How do budding system administrators learn their craft? Especially if:

    • it's a hobby, not something learned in school

    • they're unemployed and don't have access to server resources?

Skills needed:

    • understanding of the theory of networking. Lots of books and online materials on the subject.

    • practice with networking

Ways in which they would learn:

    • they own hardware

    • virtual hardware

      • in 2010 almost everything is virtualized, and relatively cheap

      • if you have access to the Internet, you have access to stuff like Amazon EC2 which can quickly provision and spin up/down instances