Maybe you have decided you want to go move on from your RHCSA/RHCE and want to take some ‘Certificate of Expertise’ level exams. Red Hat offer a range of exams, and from this range you can select 5 exams and become a Red Hat Certified Architect. A title that only lasts 3 years (from the date of your first CoE exam). Take a 6th exam and you are RHCA Level 2, take a 7th and you are RHCA Level 3 and so on.
but first some housekeeping …
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You can find a list of RHCA exams here: https://www.redhat.com/en/services/certification/rhca
Once upon a time, How hard Red Hat Exams are were loosely based on their numbering system:
– A 200-level exam would be at a System Administrator Level
– A 300-level exam would be at a RHCE Level
– A 400-level exam would be at a Advanced Level (RHCE+)
This has changed in recent years but can sometimes still provide a rough guide. I have tried to search a few different sites trying to gather other people’s opinions on how hard they found exams and try and collate them into a list. Obviously how hard someone finds an exam is very subjective but if 10 people say an exam is hard; then the exam is probably going to be hard.
Please note that blog post is based on other people’s comments rather than my own experiences.
Based on what I have found, people fall into 3 main camps:
1. Path of Least Resistance i.e. Easiest exams
These are people that will cherry pick the easiest exams to obtain the RHCA
2. Linux Guru – Toughest Exams
These are people that will cherry pick the hardest exams to try and prove their worth
These are people who mix and match between easy and hard exams, and often link them to ones they do at work or are already familiar with.
I would urge you to consider which of the above you are – are you trying to obtain a title OR are you trying to obtaining skills? I wasn’t able to find out about every exam – but below are the trends I found:
Exams consistently rated as easy:
These are the exams that are almost universally considered Easy, I either found no one (or very few) people claiming they were hard and lots that consider them easy.
– EX318 Virtualization
– EX210 OpenStack
– EX436 Clustering
Exams consistently rated as hard:
These are the exams that are almost universally considered Hard, I either found no one (or very few) people claiming they were easy and lots that consider them hard.
– EX333 Network Services – No Longer available
– EX442 Performance Tuning – Considered the hardest exam still available
– EX342 Troubleshooting
Exams inconsistently rated:
And finally, these are the exams that I found some people claiming were really easy and others claiming them as really hard. However I will mention that more people considered them hard than easy.
– EX280 OpenShift
– EX405 Puppet
– EX407 Ansible
Word of warning:
What I would say in conclusion, is that none of these exams are “gimme’s” that is to say if you do not prepare and walk into an exam based on you being “The main man(or woman) at work” or “I am so good and experienced that I don’t need to study” – you are almost certainly going to fail.