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Automating Linux and Unix System Administration (Expert's Voice in Linux) Paperback


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Automating Linux and Unix System Administration (Expert's Voice in Linux) + Learning CFEngine 3: Automated system administration for sites of any size
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Product Details

  • Series: Expert's Voice in Linux
  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Apress; 2 edition (December 16, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1430210591
  • ISBN-13: 978-1430210597
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 7 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #313,476 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

From the reviews:

"While automating a system is the dream of all sysadmins, there is such a thing as too much automation. Thankfully, this book recognises it. It covers just everything a sysadmin needs to know … . If you’re a sysadmin – get this book, you won’t be sorry. Highly recommended." (Paul F. Johnson, CVU/ ACCU/ Reviews, February, 2004)

About the Author

Nathan Campi is a UNIX and Linux system administrator by trade, working as a UNIX operations manager in San Francisco. His system administration experience is almost entirely with companies with large-scale web operations based on open source software. In his copious free time, he enjoys jogging, watching spaghetti westerns, experimenting with Linux systems, and spending time with his family.

Kirk Bauer has been involved in computer programming since 1985. He has been using and administering UNIX systems since 1994. Although his personal favorite UNIX variant is Linux, he has administered and developed on everything from FreeBSD to Solaris, AIX, and HP-UX. He is the author of various open source solutions, such as Logwatch. Kirk has been involved with software development and system/network administration since his first year at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He has done work for the Georgia Tech Research Institute, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and DHL. In 2000, Kirk was one of the founders and the chief technology officer of TogetherWeb, which was purchased in 2003 by Proficient Systems. Kirk is now a systems engineer with F5 Networks.

Kirk graduated from Georgia Tech in 2001 with a bachelor's degree in computer engineering and is pursued his master's in business administration at Arizona State University. He lives in Peoria, Arizona with his two dogs, and his lovely wife, Rachel.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Gordon Ewasiuk on January 3, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book expecting it would describe and demonstrate a variety of automation methods and tools. The book surprised me -- pleasantly. The majority of the book focuses on CFEngine ([...]) and how to use it to manage server configurations, deliver applications automatically to those servers, and enforce a consist policy across the servers.

The book goes into some depth demonstrating how cfengine works. It has chapters on configuration, setting up a production environment, setting up automated installations, and delivering applications using cfengine.

There are smaller chapters on SSH, Nagios (and using CFengine to deliver it), and improving server security using cfengine.

The book is about 400 pages and is packed with content. There are interesting facts and config bits in every chapter.

With the exception of the cfengine manuals, there are no other books on the market today which provide a detailed, comprehensive look at cfengine...until now. If you are using, will use, or have questions about what CFengine can do, get this book. I'm happy I did.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Joseph Topjian on January 30, 2009
Format: Paperback
Repetitive tasks not only waste time, but each repitition is prone to error. Automation is the solution to repetition and any serious System Administrator will tell you that automation is a cornerstone of the profession. Automating Linux and UNIX System Administration is a great guide to building this cornerstone.

This book covers a wide variety of topics including: simple shell scripting, remote management with SSH, automated installations, monitoring, and configuration management. The majority of the items are explained with using CFEngine in mind -- so much so that I feel this book should probably advertise its heavy use of CFEngine somewhere in the title or at least on the cover. If you don't use CFEngine and have no plans to do so, a lot of this book becomes irrelevant. However, CFEngine is a popular, robust management system and is worth getting to know.

If you're still managing servers by hand, it's probably time to start thinking about automation. Automating Linux and UNIX System Administration is a solid book that will set you on the right track.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Konstantin Kondakov on June 26, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a CFengine evangelist I find this book very useful to brush up my automation skills, Cfengine peculiarities and even such obscure features as modules and methods in Cfengine. THe only drawback of this book that it needs better visualization - a Cfengine and automation is a complex concept, so few more diagrams would be very helpful. The Cfengine portal ([...]) already has this book present!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. I. Asenjo on December 12, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Having the authors guide you through the process of configuring automated installations and configuration of servers is priceless.

This book is a must for any linux/unix sysadmin out there. I hope there is a 3rd edition with the new Cfengine 3 soon!

This book is not for the beginning linux/unix admin, though. You should have a thorough knowledge of the systems already. Once you have that, using the methods in this book will save you and your bosses countless hours of managing your servers.

I would like to thank the authors for a brilliant piece of work.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Mates on February 8, 2009
Format: Paperback
The book fulfills the promise of showing how to setup and manage a properly automated fleet of Debian, RedHat Linux, and Solaris systems. It touches on all the essential points of doing so, from bootstrapping the initial install systems to configuring essential services such as NTP and Nagios. I believe the text is stronger for not considering (the many!) alternative configuration management and monitoring tools available, and not going into detail on LDAP and Kerberos, as these topics are covered elsewhere, and would make this book loose focus.

Inexperienced systems administrators will benefit from the coverage of need-to-know utilities, such as sudo and SSH, along with the appendix of useful Unix tools, as well as learning how to properly setup a site from scratch. As an experienced sysadmin, I enjoyed the book, picking up a variety of good shell tips, and an excellent way of organizing cfengine configuration files.
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