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Linux Administration: A Beginner's Guide, Fifth Edition [Paperback]

Wale Soyinka
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)

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Linux Administration: A Beginners Guide, Sixth Edition Linux Administration: A Beginners Guide, Sixth Edition 4.2 out of 5 stars (22)
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Book Description

September 23, 2008 0071545883 978-0071545884 5
Administer Any Linux Distribution with Ease

Fully updated for the most current Linux distributions, Linux Administration: A Beginner's Guide, Fifth Edition, shows you how to set up, maintain, and troubleshoot Linux on a single server or an entire network. Get full details on granting user rights and permissions, configuring software and hardware, providing Internet and intranet services, and customizing Linux kernel 2.6. You'll also learn how to get your network services IPv6 ready, implement sound security, create foolproof system backups, and use the latest virtualization technologies. Real-world, hands-on examples are included throughout.

  • Install and configure popular Linux distributions, including Fedora 9, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, OpenSuSE, and Ubuntu
  • Manage users, permissions, files, folders, and applications
  • Administer Linux servers from the GUI or from the command line (shell)
  • Understand and manage file systems in Linux
  • Compile, tune, and customize Linux kernel 2.6
  • Build robust firewalls and routers using netfilter and Linux
  • Manage the Linux TCP/IP networking stack and services for both IPv4 and IPv6
  • Build and deploy Web, e-mail, and FTP servers
  • Use NIS, NFS, LDAP, and Samba for resource sharing and identity management
  • Set up and administer print, DNS, POP3, IMAP3, and DHCP servers
  • Implement Linux virtualization technologies, including the native KVM platform

Editorial Reviews Review

Administering a Linux system isn't much like administering a Windows machine. Though the goals are similar and comparable problems arise under both environments, they each require administrators to adopt a certain way of thinking about processes and data. Linux Administration: A Beginner's Guide helps readers adapt their Windows experience to Linux work. Author Steve Shah does a great job of clueing Linux newcomers into the environment. His explanations are clear, patient, accurate, and useful, and they cover all aspects of the system administrator's job. He's careful to explain hundreds of commands in a logical way, including lists of options and examples of typical uses in many cases.

But this is no mere command reference or novice's introduction. Shah doesn't shy away from explaining the really interesting aspects of Linux administration, including kernel compilation, Domain Name Service (DNS) configuration, sendmail setup, and establishing firewall protection with IP chaining. For all of these subjects (and many more), this book includes clear statements of what concepts are relevant, which commands to issue, and what to expect in response. It's a great help in self-guided explorations. It's also worth having this book on hand for work assignments--you'll find complete recipes for configuring all major Internet and local area network (LAN) services that also take into account easy maintenance and security. --David Wall

