Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) EX300 Study Guide

If you’re studying towards RHCE, then you may find this page useful.

Our configuration was tested on RHEL 7.0 and RHEL 7.1, some notes for the newest at the time of writing RHEL 7.2, have also been added, were available. There is a link to a sample exam available at the bottom of the page.

I also recommend you checking out the following blogs: CertDepot and RootUsers. They contain a great deal of information that can be helpful preparing for the RHCE exam.

RHCE exam candidates should be able to accomplish the following without assistance.

System Configuration and Management

  1. Use network teaming or bonding to configure aggregated network links between two Red Hat Enterprise Linux systems
  2. Configure IPv6 addresses and perform basic IPv6 troubleshooting
  3. Route IP traffic and create static routes
  4. Use firewalld and associated mechanisms such as rich rules, zones and custom rules, to implement packet filtering and configure network address translation (NAT)
  5. Use /proc/sys and sysctl to modify and set kernel runtime parameters
  6. Configure a system to authenticate using Kerberos (sssd, nslcd)
  7. Configure a system as either an iSCSI target or initiator that persistently mounts an iSCSI target
  8. Produce and deliver reports on system utilisation (processor, memory, disk, and network)
  9. Use shell scripting to automate system maintenance tasks

Network Services

Network services are an important subset of the exam objectives. RHCE candidates should be capable of meeting the following objectives for each of the network services listed below:

  1. Install the packages needed to provide the service
  2. Configure SELinux to support the service
  3. Use SELinux port labeling to allow services to use non-standard ports
  4. Configure the service to start when the system is booted
  5. Configure the service for basic operation
  6. Configure host-based and user-based security for the service


  1. Configure a virtual host
  2. Configure access restrictions on directories
  3. Deploy a basic CGI application
  4. Configure group-managed content
  5. Configure TLS security


  1. Configure a caching-only name server
  2. Troubleshoot DNS client issues


  1. Provide network shares to specific clients
  2. Provide network shares suitable for group collaboration
  3. Use Kerberos to control access to NFS network shares


  1. Provide network shares to specific clients
  2. Provide network shares suitable for group collaboration


  1. Configure a system to forward all email to a central mail server


  1. Configure key-based authentication
  2. Configure additional options described in documentation


  1. Synchronise time using other NTP peers

Database services

  1. Install and configure MariaDB
  2. Backup and restore a database
  3. Create a simple database schema
  4. Perform simple SQL queries against a database

Other RHCE Related Topics

FreeIPA Server on RHEL 7
Configure Remote Logging on RHEL 7
Software Bridge on Top of a Teamed Device on RHEL 7

RHCE Sample Exam for RHEL 7

I’ve created a sample exam, it’s available here.

My Exam Experience

You can read about it here.

108 thoughts on “RHCE

  1. Thanks Tomas for this great effort. I have followed your RHCE tutorials and successfully passed ex300 exam.

  2. Thanks bro, i passed my RHCE, you were right the test is not hard at all. now i can go on with RHCA. jaja thanks again.

  3. Hi guys,
    I have a question:
    I took the RHCE exam a couple of days a go and failed with ZERO points. [THIS PART HAS BEEN REMOVED DUE TO NDA]
    I am so sad, disappointed … but, I have hope to future. I have plan to retake the exam soon. So, please let me know where was my problem.
    BTW, I am aware of non-disclosure agreement. And I respect to that. I just ask a friendly help to figure out where was my weakness.


    • Your comment aims to discuss the actual exam question, therefore I won’t be able to comment on that, sorry.

  4. Hi Tomas,

    If you think so, I appreciated it if you remove my post.
    Thank you and sorry for making trouble to you.


  5. Thanks for this awesome blog Tomas.
    Although i was well prepared for the exam objectives, I wasn’t prepared enough to finish my exam on the given time :(
    Do you know RHCE 7 retake policy? I can’t seem to find it on google or on Red Hat website.

    • A retake policy is fairly simple, if you don’t pass, you have to book another exam. Unfortunately you need to pay every time you take it.

    • Thanks I will give it another three weeks to prep. btw sorry just realized I misspelled your name

  6. Hello Tomas,
    Thank you for sharing experience.

    Is it enough using CentOS7 to prepare exam EX200 or I have to use RHEL7?
    I’m going to use Sander van Vugt Cert guide.

