, whether in a small or large company, you have to have some benchmark to use before you even interivew someone for a hands on IT role as you have no way of knowing what the general standard is in Iran, or Somalia or England, so there is no point interviewing everyone who claims they have a CS degree from the University of Tehran or Dundee or Hyderabad followed by sys admin experience at the Al Eadffg Coat Factory - it simply means nothing to you.

    So, you need some kind of benchmark from which to work up from.

    If you need an MS admin, you start off with people who are MS certified. If you need Sun skills you interview only those with Sun certification. Clearly a good manager will try and delve a little more deeply into what each individual can actually do and make a decision based on the results.

    As an Englishman, I'd be happy accepting a CV from someone from the UK without certification as I could look at a CV and make some judgements based on my own experience as to whether they are worth interviewing. We'd speak the same language and would have had similar experiences which would let me make that judgement. For other nationalities, I'd expect to start with at least some kind of 'official' level of skill and take things from there.

    Equally, an Indian manager wouldn't trust a UK CV - and quite rightly so - as they don't have the experience to judge what a UK guy's CV *really* means.

    So, even though the certification doesn't guarantee that the guy can do as much as someone without a certification, it gives one a good basis on which to work from.

    Linux is taking off here as everyone is obsessed with price and since Linux is 'free' it must be a good thing to use.

    So Red Hat are right on the nail in producing a 'benchmark' which the guys with the budgets and the influence can use when looking for potential employees.

Variables don't; constants aren't.