Weekend Reading: Sysadmin 101

This series covers sysadmin basics. The first article explains how to approach alerting and on-call rotations as a sysadmin. In the second article, I discuss how to automate yourself out of a job, and in the third, I explain why and how you should use tickets. The fourth article covers some of the fundamentals of patch management under Linux, and the fifth and final article describes the overall sysadmin career path and the attributes that might make you a "senior sysadmin" instead of a "sysadmin" or "junior sysadmin", along with some tips on how to level up.

Rapid, Secure Patching: Tools and Methods

Generate enterprise-grade SSH keys and load them into an agent for control of all kinds of Linux hosts. Script the agent with the Parallel Distributed Shell (pdsh) to effect rapid changes over your server farm.

Ansible: the Automation Framework That Thinks Like a Sysadmin

I've written about and trained folks on various DevOps tools through the years, and although they're awesome, it's obvious that most of them are designed from the mind of a developer. There's nothing wrong with that, because approaching configuration management programmatically is the whole point.

Sysadmin 101: Patch Management

A few articles ago, I started a Sysadmin 101 series to pass down some fundamental knowledge about systems administration that the current generation of junior sysadmins, DevOps engineers or "full stack" developers might not learn otherwise. I had thought that I was done with the series, but then the WannaCry malware came out and exposed some of the poor patch management practices still

Testing the Waters: How to Perform Internal Phishing Campaigns

Phishing is one of the most dangerous threats to modern computing. Phishing attacks have evolved from sloppily written mass email blasts to targeted attacks designed to fool even the most cautious users. No defense is bulletproof, and most experts agree education and common sense are the best tools to combat the problem.


Many proprietary high-availability (HA) software providers require users to pay extra for system-management capabilities. Bucking this convention and driving down costs is LINBIT, whose DRBD HA software solution, part of the Linux kernel since 2009, powers thousands of digital enterprises.

Tracking Down Blips

In a previous article, I explained the process for setting up Cacti, which is a great program for graphing just about anything. One of the main things I graph is my internet usage. And, it's great information to have, until there is internet activity you can't explain.

Sysadmin 101: Leveling Up

This is the fourth in a series of articles on systems administrator fundamentals. These days, DevOps has made even the job title "systems administrator" seems a bit archaic like the "systems analyst" title it replaced.

Sysadmin 101: Ticketing

This is the third in a series of articles on system administrator fundamentals where I focus on some lessons I've learned through the years that might be obvious to longtime sysadmins, but news to someone just coming into this position.

TeamViewer Linux Host

At last abandoning WINE and launching native Linux support, TeamViewer announced the availability of a new preview version of its Linux Host with native Linux support.