    • It should be OK to use CentOS7 since it’s built from Red Hat sources. I however used RHEL 7 for my studies, it’s free of charge without support, therefore no real difference whether you download CentOS 7 or RHEL 7.

  7. I just wanna say, this is the best resource I found on the web for RHCE exam. Thanks to Tomas, I aced mine. Took me 2 weeks, maybe more to complete your sample exam, it was awesome! Thanks man, you’re the real deal.

  8. Passed RHCE!!!
    Thanks Tomas, Certdepot, Jarrod and IT fountain (Youtube channel) for putting up awesome content about RHCE. Although I had Linux Academy website subscription I wasn’t much impressed with their contents so I used these free resources as my main sources to prepare for RHCE.
    Thanks Again, Keep up the great work! :)

  9. Sorry I wanted to leave valuable post, but I was honored with “403 Forbidden Jutsu” error message. My post contained an url pointing to RedHat. Breaking the url did not help.

    • Hi, the comment has been caught by mod_security as potential spam. You can always leave a comment without putting any hyperlink in it.

  10. Hello Tomas, Just wanted to post a quick thank you for your content and labs, these helped me pass RHCE recently :)

  11. Hello Tomas,

    I am preparing for rhce, which version of linux should i expect during the exam. ??
    Are there any documentation pages available for Shell scripting during the exam ?
    or is there any way we can take help for shelll scripting while we attempt the paper ?
    How many total number of questions will we have to attempt during rhce exam ?

    • You should expect any RHEL 7 point release, however, I think it’s safe to assume that the exam may not be ready for the latest version just yet.

      During the exam you have access to all documentation that comes with RHEL, therefore your best bet is the man page for bash $ man bash.

      The number of questions may vary, I cannot tell you how many questions you will get when you sit the exam I’m afraid.

  12. I know exam will be on 7.xx version.
    if you can tell 7.1 or 7.2 or 7.x ,, that will be help full

    • I don’t have such information I’m afraid, but you can ask Red Hat and they will be able to supply you with the version that’s currently used in the exam.

    • I just confirmed from Redhat about exam version. It will be 7.0.

      Are there any known issues in 7.0 with teaming . ??
      when i setup up teaming it gives strange error on virtual box
      rtnetlink answers file exist

    • So it’s still on RHEL 7.0, that is good to know, thanks for sharing.

      I’m not aware of any teaming issues on RHEL 7.0 I’m afraid.

  13. Thanks Tomas,

    is there any way to copy/paste the data while in multi-user mode ??
    # blkid
    /dev/sr0: UUID=”2017-09-06-10-53-42-00″ LABEL=”CentOS 7 x86_64″ TYPE=”iso9660″ PTTYPE=”dos”
    /dev/sda1: UUID=”9862ac88-7696-4a41-9155-9cb58c67e6e6″ TYPE=”xfs”
    /dev/sda2: UUID=”FO2sMY-IiEp-plRc-xMaL-lOqB-a9xE-2bKe5e” TYPE=”LVM2_member”
    /dev/mapper/centos-root: UUID=”b4d76f23-1e71-4f07-b355-dbf0d4116f48″ TYPE=”xfs”
    /dev/mapper/centos-swap: UUID=”62f7ad39-cb17-4533-8af3-20751e2ab687″ TYPE=”swap”

    I simply want to copy UUID=”b4d76f23-1e71-4f07-b355-dbf0d4116f48″ and use it in /etc/fstab .

  14. normally linux with gui starts in graphical.target
    linux with minimal start in multi-user.target.

    Once linux is installed with minimal , how does this copy/paste thing works.
    thanks for explanation, as i faced this issue during rhca exam and had to write manually the required data.

    • This has little to do with targets to be honest but more with xterm. When you get networking configured, use SSH with multiple xterm windows (I had one for journalctl, one for audit.log and one to solve exam tasks). As mentioned previously, you can copy/paste in xterm without problems. This approach saved me a lot of time during the exams.

    • Hi Tomas, would please write how to use ssh with multiple xterm window. Please define what’s xterm and how we can use many at the same time to save time. Thanks in advance.

