Certifications / Open Source

Roadmap to Success: CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1

by Karin Klinger
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Published on September 8, 2015

Roadmap to Success is a series of posts designed to help learners better understand certification pathways, career opportunities associated with those certifications, and next steps beyond certification.

UPDATED: We updated this article February 13, 2017 to reflect relevant changes to the CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1 certification curriculum.

The CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1 certification is an excellent starting place to learn more about open source technologies. It is among the most popular courses offered by CBT Nuggets and is highly sought after by employers. Interestingly, passing the exams associated with the CompTIA Linux+ can result in two (2) certifications. Generally, this certification will qualify learners for roles including system administrator, network administrator, IT technician, or DevOps.

CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1 The CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1 certification is designed to affirm learner's skills and knowledge to:

  • work at the Linux command line;

  • perform easy maintenance tasks including assisting users, adding users to a larger system, executing backup & restore, shutdown & reboot; and,

  • install and configure a workstation and connect it to a LAN, or a stand-alone PC via modem to the Internet.

This certification is made up of two exams, each of which carries varying names/identification, depending on which vendor a learner chooses. CBT Nuggets provides training that thoroughly covers the exam content:

Typically, learners pursuing these certifications should have a basic familiarity with Linux, and the ability to create and manage virtual machines. These certifications are considered to be entry-level, so they are appropriate for learners who are fairly new to the industry.

Exam Details In order to take full advantage of the 2-in-1 certification opportunity, we recommend that learners register for, and complete the CompTIA Linux+ certification exams, which can then be applied to receive an equivalent LPI certification.

Time allotted for exam: 1.5 hours (90 minutes) per exam Number of questions: 60 Passing score: 500 Question types: Multiple choice (single response); Multiple response; Fill-in-the-blank Exam registration: Pearson Vue Exam cost: $200 (USD) per exam Exam objectives: Please note that exam objectives are available from each vendor that provides Linux certifications. Learners can review any single vendor's exam objectives and be prepared for the exams; there is no need to review objectives from each vendor.

  • CompTIA Linux+ exam objectives: LX0-103 and LX0-104

  • LPIC-1: 101-400 and 102-400

Recertification CompTIA certifications are valid for three years from the date of certification. The CompTIA Linux+ certification is eligible for renewal through CompTIA's continuing education (CE) program. CBT Nuggets is a CompTIA partner, meaning that our courses are pre-approved for continuing education credit. For more information on our partnership with CompTIA, review our CEU FAQs, Continuing Education Credits for CompTIA.

The Next Step The CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1 certification is an entry-level certification, which opens up opportunities for learners to continue to advance their Linux skills or diversify their resumes. Learners who earn the CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1 certifications often consider the following options for next steps in their certification journeys:

  • LPIC-2 (made up of two exams: 201-400 and 202-400)

  • Docker (formal certification is not currently available, but is said to be coming soon! Complete Shawn Powers' Docker course to be ready when the certification becomes available!)

  • Ubuntu (Like Docker, there is no formal certification available for Ubuntu, but it serves as excellent training for real-world application and skill expansion. Complete Shawn Powers' Ubuntu course to advance your skills.)

  • Red Hat Certified Systems Administrator (made up of one exam: RHCSA EX200)

Career Considerations CompTIA provides excellent information about IT career paths related to their certifications, including a career roadmap that identifies certifications from CompTIA and other providers that equip learners for specific career opportunities.

Payscale.com/ provides information that can help learners determine appropriate pay scales for job opportunities associated with the CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1 certifications. Depending on experience, an employee who holds these certifications can earn anywhere between $32,215 and $109,262 annually. Common roles or titles for those who hold a CompTIA Linux+ include Linux system administrator, systems administrator, IT manager, and IT systems engineer.

Certification Pathways The Linux+ certification is unique in that it is "powered by LPI," indicating the partnership between CompTIA and the Linux Professional Institute (LPI). So, learners earning a CompTIA Linux+ certification also earn the LPIC-1 certification! Learners earn two (2) certifications by successfully passing just two exams! With that in mind, we have included certification pathway information for CompTIA and LPI.

CompTIA CompTIA certifications are considered to be vendor neutral, meaning that the content addressed by CompTIA certifications is universally applicable to any product or brand. Generally, CompTIA certifications are broad in scope, providing a conceptual framework that can be broadly applied. CompTIA certifications are broken down into four categories: Basic, Professional, Specialty, and Master certifications. However, CompTIA certifications carry no prerequisite exams, so learners can begin at any level. Though learners can start with any CompTIA certification, the hierarchy should be considered in developing training plans.

Basic certifications:

Professional certifications:

Specialty certifications:

Master certifications:

LPI The Linux Professional Institute (LPI) has developed a certification pathway that is simple and direct. Made up of four certifications, LPI offers certifications for learners who are just beginning their Linux training, as well as seasoned Linux professionals. Certifications offered by LPI include:

  • Linux Essentials

  • LPIC-1

  • LPIC-2

  • LPIC-3

There are no prerequisites for the Linux Essentials or LPIC-1 certifications. The prerequisite for the LPIC-2 is the LPIC-1. Similarly, the prerequisite for the LPIC-3 is the LPIC-2.

Concluding Thoughts Open source technologies have been gaining momentum in the IT industry for some time. Earning CompTIA Linux+/LPIC-1 certifications can equip learners to work effectively using highly customizable systems in order to make their workplaces more effective and efficient which ultimately makes them highly desirable to employers.

Watch. Learn. Conquer Linux!


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