Novell Certified Linux Engineer: Toward One Net

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Novell recently announced a new certification called the Novell Certified Linux Engineer (CLE). Linux is the fastest-growing platform on the market today and is taking on increasingly critical roles in large corporate environments. The new CLE certification is another step forward for Novell in delivering on its one Net vision—a world in which all types of networks work together as a single network, regardless of platform. There is a high demand for Linux training, and the demand for Linux certification will grow as more and more Linux solutions are implemented.

One way to capitalize on the demand for Linux expertise is by proving you have the knowledge and skills to effectively implement Linux and the services that run on top of it. Why the services? Because the services make use of Linux’s flexibility, helping companies realize the extensive business benefits they’re looking for from Linux in the first place.

Novell services that currently run on Linux include eGuide, NetMail, iFolder, ZENworks for Servers, DirXML and eDirectory, with more on the way. These topics will be covered in a single course, Novell Services for Linux (Course #3015), forecast to be available in instructor-led training and self-study formats later this year.



  • eGuide is a Web application that lets you easily and quickly search for directory-based information. Novell eGuide provides a single location to search for the people, places and things you need to know.
  • Novell NetMail 3.1 is a full-featured, easy-to-deploy e-mail and calendaring system that simplifies the complexities and lowers the costs of deploying a traditional in-house e-mail system. NetMail also easily integrates with Microsoft Outlook and other standards-based e-mail clients, enabling you to improve your end-users’ experience without changing your IT infrastructure.
  • Novell iFolder lets your files follow you, everywhere. iFolder allows you to access, organize and manage your files anywhere, anytime. iFolder also provides worry-free security, ensuring that all files are always safe, secure and up to date. Your files can be as mobile as you are—at work, at home or on the go.
  • Novell ZENworks for Servers is the cross-platform solution for server content and configuration management. With multiple servers and server groups supporting an organization, server content and configurations can easily become out of date and out of sync. These variations can exist from group to group as well as from platform to platform. ZENworks for Servers provides complete consistency of server content, tasks and configurations among servers that have similar functions. It also ensures the reliability, predictability and stability of your servers and enables single-point, browser-based management, making it easier than ever to keep your servers up to date.
  • DirXML provides integration services that universally connect your applications, data stores and network platforms—even across technical and organizational boundaries—and enable those resources to work together as one Net. Preparing your network for e-business requires more than a flashy Web site and a fast Internet connection. If you need information to flow freely between disparate network systems so you and your employees, customers, partners and suppliers have real-time access to accurate and consistent information, DirXML is the solution.
  • Novell eDirectory 8.7 is a powerful and proven cross-platform directory service. It delivers precise, centralized control over the identities and access rights of your employees, customers, partners and suppliers. In 2002, for the third year in a row, Network Magazine named eDirectory the directory service Product of the Year, praising its exemplary cross-platform support, standards support and scalability. eDirectory also took top honors as “Best Enterprise Directory Service,” beating out Microsoft and Sun ONE Directory Server (formerly Netscape iPlanet Directory Server). In fact, eDirectory has garnered nearly two-dozen awards from various industry publications and organizations.


No previous Linux certification is required to become a Novell CLE. However, candidates should have the knowledge that is necessary to pass the Linux Professional Institute Certification Level 1 (LPIC 1). The Linux Professional Institute (LPI) is a not-for-profit community project based in Canada that has developed a well-known and respected professional certification program for Linux.

You can certify as a Novell CLE by passing a live practical exam. Novell recommends you complete Novell Services for Linux (Course #3015) and have hands-on experience with Linux to qualify to pass this exam.

The Novell CLE Practical exam uses a live Linux environment. This exam will validate your ability to perform Linux and Novell Services tasks based on the LPIC 1 objectives and course #3015 objectives within a specific time limit. As this is a live environment, Linux and Novell utilities contained in the shipping products are available as part of the Novell CLE Practical exam.

Practical Testing Technology
Novell has offered live, hands-on testing in its certification program since 1999. The Novell Certified Directory Engineer (CDE) was the first certification to offer a practical hands-on test (known as the Novell Practicum), which is delivered via the Internet to Pearson VUE testing centers around the world.

Building on this practical testing approach, Novell announced in the March 2001 issue of Certification Magazine (“Certification in the ’Net Economy”) the intent to use Virtual Machine technology for practical tests. On a single testing center workstation, several machines can be launched, each in an easy-to-use, tabbed interface—creating a virtual network with complete, fully functional operating systems. A test-taker can switch from each virtual machine by clicking on tabs. Once all tasks are completed, the state of each machine is evaluated and a pass or fail score is given.

Pearson VUE has partnered with Novell to deliver these practical exams. Watch for the beta release of the Novell Certified Linux Engineer (CLE) exam in December of 2003.

Preparing for the Novell CLE Exam
Novell Training Services will be offering low-stakes Web tests as a way to prepare for the high-stakes exam. After completing the recommended training, you can prepare for the exam using Web-based practice exams. The practice exams are not based on Novell’s practical testing technology; however, they will help in preparing for the practical exam by using item types and questions that match closely to tasks you will be asked to perform in the live exam.

Added Benefit for CNEs
All new and existing Certified Novell Engineers (CNEs) can easily update and expand their professional skills on two fronts. When they obtain the NetWare 6 CNE credential (either by completing the continuing certification requirement by Oct. 31, 2003 or by earning the NetWare 6 CNE as a new credential by the same date), they will be eligible for a free attempt at the Novell CLE practical exam.

Seizing Opportunities
The dynamic growth of Linux today provides you with a chance to move ahead. With a combination of Linux and Novell services skills, you’ll be prepared to take hold of this opportunity. You can establish yourself as a leader within your own organization, showing others the advantages that Linux and Novell services offer. Or you can look for new opportunities where companies are seeking the same expertise but haven’t found it within their own staff. The choice is yours once you have the skills. Novell invites you to explore the possibilities that earning your Novell CLE will offer.

Craig Swenson is the project manager for the Novell CLE certification. He has seven years of experience in IT support and training. Craig can be reached at

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