  15. Thanks Tomas,

    This approach will save lots of mine time during exam and others who are going to appear for rhce/rhcsa exams.

  16. Tomas-

    Very Good content. Are you going to create any more study guides for other RedHat exams. I am done with RHCE and looking for similar blogs online for other RHCA Exams but unable to find much. Any other websites you can recommend?

    • Thanks, I’m glad that you found the content useful.

      I have no plans to create other Red Hat exam-related study guides I’m afraid. As you can imagine, it takes a lot of my spare time to produce such content, and in my understanding, the amount of people who go for RHCA is significantly smaller compared to RHCE, meaning that less people would benefit from a guide, where effort required to create one would be more or less the same.

      I looked for similar blogs online myself, but couldn’t find much except for a handful of topic-related articles. I think it is safe to say that the majority of RHCA level exams cover advanced material for a specific topic (e.g. hybrid cloud storage) which don’t attract as much attention as lower level exams (RHCSA and RHCE).

  17. Hello Tomas,

    I am contantly getting this error with centos 7.0.
    When I restart
    #systemctl restart network

    logs :
    RTNETLINK answers: File exists

    I have searched the net . but could not find any thing use full so far.

    may be your expertise can solve this error.

  18. this errors appears with both protos.
    both with manual and dhcp.

    i did find that post about dhcp client and relink message. but for some reason it did not work here.
    that solution that i try to solve this issue is .
    delete connection and add again .
    some time restart also help.

    This happens so often only with VMs that i make clone .

    What will be the permanent solution for this ?

    • Try bootproto as “none” and see if that makes a difference.

      Sadly, this error can be reported for any issue while setting up networking, and it doesn’t really tell you what the actual problem might be.

      If you get this when cloning a VM, then take a look at MAC addresses and try resetting them. It might be a case of configuration files having records of old network adapters when in reality you probably attach the new ones after cloning the VM.

  19. Great work. This was very helpful stuff. like me, many candidates are getting clear the RHCE exam by your Guide. thanks for sharing this informative blog with us.I wish you luck as you continue to follow that passion.

  20. I’m making it a point to express my gratitude to you for making this available. I passed the EX300 exam yesterday and it was mainly due to your instructions which helped me setup a lab on my laptop.

    So thank you!

  21. I have passed RHCE exam yesterday in my first attempt. Thanks to you and CertDepot especially your sample exam. These two sites are really helpful (in addition to Sander video course). Exam was not very difficult but very long and I taken whole 3.5 hours to complete without having much time to recheck. I completed RHCSA exam in just 1 hour and 25min with full marks but this one taken full time plus I lost 30 points but got the certificate in the end.

    Thanks again

  22. Hello Tomas,
    Do you know which CentoOS7 version and release is used on the the exam:
    7.3 (1611)
    7.2 (1511)
    7.1 (1503)
    7.0 (1406)
    To many slight differences between them:(

  23. Hi Tomas,

    Is it compulsory to learn firewalld for RHCSA/RHCE or iptables alone can be used for configuring the firewall?

    Thanks in advance.

    • RHCE objectives clearly state that you have to know how to use firewalld and associated mechanisms such as rich rules, zones and custom rules, to implement packet filtering and configure network address translation (NAT).

  24. Hi Tomas,

    I know you’ve recommended taking exams through qa.com if one is in UK in the past. However, they don’t seem to offer “exam-only” anymore.
    You also recommend doing only classroom based exams and not koisk. However, since the next date after 26th Jan is in March, i might have to go via kiosk as i need to take the RHCE is Feb. Tried every city in uk on red hat website. No classroom tests in Feb anywhere! Wow!

    • A quick check at their website shows that they still do (e.g. EX200 or EX300 exam-only), or at least the listings are still there, however, there seems to be no option to do that online, and you have to phone them up. If you didn’t do so, I’d suggest you give them a call.

  25. G’day from down-under (Australia).

    Just wanted to say thanks for your efforts. I used it heavily in my studies. Your sample exam is invaluable and the structure allowed me to vary/extend it to ensure I was able to cover variations of the objectives.

    Passed Exam today – 24/01/2018.

