Red Hat Certification FAQs

Red Hat certification programs validate people's technical skills and knowledge. Organizations hiring employees, contractors, and consultants can look to Red Hat certifications as an input into hiring, assignment, promotion, and other management decisions. Similarly, individuals who earn these certifications benefit by having official, impartial validation of their skills and knowledge..

Performance-based testing is testing by doing--that is, by having examinees perform real-world tasks similar to those they must perform in a job role. Performance-based testing is also called hands-on or practical testing. All Red Hat certification exams are performance-based tests, and Red Hat is the industry leader in IT performance-based testing.
A government-issued photo identification is required in most areas. Candidates in regions for which government-issued photo IDs are not available should contact their local Red Hat office or their authorized Red Hat training partner for guidance on acceptable forms of identification.
Individual Exam Sessions are a convenient alternative to Red Hat's open enrollment exams that are delivered in classrooms. A professional proctor observes an examinee remotely as an exam is taken on a secured system in a testing center. Learn more by visiting the
Exam results are emailed to candidates within three US business days, assuming they have provided accurate contact information. Red Hat Certificate of Expertise Exam results are emailed within three US business days. Unfortunately, some mail servers mistakenly treat results emails as spam and filter them, which can cause delays. Candidates who do not receive their results within three US business days should contact Red Hat Certification
You will be issued an electronic certificate that will be attached to your results email.
A description of each certification, and its requirements, is provided at

RHCSA is intended as the "core" system administration certification offered by Red Hat. From the release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6, everyone who wishes to earn a system administration certification from Red Hat will begin by earning this credential. Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) is intended as a senior system administration certification. In order to earn RHCE under Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 and later, one must earn RHCSA and pass a separate RHCE exam on the same RHEL version.

Having a current RHCE certification remains an eligibility requirement for taking any Red Hat Certificate of Expertise Exam, and thus it remains a requirement for upper-level credentials such as Red Hat Certified Architect, Red Hat Certified Security Specialist, and Red Hat Certified Datacenter Specialist.

Log into the Red Hat Certification Central portal at
Verify a Red Hat certificate is current by entering the certificate number at
View the re-certification policy page for detailed information on these policies.

Red Hat Certification Changes

Red Hat is renaming this credential to align more closely to the job role people pursuing it most typically have (system administrator) and to clarify the technology in use (Red Hat OpenStack). Red Hat's training and certification for Red Hat OpenStack are available worldwide, and we want to ensure that IT professionals around the world know to come to us to learn about this powerful and rapidly evolving technology.
This change has happened already. Changing the title of a program that is available worldwide involves changing a lot of content and applications. Consequently, everything will not change all at once, but most changes should have been in place and completed by the end of January 2014.
The Red Hat Certified Security Specialist program is being discontinued. Red Hat will not issue any Red Hat Certified Security Specialist certifications after February 28, 2014. Red Hat will continue to promote and encourage good security practices by making security a component of all its training and certification exams and through focused credentials and courses. Additional security-focused offerings are in planning.
Anyone who currently meets the requirements for RHCSS is still an RHCSS and may claim that status. That status can also be verified online.
The Red Hat Certificate of Expertise in Directory Services and Authentication has essentially been replaced by the Red Hat Certificate of Expertise in Server Hardening. The identity management component of this newer credential focuses on identity management using Red Hat IdM in Red Hat Enterprise Linux. This credential will continue to appear on the the verification page for anyone who has earned it.