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Wireshark Network Analysis: The Official Wireshark Certified Network Analyst Study Guide [Paperback]

Laura Chappell , Gerald Combs
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 111.58
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Book Description

March 15 2010 1893939995 978-1893939998
Wireshark is rated #2 in the Top 100 Network Security Tools by sectools.org. Wireshark is the world's most popular network analyzer tool. This book is the ultimate resource on Wireshark which is a MUST HAVE tool used by network IT professionals to troubleshoot, secure and optimize networks. Readers learn to capture wired and wireless traffic, focus on the cause of slow web browsing, identify why applications don't run properly across the network, locate the cause of poor VoIP call quality, determine why WLANs are plagued with problems and more. The author, Laura Chappell is the founder of Wireshark University and Chappell University and has been analyzing networks for over 20 years - the book is written in a clear manner with hundreds of screenshots for the visual learner. The foreword was written by Gerald Combs, creator of Wireshark. Wireshark Network Analysis covers the test objectives for the Wireshark Certified Network Analyst Exam and includes test questions and answers for all topics covered. Filled with 45 real-life case studies, Wireshark Network Analysis takes you inside small, medium and large corporations to see how they solved network problems in a more efficient, accurate way using Wireshark. Book supplements are available online at www.wiresharkbook.com.

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Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good resource. Jan. 2 2012
Format:Paperback
This text contains a treasure trove of tips that will show you how to get some of the trickiest bits of information out of Wireshark. It is not always easy to find the exact information you need, but if you persist it will point you to other resources where you can find the information that will really help you learn how to really take advantage of this product.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent overview April 17 2011
By Chris
Format:Paperback
This books is absolutely invaluable to anyone who wants to start using Wireshark quickly and effectively. There are a lot of tutorials on the internet for Wireshark, but I found Laura Chappell's book to be the most comprehensive guide I've ever seen. She gives very clear directions and illustrates with many examples which she's amassed over the years using Wireshark to solve real-life networking problems. There are also many ZIP'd capture files available from her book website

[...]

I am exceedingly happy with this purchase and I can't recommend it enough!
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Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  30 reviews
41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book with material beyond Wireshark April 9 2010
By M. Christodonte II - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I was a little nervous when I started reading this book. Chapter 1 provided an overview of network analysis, but had a lot of "personality." When I read, "Wait...more data is coming in...and more...and...SCREECH!" I wasn't too sure if I was going to finish the book. At over 700 pages, I was hoping that each page contained only "meat and potatoes," without a lot of dry humor and meaningless analogies. Thankfully, a few pages later I began what turned into a great read -- full of solid content.

Wireshark Network Analysis goes well beyond Wireshark functionality. Although the first several chapters outline how to best use Wireshark -- examining the settings, filters, and other configurations -- I think the true value of the book is in the detailed explanations of network traffic analysis. For instance, pg. 304 delves into DNS. This section tells the reader exactly what DNS is used for and provides an analysis of normal and abnormal DNS traffic. It also shows screenshots of the packet, displays and describes its contents. This type of analysis is provided throughout the book and covers all forms of network traffic (including suspect traffic -- my personal favorite).

Page 563 resonated with me, as I'm a firm believer in baselining network traffic. In this section, Wireshark Network Analysis details the importance of baselining and the types of traffic to focus on. Like other sections, this section also provides screenshots and shows how to analyze traffic and packet statistics.

There were minimal grammar errors, and it does seem like the case studies were not tech edited by the book editor -- many of them contained several grammar mistakes. Although, it does appear that the case studies were all submitted by third parties and probably used as-is. Nevertheless, I can provide plenty of other examples as to why Wireshark Network Analysis is a great book. There are plenty of screenshots, review questions with answers on the next page (instead of making the reader turn to the back of the book), and links to tons of packet captures for analyzing on your own. Overall, the book is well-written and, in my opinion, the best network analysis book on the market today.
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best introductory book on Wireshark available today Aug. 5 2010
By Richard Bejtlich - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Wireshark Network Analysis (WNA) is a very practical, thorough, comprehensive introduction to Wireshark, written in an engaging style and produced in a professional manner. WNA provides a variety of methods for teaching network analysis with Wireshark, including description, screen shots, user-supplied case studies, review questions (with answers), "practice what you've learned" sections, and dozens of network traces (available online). Readers who approach the book as more of a class in printed (text) and electronic (trace file) forms will likely understand the higher-than-normal price tag. Anyone trying to learn how to use Wireshark, including basic protocol analysis, will greatly benefit by reading WNA.

