Jeremy C. Reed
reed at reedmedia.net
Tue Sep 13 18:33:33 EDT 2005
On Tue, 13 Sep 2005, Evan Leibovitch wrote:
> There's a lot more diversity amongst Linux distributions than flavours of
> BSD. If LPI could pull off a distribution-neutral exam that is endosed by
> Slackware, Mandriva, and Debian, the creation of something mutually
> acceptable to the BSD variants (or at least their users) should be much
> easier. There are fewer BSD variants and (at least it appears to me that) the
> variations between them are less than exist between, say, the Ubuntu and
> Novell Linux distributions.
> Also consider that you don't have to redo the whole exam to allow for major
> variations. In LPI exam 101, there was an objective that you needed to know
> one of the two major Linux packaging systems (RPM or DPKG). Candidates could
> choose, at exam-taking time, whether they wanted their exam to have RPM or
> DPKG questions. It was significantly more expensive and complex to create and
> administer, but far less so than creating entirely separate exams (or
Thanks for the note.
Linux systems in general all use the same packet filtering, coreutils,
shadow suite, findutils, util-linux, GNU gzip, net-tools, procps, gsed,
GNU libc, sysvinit, e2fsprogs, gcpio, GNU tar, etc. There are differences
in tools used for networking, like many distributions have moved to
iproute2 suite. And many distributions have different boot scripts and
distribution-specific locations for configurations.
In most cases, the core level utilities on Linux systems come from the
same upstream sources . This is a major and significant difference
between Linux and the BSDs.
The BSDs have different kernels with different configurations and
different suggested ideas for building and updating kernels.
The BSDs have different libc (but not important to certification).
The BSDs have different tools for adding and managing users.
The BSDs have different packet filtering suites.
In many cases, the BSDs have different tools for gzip, tar, and various
userland tools. In most cases, the standard behaviour and usage is the
The BSDs have different packaging systems (other than DragonFly and
NetBSD do have the same).
The BSDs have different techniques for updating systems.
The BSDs have different bootup scripts and bootup configurations
(FreeBSD and DragonFly do use their own derivatives of NetBSDs rc.d
system, but the code is divering and also the configuration names and
script names are different.)
The BSDs have different file systems and tools -- although in most cases
the basic behaviour and use is the same.
And so on ... I think I covered other differences several months ago on
We will need to decide whether we want to cover concepts versus tools in
many cases -- such as packet filtering/firewalling versus ipfw,
ipf, and pf specific tools.
Jeremy C. Reed
 I have packaged up many suites for Linux systems. For two years, I
have maintained and used the PkgLinux distribution.
More information about the BSDCert