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Linux OS Interview Questions

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Trap command: controls the action to be taken by the shell when a signal is received.

Trap [OPTIONS] [ [arg] signspec..]

Arg is the action to be taken or executed on receiving a signal specified in signspec.

e.g. trap “rm $FILE; exit” // exit (signal) and remove file (action)

Shift Command: Using shift command, command line arguments can be accessed. The command causes the positional parameters shift to the left. Shift [n] where n defaults to 1. It is useful when several parameters need to be tested.

Getopts command: this command is used to parse arguments passed. It examines the next command line argument and determines whether it is a valid option

Getopts {optstring} {variable1}. Here, optsring contains letters to be recognized if a letter is followed by a colon, an argument should be specified. E.g (whether the argument begins with a minus sign and is followed by any single letter contained inside options ) If not, diagnostic messages are shown. It is usually executed inside a loop.  

A stateless Linux server is a centralized server in which no state exists on the single workstations. There may be scenarios when a state of a partilcuar system is meaningful (A snap shot is taken then) and the user wants all the other machines to be in that state. This is where the stateless Linux server comes into picture.


  •     It stores the prototypes of every machine
  •     It stores snapshots taken for those systems
  •     It stores home directories for those systems
  •     Uses LDAP containing information of all systems to assist in finding out which snapshot (of state) should be running on which system.  

Nslookup is used to find details related to a Domain name server. Details like IP addresses of a machine, MX records, servers etc. It sends a domain name query packet to the corresponding DNS.

Nslookup has two modes. Interactive and non interactive. Interactive mode allows the user to interact by querying information about different hosts and domains.

Non interactive mode is used to fetch information about the specified host or domain.

Interactive mode:

Nslookup [options] [server]  

Bash is a free shell for UNIX. It is the default shell for most UNIX systems. It has a combination of the C and Korn shell features. Bash shell is not portable. any Bash-specific feature will not function on a system using the Bourne shell or one of its replacements, unless bash is installed as a secondary shell and the script begins with #!/bin/bash. It supports regular and expressions. When bash script starts, it executes commands of different scripts. 

Network monitoring tools are used to monitor the network, systems present on the network, traffic etc.

Ping: Ping command is used to check if the system is in the network or not. To check if the host is operating.

e.g. ping ip_address

When the command is executed, it returns a detailed summary of the host. Packets sent, received, lost by estimating the round trip time.

Traceroute: the command is used to trace the path taken by the packet across a network. Tracing the path here means finding out the hosts visited by the packet to reach its destination. This information is useful in debugging. Roundtrip time in ms is shown for every visit to a host.

Tcpdump: commonly used to monitor network traffic. Tcdump captures and displays packet headers and matching them against criteria or all. It interprets Boolean operators and accepts host names, ip address, network names as arguments.

Ntop: Network top shows the network usage. It displays summary of network usage by machines on the network in a format as of UNIX top utility. It can also be run in web mode, which allows the display to be browsed with a web browser. It can display network traffic statistics, identify host etc. Interfaces are available to view such information.  

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