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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Resource Kit
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
TCP/IP Core Networking Guide Is Pretty Good

This volume provides a very clear review of TCP/IP. Basic concepts are covered in separate chapters from Windows 2000 distinctives. This organization makes the book an excellent learning tool. Students can work through the basic chapters while more experienced readers might go straight to the Windows 2000 features.
One of the features that appears throughout the SRK is flowcharts. This can be a helpful method for visualizing the step by step activities of establishing connections, resolving names, etc. This approach is applied in this volume particularly to troubleshooting. I liked having a flowchart and a list of steps to clarify the points covered.
Microsoft is emphasizing the use of network analysis through the use of Network Monitor in the SRK. Capture files are frequently included to illustrate TCP/IP functions.
A number of new tools for testing and verifying TCP/IP on a Windows 2000 network are covered in the book. The coverage is a little light weight and it is common to be referred to Server Help for more information. It appears to be necessary to review Server Help, the SRK Companion CD, as well as the SRK itself to fully review some tools and features. This sounds worse than it really is however.
A chapter is devoted to IPSec. On the one hand an attempt is made to review the material from a basic level to begin educating the industry on an important security option. The chapter also tries to cover the means of making IPSec functional on a network. I wanted more.
I was also disappointed with the chapter on Quality of Service. There was too much repetition and important issues were not addressed clearly enough. For instance, not all QOS features can overlap on machines. It was not clear what features can be run together and which must be installed on separate machines to function appropriately.
The last chapter in the volume was on SNMP. It was basic and clearly written.
Nine Appendixes were included covering everything from the OSI Model to LMHOSTS files. It is a shame this volume will not be more accessible to students as it is really an excellent treatment of TCP/IP.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Dreamweaver MX 2004: The Missing Manual
Publisher: Pogue Press
Authors: David McFarland
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5

This is the second book I buy from the "Missing Manual" series (the first one being "Mac OSX: The Missing Manual"), and I keep buying them for a good reason: They're written in such a way that they make even hard or boring concepts easy to understand.
Armed with this book you will be able to start building web pages and entire sites with pictures, links, interactive forms, CSS, JavaScript Behaviors and, most important, clean HTML and XHTML.
The only thing to keep in mind is that in order to work through the tutorials you need an Internet connection. However, once you're online downloading the files is REALLY easy and the files are so small that you can store in floppy disks! (if you want to).
If you want to enjoy learning Dreamweaver MX'04, get this book.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Essential XML Quick Reference: A Programmer's Reference to XML, XPath, XSLT, XML Schema, SOAP, and More
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Aaron Skonnard, Martin Gudgin
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Exactly what a Quick Reference should be...

This book covers all the essentials of XML quickly and with no distracting fluff. This is the by far the best XML book I have read, and I highly recommend it.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Essential System Administration, Third Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Æleen Frisch
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
THe best UNIX sysadm book I know of

I purchased the second edition of this book several years ago in order to improve my Linux knowledge of system administration tasks. (A valuable purchase.)

The new third edition is much better than the second edition and covers almost everything (except Web server administration), for example LDAP, PAM, DHCP, SNMP, NTP time servers, and security issues. Whereas the background of Kerberos tickets are covered, the Kerberos configuration is missing.

If you administer a greater UNIX network, you should consider this book. This is also the case if you are using different Linux distributions, because the author explains SuSE 8.x and Red Hat 7.x.