Create an official NethServer certification track

Continuing the discussion from Where are we at in 5 years?:


I like the idea of certification, because of the reliability of information to others.
If someone ask something in the community and a certified member answers, the
newcomer can trust this information.

In other communities, there are selfsigned so called experts which give horrible advices.
They don’t do this intentionally, they do think they know what they are doiing.

I think this is one of the badest things for a community. Unreliable information given to people which need help. (Of course this is also terrible in real life.)

Of course noone is save to failures, but a certificationsystem can help to improve this.

And I want to mention, that in this community, I neverhad a doubt, that someone who give advices didn’t know what he/she is doiing. That’s another aspect, why I feel so comfortable with nethserver.


:ok_hand: I like the idea too, hope that some of us could work on a good-quality training course so we can certify some members and avoid bad advice.

So happy to hear this, all credit goes to the amazing people who hang around here. :+1:

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A friend of mine is Manager Training for EMEA at SuSE. He just presented the latest certification track for SuSE:
I do realize that SuSE is HUGE in comparison to the tiny NethServer world. But still, they not only have a large certification team, they also have the expertise to think through a decent certification track.
We can adopt the strategy, however we probably have to start small. I must say that I am quite exited about getting a cert track off the ground.


I would pay M$ level cash for training that covers nethserver specifics like the e-smith system and other things you should know before you apply regular Linux knowledge to the situation.

I am taking a risk not being able to properly evaluate impacts, and being able to train engineers how to operate nethserver without having to write the docs myself, would be a very large selling point IMHO.

As it stands, I replaced a M$ environment on the server-side, completely with a bunch if virtual nethservers and it is working so well that I am trying to get funds to donate since it otherwise feels awkward. The only issue is that none of the M$ people can easily google their way to success nor train for nethserver, and thus I somewhat feel like this sword of Damocles is hanging above the servers any time someone else besides me points to them :stuck_out_tongue:

In my mind, creating a certification track needs a lot of time. @robb how did you get on with this?

Indeed creating a certification track is a LOT of work. With the developments for me at home, the progress of creating the course has been very low the last few months. However, I still intend to have this available in the near future. I sure can use help with this. Anyone willing to pitch in, please raise your hand or pm me directly.

Our friends in Venezuela have their own troubles there so I can’t expect too much help from them, which is completely understandable.

@Jeroen_Visser: My intention is to first create a general sysadmin course for NethServer wich would end with an exam that provides a NSCA (NethServer Certified Administrator) certificate. Maybe followed by a NSCE (NethServer Certified Engineer). In this module we could encorporate the e-smith layer as part of the certificate. We could very well use the help of @giacomo and @stephdl with ideas how to put such a course together.


@robb I don’t mind being a crash test dummy for the exams.

Just thinking a bit more widely on this, how with this certification or testing process be geared towards or compliment those who are LPI or CentOs certification?

Hi @bwdjames,
IMO this cert track should be a specific track towards NethServer. For the administrator track the idea is that the certification should be enough to safely install and maintain a NethServer instance. Having an LPI / RH / CentOS certification is absolutely a pre. I don’t want to invent the wheel and maybe LPIC 101 and 102 curriculum should be considered as known for this exam? If this is mandatory knowledge (= must have LPIC 101-102 certification) is to be decided. I am very reluctant in setting such a barrier. I rather see as many as possible NS certified members.
For the Engineer track I think of LPIC 201-202 level. Again, I hate to do ‘double work’ and IMO the track should be as hands on as possible on NethServer. As said before, this could be the track where the e-smith layer can find it’s place as a topic.

But the track is still far away from this. Past few months I was not able to work on it and our friends from Venezuela, who have been helping, have their own real life troubles in their country.

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@robb Thanks for the clarification. I wish I have the time to assist on this as I see that is has value.

I can understand that one does not want barriers for the NethServer certification.

One thought or option is for the Administrator track and for the Engineer track, the LPIC can be recommended and one can have a third NethServer Certification for those who not only have passed the NethServer Administrator or Engineer Track, but who also have the LPIC / RH / CentOS certification. One would not have to have a separate course or exam for it - the only qualification is to pass one of the NetServer tracks and to be able to produce proof that you have passed another qualifying course. Would that be an option or something to be considered?

I have seen distro specific tracks where LPIC was mandatory to become offically certified for the distribution. In some way to me this is a viable choice. LPIC covers generic linux knowledge so by having a mandatory LPIC cert you only have to focus on distribution specific topics.
I personally think that part of the first track must contain basic insight of what open source is and what the philosophy behind open source is. Problem that rises then is, to what extend should it explain that. Do we follow the purist path of Richard Stallman or a more pragmatic approach?
I highly value the work of RMS, but IMO his strict vision limits the flexibility of a distribution like NethServer and even scare a lot of users away. A more pragmatic approach will make NS an option for a lot more people, schools and companies.
Maybe an explanation like RMS gives on open source can be part of the course and a question to the person who is doing the course on what he/she thinks about open source could be a reasonable compromise. Then there has to be some thought on the subject and understanding that open source is so much more than free to use software.

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@robb That sounds like a reasonable approach.

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