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Sunday, April 22, 2007


I wanted to trigger myself so that I can get rid of the discouraging thoughts which have swollen within myself. I decided that the best way is to get into something which I will automatically do without forcing or pushing myself to do. A thing, that I can do with a flow. I wanted to gain some confidence which my inner heart is saying that I have lost them. Confidence can be gained only when I’m tested.

So, I decided to go for some certification. I always thought that software certifications are not a way to test a software engineer. But, I went for it because I wanted to trash all my low-feelings within me. Three weeks back, without thinking twice, I went and registered for the first level exam of Linux Professional Institute (www.lpi.org). Even the NIIT center guy was not aware of such an exam. When I told him that I want to register for LPI exam, he just gave a weird look at me. Only after repeating its name thrice, he was able to search for such an exam in his database. As everyone register only for Oracle or Sun Java or .NET exams, he was aware of only such things. And, I don’t think anybody else have ever taken such an exam there. I considered taking RHCE or RHCT earlier. But I dropped them because of two reasons

1) They are very much distribution based. I’m not a full-fledged redhat/fedora user though I started everything with the official black labeled one-cd Redhat 7.0 during 2001. Thereafter I tried out a couple of distros and finally settled permanently with Debian by the end of 2002.

2) RHCE and RHCT are very good exams which really test your brains by presenting a troubled system which you have to troubleshoot. I don’t want to be a full-fledged System/Network administrator because I don’t want to make my career in it.

These things made me to choose LPI which can be passed by a candidate who knows atleast the basics of debian & redhat distros. After registering for it, I came to home atonce and took an online mock exam to just test myself. I passed it very narrowly! Second time when I took, I failed!! Third time, again I passed very narrowly!!!

Earlier I thought that I should take the exam without any preparation. But after taking the mock exam, I decided that I should prepare for it else I might fail :)

Two weeks before, I took the first level exam and completed it. The exam was a bit tough. Had I taken the exam lightly, there are many chances that I might have failed. I was posed with 98 objective questions (Choose the best answer and Fill in the blank) and I got 12 of them wrong. Personally, I felt that the exam questions were good but while answering some of the questions in the exam, I was feeling that the question should have been framed in an even better way. Answered all the questions half-an-hour before the allotted 120 minutes for the exam.

Overall, I would rate, it is worth preparing and taking LPI though the exam questions could have been even better.



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