Computer & Network Administration



Computer and network system administration is an increasingly complex and essential field. As the reliance of industry and government on computer systems increases so does the number and importance of system administrators. This course provides a practical problem-solving approach to the field of UNIX/LINUX computer and network system administration. Upon completion of this course, students are capable of configuring, administering, and supporting users on a UNIX/LINUX multi-user networked computer systems.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, students will understand...


There is no textbook for this course. Instead, there will be online readings and videos assigned on a bi-weekly basis. These will be listed in the Schedule section.


Room 302 in Dana Hall has six machines running the Ubuntu version of Linux. From left to right, their names are autechre, bauhaus, cappadonna, deftones, eluvium, and fugees, respectively. Do not reorder these machines, as this listing is important for their administration.

Software Requirements

All you’ll need for this course will be a GitHub account. If you’d like to play with Linux on machines other than those in the lab, then you’ll need a USB flash drive onto which you’ll install Ubuntu.


Important Dates

Check the University’s official calendar for other important dates.

Note: Time permitting, I will make every attempt to cover the topics listed below in order. However, depending on the cadence of the class, some topics may be overlooked.

Week Topics Homework
  • Visit lab
  • Thorough syllabus breakdown
  • Booting to Ubuntu on a flash drive
  • The difference between working with Ubuntu on a flash drive and working with it on a dedicated system
  • Logging in to the Linux machines in the Dana 302 lab
  • What is a shell?
  • cli tutorial
  • The bash environment
  • Clone the in-class examples repo for the semester
  • cli tutorial continued
  • emacs tutorial
  • An introduction to The Filesystem Hierarchy Standard (fhs) Linux standard directory tree structure
  • The fhs Linux standard directory tree structure continued
  • An introduction to bash scripting
  • bash scripting continued
Seven pending pending
  • In preparation for final exam, a review of material covered thus far
  • Spring Recess
Ten pending pending
Eleven pending pending
Twelve pending pending
Thirteen pending pending
Fourteen pending pending
  • Evaluations
  • Final exam*
Happy summer!

*Date, time, and room pending.

Class Policies

Advice on Succeeding in Class

We will go over the following document in detail on the first day of class.


There are three homework-type assignments and one final exam. (See the Grading Standards section to learn what percentage of your final grade each is worth.)

  1. Assignment (due XX February 2020)
  2. Assignment (due XX March 2020)
  3. Assignment (due XX April 2020)

Grading Standards

Grading Formula

Your grade for this course — explained by The University of Hartford here — will be computed using the following formula:

  1. Assignments (45%)
    • Assignment 1 — 15%
    • Assignment 2 — 15%
    • Assignment 3 — 15%
  2. Final exam (45%)
  3. Attendance and participation (10%)
    • Three unexcused absences alters the grading formula. First, the attendance and participation component of your grade increases to 40% from 10%. The 30% difference is taken from the assignments, each of which becomes worth 5%. Thus, all assignments are worth 15%, the final project remains at 45%, and attendance is worth 40%. Finally, the attendance portion of the grade becomes a 0, meaning that the highest grade you may achieve is 60 if you miss three classes without excuse and get perfect scores on all assignments and the final project.

To calculate your final grade, convert to decimal the percentages above and the grades you’ve earned. For example, if you got an 80 on the first assignment, a 93 on the second assignment, a 60 on the third assignment, a 100 on your final project, and 100 for attendance, then you’d use the following formula:

(.80 × .15) + (.93 × .15) + (.60 × .15) + (1 × .45) + (1 × .10) = 89%

I do not give grades — students earn them. The grade you earn is based strictly on the outlined formula clearly listed in this section.

This grading formula is unbending and will be adhered to strictly.

Important Note

Please do not try to negotiate a grade with me. By asking me to treat you favorably, you’re requesting that I put you above your classmates. Manage your time well; I do not accept late work.

Academic Honesty

Cheating of any kind will not be tolerated in this course; make certain that all the work you submit is your own. Refresh your understanding of the college’s policy on academic honesty.

Students with Disabilities

Read about how The University of Hartford supports students with disabilities:


I only communicate with students over email in emergency situations (pet emergency, personal tragedy, etc). For matters related to the class, you’re advised to see me in person before or after class, or during my office hours. My contact info is listed in the Preamble section above.

Office Hours

My office hours are walk-in for quick questions and by appointment for more involved academic inquiries.

If neither of the aforementioned times agrees with your schedule, we can make alternate arrangements to meet.