Men make up the majority of Linux System Administrators in the United States, bringing in about $69K annually. Total cash compensation to Linux System Administrators approaches anywhere from $41K on the lower end to $102K on the higher end; in exceptional cases, this can include more than $11K from bonuses and upwards of $8K from profit sharing. Residence is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by years of experience. Most enjoy medical while a strong majority get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to a majority. The majority of Linux System Administrators claim high levels of job satisfaction. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$44,146 - $98,477
$44K
$69K
$98K
MEDIAN: $68,868
10%
50%
90%

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$15.45 - $53.98
$15
$28
$54
MEDIAN: $27.61
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$44,146 - $98,477  
   
Bonus
$410.22 - $11,461  
Profit Sharing
$198.66 - $8,217  
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).
)
$41,275 - $102,095  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 627
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$15.45 - $53.98  
   
Overtime
$25.83 - $66.08  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$410.22 - $11,461  
   
Profit Sharing
$198.66 - $8,217  
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).
)
$41,275 - $102,095  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 127

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United States (change)

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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

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

Linux System Administrator Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Linux System Administrator


Survey results imply that Linux System Administrators deploy a deep pool of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in UNIX, Cloud Computing, VMware ESX, and Perl are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 7 percent and 14 percent. Those listing Bash as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. MySQL and Cisco Networking also typically command lower compensation. Most people familiar with Linux also know VMware ESX.

Pay by Experience Level for Linux System Administrator

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


In general, experience and pay appear to be strongly linked; those with more experience usually bring in higher incomes. The average beginner in this position makes around $60K, but folks who have been around for five to 10 years see a markedly higher median salary of $74K. Linux System Administrators bring in $83K after working for 10 to 20 years. Folks who have racked up more than 20 years in the field report incomes that aren't that much higher than less experienced individuals' earnings; the veterans make just $91K on average.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $69,138

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

For Linux System Administrators, busy San Francisco offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 45 percent above the national average. Linux System Administrators can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like New York (+14 percent), San Diego (+13 percent), Boston (+12 percent), and San Antonio (+5 percent). Linux System Administrators' salaries are heavily influenced by location — Linux System Administrators in Lansing bring in salaries that are 43 percent lower than the national average. Workers in Orlando and St. Louis earn salaries that trail the national average for those in this profession (38 percent less and 30 percent less, respectively).

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Linux System Administrator

Gender

Female
8 %
Male
92 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 84 votes.
042
Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
42%
5-9 years
27%
10-19 years
22%
20 years or more
6%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Linux System Administrator Salaries




National Average
$69,000


Skills That Affect Linux System Administrator Salaries

UNIX
up arrow 14%

Cloud Computing
up arrow 8%


up arrow 4%

up arrow 3%


up arrow 1%

Amazon Web Services (AWS)
0%

National Average
$69,000

up arrow 3%





up arrow 18%

Bash
up arrow 26%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 84 votes.

Gender

Female
8 %
Male
92 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
42%
5-9 years
27%
10-19 years
22%
20 years or more
6%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 85%
dental benefits
Dental: 75%
vision benefits
Vision: 66%
dental benefits
None: 13%
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