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Have you been thinking about switching jobs and are uncertain about that technical interview process? Try taking the technical interview and see if you are up it.

It seems the job market is starting to move a bit. If you are uncomfortable in your current position or if you just want to test the waters, it might be time to brush off your resume and hit the road. Before you do, you should also brush up on some of your Linux Admin skills so that you are ready for the dreaded technical interview. Here is a list of questions; any true Linux Admin should be able to answer. If you do not know the answers to these questions, not to fear, take a bit of time, research the answers, and then go and hit the road. Some of the questions are about you, your personality and how you conduct yourself. Other questions are technical in nature concerning networking and operating systems. When answering the questions, both when you go through this interview and when you are in a real interview, try to answer completely and include any real-life experiences you have. Just answering questions with a yes/no or minimum answer does not show a true interest in the field of Linux Box administration and how it can impact the company. Most people want to know how you apply the knowledge and what you have learned from it. Moreover if you want to be more expert, you may think of BASE Limited for your Linux training. Good Luck.

     
 

1.

How do you take a single line of input from the user in a shell script?  
 

2.

Write a script to convert all DOS style backslashes to UNIX style slashes in a list of files.  
 

3.

Write a regular expression (or sed script) to replace all occurrences of the letter 'f', followed by any number of characters, followed by the letter 'a', followed by one or more numeric characters, followed by the letter 'n', and replace what's found with the string "UNIX".  
 

4.

Write a script to list all the differences between two directories.  
 

5.

Write a program in any language you choose, to reverse a file.  
 

6.

What are the fields of the password file?  
 

7.

What does a plus at the beginning of a line in the password file signify?  
 

8.

Using the man pages, find the correct ioctl to send console output to an arbitrary pty.  
 

9.

What is an MX record?  
 

10.

What is the prom command on a Sun that shows the SCSI devices?  
 

11.

What is the factory default SCSI target for /dev/sd0?  
 

12.

Where is that value controlled?  
 

13.

What happens to a child process that dies and has no parent process to wait for it and what's bad about this?  
 

14.

What's wrong with sendmail? What would you fix?  
 

15.

What command do you run to check file system consistency?  
 

16.

What's wrong with running shutdown on a network?  
 

17.

What can be wrong with setuid scripts?  
 

18.

What value does spawn return?  
 

19.

Write a script to send mail from three other machines on the network to root at the machine you're on. Use a 'here doc', but include in the mail message the name of the machine the mail is sent from and the disk utilization statistics on each machine?  
 

20.

Why can't root just cd to someone's home directory and run a program called a.out sitting there by typing "a.out", and why is this good?  
 

21.

What is the difference between UDP and TCP?  
 

22.

What is DNS?  
 

23.

What does nslookup do?  
 

24.

How do you create a swapfile?  
 

25.

How would you check the route table on a workstation/server?  
 

26.

How do you find which ypmaster you are bound to?  
 

27.

How do you fix a problem where a printer will cutoff anything over 1MB?  
 

28.

What is the largest file system size in solaris? SunOS?  
 

29.

What are the different RAID levels?  
 

30.

Advantages/disadvantages of script vs compiled program.  
 

31.

Name a replacement for PHP/Perl/MySQL/Linux/Apache and show main differences.  
 

32.

Why have you choosen such a combination of products?  
 

33.

Differences between two last MySQL versions. Which one would you choose and when/why?  
 

34.

Main differences between Apache 1.x and 2.x. Why is 2.x not so popular? Which one would you choose and when/why?  
 

35.

Which Linux distros do you have experience with?  
 

36.

Which distro you prefer? Why?  
 

37.

Which tool would you use to update Debian / Slackware / RedHat / Mandrake / SuSE ?  
 

38.

You're asked to write an Apache module. What would you do?  
 

39.

Which tool do you prefer for Apache log reports?  
 

40.

Your portfolio. (even a PHP guest book may work well)  
 

41.

What does 'route' command do?  
 

42.

Differences between ipchains and iptables.  
 

43.

What's eth0, ppp0, wlan0, ttyS0, etc.  
 

44.

What are different directories in / for?  
 

45.

Partitioning scheme for new webserver. Why?  
 

46.

How do you list all files in a directory, including the hidden files?  
 

47.

How do you find out all processes that are currently running?  
 

48.

How do you find out the processes that are currently running or a particular user?  
 

49.

How do you kill a process?  
 

50.

What would you use to view contents of the file?  
 

51.

How can you gather statistics on a table?  
 

52.

What would you use to edit contents of the file?  
 

53.

What would you use to view contents of a large error log file?  
 

54.

How do you log in to a remote Linux box?  
 

56.

How do you get help on a Linux terminal?  
 

57.

How do you list contents of a directory including all of its subdirectories, providing full details and sorted by modification time?  
 

58.

How do you create a symbolic link to a file (give some reasons of doing so)?  
 

59

What is a filesystem?  
 

60.

How do you get its usage (a filesystem)?  
 

61.

How do you check the sizes of all users� home directories (one command)?  
 

62.

How do you check for processes started by user 'pat'?  
 

