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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on 10 April 2012
Just so you know where I'm coming from, RHEL4/5 admin with 5 years experience and plenty of prior experience across other OS's, not a sysadmin God, but not too shabby, looking to fill a few blanks like selinux that just haven't come up in the working world.

Bought this to help fill in a few blanks before the exam, but unfortunately found it rather rambling and unclear, inaccurate in places, and frankly feels like it has been rushed to market without proper editing or proof reading. For example, the chapter 'The Boot Process' is not the place I'd expect to find details of ifconfig, network configuration and ntp. It frequently doesn't expand on acronyms (pretty standard practice in any technical documentation in my experience the first time you mention something), for instance 'MLS' (Multi Level Security) in relation to SELINUX is not expanded at any point, leading to frequent visits to the web to clarify points.

It lacks any insight into what is happening under the bonnet, which as an engineer I find unhelpful. How can such a clearly defined subject not have clearly defined chapters and some fundamental principles covered?

In short, it's too vague to be a reference, and too rambling to allow for study and I am now in need of something more focused.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 7 November 2011
I've over 14 yrs. Linux sys-admin experience and decided to take the exam. So, bought this book to prepare for RHSCA/RHCE exam and found it's very good as study material and also as reference. It seems to be a must-have one for the RHSCA/RHCE candidate, even for a experienced one. However, the included PDF version is bit different form the original book for a few chapters, and there quite a few serious ones. I haven't finished reading the book yet but beware of page 51, 06-ch06.pdf, where it describes how to auto-mount an encrypted LUKS filesystem - if you do that you'll end up with a non-bootable system. After adding the "/etc/fstab" entry (and of course before [re]booting), you need to put this in to the "/etc/crypttab":

< encrypted block device > < path/to/the/actual/device > < password OR none > [list of options]

So, if "/dev/mapper/test-crypt" is the name of the resulting encrypted block device and "/dev/sdb1" is the path to the actual device, the entry should be:

test-crypt /dev/sdb1 none

It'll ask for the LUKS password during boot. For the password less booting, you need to put the password in a file like this:

# touch /root/luks.key && chmod 600 /root/luks.key
# cryptsetup luksAddKey /dev/sdb1 /root/luks.key
# echo "test-crypt /dev/sdb1 /root/luks.key" > /etc/crypttab

(The path and the name of the key file could be anything of your choice but should be matched in every entry).
The "/etc/crypttab" is actually mentioned in the book, page 381, but with some what misleading information. "<directory name w/o slash>" is wrong interpretation, according to the man page.
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on 26 November 2013
On the plus side, the book includes practice exams, and a brief summary of the key skills/tasks expected early on. However, it's very long, can be confusing, contains a lot of superfluous or anecdotal comments and is at times inaccurate (nothing dangerous, but I would advise against using this book as your only point of reference).
If your looking for an introduction to Linux, which will get you through the RHCSA/RHCE qualifications, this is too short. If you are an experienced professional who just needs to fill a few gaps in your knowledge then it's far too long.
I also didn't like the style. It's quite a chatty book, with section headings like "Wow, look at all that software", which some people might like, but I didn't. It's also interspersed with slightly pointless and annoying 'factoids' (LILO hasn't been supported by RedHat for years, for example), and little detail about how each section actually relates to the exam.
The PDF copy is Ok, but it's just PDF - there isn't a HTML, ePub or mobi copy too.
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This book covers all of the material for the Red Hat certified System Admin and Engineer tracks. Jang has done a good job, each section is covered in clear detail and doesn't waffle on too much and is well presented. Chapters start with the boot process and work their way up to system services the most admin/engineers will use and administer in their day to day work. The SA and CE tracks are clearly separated and provide examples that you can follow. As the the certification tests are fully practical it is well worth following these examples in a virtual machine to really get to know the environment. Enjoy working through this and good luck.
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on 13 February 2014
The book is good to practice for the exam and build a small lab, it is quite useful to get experience before the exam. The fact that the chapters are available as pdf is good because you can read things beforehand (bus, train) and then practice when you have time. The instructions sometimes are not quite detailed and can be a bit confusing to read sometimes. Perhaps it is target for beginners, I found the order of things too confusing sometimes. On the other hand, instructions weren't precise enough and, in this particular, actually targeting more experienced users. I haven't tried the last chapters for the RHCE.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 21 August 2013
A essential read to someone that is pursuing the rscsa or rhce certification .
Also even if you do not get the certification there are always good things to learn here .
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on 18 August 2014
Although Michael Jangs book is well known for being the book to buy when doing your RHCE, I found it went over and over and over the same statements like a stuck record.
this book could be half its size (pages wise) if it just stuck to the subject matter and stopped going of on a mission.
I passed my rhcsa and rhce, but I cant say this book helped much. The redhat course books were far more useful.
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on 12 May 2013
I have read through the first 2 chapters of this book to get the baseline system set up and would say it is confusing to say the least. As one reader suggested there is a lot of "rambling" and not actually getting to the point. Not recommended.
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on 24 April 2015
Pretty good book, with lots of worthwhile content.
There are quite a few errors though. Anyone who goes through the book actually doing the exercises will find several mistakes.
However for the money I'd say it's quite good value.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 3 March 2013
You need to read chapters One and Two at the same time to figure out what the lab system 'baseline' starting point is. It would help if there was an appendix that said 'Just build this, you will learn more about what it actually is later'.

Got to Chapter 3 and choked on this bit;
"
ln
Linked files allow users to edit the same file from different directories. When linked
files are devices, they may represent more common names, such as /dev/dvd. Linked
files can be hard or soft.
Hard links include a copy of the file.

As long as the hard link is made within the same partition, the inode numbers are identical.
You could delete a hard-linked file in one directory, and it would still exist in the other directory."

The above is just plain wrong!

A file is an entry in a directory that contains the name, and the inode number of the actual file.
Using the 'ln' command to make a hard link just creates a new entry in a directory pointing to the same inode as the file you are linking to. As each file system has a private set of inode numbers, you cannot hard link from one filesystem to another, but you
can use a symbolic link (-s) to achieve the same effect.

So a link is not just for editing, it is not a 'copy'. A hard link is where an entry in a directory points to the same inode as another entry in some other (or the same) directory, and you cannot have hardlinks from one filesystem to another (nothing to do with partitions!) as inodes are only unique within a file system.
When you delete a file, the actual function in the kernel is 'unlink'. When the number of hard links to a file is down to zero, the file is actually removed.

Looking for alternative source of training materials for RHCE exams...
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