    For your info:
    – Kiosk Based
    – RHEL 7.0

    • Well done passing the exam, congratulations!

      I’m glad that you found the sample exam helpful, thank you.

  26. Great blog, it’s helped me a lot.

    I’d like to share with all of you my bad experience with Kiosk exams and discourage doing Redhat exams with it.

    I’ve been RHCE for the last 3 years and it was time for my renewal. Due to lack of available dates, I had to take the exam in the Kiosk mode.

    My problems started during the exam. Once I had all the questions completed, I rebooted both VMs and my surprise was that one of the VMs didn’t boot, and showed a blank screen and didn’t even reach the BIOS or the grub. I was pretty sure I didn’t mess with the boot (I’ve a lot of experience with Redhat systems) but as I had enough time I reinstalled the server and started over. When I completed the questions again the issue reproduced and I failed my exam (with zero explanations from Redhat even I complained).

    I accepted my failure and tested again. Redhat provided more details in the new exam and I was reported 21/23 items correct and still didn’t pass o_O.

    When I asked Redhat for explanations, they argued that one of the VMs needed intervention to boot and for that I lost some items (just enough to not pass? Seriously?).

    Indeed, the same VM of the first exam had the same issues at boot. When I reboot the VM from within the OS (I’m old fashioned know, but I use the “reboot” command), the VM won’t boot and a blank screen showed up again.

    If I powered off the VM and start up, it starts fine with no errors of any type (WTF?).

    I reported it to Redhat but still have no possitive repsonse and due to this I have lost my certification (expired yesterday).

    I wanted to share my really bad experience with you and warn you that Redhat Kiosk exams are shit, specially the support from the training team, they always blame you.


    • Thank you very much for sharing your experience, and I’m sorry to hear that you had problems with the Kiosk-based exam.

    • I have a question to see if anyone can help me out, as I saw a weird behavior in samba in my home labs. I reported to Redhat as I believe it may be a bug in RHEL 7.0 but they didn’t agree.

      Once I configured the samba shares and mounted them with the multiuser option and checked everything was working fine, after rebooting the servers I notice the new logins into the shares where denied.

      In journald I saw this error message:
      nslcd[XXXX]: [3f1dc7] request denied by validnames option

      It sounds weird, as nslcd is the daemon responsible for the LDAP and Kerberos authentication, and samba users are local.

      Has anyone hit something similar? I tried to resolve it with no luck and after a while it started working again.

      Thank you very much.

    • Hi, after several emails with Redhat, they have apologized and renewed my certification.
      There really was something wrong with the environment in my exam.

  27. Hi Tomas,
    Thanks for this valuable site. I took the RHCE test and waiting results. My System 2 went in maintenance mode due to iscsi mount and couldn’t reboot. I tried to go single user mode, unfortunately, I was not able to fix before the time end. Everything was done correctly for first part of the question and I was able to discover the share, able to login, format the disk and mount it for second part as well. At the end I entered following in fstab and mount -a was not complying and I was able to see the mounted disk. df -h was showing correct. But after reboot the system went in maintenance mode. I did mkfs.ext4 /dev/….which was 100% correct. I only forgot logout the session before the reboot. Is that the cause I had the problem? I showed that issue with proctor and she said they will not grade the all tasks that I did on second machine and really worry .Please suggest to me where I did mistake? Any suggestion is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
    I copied UUID and put correctly as following:
    UUID=”B89F6d89-986c-4dae-a553-6a9ccc5caf8b2″ /iscsi /ext4 _netdev 0 0

    • Hi Ryan, I’m glad that you found the site useful.

      Looking and the fstab line that you’ve posted, it should’ve been “ext4” and not “/ext4”.

    • Thanks for your respond.Sorry,I mistakenly entered /ext4 here not in the test. It was not the case.I’m 100% I did not enter /ext4. Please advice me other possible solutions.Thanks again.

    • I’m sure, I didn’t make any mistakes in the fstab file even though there is typo in above post but some how,I forgot the session logout before the the reboot and guessing that was the big disaster.Please advice me.Thanks!

    • I never encountered such issue during my studies I’m afraid, therefore not sure that to advise. Perhaps trying to replicate the problem could help?

