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Senior Linux Systems Engineer - KDI

Date: Mar 7, 2023

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 10014 


The Information Technology Services Division in the Business Services Directorate at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory is seeking qualified applicants for a Senior Linux Systems Engineer position in the KDI area of ITSD. The Knowledge Discovery Infrastructure (KDI) program serves to facilitate research activities on health data that has been entrusted to ORNL by the U.S Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA) and other agencies. As such, ORNL is tasked with the balanced mission of sharing medical data in a way that enables researchers to perform research activities on this highly sensitive data, while at the same time, ensuring the security of that data. We run mid-range clusters, servers, workstations, and other services where science happens at the lab.


This Senior Linux Systems Engineering position would be responsible for having an in-depth knowledge of installation, problem solving, application security, process automation, and custom system builds. This position will work in the KDI team with research users to deliver and maintain Linux systems in support of health data for great causes such as suicide prevention, cancer treatments, and mental health treatment research.


Major Duties/Responsibilities: 

  • Design, install, configure, and maintain (including patching) CentOS Linux systems, Storage, Backup, and application software in support of research needs. Provide consulting in the selection and purchase of hardware and software systems.
  • Provide configuration management utilizing Ansible.
  • Ensure the secure and effective operation of computing systems through compliance with ORNL procedures and IT Internal Operating Procedures.
  • Troubleshoot system problems quickly and effectively.
  • Work with other systems engineers and vendors to resolve hardware and software issues.
  • Answer escalated helpline calls in addition to primary project work.
  • Develop and document procedures for startup, execution, shutdown, backup, and recovery.
  • Monitor systems performance.
  • Install and configure software, both commercial packages and various open source packages.
  • Maintain documentation/notes on software builds and installs.
  • Work with scientific users to determine needs, and balance needs against cyber requirements to provide a solution that meets the requirements of both.
  • Port, modify and write system management, logging and scientific tools.
  • Support data storage systems and backup services.
  • Assist users with use of computing systems.
  • Promote operational efficiency and reliability through automation.
  • Off hours support during maintenance windows and on-call support rotation may be required.


Basic Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree in computer science or related technical subjects. An equivalent combination of education and experience may be considered.
  • A minimum of 8 years of experience managing UNIX/Linux Systems. 


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Master's degree in computer science or related technical subjects.
  • Experience with multiple operating systems.
  • Experience with RHEL7/8/9, VMware ESXi 6/7/8.
  • Familiarity with version control systems such as Git, Subversion, Bazaar, etc.
  • Knowledge of networking fundamentals including TCP/IP, traffic analysis, common protocols and network diagnostics.
  • Experience with performance and diagnostic tools for benchmarking, analysis and tuning of systems, networking and storage.
  • Experience with virtualization hypervisors (VMware, KVM, LXC).
  • Experience with CFEngine, Puppet, Ansible, and other configuration management systems.
  • Experience with Nagios, CheckMK, Solarwinds, Ganglia, and other network and device monitoring systems.
  • Experience with various storage architectures, filesystems and hardware (iSCSI, SAS, Netapp, LVM, XVM, ext3, ext4).
  • Experience with various backup solutions (Bacula, BackupPC, Amanda, StorCycle).
  • Previous experience working in a government, scientific, or other highly technical environment.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills suitable for user support and ability to work well with peer system administrators.
  • Moderate fluency in at least one scripting language such as Bash, Python, Ruby, Perl or equivalent.
  • Implementation, maintenance, and assistance to users with containerization software such as Podman.
  • DEVOPS scripting, programming and automation skills are a must to be able to manage this environment effectively. 
  • Porting/updating utility scripts between OS versions/platforms. 
  • Demonstrated capabilities to work in a dynamic environment and translate user needs into actionable project plans and see those plans through execution while balancing needs for short-term, high-priority tasks. 
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to work independently and demonstrated analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to balance complex research and security requirements.
  • Technical documentation skills, including ability to prepare simple documentation web pages.


Special Requirements:

Q clearance: This position requires the ability to obtain and maintain a clearance from the Department of Energy. As such, this position is a Workplace Substance Abuse (WSAP) testing designated position. WSAP positions require passing a pre-placement drug test and participation in an ongoing random drug testing program.




This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply.  UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.

Nearest Major Market: Knoxville