Joined: 10 Aug 2002
Location: Portland, Oregon USA
|Posted: Thu Jun 24, 2004 1:11 pm Post subject: Book Review - Configuring And Troubleshooting Windows XP Pro
Configuring And Troubleshooting Windows XP Professional
Author(s): Martin Grasdal, Brian Barber, Chad Todd, Norris L. Johnson, Jr., Robert Shimonski
Publisher: Syngress www.syngress.com
Date Published: 2001
Book Specifications: Softcover w/CD, 776 pages
Publisher's Suggested User Level: Not Rated
Reviewer's Recommended User Level: Intermediate
Suggested Publisher Price: $49.95 US / $77.95 CDN / £34.99 UK
Amazon US website
Amazon UK website
Blurb from back cover:
"When I first saw Windows XP in the early beta versions, I was astonished by the number of additions and improvements that Microsoft had incorporated into it. Windows XP is the most feature-rich and useful desktop operating system yet. Because Windows XP includes so many new and useful features, the prospect of mastering it may appear daunting. However, many will find that using Windows XP will make using a computer more enjoyable, and that mastering XP is more a matter of play, rather than work. To put it simply: XP rocks. I found both myself and the other contributors with whom I worked on this book sharing a common enthusiasm for the product. It is our hope that we also communicate this enthusiasm to you, and that you will find this book informative and enjoyable."
-Martin Grasdal, Technical Editor and Contributor
During the 1980's books covering the topic of maintaining and troubleshooting computer operating systems were few, yet had a shelf expectancy of several years. Today that has changed. Write a book on Windows XP and it becomes outdated within six months. Toss in a Service Pack or two from Microsoft and suddenly the book is no longer useful.
There are those few rare books though which are valuable in learning the basics of a particular Operating System from. This, I believe is one of those books.
This book starts out like so many other books of it's kind, with an introduction to Windows XP. Not only are you instructed about it's newer features and security enhancements, but you also get a feel for all the other major features as well.
After understanding what XP Pro can do, you are then lead into the many issues of installing the OS. You will learn how to perform a clean install, as well as how to upgrade. Or perform a network installation. All the bases are covered by the authors, including how to use Sysprep and automating the setup for a targeted computer. I found this section of the book to be useful and precise.
The chapter covering XP Pro's user interface could have been left out of the book. Most everybody knows the basic features of the Windows OS, and this chapter was not much help to even a beginner reader.
Working with System Tools was a joy to read. I really didn't learn anything new, but did discover a few quicker methods of completing certain tasks.
I believe you will find the meat of the book in Windows XP Networking and Configuring Internet Technologies. The book will give you a very good understanding of the many differing protocols and which is best to use where. The only weak spot in all this was the coverage of wireless technology. Yet that too is understandable, considering that at the time of publication; wi-fi was still a developing infant.
Style and Detail
Excellent job done in laying out the contents of the book. If you read it from front to back as I did, you will discover how it logically flows from issue to issue. The only feature I found to be distracting was the Introductions to each chapter. I feel these could have been left out, or at the very least, placed up front where one could scan them quickly.
At the end of each chapter is a Frequently Asked Questions section which is normally filled with excellent questions and short to-the-point answers. Those who are studying for an MCSE Exam will find these sections extremely useful.
The CD which comes with the book contains an XP CramSession which again, is useful for those studying for their MCSE. However, that's all it comes with. I had hoped to at least see an electronic version of the book on the CD so that one might be able to perform a keyword or phrase search of it's contents.
Although the book itself is outdated, those wishing to become expert in Windows Professional basics would still find this book very useful. Many of the topics discussed in the book continue to be accurate in versions of Windows with SP1. However, with the release of SP2, this book indeed is feeling it's age and will need to be updated. It is this fact alone which has given the book a lower rating than it normally would have got when it was first released.
This book receives an honored SFDC Rating of 6/10.
Security Forums Dot Com
Keywords: Windows XP, Configure, MCSE Exam 70-270, Troubleshoot, XP Pro
This review is copyright 2004 by the author and Security-Forums Dot Com, and may not be reproduced in any form in any media without the express permission of the author, or Security-Forums Dot Com.
Last edited by Tom Bair on Sat Feb 12, 2005 8:11 pm; edited 1 time in total
Joined: 27 May 2002
|Posted: Wed Aug 18, 2004 8:56 pm Post subject:
|The only weak spot in all this was the coverage of wireless technology. Yet that too is understandable, considering that at the time of publication; wi-fi was still a developing infant.
Since the book was published in 2001, most likely written in 2000, wifi was not new since IEEE 802.11b was in full swing with hardware from many SOHO mfg's back in 1999. Wi-Fi predates that time as well as well.
The rest of the review seemed well done, just a difference in opinion on one small point.