Systems Administrator 1 - Job Role Training


Looking to become a System Administrator? This package consists of hands-on labs focusing on that NIST National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) work role. Completing these labs will help you learn the skills needed for a job in the area. A follow-on package, "System Administrator 2" is also available for more in-depth practice with these job skills.


Prerequisites vary by lab, but are generally: familiarity with the Unix/Linux command line and basic networking concepts (TCP/IP, DNS, etc.).


16 hours, self-paced. Pause and continue at any time.


  • Introductory IDS Configuration with Snort
    Students will learn how to configure an Intrusion Detection System (IDS) to examine traffic to/from a firewall. The popular Snort® IDS will be used in this exercise. The exercise will include both harmless background traffic and potentially-malicious traffic to be detected by Snort.
  • Firewall Configuration with IPtables
    Students will configure a network firewall using the standard Linux iptables module. The exercise will include both ingress and egress filtering, stateful packet inspection, and best practices. More advanced techniques such as port knocking will also be introduced. Evaluation will include network probes from both inside and outside the firewall to ensure proper rules are configured.
  • Using Active Directory to Manage Domain User Accounts
    Students learn to use the Windows Active Directory service to create and manage domain user accounts. They also learn to set up security policies and assign these policies to users and organizational units.
  • Host IDS Setup with OSSEC
    Students learn how to configure and run the widely-used, free OSSEC Host Intrusion Detection System (HIDS). During the exercise, students will learn how to check for rootkits using OSSEC, how to verify file integrity, how to set up passive and active responses, and more. Host intrusion detection is critical to maintaining a secure system, and is required by HIPAA and PCI regulations, both of which OSSEC can help you meet.
  • Log Analysis with RSYSLOG
    This lab teaches students to setup and configure a central RSYSLOG server that will receive and store logs from FreeBSD, Linux and Windows clients.
  • Secure Configuration of the Apache Web Server
    Students will learn how to set up a web server securely by configuring the commonly-used Apache HTTP Server® on a Linux system. Security options will be explored, including location/directory restrictions, permissions, authentication, and SSL configuration.
  • Secure SSL Configuration in Apache
    Students will build on the basic Apache configuration exercise to configure Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption for the Apache HTTP Server®. Students will learn and implement best security practices and strong cryptography guarantees while avoiding vulnerabilities such as Heartbleed.
  • Introduction to Shell Scripts
    The ability to read and write shell scripts is an essential skill for system administrators. They are used to automate frequently executed tasks, saving system administrators time and reducing the likelihood of mistakes.
  • Introduction to MariaDB and MySQL
    This lab will introduce students to MariaDB and MySQL by having them create a database, add tables to the database, populate data tables, and retrieve information from the database. They will do this using the MySQL command line interface.



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