New Sysadmin Onboarding


Operating Systems

We do not support Microsoft Windows for Sysadmin work. The Lab functions completely on *nix-based operating systems (with a bit of *BSD), and, hence, many assumptions are made about the systems from which Sysadmins administer the Lab, severely limiting the usefulness of Microsoft Windows. For example, we write scripts to target *nix-based operating systems with bash support which Windows is not. Even though new versions of Windows supports Windows Subsystem for Linux, this compatibility layer does not provide a full Linux system. Hence, various programs developed for Linux such as sshuttle, iptables, and many others do not work on WSL or have serious problems. Although you could maybe get by using Windows for simple tasks, any serious administrative tasks require a Linux box.

The recommended operating systems for Sysadmin work are:

Other mainstream Linux distros are also acceptable.

Although it is possible to conduct work as a Sysadmin from macOS, we don't explicitly support it as the Lab runs on Linux. Programs on macOS are often very old and/or ports of Linux programs, all of which may result in problems, incompatibilities, or inconsistencies for Sysadmins using macOS.