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Let’s talk in detail about what a system administrator has to deal with and what knowledge he needs to have. We can’t hide from new technologies, so we just need to learn how to manage and use it both in business and for personal purposes.

It doesn’t always work fast (or cheap). IT specialist has to study a huge amount of material and test the product before its full implementation (if integrator isn’t invited), apply creative approach in non-standard situations, look for the answers on the Internet and visit all kinds of forums.

The responsibilities of a system administrator can be divided into two parts: daily performed and infrequently used. The solution of the tasks assigned to a system administrator depends on the level of training, availability of automation tools for settings changing, convenient management of any processes and other factors.

Let’s talk about the nuances and specifics of different systems administrating. Here is a list of requirements (tasks) that we have been facing for several years, thus we will have a review of the work performed by the system administrator.

Task 1. To display on the web page fullness of folders located on the FTP server (CentOS)

Basically, monitoring systems are used to solve this issue, among their functions there is a warning about the filled space of the specified disk. However, such programs do not provide information about the user and the files type, so you have to search manually. In our case, we have implemented a recursive search through folders, which is based on the Perl language using.

In-depth knowledge of Linux systems is required.

Task 2. Ability to work remotely

Since we have a hybrid IT infrastructure, the connection to different servers goes in different ways: to Windows servers via RDP protocol using Remote Desktop Connection Manager and to Linux servers via SSH running Putty.

Task 3. To separate work bookmarks from personal ones in the browser

Services with a web interface were being added to the browser bookmarks, which became more and more numerous and it was necessary to create separate groups to separate work bookmarks from personal ones. For work bookmarks moving to another location, it was decided to create a separate page for system administrators on the corporate website.
With each new task, the page of quick navigation through the service is being inflated, but it remains convenient, as large pictures with inscriptions are used.

Task 4. To keep track of the versions of Microsoft OS and software, to apply the necessary updates

The OS and software updating is an important task. Indeed, updates of server and client systems are often being released, which help to “patch holes” or improve functionality. With the release of new versions it is necessary to plan actions to minimize the costs of business downtime.

In this case it is necessary to take into account the availability of free space of the disk and how much the server is occupied with user applications in order to find a better time to perform the work.

Knowledge of how to configure the WSUS role is required.

Task 5. To implement the transition to another domain

The migration to another domain will add a lot of trouble, as this procedure is very, very rare, so much attention will have to be paid to planning. The main problem is to migrate Active Directory, because migration of computers and users with passwords is not a trivial task, and there are not so many automation tools in such case.

The migration process can be described as follows: deploying of additional server, then the AD DS role, a trust relationship building between the two forests/domains, the SQL server installing, the Active Directory Migration Tool running, that allows to migrate users between domains. After that, the User Profile Wizard utility is installed on the user’s computers, with the help of which their profile is transferred.

Knowledge of DNS and Active Directory administration is required.

Task 6. To leave behind FTP-servers on Windows

In a hybrid IT infrastructure, you may need to opt out of shared folders and FTP servers on Windows systems in favor of Linux systems. Here you need to understand how the file and folder permissions are granted to users.

Knowledge of Linux-systems configuring is required.

Task 7. Planned transition to new versions of Windows OS

Client machines transition to the new OS may require a lot of time that will be spent by IT professionals. This process can be automated and accelerated several times.
To do this, it is necessary to enable and configure the WDS role on the server, add a reference image of the newly installed OS and drivers. It will help to install a new Windows system on multiple computers simultaneously over a network by pressing only a few buttons.

To get additional functions for process automation, it is convenient to use MS SCCM that helps centrally manage the updates downloading and installation, installation of operating systems and applications, connect to the desktop of a remote computer, take into account the licensed software, compare the required settings with the existing ones, inventory computer equipment and more.

Knowledge of configuring DHCP roles is required. WDS.