Pythian Remote Linux Systems Administrator Interview Questions | Glassdoor

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Pythian Remote Linux Systems Administrator Interview Questions

Interviews at Pythian

2 Interview Reviews



Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview





Helpful (6)  

Remote Linux Systems Administrator Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate
No Offer
Negative Experience
Easy Interview


I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Pythian.


There're was 4 stages.
1. They responsed to my CV with <10 questions about linux
2. quick 30min interview with HR.
3. 1 hour tech interview. Very friendly.
4. 1 hour interview with team leader and HR. Looks like team leader tried to solve some work tasks during the interview. I saw that she typed something and didn't listen me.
5. HR called me and told some standard phrase

Every interviewer except team leader were friendly. Looks like team leader was overloaded by work tasks and she really can't wait until our interview will end.

Interview Questions

  • Common questions about linux and networks:
    What is superblock
    What is difference between ext2 and ext3
    How you will troubleshoote problem with remote server connection.
    hardlink/symlink difference
    write simple loop using python
    write regexp
    what is mpm
    what is virtualhost   Answer Question

Other Interview Reviews for Pythian

  1. Helpful (6)  

    Remote Linux Systems Administrator Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview


    I applied online. The process took a week. I interviewed at Pythian (Ottawa, ON (Canada)) in September 2015.


    Never spoke to anyone, just got an email about a quiz they wanted me to take.
    Did some more digging around, and decided that the company and its size/reputation doesn't justify the complexity, effort and excessiveness of their quiz.
    They're clearly after people that spend all day on this tech, then go home and do more of it just for fun. I'm not that guy.

    Interview Questions

    • A client has a Red Hat Linux-based firewall that is multihomed, and is connected to both the internal (eth0 and external (eth1 networks. They would like you to configure this firewall to act as the default Internet gateway.

      1. What utilities would you use to accomplish this? Please list the commands and their parameters that you would execute.

      2. What environment/kernel changes would be needed to make this work? What tools would you use to make the changes? What commands would you execute for the changes?
      3. Once it’s working, how do you ensure that the configuration will persist a reboot? Please list the tools that you would use, commands that you would execute, or files that you would change, as applicable.   1 Answer
    • A client has performed some network maintenance on their side and, as part of the change, has modified the IP addresses of some of the servers we connect to, causing us to lose access. Our VPN tunnel terminates behind a firewall on their network. Some of the machines were already behind the firewall, while others were moved behind the firewall as part of the change. To further complicate the situation, the individual servers also run firewalls which only allow access from specific IP ranges

      1. Please identify what changes (if any) need to be made on our VPN appliance to restore connectivity to the client&#039;s servers.

      2. After verifying that the VPN configuration is correct, what would you do to confirm that we have access to the servers? Please indicate what specific commands you would run.
      3. Assuming that we still do not have connectivity to the servers, what request would you make to the client to check that we have been given access to their network? What information would you request from them?   Answer Question
    • Current setup:
      A server is running Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 with a single public network interface, provisioned with one IP ( for the server, and two virtual IPs ( and for services running on the server. The additional IP addresses are routed with a /32 prefix through the primary IP address.

      Desired setup:
      Two virtual machines are running on the server, with each one using one of the virtual IPs. The hosting provider will not route traffic on the virtual IPs to anything other than the physical server, so a workaround will need to be implemented to allow traffic to the virtual machines. The virtual IP addresses must be configured directly on the virtual machines to assist with some application limitations.


      1.What virtualization product would you recommend to use for this implementation?
      Provide justification based on the following factors:
      - Technical strengths over other virtualization solutions,
      - Cost (monetary, such as license costs, and labour, (such as installation, maintenance, support, etc.)

      Please add anything else you feel is worth mentioning.
      2. Provide an overview of the technical details of the implementation. Include the type of network setup to use in the virtual environment, so that the result produces the desired setup. Please include any other technical points you think are important.   Answer Question
    • A client has an environment consisting of a mixture of CentOS and Ubuntu servers hosted at Amazon Cloud. The environment has reached a size where it makes sense to implement a configuration management system. The client has asked you to recommend a system to use. Their requirements are:
      ● The solution must use open source software
      ● It must be easy to deploy machines and have them operational as soon as possible
      ● It must be possible to add machines to the system with minimal manual effort
      ● The system must be able to scale with the environment
      ● There must be a web-based frontend to manage the system
      ● The system must provide reports of compliance and changes to the environment
      ● Managed systems must be added to a monitoring system (Nagios) automatically

      Please do the following:

      1. Identify at least two solutions to consider for this project.

      2. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of the two best solutions.

      3. Recommend a solution, articulate why it was ultimately chosen, and indicate how it meets the requirements outlined above.   1 Answer
    • A client has a requirement to monitor components of Windows systems (services, events, etc.) using WMI, and has created an unprivileged account in their domain for this purpose. They have asked you to identify the minimum permissions required to be able to query WMI from a remote system. The environment consists of servers running a mixture of Windows 2003 and 2008 which are all configured in the company domain.
      Please do the following:
      1. Identify the minimum privileges required, noting any differences between versions of Windows.

      2. Specify how the permissions are to be granted and deployed to machines in the environment.   Answer Question

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