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Essential System Administration Pocket Reference: Commands and File Formats (Pocket Administrator) [Paperback]

∆leen Frisch
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: £6.50 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Book Description

30 Nov 2002 Pocket Administrator

If you're a Unix system administrator, then the information you need every day just to get your job done could fill a book--a very large book. But, practically speaking, you don't want to stop and thumb through a weighty volume each time a problem arises. Your answer is the Essential System Administration Pocket Reference, the only system administration reference that fits in your pocket. Concise and easy-to-use, this little book is the portable companion to the classic Essential System Administration by AEleen Frisch.

The Essential System Administration Pocket Reference is a quick reference to all the fundamental and essential tasks required to run such divergent Unix systems as Solaris, Linux, AIX, BSD, SuSe, Red Hat, and more. Beginners and experienced administrators alike will quickly be able to apply its principles and advice to solve everyday problems. The book is divided into three parts: Commands, Syntax and Their Applications, Configuration Files and Formats, and Operating System Specific Information. The information in this book is a must-have for any administrator or user of a Unix system.

O'Reilly's Pocket References have become a favorite among technology professionals everywhere. By providing a wealth of important details in a concise, well-organized format, these handy books deliver just what you need to complete the task at hand. When you've reached a sticking point and need to get to a solution quickly, the new Essential System Administration Pocket Reference is the book you'll want to have.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 146 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (30 Nov 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596004494
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596004491
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 10.2 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 851,441 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description


A must have for anyone who has to maintain a Unix machine and is valuable even as a shortened collection of man pages. -- Peter Sheehan, The Assayer, Feb 2003

Unless you have memorized every command and its options across the different Unix systems, the pocket reference is something I would highly recommend getting. -- Linh Pham, Daemon News, Jan 2003

From the Publisher

This pocket reference brings together all the important Unix and Linux system administration information in a single compact volume. Not only are all of the important administrative commands covered, but this reference also includes the locations and formats of important configuration files (including both general system databases like the password and group files as well as the configuration files for major subsystems like DNS, DHCP and sendmail).

In addition, variations in command usage and file formats are included for the most important UNIX versions. When you get a new system running a different Unix operating system, all the information you need will already be at your fingertips. The book covers these Unix versions:

Red Hat Linux 8.0 and SUSE Linux 8.1

Solaris 8 and 9

Free BSD 4.7


HP-UX 11

This book is truly an essential reference for all Unix and Linux system administrators.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good for starting out 28 Dec 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Having been mostly a point and click operative, I have recently started to get more into command line in order to push myself into a windowless environment. I have a remote server that runs with a desktop, but that in itself just adds another layer of things to go wrong. So I duly converted it over to a server version and jumped right into the windowless world.

I had received a few Unix admin courses and my computer days precede Windows platforms so I wasn't completely green to the command line. However, there are many days where I get stuck with a command I don't use too often and don't follow the 'man' pages, so a book like this becomes very helpful. It gives the main commands, syntaxes and some examples of use and most of the time it is enough to get me through the problem.

There is a much larger and comprehensive version of this book, but it isn't something you can carry around with you or slip into your laptop bag. So this book bridges that problem of heaving a large breeze block around with you. There are times when it doesn't have the command or explain it completely, but you have to remind yourself that this book is an essentials only

It has been a great help in my steep learning curve and used more than the larger Sys admin book
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A top job. 25 Sep 2008
This is a condensed version of "Essential System Admin." by the same author. As such, the reader gets the core commands that are required across various Unix flavours. It is in situations where a server is down and you need to quickly trouble-shoot options is when this book comes through. The relevant chapters; on Process Management, Device Files, etc, are well organised so that the required information can be quickly parsed. Thus recommended.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars <Extremely compact information for UNIX System administrator 20 Dec 2002
By Gregor Theis - Published on
This book contains a lot of very useful information for every UNIX admin on very little space. When I bought this book, I thought that I would only use it as an aide-mémoire but a learned a lot of new things while reading this booklet.
The organization of this book into several topics that comprise a certain area of system administration like e.g. "Networking" help, if you want to gain a good overview of the commands, configuration files and specialties (e.g. device files) for this area.
A booklet of this size can of course not replace all the books and UNIX man pages that dig very deeply into each of the subjects mentioned in this book. As an overview book this was not the intention of the author anyway. This is meant as an overview book only that mentions the important details. You will not find many examples in this book (if any). This book is not meant for beginners or for learning the subject of UNIX system administration. If you want to learn this I recommend the big edition of this book as a good starting point.
I especially liked the following about this book:
- The different options for the UNIX derivates (Red Had Linux 8.0, Suse 8.1, Solaris 8 and 9, Free BSD 4.7, AIX 5 and HP-UX 11) can be found next to each other, this is really helpful if you work with more than one version of UNIX at a time
- Not only the commands the but configuration files and the device files on the platforms are covered
- The coverage of commands is surprisingly big (e.g. I did not expect DHCP configuration instructions in the book)
"Essential system admin pocket reference" covers some of the GNU commands. Unfortunately I am missing coverage for the following commands that are very helpful in problem analysis:
- lsof (list open files)
- truss / strace / trace (trace system calls)
- top (CPU and System Monitor)
This book has the perfect size for a reference book to carry around.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete for the reluctant or casual sys admin 3 May 2005
By Paul - Published on
I'm a programmer and support analyst, but I work for a company with servers all over the world and no "in-house" sys admin at my location. So from time to time I get called upon to set things up, troubleshoot operating system problems, etc. This book always seems to have the answer. If you get this book along with another pocket book called "UNIX Shell Commands: Quick Reference" by QUE then you'll be pretty well set without lugging anything big around.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book ROCKS! 21 April 2004
By James K. Hoffman - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Ahem. I know this is only the "pocket" version of this book, but Essential System Administration Pocket Reference is the best system admin book I've seen in a long time. Now, I'm relatively new to Unix system admin, but I've knocked around the industry for over ten years now, so I know a thing or two about sysadmin work. Usually, what I look for in a reference guide is either something quick and simple or with miles and miles of depth. If I'm new to a system, or I only administer it as a backup or "once in a blue moon", the quick guides suit me well. In this case, that was precisely what I was looking for in a Unix system administration guide. Essential System Administration Pocket Reference provides this to a "T".
Without getting bogged down in lengthy descriptions or philosphical discussions of which tool to use when, this pocket reference lists the basic administration commands, beyond GREP (though it lists that, too!), with a short description of what it does. It's easier to read than the MAN file, usually gives me few examples, and I don't have to open a second terminal window to use it! Seriously, I really reccomend this guide to anyone new to Unix, including Linux, system administration. Or, like me, is getting back into it for the first time since, well, since the Dark Ages. It's a great guide or refresher and it literally does fit in your pocket!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely a must, no matter which UNIX variant you use 21 Nov 2007
By J. A. Rodriguez - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I brag an LPI-2 certification, but I definitely do not have such expertise in any other UNIX variant, be it BSD, Solaris, etc. This book covers everything you need to know to understand in a few minutes how one differs from another and, most important, use any of them with relative ease. And it does not limit to basic shell usage, that would be too easy. You can even set up a couple of services, such as Apache & Co., DHCP or DNS, all with some previous experience with any variant and this book as a translator of sorts. Of course, it may be considered outdated now, but that's why I'm expecting the new edition.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great reference 23 April 2010
By Opera fan - Published on
This is a very good quick reference for daily work. I liked that it takes the basic flavors, once you understand how is organized is very helpful. Quality of material and covers is excellent as well as the size.
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