vm_symm
Contributor
Contributor

Is Windows/Linux System and Network Admin knowledge essential for VMware Admin?

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Hi,

I am planning to do VCP.

Kindly let me know if I should know how to set up routers/Windows or Linux Networks as well apart from learning VMware Vsphere stuff?

I currently work as a Storage Admin(mainly EMC SAN), but I have very limited OS related knowledge when it comes to the networking part. I have never set up a Domain Controller, or set up a router or set up anything on a network.

Kindly request someone to please let me know what all should I study before I attempt to set up a lab at home to study for VCP?

Or, frankly speaking, would it be better for me to not to pursue VCP as of now? Because whats the use of becoming a VCP but not being able to set up networks etc?

Please let me know.

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scott28tt
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

I believe that the best vSphere admins/engineers are those that have a good appreciation/understanding of networking, storage, servers, OSes, and applications - all the techologies that sit above and below where virtualisation sits in a modern datacentre.

I was the opposite of you in terms of skills/background when I first learned about vSphere, and I'd only done small bits of networking - but I made sure I raised my own bar in that area and learned a good amount about storage as part of my development.

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scott28tt
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

I believe that the best vSphere admins/engineers are those that have a good appreciation/understanding of networking, storage, servers, OSes, and applications - all the techologies that sit above and below where virtualisation sits in a modern datacentre.

I was the opposite of you in terms of skills/background when I first learned about vSphere, and I'd only done small bits of networking - but I made sure I raised my own bar in that area and learned a good amount about storage as part of my development.

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EdWilts
Expert
Expert

You will need some basic networking knowledge but definitely do not need to know how to set up a domain controller or configure a router.  I've never done either and passed the VCP4 and VCP5 exams. My background is in host administration (OpenVMS, Linux) and storage (both SAN and NAS).  I've done a fair amount of network troubleshooting though.

Please read the VCP Blueprint - it will tell you what you need to know.  Also, if you can, buy a copy of Scott Lowe's vSphere 5 book.

You'll need network knowledge along the lines of configuring virtual switches, port groups, understand VLANs, jumbo frames, etc.  If your storage background includes NAS as well as SAN, you'll have run across similar constructs before.

You should definitely be familar with the vSphere Networking manual.  If you can understand what is in there, and how to troubleshoot some basic network issues in Windows and ESXi, you should be okay.  I don't recall a single Linux question.

In general, there are aspects of the exam blueprint you can be weak in but you'll need to make up for those in other sections.  Some of us will have stronger storage skills than network skills and some the other way around.  It's a rare admin that knows all of them especially when the storage skillset you need spans FC and its various multipathing policies, NFS, iSCSI (both hardware and software), etc.

.../Ed (VCP4, VCP5)
vm_symm
Contributor
Contributor

Hi Scott and Ed,

Thank you for your replies.

Yes, I am planning to by Scott Lowe's book. My colleague has that book and stated that its one of the best books avaialable for the exam and in general for VMWare.

I am planning to build a decent home lab for the exam. The Laptop I dont think will suffice for building a decent home lab.

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