WNA will not bore you. Author Laura Chappell offers one of the more lively writing styles you're likely to find in technical books, reminiscent of Michael W. Lucas. The book is expertly organized, starting with multiple chapters explaining Wireshark, followed by sections on common protocols and concluding with other uses and applications. WNA provides plenty of coverage on configuration, customization, and profiles which I have not seen addressed elsewhere.

I've been using Wireshark (previously Ethereal) for at least 10 years, and I still found a few cool tips by reading WNA. These included right click -> Apply As Column, right click -> Filter Field Reference, right click -> Colorize Conversation, Display Filter auto-completion, Display Filter Macros, Mark Packet with ctrl-M, and Ignore Packet with ctrl-X. I also learned that applying a display filter to Tshark (via -R) does NOT change the packets saved to disk -- only those counted or displayed on screen. I liked the chapters on WLAN and VoIP analysis, 26 and 27 respectively.

I only have a few caveats for WNA. First, the book doesn't talk about how to extend Wireshark. It doesn't explain how protocol dissectors work, or how to use the Lua programming language with Wireshark. The chapter on network forensics (ch 30) doesn't saw much about the subject. I would have liked examples of using Rawshark in chapter 33.

I also appreciate that WNA offers an online errata so readers can identify any typos. For example, I expect to see an issue I found with Figure 200 on p 378 to appear soon; basically some of the TCP sequence numbers need to be adjusted. Also on p 452, "Referrer" should be the misspelled but accurate Referer.

I have recommended all my junior analysts read WNA. They will learn a ton about Wireshark, and will also be able to follow Laura's explanations of many common network protocols. We may even pursue the certification tied to the book. Great work Laura!
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Really disappointed Oct. 27 2011
By Mike G. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Frankly, this is one of the biggest disappoints I've purchased in a while.

First, let me say, I have not finished the book yet, so I'll update this later if anything changes...In fact I am writing this review as a warning to anyone thinking of buying this book. Unless you are an absolute beginner, I promise , you will be thoroughly disappointed , especially considering the price tag!!!

My Complaints:
1) The chapters that describe networking are downright careless with the use of the term "packet". As any network engineer worth their weight in salt knows, frame->packet->segment (i.e layer 2 MAC fram, Layer 3 source & dest IP packet, and Layer 4 source & dest Port). This author carelessly jumbles all this up in various places generically calling it a packet. okay, you say, well this is not a intro networking book and the author discloses that and provides good references....well in my opinion, this author should either remove the first few chapters or rewrite them correctly.

2) All of the case studies I have read so far(btw: I heard they were "really good", and are the primary reason I bought the book) are poorly explained...The author explains the symptom, then says they used wireshark to fix the problem. Huh? Well that's just great, what the heck did you do, I want screenshots, and step-by-step details. Otherwise it's just some worthless story.

3)chapters 2-4+ repeatedly reference free online material...like user guide stuff. These chapters talk about stuff like menus and user interface stuff... why is it even in the book if it's free online....Some might think it is necessary, but to me it is just filler.

Currently, I'm on chapter 14...
Sorry, at this point I cannot recommend any good alternatives...I'll keep looking.

Honestly, I've learned more about wireshark looking at free online videos and reading the online documentation.
That's it for now, I'll be back
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hands down the best network analysis book to date. June 13 2010
By Dan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I saw this book in the Tech Ed 2010 book store the day before Laura's session and thought $99 - you've got to be kidding! After seeing her present in her first session, my opinion changed completely and I rushed (along with many other attendees at the session) directly to the bookstore down the hall to grab a copy.

Needless to say the book sold out immediately and I was lucky to have obtained one.

I have been in the Networking industry for close to 20 years, and Laura has the unique ability to make this material understandable and accessible for anyone that has basic network knowledge. Coupled with her sense of humor, it enables one to tackle this esoteric topic and even enjoy it along the way.

This book has enabled me to "fill in the gaps" in my network analysis skill set and I look forward to referring to it for a long time to come.

Great job Laura, I look forward to seeing more material from you in the future!
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Resource April 14 2010
By Parentsof4 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A through knowledge of TCP/IP and a packet-level understanding of network traffic is essential for any Network Administrator or Engineer. If you take your time go and work along with the material in this book, you should be able to troubleshoot difficult and hard to diagnose network issues. No matter what the device is, a firewall, load balancer, server or router, it all comes down to packets on the wire. My only issue is that for $99. I would have expected a hardback or at least color, otherwise this would have easily been 5 stars.
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