Red Hat Certified Virtualization Administrator – RHCVA

by Mirek Burnejko

RHCVARHCVA is a new certification from Red Hat that covers topics about virtualization.

Red Hat is not the biggest player on the market (compared with VMware, Microsoft and Citrix), but provides a great product for virtual environments built on Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Hypervisor.

Red Hat provides also an access to trial products and learning materials on the official website.

As always the exam is practical, so it is a good point to prove your REAL knowledge on the job market.

What Exams You Must Pass to Become RHCVA

You must pass only one exam RHCVA (EX318).
You do not need to attend any official training to achieve the RHCVA certification. RHCE isn’t required for the RHCVA certification (Thanks to Dean for a comment about that).

Format of the Exam

The exam (like other exams from Red Hat) is a practice exam. You have 3 hours to do tasks from the exam guide. You have an access to all internal resources (MAN pages, Red Hat documentation).

Where You Can Pass the RHCVA Exam

There are no central database for exam facilities (In USA you can use a tool from the Red Hat website). If you want to find a place to pass the exam, just type in google: “EX318 + your_city”.

How Much Does the RHCVA Exam Cost

The exam costs $600.

How To Renew your RHCVA Certification

The RHCVA certification is valid for three years. Before the date of expiration you must pass one more time the actual RHCVA exam.

Scope of the RHCVA exam

To successfully pass the exam you must understand and have experience with:

  • Installation of Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager (RHEV-M)
  • Installation and configuration of Red Hat Virtualization Hypervisor (RHEV-H)
  • Creation of virtual data centers, clusters, pools and templates
  • Creation of virtual machines (Windows and Linux)
  • Management of users and rights
  • Configuration of storage for a hypervisor
  • Management of other functions on RHEV-M and RHEV-H

You can find an actual list on the official website.

How To Prepare to the Exam

Preparation to the exam without an access to a real equipment is hard. You cannot find (at this moment) any books about virtualization technologies from Red Hat. The best choice is an official training or an own lab.

  • Official Training
    • Red Hat through partners provides a training Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RH318) – 4 days, $3000
    • The easiest way to find a training is to use google: type “EX318 + your_city”
    • Example from Global Knowledge
  • Documentation
  • Lab
    • You need two physical servers or computers (you can find here system requirements). You need a server for Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager and at least one hypervisor host
    • You need Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 for Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager and Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Hypervisor. You can use for that an evaluation version for 60 days
    • After registration for the evaluation software you will receive an access to a Red Hat website with labs and videos
    • You can install virtual machines on a local hard drive of the hypervisor, but it is good to have an external storage server. The cheapest way is to use FreeNAS or OpenFiler and test connections through iSCSI or NFS. You need a separate machine for that.

Success Story

If you interested with sharing your success story with RHCVA please contact me.

Examples of Job Opportunities

Great place to find a job for virtualization market is the official Red Hat Jobs portal.

Questions and Answers

Q: Are there any other benefits of the RHCVA certification?
A: This certification is one from the needed certifications for the Red Hat Certified Datacenter Specialist (RHCDS) and Red Hat Certified Architect (RHCA) credentials – certifications with amazing value on the job market.