The Best Linux Certifications for 2022

CompTIA Linux+ validates the competencies required of an early career system administrator supporting Linux systems.

Linux might be an unfamiliar name to the casual end user, but these days the top tech pros know it as the operating system (OS) that basically makes the internet happen. If you have been managing Windows servers for some time, or worked in other segments of the technology world, you have probably run into a Linux fanatic who proudly promotes their enthusiasm for the UNIX-like OS with an image of Tux the Linux Penguin on a t-shirt or mousepad. (You might even know someone who thinks it should be called GNU/Linux, but that’s a whole other kettle of fish.)

It’s not just an OS for diehards anymore, though. The Linux kernel, created and launched by Linus Torvalds in 1991, has since become an increasingly important part of the infrastructure of the online world. For those IT professionals who really want a career advantage, there has never been a better time to master Linux.

With approximately 96% of the top 1 million servers using the Linux OS, and 90% of cloud infrastructure being Linux-based, it’s easy to see why learning Linux is so important. It should be a priority for anyone interested in systems administrator or network administrator job roles.

Taking a deep dive into Linux, though, can be intimidating for those who were weaned on Windows. Those familiar with managing Windows OS servers might wince at the notion of learning a whole new platform with its own distinct command line and unique lexicon of commands. Even basic tasks like configuring firewalls and user group management demand a new technical vocabulary.

There is a learning curve for navigating and troubleshooting in a Linux environment. Anyone who has tried playing with Ubuntu at home knows that working in a Linux environment without knowing what you are doing puts you at risk for making fatal mistakes.

That is why Linux certification is such an important credential for IT pros. Holding a Linux certification demonstrates your competence to a potential employer, and it allows you to be confident in your own Linux skills. Earning the certification proves to employers that you know what you’re doing. It also helps you trust your own expertise and feel confident you can do the job without mishaps.

Get Started with CompTIA Linux+ Certification

The CompTIA Linux+ certification confirms a high level of proficiency in the use of Linux in a business environment. This highly respected professional certification, like all of CompTIA’s certification offerings, is vendor neutral – meaning it is not tied to one particular product or company. In the open-source world of Linux this can provide a huge benefit.

Since Linux is an open-source product, there are multiple popular versions, called distributions, out there in circulation. Different Linux distributions, or distros, are all built on the Linux kernel but are tweaked to have different characteristics and features that make them especially appropriate for particular types of computing.

For example, there are Linux distributions which are:

    • Entirely free
    • Require payment or a subscription
    • Are meant for home use
    • Are specifically for enterprise computing
    • Are used exclusively by small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs)
    • Are built with cybersecurity in mind
    • Are honed for speed or portability
    • Are used primarily in an enterprise data center
    • Are built specifically for use in parts of an enterprise

Why Get a Linux Certification?

As with any certification in the IT industry, the advantages of a Linux certification are well-established and myriad. Holding a certification proves to employers that you have the skills they need and can improve your confidence in your own skills.

Whether a system engineer, a sysadmin or a cybersecurity pro, working competently on a Linux system requires serious technological expertise. Given the level of skill required and the trust placed on IT pros to keep Linux machines up and running, it’s not a stretch to say that a Linux certification may be even more valuable than in other areas of IT. A trustworthy certification is shorthand that you are capable of doing the job you say you can do.

Which Linux Certification to Choose?

An analysis of Emsi Burning Glass data finds nearly 10,000 job postings where employers require or request Linux-certified candidates (9,639 job ads in the United States from November 2020 to October 2021).

CompTIA Linux+ is one of the top Linux-focused certifications requested (3,787 ads), following only RHCE (RedHat Certified Engineer), which was cited in 4,122 job ads. Other top citations include RHCSA (RedHat Certified System Administrator), LPI (Linux Professional Institute) and RHCA (RedHat Certified Architect).

What Are the Advantages of Linux Certification?

On the business side, the global Linux OS market is projected to grow to $15.6 billion by 2027, up from only $3.89 billion in 2019. That means more companies are using one Linux distribution or another to power their business.

Businesses ranging from massive multinational corporations to SMBs run Linux today, and even more will do so tomorrow. Learning Linux is something to keep in mind for server and system administrators, and others, who want to keep their skills fresh and their resumes polished. 

With more employers needing to bring on Linux-proficient tech pros to keep their operations running reliably and securely, certification will only grow in importance. As is the nature of open-source software, there will undoubtedly be countless new distributions of Linux developed. Vendor-specific certifications will proliferate alongside them. It will always be in your professional interest to get certified on the particular Linux distribution that you are working with, if available.

CompTIA Linux+, however, will continue to be the standard for across the board competence for Linux operating systems. No matter what distributions appear and what extended features they have, CompTIA Linux+ confirms you have the foundational knowledge to handle them.

Contact The Academy to learn more about CompTIA Linux+ and how you can get certified. 


Sources: Content: comptia.org/blog/best-certifications-for-linux; Image 1: kaspersky.com; Image 2: extremetech.com; Image 3: comptia.org/certifications/linux#tab-1