The giveaway for Red Hat certifications is that all come with acronyms that start with RH, as follows:
- Red Hat Certified Systems Administrator (RHCSA) — This foundation certification vets essential skills in handling files, working at the command line and using system documentation, along with managing systems (boot-up, identifying processes, start/stop virtual machines, controlling systems), configuring storage partitions and logical volumes and more.
- Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) — This cornerstone certification is designed to test and validate the skills and knowledge necessary to work as a senior-level Linux system administrator. Topics covered include advanced IP routing and services, managing runtime kernel behavior, working with iSCSI, automating maintenance tasks with shell scripts and working with networking services for Web, FTP, NFS, SMB, SMTP, SSH and more. An RHSCA is a prerequisite for the RHCE.
- Red Hat Certified Architect (RHCA) — Red Hat’s pinnacle certification takes the RHCE or Red Hat Certified JBoss Developer (RHCJD) as a prerequisite, and also requires candidates to earn at least five certificates of expertise within one of the concentrations: Datacenter, Cloud, DevOps, Application Platform or Application Development. Expertise areas include OpenStack, hybrid cloud storage, JBoss administration, platform as a service (PaaS), deployment and systems management, virtualization, clustering and storage management, server hardening and performance tuning. Each certificate requires passing a performance-based exam, which lasts up to six hours. Candidates who pass six or more exams earn the designation of RHCA Level II. This is a grueling, expensive and time-consuming credential to earn, but it’s valued highly.
Because Red Hat Linux is widely used in the business world, it makes an excellent choice for those interested in a more platform-focused path into the Linux world. Of course, for those who already work with or around Red Hat, it is a natural certification choice as well.