  28. Tomas,It’s wounder full website to prepare Redhat Exams and thanks for this.Please guide me where I missed for the following scenarios:
    1)Network Teaming:I have 2 virtual machines and trying to build teaming on both machines but I’m having same issues on both machines.I did as follows:
    ip link (shows 3 network cards)
    #nmcli dev status
    #nmcli connection add type team con-name team0 ifname
    team0 config ‘{“runner”: {“name”: “activebackup”}}’
    # nmcli connection add type team-slave con-name slave1
    ifname eth1 master team0
    #nmcli connection add type team-slave con-name slave2
    ifname eth2 master team0
    # nmcli connection modify team0 ipv4.method manual
    ipv4.addresses “given address/24” connection.autoconnect yes
    # nmcli connection up team0
    error:connection activation failed.
    #nmcli con up slave1 : connection activation failed: master connection not found
    # #nmcli con up slave2 : connection activation failed: master connection not found
    # teamdctl team0 state
    Error: device team0 doesn’t cxit
    #cd /etc/sysconfig/network-script/
    #ls : ifcfg-team0 is there
    I can not ping and can not make fail over. Please advice me.Thanks.

  29. I really appreciated your quick respond and I’m getting following output with nmcli d :Looks, not connected even though I was able to add the slave1 and slave2 on the team0. Also, nmcli con show is showing team0 and all slaves.
    enp0s3 Ethernet disconnected eth0
    enp0s8 Ethernet disconnected
    enp0s9 Loopbackup Unmanaged

    • I don’t see the team0 device. That’s why you get the error “device team0 doesn’t exit”. Moreover, you used eth0 and eth1 when creating slaves, but I don’t see them either.

    • Thanks, Tomas!!!.Firstly,I deleted team0, slave1 and slave2 then recreated team0 again.Then added 2 slaves on team0 with enp0s8 and enp0s9 after creating them. Now,no issues to up the team0,slave1 and slave2. I’m also able to ping the ip which I assigned on team0. Thanks for your help again!!

  30. Thanks to this site and CertDepot’s I passed the RHCE with 271 points on Friday, which was really an unexpected achievement. It wasn’t easy – the key was practice, practice and more practice. You don’t have much time in the exam so you need to eat, sleep and breathe RHCE in the run up to the exam so when you go in you can immediately do some or even all of the tasks practically with your eyes closed. This gives you some breathing room to fix stuff if you run into issues.

  31. Finally, I passed the RHCE exam.I took Kiosk individual exam which was really horrible.Proctor was unfair with me and telling to me not to use shift+ctrl+ and so many other functionalities and everything was confusing.Time to time he or she was disturbing to me and telling my exam was ended.Uff, I asked the reason but he or she said ignore that.Computer was very slow.I did not have hope to pass but I solved the 90% questions.Thanks for this valuable site.

  32. Which one of the following methods would you recommend to use during the exam:

    virsh console

  33. Thanks Tomas for your website and your time spend creating it! I took exam twice and your site along with Sander’s book were very valuable resources to finally pass the exam. I would suggest for anyone something you already mentioned, take time to read all tasks carefully and plan ordering things. Spending too much time on one task and not having time for rest is a recipe for failing exam. Entire exam is not that hard but time is more important than anything else. Don’t try to things in the best way they can be done just do them as quickly as possible. I don’t like personally using nmcli or authconfig-tui but setting up network interfaces or kerberos is way faster with these tools.

  34. Thanks Tomas,

    I have passed RHCE today
    score: 261
    I have attempted the paper via KIOSK . Exam version is still 7.0 (Pakistan).

    Exam Experience.
    Exam was fairly easy. not as tough as I expected. But couple of tricky questions , that might have reduced my score. I finished the exam in 3:00 hrs. with 30 minutes to spare for rechecking.

    KIOSK exams are hard to attempt in this sense that you will not be answered any questions from the online examiner.Only read the instructions and make your own plane.

    For all those who are going to attempt RHCE. Just one suggestion .
    Tomas has made a great site . This site covers each and every aspect that you can encounter during the exam or even more. You need to check each and every topic carefully.

    I have followed lisenet , certdepot, Redhat official book for this course and youtube off course.

