What is the difference between a systems administrator and a network administrator?

October 17th, 2010

Wikipedia.org states that a network administrator is the same as a systems administrator except he/she is working on a network. But when would a systems administrator be in demand. Princetonreview.com says there are 100,000 unfilled systems administrator jobs in the US. Why can’t network administrators fill these positions? Please help.

admin Networking , , , ,

  1. virus.execute
    October 17th, 2010 at 05:38 | #1

    systems admin is for the computer in general, but network admin it specificalyl for networks ie internet

  2. theres_blr
    October 17th, 2010 at 06:19 | #2

    system admin is person looking after the server and network connection, but not client system,
    network admin look or takes care of all client system

  3. Tim T
    October 17th, 2010 at 06:23 | #3

    In many cases, there is no difference. Many HR departments don’t know the difference between those two job titles, so they are used interchangably.

    If you are looking for a job in one of those categories, I would look in both just to make sure that you don’t limit your possibilities.

    In general though, the systems administrator is focused on servers, whereas the network administrator is focused on routers and switches.

    There may be overlap where a network administrator will also repair servers, and vise-versa.

  4. tuxedomadness
    October 17th, 2010 at 06:57 | #4

    Well, the position largely depends upon the organization. I’ve been both and on top of that, the duties of both have largely have been combined and blurred. Because for IT the network is considered part of the company’s computer system and part of the overall responsibility for a small to mid-size company

    Size matters. At my shop, we have hundreds of machines, all networked together.

    OS’ = AIX, HP-UX, Solaris, Stratus, MVS, TPF, Novell, DOS, Windows95, Windows98, WindowsNT Windows2K, IIS, FreeBSD, Linux.

    The Systems Administrators are divided into Unix, TPF, MVS, Stratus, PC-OS camps.

    Network Administration is separate and divided into Hardware and Software camps. The MVS administators have overlap into Network administration as well. They oversee the entire network infrastructure, cabling, telephony, VoIP

    We also have separate Systems Engineers (me for one) who design and specify the systems and configurations. As Capacity Engineer, my duties overlap some of the SysAdmin stuff, only it’s my job to watch the utilization of all the systems all the time and to advice upgrades. The SysAdmins are to busy with configuration changes, upgrades, and other administrative tasks to always keep a watch of the utilizations.

  5. Carmen Sandiego
    October 17th, 2010 at 07:14 | #5

    I think the difference is what you want it to be.

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