Linux Foundation Certified Engineer (LFCE)

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Exam Fee: $300

Exam may be scheduled anytime within 12 months of purchase

NEW: Includes one free retake attempt per purchase.


A Linux Foundation Certified Engineer (LFCE) possesses a wider range and greater depth of skills than the Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator (LFCS). Linux Foundation Certified Engineers are responsible for the design and implementation of system architecture. They provide an escalation path and serve as Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) for the next generation of system administration professionals.

LFCE Exam Preparation

LFCE Exam + LFS211 (Linux Networking and Administration) - $499

  • A self-paced 100% online course
  • Full 12 months to complete the course
  • Gives you the foundational principles you need to take the LFCE exam
Register for LFS211 & LFCE Exam
  • A self-paced 100% online course
  • Full 12 months to complete the course
  • Gives you the foundational principles you need to take the LFCE exam
Register for LFS211 & LFCE Exam

New exam info: The new version of this exam is now live. Please see details below under EXAM DETAILS/Overview of Domains and Competencies.

Why Choose Linux Foundation Certifications

There are many reasons to choose Linux Foundation Certifications. Here are just a few:

  • The Linux Foundation is the non-profit organization that hosts the Linux project, employs Linux creator Linus Torvalds and hosts (where all Linux kernel updates are released). When you get our certifications, you’re getting certified from the source.
  • Because we’re so close to the Linux community, we are able to update our certifications regularly using feedback from the community to make sure our exams are using the most up-to-date information.
  • The Linux Foundation has the only performance-based certifications on the market today that are available in both CentOS and Ubuntu.
  • We don't sell any software or support services so we’re completely distribution-neutral. Our only goal is to help you advance your Linux career.

Candidates must pass the required Exam to earn Certification. Review the following sections under Exam Details for more information.

Need some extra help? Download our Free Certification Preparation Guide.

Exam Details

Exam Format

Certification Exams are performance-based and Candidates will need to perform tasks or solve problems using the command line interface in their chosen Linux distribution. For exam security, Candidates are monitored by a proctor during the exam session via streaming audio, video, and screensharing feeds. The screensharing feed allows proctors to view candidates' desktops (including all monitors). The audio, video and screensharing feeds will be stored for a limited period of time in the event that there is a subsequent need for review. (Watch this video from the proctoring provider to get a sense of how the proctoring piece works.)

Candidates must ensure they meet the System, ID, and Other Requirements for Taking the Exam.

The following choices of Linux distributions are offered for the Exam. Candidates will be prompted to select from one of these choices when registering for the Exam.

  • CentOS 7
  • Ubuntu 16

System, ID, and Other Requirements

System Requirements:

Candidates are required to provide their own front-end hardware (laptop or workstation) with Chrome or Chromium browser, reliable internet access, and a webcam and microphone in order to take exams. Candidates do not need to provide their own Linux installation or VM; they will be presented with a VM in their browser window using a terminal emulator. Candidates should use the compatibility check tool to verify that their system and testing environment meet the minimum requirements.

ID Requirements for Candidate Identification and Authentication:

Candidates are required to provide a means of photo identification before the Exam can be launched. Acceptable forms of photo ID include current, non-expired: passport, government-issued driver's license/permit, national ID card, state or province-issued ID card, or other form of government issued identification. If acceptable proof of identification is not provided to the exam proctor prior to the exam, entry to the exam will be refused. Candidates who are refused entry due to lack of sufficient ID will not be eligible for a refund or rescheduling.

Other Requirements

Candidates should also be sure to review Policy and Terms for Certification and Exams.

Overview of Domains and Competencies

The Linux Foundation worked with industry experts and the Linux kernel community to identify the core domains and the critical skills, knowledge and abilities ("competencies") applicable to each certification. Performance-based exams were then developed based on the competencies that were identified.

IMPORTANT NOTICE REGARDING UPCOMING CHANGES *On June 12, 2018, the Domains and Competencies for the LFCE Exam was updated (and support for openSUSE was discontinued) as described here.

LFCE Domains and Competencies V3.18

Essential Commands - 5%

  • Use version control tools
  • Manipulate file content programmatically
  • Run commands on many systems simultaneously
  • Install Linux Distribution

Operation of Running Systems - 18%

  • Monitor, tune and troubleshoot system performance
  • Update operating systems to provide required functionality and security
  • Update the kernel and ensure the system is bootable
  • Script automation tools to make work faster and more accurate
  • Train team members on new technology or changes to existing systems
  • Maintain systems via configuration management tools
  • Maintain the integrity and availability of hardware
  • Develop and test disaster recovery plans
  • Support incident management for outages/trouble
  • Produce and deliver reports on system use (processor, memory, disk, and network), outages, and user requests
  • Monitor security and conduct audits
  • Manipulate Linux system during the recovery process
  • Use udev for device detection and management
  • Configure and modify SELinux/AppArmor policies

User and Group Management - 10%

  • Connect to an external authentication source
  • Configure advanced PAM

Networking - 15%

  • Monitor, tune and troubleshoot network performance
  • Configure network traffic tunneling
  • Configure a system to perform Network Address Translation
  • Dynamically route IP traffic
  • Implement advanced packet filtering

Service Configuration - 17%

  • Implement and configure an HTTP server
  • Implement and configure time synchronization server
  • Implement and configure network logging server
  • Configure a DHCP server
  • Implement and configure an SMTP service
  • Implement and configure the HTTP proxy server
  • Configure host-based and user-based security for a service
  • Implement and configure a centralized authentication server
  • Implement and configure a PXE Boot server
  • Implement and configure an authoritative DNS server

Storage Management - 10%

  • Manage advanced LVM configuration
  • Identify storage devices using block device attributes
  • Manage Linux file system features and flags
  • Implement and configure remote block storage devices
  • Implement and configure network shares

System Design and Deployment - 25%

  • Define a capacity planning strategy
  • Conduct post deployment verifications
  • Create and maintain software packages
  • Create, configure and maintain containers
  • Deploy, configure, and maintain high availability/clustering/replication

Scoring and Notification

A score of at least 57% must be earned to pass the Exam.

Upon completion, exams are scored automatically and a score report will be made available within three (3) business days. If a passing score is achieved and other applicable requirements for Certification have been fulfilled, a notification indicating the Candidate has been successfully Certified will follow the score report.

Duration of Exam

2 hours


English (See FAQ for Spanish and Portuguese options)

Policy and Terms for Certification and Exams


Candidates who sit for Linux Foundation Certification Exams must agree they have read and will abide by the terms and conditions of The Linux Foundation Certification and Confidentiality Agreement before beginning the certification exam. The Agreement applies to all exams. Signing and adhering to this Agreement is required to be officially certified and to maintain valid Certification.

Refunds, Cancellations, Rescheduling

View Terms and Conditions of Exam Registration to understand the policy on refunds, cancelations and rescheduling.

Retake Policy

View the Retake Policy to get info regarding eligibility for a free retake

Optional Training and Resources

Free Resources

Linux Foundation Certification Candidate Handbook

All Candidates should review and familiarize themselves with the Candidate Handbook prior to taking an Exam.

Certification Preparation Guide

Need some extra help? Download the Certification Prep Guide.

Optional Training

The following courses can help Candidates prepare for the LFCE Exam. These courses are optional and are not required for certification.

Course ID Title Duration

Linux Networking and Administration

Get the skills you need to get certified and work as a Linux systems engineer. This 100% online self-paced course walks you through everything you need to know to pass the Linux Foundation Certified Engineer exam and advance your IT career in Linux.

1 Year Access

Advanced Linux System Administration and Networking

The need for sysadmins with advanced administration and networking skills has never been greater, and competition for people with experience is fierce. Whether you're looking for expert test prep for the Linux Foundation Certified Engineer certification, need training to help transition to Linux from other platforms, or you're just brushing up on these vital admin and networking skills, this course will teach you what you need to know.

4 Days

How to Renew Certifications

Linux Foundation Certifications are valid for 2 years and Candidates may keep Certification valid by completing one of the renewal requirement options below. Renewal requirements must be completed prior to the expiration of the Certification.

Options to meet Certification renewal requirements:

  • Retake the exam. Candidates have the option to retake and pass the same exam to keep their Certification valid. The Certification will become valid for 2 years starting on the date the exam is retaken and passed.
  • Achieve (or renew) a higher-level Certification. On the date that a Candidate with an active LFCS Certification achieves LFCE Certification, the expiration of their LFCS Certification will be extended for 2 years so that both their LFCE and LFCS Certifications expire on the same date. The date on which their LFCS Certification expiration is extended (i.e. renewed) becomes the Renewal Date. (For example, a Certificant holds an active LFCS Certification expiring on August 20, 2016. The Certificant then achieves LFCE Certification on March 1, 2016. Their lower-level LFCS Certification will be extended for 2 years effective March 1, 2016 and both their newly achieved LFCE and renewed LFCS Certifications will have the same expiration date of March 1, 2018. March 1, 2016 becomes the Renewal Date for their LFCS Certification.)