    Many Thanks Lisenet

    • Thank you for your feedback Muhammad. Congratulations on passing the exam, and welcome to the RHCE family!

      I did put a lot of effort into writing the RHCE article series, therefore if you read and learn all the topics listed on this website, you should be in a strong position of passing the exam.

  35. Hi Tomas

    I really appreciate the effort you put in creating your site. It helped me to pass RHCE on friday the 1st of June 2018.

    Thank you


  36. Thanks Tomas,
    I use your site, GitHub RHCE_notes_v2.4.pdf and Sander Van Vugt book to pass the exam last Friday. For learning lab I use virtualbox and vagrant to build my VMs using the FreeIPA guide you provided. You have done an excellent job here.


  37. Tried today, but failed unfortunate. The irritating thing though is that I read through the objectives and thought “yes”. But I did not have enough time. Exam still on version 7.0.

    Still I would recommend your site – it has been very helpful.

    • I would recommend on taking the RHCE exam only if you can do the sample exam (the one that’s available on this website) in less than 2,5 hours. If it takes you more than that to complete it, then you may run out of time during the real exam.

  38. Hello Tomas, thanks for this amazing site. Anyway, can you please tell me why didn’t you cover some of the objectives? For example:

    Route IP traffic and create static routes
    Use shell scripting to automate system maintenance tasks

    Configure SELinux to support the service
    Use SELinux port labeling to allow services to use non-standard ports
    Configure the service to start when the system is booted
    Configure the service for basic operation

    Please correct me if I missed something. Thanks

    • Hi, thanks for your feedback!

      To answer your question, all of these topics are covered throughout the RHCE series, with one exception of shell scripting.

      Shell scripting is an ambiguous term in my opinion, and it is simply not possible to cover it in one blog post. The Bash man page alone has over 3600 lines.

      Having said that, there are several articles on this website that cover scripting (not RHCE related though), feel free to take a look at this one, this one or this one. These are all Bash scripts I wrote some time ago, you might find them helpful!

  39. Hi Tomas,
    I just have gone through rhce exam and unfortunately due to no reboot till end i have failed the exam.keeping in mind NDA i would like to ask few general questions regarding RHEL if someone reply it will be great help.
    Q=1 i have seen many videos for link aggregation through teaming some people are mentioning gateway and some donnot mention ipv4.gateway which one is right as i can ping in both cases. ?
    Q=2 i have read that in shell scripting the script should end with .sh but again even in shell script some are mention .sh and some are not but if i execute the script in end it gives the result so which way is better.
    Q=3 In HTTP i configured all in conf.d virtual hosting part not in httpd.conf default and have not rebooted the system will this effect that after reboot no http elinks will work.
    Q=4 in KVM virtual machines how can i copy form one terminal to other as ctr+shift+v is not working.

    • Hi, to answer your questions, see below.

      Q1. This depends on what you are asked to do during the exam. If you need routing, then you need a gateway. If you don’t need routing, then you don’t need a gateway.
      Q2. A shell script file does not have to end with .sh, but it should start with a shebang and has to be executable.
      Q3. Apache configuration can be put in several places. System reboot is irrelevant in this case, everything should work.
      Q4. Use xterm.

      Good luck with your exam!

  40. Hi,
    First of all thank you for your very good tutorials.
    I plan to do RHCE from redhat 7 in next 6 months. Do anybody know when they plan to switch exams to redhat 8?

    I am already good in redhat 7, as i know redhat 8 should be released for testing in 1st quart of year.

    • There is not date confirmed yet, but this is what happened with RHEL 6 exams.

      RHEL 7.0 was released in June 2014 and you had 9 months (until the end of February 2015) to book and sit an RHCE exam on RHEL 6. There was also an option to buy the exam voucher by that date and take the exam any time within the year.

      This suggests that you can expect to be able to do the RHCE exam on RHEL 7 until at least the end of 2019.

  41. Hello Tomas,

    I was conducting some research on a website for RHCE , lots of people suggested me to read your website.
    Thanks for helping the community . I am currently studying for RHCE , is there a problem if i practice on a server ipa with centos 7.3 or 7.4 while the current exam is on 7.0.? what are the pro and cons of that ?
    Thanks for your prompt answer

Leave a Reply to Hal Koyo Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *