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Linux System Administrator Salary

Men account for the majority of Linux System Administrators in the United States. The overall average income for this group is approximately $70K per year. Total cash earnings of Linux System Administrators range from $40K on the low end to $100K on the high end; the final amount can include bonuses and profit sharing proceeds that occasionally exceed $8K and $16K, respectively. Geographic location and tenure each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Most Linux System Administrators like their work and job satisfaction is high. A large number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a fair number collect dental insurance. The figures in this rundown are based on the results of PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$44,414 - $99,618
(Median)
$44K
$70K
$100K
MEDIAN: $70,272
10%
50%
90%

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$14.36 - $47.27
(Median)
$14
$25
$47
MEDIAN: $25.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$44,414 - $99,618  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $7,891  
Profit Sharing
$1.21 - $15,659  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$40,349 - $100,489  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 411
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$14.36 - $47.27  
   
Overtime
$16.85 - $56.62  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $7,891  
   
Profit Sharing
$1.21 - $15,659  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$40,349 - $100,489  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 74

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Job Description for Linux System Administrator

A Linux system administrator is responsible for the standard day-to-day administration of Linux servers. This would include, but not be limited to, deployment of a standard LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP) web server configuration, including installing all standard plugins, SSL and configuration. A Linux system administrator should also be familiar with at least two different Linux distributions. Ideally, one of the Linux distributions should be Redhat Enterprise Linux, the most common distribution used in the corporate world. The second distribution should be one of the Debian based distributions (such as Debian and Ubuntu), since most cloud service providers use some form of Debian for their servers. A typical applicant should have at least three years of experience in day-to-day administration of Linux servers.

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Linux System Administrator Tasks

  • Back up, recover, maintain and migrate data and programs.
  • Identify and resolve service problems ranging from disaster recovery to login problems.
  • Maintain, enhance and create tools for the Linux environment and its users.
  • Create and update documentation, including maintenance logs and end user training.

Linux System Administrator Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Linux System Administrator


Linux System Administrators seem to require a rather large skill set. Most notably, skills in Puppet, UNIX, Cloud Computing, and Perl are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 10 percent and 13 percent. Those listing Cisco Networking as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. System Administration and Apache / Apache HTTP Server also typically command lower compensation. It is often found that people who know Linux are also skilled in Shell Scripting.

Pay by Experience Level for Linux System Administrator

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience make $59K, but folks with five to 10 years under their belts enjoy an appreciably larger median of $72K. For Linux System Administrators, 10 to 20 years of experience on the job amounts to an average salary of $85K. Folks who claim more than 20 years of relevant experience actually report a comparatively lower median income of $84K.

Pay Difference by Location


Linux System Administrators will find that Washington offers an impressive pay rate, one which exceeds the national average by 29 percent. Linux System Administrators will also find cushy salaries in New York (+19 percent), San Diego (+19 percent), Boston (+12 percent), and Atlanta (+11 percent). Linux System Administrators' salaries are heavily influenced by location — Linux System Administrators in Chicago bring in salaries that are 27 percent lower than the national average. A couple other locations with smaller-than-average paychecks include Huntsville (26 percent lower) and Austin (8 percent lower).

Related Job Salaries

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Experience Affects Linux System Administrator Salaries




National Average
$69,000


Skills That Affect Linux System Administrator Salaries

Puppet
up arrow 13%

UNIX
up arrow 11%

Cloud Computing
up arrow 10%

Perl
up arrow 10%


Python
up arrow 3%

Virtual Machine (VM)
up arrow 1%

Linux
0%

Shell Scripting
0%

National Average
$69,000

Network Management / Administration
up arrow 2%

MySQL
up arrow 2%


System Administration
up arrow 17%

Cisco Networking
up arrow 20%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 72 votes.

Gender

Female
7 %
Male
93 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
40%
5-9 years
26%
10-19 years
24%
20 years or more
7%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 86% dental benefits Dental: 76%
vision benefits Vision: 66% employee benefits None: 13%