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System/netwrk administration

By willz ·
Can somebody inform me, what's the difference between the 2 if there is a difference and ow do you go about becoming either of these.


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Long history

by stress junkie In reply to System/netwrk administrat ...

In the beginning there was the computer. The computer required technical support. The person whose job it was to provide that technical support was called the system administrator. Creating a precedent in the computer industry that continues to this day some people decided to create new names to describe the same thing. Some places started calling their computer technical support person a system manager. Other places used the phrase system analyst.

One day people started to connect computers together over a communication link. Pretty soon this communication link required a high degree of knowledge to support. The person whose job it was to provide this support was called the network administrator.

Then came M$ NT. Bill Gates had a vision to consider the network as just another component on a computer like the hard disks or the video card. M$ NT came bundled with capabilities to provide network support and the same operating system could be configured as a server or as a network service provider such as domain controller or printer server. Thus people started referring to the NT system administrator as a network administrator.

Then network support became MUCH more complicated due to the rise in network devices such as dedicated routers, switching hubs, et. al. The amount of knowledge required to adequately support both the computer and the network became too great for mere mortals to learn. Thus the job of supporting the network was slit off from supporting the server or desktop computers. Network administration returned to being a specialty skill. However the people in the computer industry, particularly in talent recruiting companies, a.k.a. employment agencies, have failed to keep up with these trends. Consequently today when you see a job title of network administrator the job may be narrowly focused on supporting the network or it may include system administration.

Your second question is easier to answer. You can get into the field by going to school and learning the principle skills. I would, however, suggest that you graze the huge number of discussions on this topic. It is my opinion, and the opinion of many other people, that the need for on site techncal support personnel is diminishing and will continue to diminish for some time to come. There are probably already too many skilled people in the field. Career prospects for mathematicians or for car mechanics are better than those for computer support personnel. If I were 18 years old right now I would probably become a car mechanic. The pay is good and the need for more car mechanics is increasing.

And believe me, working in an office environment has its drawbacks. Politics and incompetent management are just a couple of the many frustrating and irritating issues that one faces when you work among the gods of industry. I've often said that American business thrives in spite of its managers, not because of them.

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The shorter answer from someone who is both

by jdclyde In reply to System/netwrk administrat ...

A system admin works on servers (systems).
They do the upkeep of patches and updates. Install software and manage user accounts as well as take care of backups.

Network admins handle the hardware and software used to connect computers together. Doesn't matter if they are in the next room or in Japan, connecting is connecting. Net admins work with Routers and Firewalls to provide connectivity, while trying DESPERATELY to limit exposure of valuable company assests.

Sometimes they will have someone separate for Security, but many times in your medium to small organizations that falls to the Net admin. If your really small, then the Sys/NET/Security is done by just one or two people. Thus my title of "computer systems administrator". If it is related to computers, I am to blame.

As for becoming one or the other or both. You should start with one or the other, and learn that. There is a lot to learn and people that are good at what they do will spend years getting good at just one of them. Some pick this up quicker than others, so it will really depend on you.

Best thing, look to be and assistant and pay attention to EVERYTHING that the head admin does, AND WHY they do what they do.

I got my start in networking helping a consultant setup networks on the side. He did them on weekends. I would help, he would show me what was what and then buy me lunch/dinner. To pay for what he taught me would have cost me major bucks, so it was well worth my time. Then when I got some formal training I picked up on ideas quicker because I had worked with the equipment and had a basic understanding of the WHY, which goes a long ways to understanding the HOW.

Best of luck.

NOTE: I think Netadmin is more fun.

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Both are each other

by Cactus Pete In reply to System/netwrk administrat ...

These days, the line is blurred - not only because nontechincally knowledgable HR types mix up the titles as they assign them, but because so many people are both and have either title.

My feelinghas always been that to be good at either, you must be good at both.

In very large shops (the only types of places where the differentiation is visible) you might focus more on network administration under that title, or under servers as a single entity with the system admin title.

Then again, some places see the difference as sys admins being desktop support, while all things in the server room fall to the network admin.

So, yeah, there's a difference, maybe - it depends on who is defining it, and in what circumstance.

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which position has a better salary?

by breathing98 In reply to System/netwrk administrat ...

whoa...i was just thinking the same thing. When I do a job search for a Network Administrator, System Administrator title's comes up as well. Being a Network Administrator does sound more interesting, but when I compared salaries I noticed System Admins get paid a little bit more.

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