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on August 4, 2013
This is a really nice book for those who want to learn a lot of system administration, not only Unix/Linux concepts.
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on May 26, 2005
I agree on the fact that it is a bit outdated, but one must understand that it must be a very tiedous task to update this kind of content. I agree that maybe too many flavours of Unix have been covered. Hopefully, some will be dropped for the next edition (AIX, and TRU64 especially). However, this book is very well written and covers all the basics of sysadmin.
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on March 17, 2004
I use this book more than probably all my other reference materials put together. This book provides information across most UNIX platforms ie Linux,AIX, Solaris, HPUX etc. This is a must have for Sys Admins of all levels.
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on February 7, 2004
Your first book should be "UNIX System Administration Handbook" by Nemeth, Snyder, Seebass, & Hein. I always turn to that book first. I am not sure I would buy Frisch's "Essential System Administration" again. Definitly try to get it used if you do buy it. Looking in this book is often a last resort, and often if I haven't found the answer in my other two books, then it normally isn't in this one either.
It is a big book, much of which I feel is fluff, but if this was your only book on the topic, you would still be ok. The wording just isn't as clear as I'd prefer.
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on September 2, 2003
This book is hard to follow unless you already know about Unix. I think myself as intermediate user at least since I am using Unix since in engineering school. This book is still not quite easy to follow sometimes.
On page 80 (about find): "The specified permission mode is XORED with the file's permission setting" I do not know what the author means (I don't know if it is error. ). It seems to me her presentation is more hard to understand (I am foreigner and it makes more difficult to me!) This is just one example. There are many examples which is not clear (My feeling is the author does not think very carefully when she wrote or how to present the materials better). If you already know the stuffs, you will be fine. If not, then you spend ton of times to figure out what the auther really means.
So if I a file permission 777
find / -perm -777
So 777 XORed 777, I got 000. (The author said the specified permission mode is XORED with the file's permission setting). I don't follow what she means.
Unfortunately, there are not many choice for Unix books. Either I have to dig very deep into the Unix OS which I don't have time to do it right now (I mean to learn the Unix OS from the C structure and implementations)
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on May 10, 2003
This book is generalized, but in a good way (for once). Instead of a lot of fluff and only touching a little bit on various software and how to do the most basic stripped down installs of things that have little to do with Unix, other than it can "run" on a Unix system, it actually covers a lot of ground. It covers a lot of topics and aspects, like it should be expected. There's parts that could be improved and it's biased towards some platforms over others, but for general knowledge and insight, it can offer a lot.
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on January 23, 2003
This book should be called Indispensable and Complete System Administration. Ok, that's an exaggeration, but not by much. No book will ever be the complete book on Unix or Linux admin, but this one has so much material in it, it will be quite some time before I start looking for material not in the book. Every aspect of System Administration is covered in this book. The material goes into details as necessary, but the author does a good job of not getting bogged down in the details or overwhelming the reader with irrelevant or arcane knowledge that only a handful of people will use. What you will find is broad and thorough coverage of the material in an accessible, easy to read style.
One of the things I appreciate most about this book is the organization. Rather than listing out a bunch of technical information, each chapter deals with a specific task that a sysadmin needs to be able to do, and the information to carry out that task is contained within the chapter, rather than making references to other chapters or appendices, as is common practice.
This is another book that delivers the excellence I've come to expect from O'Reilly.
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on October 3, 2002
From the MOTD to kernel configuration, it's covered. No this book will not replace a bookshelf full of other references (and on my shelf they're mainly other O'Reillys), but if you have to carry only one book with you and operate in a heterogenous *nix environment, then this should be it. I've also owned copies of the first and second edition, and in my opinion the third edition warranted purchase.
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on September 13, 2002
Well, it was a long wait, but the new third edition is great. Covers a couple of Linux distro's, FreeBSD, and your standard Unix platforms. More complete coverage of networking and security. More readable than the previous edition. Good for anyone with minimal Unix experience or those who have worked with it for years.
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