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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent introduction
This book provides an excellent introduction to the complex subject of computer networking. The writer moves effortlessly from the most basic concepts (what is a network?) through to routing, switching, the different networking protocols and on to frame relays and basic security. The writing style is concise and entertaining and avoids being dry and overly technical...
Published on 13 Oct. 2004 by JohnA

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I found it long winded
If you like the "for Dummies" books, you might like this. It doesn't get to the point and give facts hard and fast as I would like, but beats around the bush using old philosophies like the three blind men trying to describe an elephant "one grabs the tail and says an elephant is like a rope". If I wanted to read something like that, I'd pick up religious...
Published 13 months ago by Mr Stern


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent introduction, 13 Oct. 2004
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JohnA (Birmingham, West Midlands United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This book provides an excellent introduction to the complex subject of computer networking. The writer moves effortlessly from the most basic concepts (what is a network?) through to routing, switching, the different networking protocols and on to frame relays and basic security. The writing style is concise and entertaining and avoids being dry and overly technical. Anyone who has read this book will be equipped with a firm understanding of networking fundamentals and be ready to move on to more specialised areas. This should be a standard text both for IT students and new IT professionals. Even those who have been in the business for a few years but need to brush up on their networking basics will benefit.
This book is from Cisco Press's new 'First Steps' series which also includes:
Network Security First-Step, LAN Switching First-Step, Wireless Networks First-Step, Routing First-Step, and TCP/IP First-Step.
I would be interested to find out if the other books in the series are of the same, very high standard.
Thoroughly recommended.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars outstanding intro, 17 Jan. 2006
This is an absolutely outstanding book for an introduction to computer networking. It is a perfect self-study tool, with self-tests (answers provided). The author's style is very friendly and casual, without being condescending. The book also anticipates many of the questions you are likely to be asking yourself at any point, and there is no unreasonable cisco product advertising.
A very good work to get started in networking. Afterwards you can follow with the other books in the First-step series, or Tanenbaum "Computer Networks".
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gentle but effective introduction, 4 Feb. 2008
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ReviewMan "Large" (London) - See all my reviews
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An excellent book which has clearly been written by a person who is highly skilled in the art of communication. You will learn far more than one would expect to learn from an introductory book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Foundation Book, 21 Aug. 2007
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R. Whiting "RobW" (North Wales, UK) - See all my reviews
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Wendell Odom is a highly respected author of Cisco training material, with Computer Networking First Steps Odom lays the foundations for future study and understanding of networking. After reading this you will have a much better understanding of the fundamental principles involved. Highly Reccomended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Computer Networking First Step - brilliant, 19 April 2009
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P. Cairns (Edinburgh, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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I am an IT project manager who had a very patchy knowledge of networking. For my new project I realised I needed a solid basis of networking knowledge so that I would at least understand enough of what our Comms people are talking about to enable me to ask pertinent questions. Not only does this book provide the basic info I needed but it is written in a familiar, entertaining way, making it an astonishingly easy read. It is clear that the author is not so much concerned with imparting his knowledge but more concerned with helping someone in my position to understand and learn - which I reckon is a vitally important difference. If he had just wanted to impart his knowledge, he could have done that in a book a quarter the size of this one, or less. He has taken the trouble to to write it in a way that really helped my understanding and learning process, and made me actually want to keep reading on. Brilliant !!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I found it long winded, 17 Jun. 2014
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If you like the "for Dummies" books, you might like this. It doesn't get to the point and give facts hard and fast as I would like, but beats around the bush using old philosophies like the three blind men trying to describe an elephant "one grabs the tail and says an elephant is like a rope". If I wanted to read something like that, I'd pick up religious texts, philosophy or some abstract novel. It gets a bit odd too, with chapers like "can you eat a T-rex"... I thought it was terminology, but no, just another metaphor. To be honest, I got fed up of it, ans stopped reading half way through. But it's more about helping you to decide what part of the industry you want to enter, and how to communicate with people doing different jobs on the network.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 3 Stars But Still Worth The Read, 30 Dec. 2008
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It was okay. A little heavy on the metaphors and humour in several places - I didn't want to waste too much time being distracted by anecdotes and slightly inacurrate metaphors for want of learning about networks. The content covered was terrific and even though this is a "first-step" book I probably would have liked an additional paragraph or two on some particular topics whereby they were covered in more depth. There were a small number of topics covered that weren't explained as clearly as I would have liked, i.e. subnets. The diagrams were a bit dated as was some of the content - bringing it up to date (i.e. to 2008) would have been preferred. All up though it wasn't bad but could do with some improvement in the noted areas.
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