Ops 301: Networking and Systems Administration

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Overview

Gain hands-on server and networking skills in this exciting course that follows the journey of the fictional GlobeX Corporation as it grows from a startup to a multinational enterprise with fully-functional network and information systems. As their new administrator, get ready to deploy systems and design new networks in this fast-paced learning environment that mirrors critical on-the-job scenarios designed to prepare you for real-world Ops challenges.

The course integrates practical network and systems administration operations such as network design and troubleshooting, VPN tunneling, firewall configuration, network security, server deployment and configuration, user identity management, scripting & automation, and system health monitoring with professional exercises in change management and project planning in a simulated on-the-job narrative.

This course includes a career coaching curriculum to get you ready for your job search. The course totals 160 hours, including lectures, lab, coworking, and collaborative projects.

Certification Alignment

This course will substantially prepare you for achieving the learning objectives of CompTIA Network+ certification. This course covers significant aspects of all five domains required for Network+.

  • CompTIA Network+
    • 1.0 Networking Fundamentals
    • 2.0 Network Implementations
    • 3.0 Network Operataions
    • 4.0 Network Security
    • 5.0 Network Troubleshooting

Students are strongly encouraged to register for the CompTIA Network+ exam during course prework, and take the exam during the final module.

Outcomes

At the end of this course, you will be able to land an entry-level Network Operations Specialist or Systems Administrator job with skills to:

  • Apply lightweight Agile project management methodologies
  • Administer critical IT and network systems
  • Practice identity management in Active Directory (AD)/LDAP protocol
  • Design and deploy a client-server network including a domain controller (DC)
  • Create and push group policy to endpoints
  • Analyze how cloud systems can integrate into on-premise systems
  • Automate OS tasks using scripting languages Bash, Powershell, and Python
  • Design and deploy network infrastructure using the open source pfSense virtual appliance
  • Extend the capabilities of pfSense using packages
  • Troubleshoot challenging network connectivity problems
  • Oversee patch management of Windows endpoints
  • Be prepared for an Ops 401: Cybersecurity Engineering course

Prerequisites

  • Required: Familiarity with algebra concepts.
  • Ops 201: Foundations of Computer Operations: Learn to support technology operations by resolving issues with hardware, software, and virtual or cloud systems.
    • Students with previous experience can test out of this requirement in their application. If you'd like to test straight into this course, please make sure you have experience with all of the topics covered in the Ops 102 and Ops 201 courses.

Prework

Once you are accepted into the course, please complete the Ops 301 Prework.

Topics

Systems Administration

  • Agile project management
  • Linux and Windows network services, like AD, DHCP, DNS, email, LDAP, web servers
  • LAN connectivity to cloud resources on AWS
  • Identity management
  • IT infrastructure and systems design
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2019
  • Patch management
  • Software administration
  • Virtual machine administration

Networking

  • Router and firewall administration with pfSense
  • Network traffic analysis tools
  • Network access controls
  • Network design
  • Network infrastructure troubleshooting
  • Network service administration (TCP/IP, DHCP, DNS)
  • Virtual private network(VPN) client and tunnel

Scripting & Automation

  • Bash
  • OS task automation
  • Powershell
  • Python

Career Transition Services

Changing careers is about more than learning a new skill. In tandem with your Ops education, you will receive powerful career-building strategic training so you can confidently start your job search as soon as (or even before!) you graduate.

Our Career Transition Services provide training, mentoring, leadership, and introductions to industry partners to help you become a more well-rounded professional and a leader in your field. These services, which start in Ops 201 and continue after Ops 401 graduation, involve a series of events, workshops, and assignments that help you think holistically about your new career and take actionable steps towards success.

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Material Requirements

For all Ops courses beyond 101, you must come to class on the first day with:

  • A recent-model laptop (or desktop) computer:
    • Running a 64-bit Operating System, like macOS, Ubuntu or Windows 10 Pro.
    • Fully up to date, with the latest version of the operating system and all security updates installed.
    • At least 60GB of free space on the hard drive.
    • At least 16GB of RAM (or 8GB Unified Memory). 32GB RAM strongly preferred.
    • Free of viruses, Zoom-ready (reliable webcam and microphone), and in general working order.
  • A reliable high-speed internet connection.
  • An Ops Lab Kit (see below), which contains tools of an IT pro, and a PC to use for labs (where you can uninstall/reinstall the operating system repeatedly).
  • Sybex CompTIA Network+ Study Guide (includes access to online practice exams).

Computer Requirements

You are required to supply your own desktop or laptop computer (not a Chromebook) with adequate system specs to run Zoom, Slack, Remo, and Microsoft Visual Studio Code. This computer will be used to remotely access the Lab Kit PC, which will perform the majority of the resource-intensive virtual machine hosting during the class. You are also responsible for maintaining a reliable source of high-speed internet connectivity for attending lecture time and occasionally presenting via Zoom.

Ops Lab Kit

By the first day of class, you will need to have received ALL items from the Ops Lab Kit Amazon Shopping List as specified by Code Fellows. This means you are responsible for purchasing everything in the Ops Lab Kit list and ensuring it will be delivered to you before class starts.

If your funding source provides required materials, talk to your Admissions Advisor about ensuring a timely delivery.

Your Ops Lab Kit contains primarily:

  • A desktop tower PC computer intended for lab and data overwrite
  • Compatible peripherals
  • Two 32GB USB flash drives
  • Sysadmin toolkits
  • Cat5e networking supplies
  • A wireless router for home network isolation

Each kit costs approximately $400, and will be reused in every Ops course (you don't need to buy more hardware for later courses), in your job search, and beyond.

Stacked Modules

Concepts in each of our courses are taught using stacked modules, where a new concept is introduced in each class session, building upon what came before it. This is a challenging style that requires persistence, practice, and collaboration, but allows more concepts to be introduced over the length of the course. This method helps students learn and retain more information in a short period of time. Learn more about stacked modules »

Homework Policy

In order to pass the class, students must attain at least 90% of available points.

Professionalism

Punctuality, participation in discussions, completion of assignments, and demonstration of professional courtesy to others are required, in accordance with our Code of Conduct. Attendance will be taken at the beginning of every class. Passing requires at least 90% attendance. Students should always contact the instructors ahead of time if they are unable to attend all or part of the published class/lab hours.



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