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Red Hat Linux Network Toolkit Paperback – Mar 1 2000


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Amazon.com: 11 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Excellent resource for creating a home/small office network April 15 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
If you are planning to put together a small network (home or office) connected to the internet through a Linux box, then this book is perfect!
The key points of setting up a network, DNS, file sharing, email, firewall, backups etc. are all explained and often have supporting scripts or files provided on the CDs. If you are using any flavor of Linux, this book is good. If you are using Redhat (a version is included on a CD with the book), then it is excellent (Redhat has a few file structure differences that are clearly addressed).
The book is organized well too. The first 3 chapters step through installing Linux, connecting a Windows PC and troubleshooting in a way that you are virtually guaranteed to have a network running without fail. It is very cool to have accomplished setting up a network within such a short time. The remainder of the book goes into more detail of various aspects of network/Linux services in order to expand upon the basic network that was built. By the end of the book, I had a fully functional network with all the services I could use. This book was an excellent investment!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Security problem on accompanying CD June 11 2000
By Hans Cathcart - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I noticed that on the 2nd CD that is included with this book there is a script called: "make_firewall.sh" If you execute this script, it will start to "rpm -e" (yes that's erase) all the RPMs listed in an accompanying file called "rpms_to_remove". Nowhere on the CD does it tell you that this script will do this. I suspect it was placed there in error. BE CAREFUL!
Otherwise I find this book pretty good for a beginning understanding of Linux networking.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
One More Thought On The Security Scripts Aug. 6 2000
By Robert L. Cochran - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My earlier review should have mentioned Hans Cathcart's comments about scripts which remove installed products. He thinks the script was added to the CD in error. If you check the book carefully you will find a discussion of why some installed packages should be removed. Chapter 12 starting at about page 386 discusses removal of unnecessary software on a *firewall computer*. Mr. Sery is talking in the context of a standalone firewall machine, not your personal work machine. It's important to understand this distinction and to read Chapter 12 before you run any of his scripts from the CDs. You would not want to run these security scripts on your *personal* machine.
Of course Mr. Sery is overlooking a small fact -- most home users don't have the money or knowhow to set up a standalone firewall computer, quite separate from their personal work machines.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Pretty Good Book, Some Script Errors. Aug. 5 2000
By Robert L. Cochran - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this book helpful when setting up my Red Hat 6.2 distrubution for home network connectivity. I really wanted guidance for topics such as DNS, IPCHAINS and IP-Masquerading. The book touches on these topics but not in exhaustive detail. Instead it relies on a number of scripts supplied in companion CD's to provide the user with 'canned' solutions to the problem of easy setup of DNS, IPCHAINS and masquerading. The reader is urged to just install and run the supplied scripts. Be sure to carefully read the book's comments on the scripts as part of your personal learning and checking process. Don't just run the script blindly.
I made use of a number of the scripts that came on the CD. Being a professional programmer, though, I automatically distrusted them, so I was careful to preserve any scripts already installed on my system by copying them to backup files. Then I reviewed the scripts supplied by Mr. Sery. There are some errors in his scripts for DNS. I believe (without proof) that some of the named scripts supplied are actually for BIND-4 not BIND-8. You cannot have comments in some of the named scripts. They did need changing for my particular system in order to run without error. I heavily modified and tested Mr. Sery's scripts (with the help of 2 other books!) before being satisfied with them. Part of my testing included checks of /var/log/messages to see if named was complaining about the scripts. His scripts, in much changes form, are what I have been running very satisfactorily for about 2 months now.
Mr. Sery has a web site containing errata for this book. I suggest checking the errata before implementing his scripts or any of the examples in the book. I emailed my comments on this book to Mr. Sery some time ago, and he did not reply. This is unusual, most book authors will gladly respond to *polite*, *professional* queries from buyers of their books.
Large portions of the book are devoted to dull stuff such as installing a Red Hat distribution and backup considerations, rather than networking itself. You can find installation advice from other sources. (I admit installing Red Hat Linux is a very tough job to do.) Also please note that the book focuses on Red Hat 6.1. At this time Red Hat 6.2 is the most recent release.
If you have an Offical Red Hat product installed that you are currently entitled to support for from Red Hat, be careful what you install from Mr. Sery's Publisher's Edition of Red Hat Linux. You may not be able to get support for Publisher's Edition packages.
Good points about the book -- it walks the user through networking setup. This is what made the book worth buying for me. This book is like a very small scale Rand McNally road map to networking. I had to get detail stuff from other sources (the detail stuff being equivalent a U. S. Geological Survey map). There are a lot of diagrams and some screen shots. The supplied scripts are valuable guides for proper coding of arcane stuff but contain errors you will have to debug. The book Red Hat Linux 6 Unleashed by Pitts et al actually has a more useful discussion of coding named scripts (even though I severely criticized this book in a separate review.)
If you have a home network containing one Linux machine that you would like to connect to Windows machines, do get this book plus the O'Reilly book Using Samba. Read the Samba book first and closely follow its advice. (But remember Windows 2000 has been released and Milennium Edition is around the corner, and the two may outdate the Samba book fast.) If you have a bunch of Linux boxes you want to network, do get this book but expect to need other books as well.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Good format but riddled with errors May 31 2001
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I agree with the reviewer that stated that this book was poorly proofed - if at all. The format of the book is very good, but it is so riddled with errors that you end up going in circles trying to figure out what the author is trying to tell you to do. I ended up using this book as my primary source for getting my Samba network up and running, but only because I couldn't find a better reference. I hope that a revised edition will be coming out for Red Hat Linux 7.0/7.1, and I hope that the myriad errors in the current edition will be addressed.


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