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Linux System Administration Paperback – 6 Apr 2007


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Review

O'Reilly merits recognition for their openness. Even an experienced admin will probably find some useful stuff in here.
-- Bob Uhl, Slashdot, October 2007

Book Description

Solve Real-life Linux Problems Quickly

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Amazon.com: 13 reviews
22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Quite Disappointing 5 Aug. 2007
By James M. Barker II - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I shelled out the full price for this at a local bookstore with the hopes that it could help me setup a new Debian LINUX server. Normally, O'Reilly books have a very high level of accuracy and detail, this one deviates from that standard quite a bit. I used to admin BSD boxes many moons ago and thought this would be the perfect refresher course for me to get back up to speed with the current technology. From the beginning of the book, I started running into problems and was getting confusing errors that were not at all mentioned in the book. For starters, this book is based on older software packages that aren't included in the current distribution, so you have to use your favorite search engine to find out what the current version and installation package names are. Next, the configuration files the authors tell you to modify are in many cases wrong or non-existent. They have you comment out lots of lines in various config files only to discover later on in the book that you have to uncomment them so things like PHP will actually work. On top of that, the ISPCONFIG setup fails, as there is some sort of problem with the PHP installation. AARGH! I think I spent more time playing Sherlock Holmes on the web than I did reading the book. Which, I actually recommend that YOU do if you are in a similar position as me... To add to my frustration with the authors, their website is basically vacant. My opinion is they cashed the check from O'Reilly and forgot about the rest of their commitments to the readers who are spending from $29 to $44.99 USD on a copy of this outdated and confusing waste of paper. There might be a few useful tidbits here and there, but the web is your best resource for this information. I gave it 2 stars because it does point you in a general direction of how you might want to set things up, but the explanation of it all is generally wrong.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
This Book should be renamed Debian Sys Admin 31 July 2007
By T. Brown - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I found this book very disapointing. My main concern was with the authors decision to base the examples solely on Debian distros of Linux. This is not mentioned in the the books description.

The book also advises that there is a website to accompany the book with examples, tips and new procedures. This turns out to be a one page website with 5 links that refer back to the same homepage with no content.
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Useful survey of interesting software & technology 27 May 2007
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I've just finished reading O'Reilly's latest GNU/Linux title, Linux
System Administration (full disclosure: I was sent a reviewer's copy).
Bottom line up front: it's a handy introduction for the beginner
GNU/Linux sysadmin, and a useful addition to an experienced sysadmin's
bookshelf.

The book is essentially a survey of various Linux system-administration
tasks: installing Debian; setting up LAMP; configuring a load-balancing,
high-availability environment; working with virtualisation. None of the
chapters are in-depth examinations of their subjects; rather, they're
enough to get you started and familiar with the concepts involved, and
headed in the right direction. I like this approach, as it increases
the likelihood that any particular admin will be able to use the
material presented. I've been working with Apache for almost a decade
now, but I've not done any virtualisation; some other fellow may have
played with Linux for supercomputing, but never done any web serving
with it; we both can use the chapters which cover subjects new to us.

I really like some of the choices the authors made. A lot of GNU/Linux
'administration' books focus on GUI tools--I've seen some which don't
even bother addressing the command line! I've long said that if one
isn't intimately familiar with the shell--if one cannot get one's job
done with it--then one isn't really a sysadmin. Linux System
Administration approaches nearly everything from the CLI, right from the
get-go. Kudos!

The authors also deserve praise for showing, early on, how to replace
Sendmail with Postfix. In 2007, there's very, _very_ little reason to use
Sendmail: unless you know why you need it, you almost certainly don't.
Postfix is more stable and far more secure.

Another nice thing is how many alternatives are showcased: Xen & VMware;
Debian, Fedora & Xandros; CIFS/SMB & NFS; shell, Perl, PHP & Python and
so forth. One really great advantage of Unix in general and GNU/Linux
in particular is choice--it's good to see a reference work which
implicitly acknowledges that.

The authors are also pretty good about calling out common
pitfalls--several got me, once upon a time. It'd have been nice to have
had a book like this when I was cutting my teeth...

Lastly, I liked that the authors & their editor weren't afraid to refer
readers to books from other publishers, in addition to O'Reilly's
(uniformly excellent) offerings. Not all publishers would be so
forthright; O'Reilly merits recognition for their openness.

The book's not quite perfect, though. I wish that PostgreSQL had at
least been mentioned as a more powerful, more stable (and often faster
in practice) alternative to MySQL, and one doesn't actually need to
register a domain in order to set up static IP addressing. Still, these
are pretty minor quibbles.

I'd say that the ideal audience for this book is a small-to-medium
business admin who'd like to start using Linux, or who already is but
doesn't really feel confident yet. It covers enough categories that at
least a few are likely to be relevant. Even an experienced admin will
probably find some useful stuff in here.
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Linux System Administration Good for MCSE and a seasoned Linux or UNIX administrator 20 April 2007
By Pretty Lights Out - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Linux System Administration is a book for a seasoned Linux or UNIX administrator. The book attempts to describe day-to-day administration, maintenance and advanced issues commonly faced by Linux system administrator. Book covers wild verity of topics.

Both Tom Adelstein and Bill Lubanovic has done an extraordinary work to put together Linux System Administration. Tom is not just a system administrator but a good technical writer.

So what's unique about this book?

Generally most Linux classes and books cover topics such as user administration, setting up mail and web servers, printers, new hard disk / file system etc. But very few books or classes deals with scalability and availability issues. The book teaches you how to setup a reverse proxy in front of Apache, setting up a load balancing server, hot backups and running Linux based server 24×7.

The entire book is divided into 11 chapters that cover from practical advice on building everything from SOHO hubs, web servers, and LAN servers to load-balanced clusters and servers consolidated through virtualization.

Sure you will find most of the information mentioned in this book throughout mailing lists, forums, blogs, and discussion groups but not in one handy guide. Overall, a great book that touches all Linux administrative aspects not covered in many books and classes. This book is highly recommended to all Linux administrators or admins with Windows Sever background.

a) Level of experience needed: Intermediate Linux / UNIX sys admin / MCSE etc

b) Who will find useful: Linux/UNIX sys admin / IDC Tech support staff / Linux fan boys ;)
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Great for quick overview 3 May 2009
By Brent Schlueter - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I got this to get me more acclimated with our Linux systems. I have only had very limited exposure to Linux and the apps you run on it. This is a great book for giving a technical person a good understanding of basic administration. I would recommend based on the book description and who the intended audience is for.
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