You may not have heard of the Linux Professional Institute (LPI) or its professional certifications, but they're becoming an important part of proving professional competence in the Linux operating system. That aside, LPI Linux Certification in a Nutshell
is a fantastic introductory Linux book, well suited to introducing a curious newcomer to the environment and bringing an intermediate user up to expert status.
The book is organised around the LPI's published standards for two Level 1 exams (exams 101, which deals with key commands and file-system concepts, and 102, which places more emphasis on hardware, networking and shell scripting). The organisation works well even if you're not specifically preparing for either exam.
LPI Linux Certification in a Nutshell assumes nothing in early chapters, going so far--to cite one example--as to walk readers through the concept of commands with parameters separately from the concept of commands alone. Later the pace picks up, and strategic advice is substituted (such as how to partition a disk for maximum speed and reliability) for "type-this" instructions.
Throughout, the book makes effective use of O'Reilly & Associates' time-tested and remarkably clear format for presenting Unix commands and configuration files. Each chapter concludes with a series of exercises designed to help you discover behaviours on your own, and includes the practice questions you expect in a test-prep aid. --David Wall
Topics covered::the knowledge that's tested on the Linux Professional Institute's exams 101 and 102, which includes everything from basic Linux commands and concepts to installation of the operating system, essential network configuration and kernel recompilation.
"...is characteristically O'Reilly through and through - vastly detailed, confidently written and not dressed up with too many screenshots or wild page designs. Although Linux Certifcation...is structured as a front-to-back read, mirroring the order of the LPIC topics, it also features page markings to help you use it as a quick reference guide when you've worked through it. The book shows you how to prepare for the LPIC exams, with exercises and examples galore, plus a host of massively useful practice exams to give you a taste of the real thing... O'Reilly's book is a monster, covering everything in great depth, and even though it's a bit costly it's worth the price given the exhaustive coverage therein. Just don't expect any kind of entertainment along the way - it's all very serious stuff." Verdict: A bulging, desk-warping behemoth of a book, tackling LPIC topics with clarity and excellent details. Rating: 9/10 - Mike Saunders, Linux Format, May 2007