63.

How do you start a job on background?  
 

64.

What utility would you use to replace a string '2001' for '2002' in a text file?  
 

65.

What utility would you use to cut off the first column in a text file?  
 

66.

How to copy file into directory?  
 

67.

How to remove directory with files?  
 

68.

What is the difference between internal and external commands?  
 

69.

List the three main parts of an operating system command:  
 

70.

What is the difference between an argument and an option (or switch)?  
 

71.

What is the purpose of online help?  
 

72.

Name two forms of security.  
 

73.

What command do you type to find help about the command who?  
 

74.

What is the difference between home directory and working directory?  
 

75.

Which directory is closer to the top of the file system tree, parent directory or current directory?  
 

76.

Given the following pathname:

$ /business/acctg/payable/supplier/april
a) If you were in the directory called acctg, what would be the relative pathname name for the file called april?
b) What would be the absolute pathname for april?
 
 

77.

Suppose your directory had the following files:
help. 1 help.2 help.3 help.4 help.O1 help.O2 aid.O1 aid.O2 aid.O3 back. 1 back.2 back.3
a) What is the command to list all files ending in 2?
b) What is the command to list all files starting in aid?
c) What is the command to list all "help" files with one character extension?
 
 

78.

What are two subtle differences in using the more and the pg commands?  
 

79.

When is it better to use the more command rather than cat command?  
 

80.

What are two functions the move mv command can carry out?  
 

81.

Name two methods you could use to rename a file.  
 

82.

The soccer league consists of boy and girl teams. The boy file names begin with B, the girl teams begin with G. All of these files are in one directory called "soccer", which is your current directory:
Bteam.abc Bteam.OOl Bteam.OO2 Bteam.OO4
Gteam.win Gteam.OOl Gteam.OO2 Gteam.OO3
Write the commands to do the following:

a) rename the file Bteam.abc to Bteam.OO3.
b) erase the file Gteam. win after you have viewed the contents of the file
c) make a directory for the boy team files called "boys", and one for the girl team files called" girls"
d) move all the boy teams into the "boys" directory
e) move all the girl teams into the "girls" directory
f) make a new file called Gteam.OO4 that is identical to Gteam.OOl
g) make a new file called Gteam.OO5 that is identical to Bteam.OO2
 
 

83.

Draw a picture of the final directory structure for the "soccer" directory, showing all the files and directories.  
 

84.

What metacharacter is used to do the following:
1.1 Move up one level higher in the directory tree structure
1.2 Specify all the files ending in .txt
1.3 Specify one character
1.4 Redirect input from a file
1.5 Redirect the output and append it to a file
 
 

85.

Which of the quoting or escape characters allows the dollar sign ($) to retain its special meaning?  
 

86.

What is a faster way to do the same command?
mv fileO.txt newdir
mv filel.txt newdir
mv file2.txt newdir
mv file3.txt newdir
 
 

87.

List two ways to create a new file:  
 

88.

What is the difference between > and >> operators?  
 

89.

Write the command to do the following:
1 Redirect the output from the directory listing to a printer.
2 Add the file efg.txt to the end of the file abc.txt.
3 The file testdata feeds information into the file called program
4 Observe the contents of the file called xyz.txt using MORE.
5 Observe a directory listing that is fo
 
 

90.

How do you estimate file space usage?  
 

91.

How can you see all mounted drives?  
 

92.

How can you find a path to the file in the system?  
 

93.

What Linux HotKeys do you know?  
 

94.

What can you tell about the tar Command?  
 

95.

What types of files you know?  
 

96.

How to copy files from on PC to another on the same network?  
 

97.

Please describe information below:

-rw-rw-r-- 1 dotpc dotpc 102 Jul 18 2003 file.buf
drwxr-xr-x 9 dotpc dotpc 4096 Oct 21 09:34 bin
lrwxrwxrwx 1 dotpc dotpc 20 Mar 21 15:00 client -> client-2.9.5
drwxrwxr-x 11 dotpc dotpc 4096 Sep 2 2005 client-2.8.9
drwxrwxr-x 7 dotpc dotpc 4096 Dec 14 12:13 data
drwxr-xr-x 12 dotpc dotpc 4096 Oct 21 09:41 docs
drwxr-xr-x 5 dotpc dotpc 4096 Dec 7 14:22 etc
drwxr-xr-x 11 dotpc dotpc 4096 Mar 21 15:54 client-2.9.5
-rw-r--r-- 1 dotpc dotpc 644836 Mar 22 09:53 client-2.9.5.tar.gz
 
 

98.

If you would like to run two commands in sequence what operators you can use?  
 

99.

How you will uncompress the file?  
 

100.

How do you execute a program or script, my_script in your current directory?  
 

101.

How to find current time configuration in the file my_new.cfg?  
 

102.

What does grep() stand for?  
 

103

•  What does the top command display?  
 

104

•  How can you find configuration on linux?  
 

105

•  How to find difference in two configuration files on the same server?  
 

106

What is the best way to see the end of a logfile.log file?  
     
 
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