Topics covered: Administering Linux 2.2.x (particularly Red Hat, Caldera, and SuSE distributions). Installation, initial configuration, using the bash command shell, managing files, managing software, and granting rights to users. DNS, FTP, Apache, sendmail, Samba, and other services receive lots of attention. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"A delight to read. I think this book is well-written enough in explaining what is behind much of Linux." -- Harvey Friedman, Linux Journal --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Series: Beginner's Guide
  • Paperback: 662 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media; 5 edition (September 23, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071545883
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071545884
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1.3 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #514,842 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
48 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars is just what it says June 11, 2000
By A Customer
If you are familiar with Linux or Unix and want to start into some network services, this book is a solid introduction. As the title says, this book is for beginner's, but the author doesn't assume that means weenie. He has done a nice job of selecting basic tasks, and for each one lays out the commands, file locations, and basic configurations for the files. Other books either relied on GUI utilities, or used twice as many pages going into too much detail on some sections and not enough on others. This book is just what it says, a beginner's guide to help you get started with Linux servers and/or integrating Linux into an existing NT network.
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32 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Linux Systems Admining Text February 14, 2000
Definitely an excellent book to start with. While it is possible to get books which are exhaustive on a given subject (i.e. DNS and Bind by O'Reilly), this book provides a great deal of coverage on everything. I fully intend to use it as a reference.
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34 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete and easy to understand info for the new admin February 6, 2000
I have other Linux books and I found this book seemed to have the correct mix of overview and detail for the new admin. Other books with much detail would be a great second book but to get started this is the book.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, couldn't put it down! January 17, 2001
By A Customer
As a web developer, I decided to pick up this book along with O'Reilly's Running Linux to get at least a basic understanding of different conecpts, issues, concerns, etc. that anyone wanting to create a good web site (and a secure one) should be familiar with.
Between the two, I have found this book far more helpful, as it discusses the basics of Linux (to me important) as well as administration concerns, security issues, and principles that every SysAdmin should understand and follow.
It flows well, the writer's style is great and I read the entire thing over a course of 4 days. After reading it and doing additional research on the net, I realize that Steve has covered about 80% of what most authors are writing about when it comes to securing a single server.
The book starts easy and gets quite in-depth, so if you are a rookie (like myself) you should at least have aptitude for computers or a strong will to learn. If that is the case, this is a great reference book which I will no doubt continue to use as I explore Linux further.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Converting from NT to Linux? This is your book April 6, 2001
This book is a very solid introduction for those who know their way around computers and operating systems in general. It's good to find books that don't treat the user like complete weenies or books that go so techincally deep but speak of very little...
This book as a lot of analogies between the Linux and NT world, including some pretty nice network blueprints showing how a NT network would be server-wise, compared to a Linux network.
Overall this was a great intro level book. My highest recommendations to everyone.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great guide! January 23, 2009
As Wale Soyinka claims at the beginning, Linux Administration: A Beginner's Guide, Fifth Edition; is a book for beginners, not for "dummies." He assumes you know most of the basic terms and concepts needed to run a modest Windows network. This book explains the "why" for many of the facets in running a Linux server, to further complete your knowledge of your system and to understand the options available to you when setting up and tweaking your server to suit your needs.

It covers so many topics that it understandably doesn't go into a lot of detail on some of them. But then again, this is not an expert's guide. It will, however, help you get pretty familiar with the tools you'll need and even provides background information about how certain programs evolved. The content was kept fresh by the author adding gems of humor and making the text read a lot less like a math book than I expected.

There are plenty of command line examples strewn throughout the book, and human-readable explanations of each option you have available to you. Because sometimes, Linux's man page documentation is too cryptic for those not intimately familiar with an application. This adds to the book's value as a reference manual for when you can't remember everything you read.

This book filled in a lot of the holes in my education concerning Linux and administration in general. A good investment for anyone looking to start their own solid Linux server, or a reference book for the more seasoned admin. From reading this book, I feel much more confident in my admin-abilities and have solid ground to reach higher levels of Linux administration. All of which of course, adds to my value as an employee!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great introduction to administering Linux November 2, 2000
I've quite a few books on Linux, and this is one of the best. A lot of the books I have either think you're a Linux guru, or that you have no concept of computers. I have many years of experience with administering NT servers so I know the concepts, but lack the know how of getting it done in Linux.
This book is perfect for people like me. I'd recomend it to anyone. Well done!
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
I am a senior engineer for network security operations, and fairly new to Linux. I bought this 2nd edition of LA:ABG to gain familiarity with installing, configuring, and optimizing Red Hat Linux 7, specifically. Steve has written THE book for beginning Linux system administrators, and I heartily recommend it.
LA:ABG never wavers from its primary goal: to give new sys admins the knowledge to build and maintain Linux services. The novelty of this "beginner's guide" is Steve's belief that "beginner" does not equal "GUI." Steve explains each service using its command line interface, since that may be the only available interface in an emergency. He also explains how to compile each software package from source, useful when one needs to upgrade or replace applications.
I was surprised by the number of helpful commands and options packed into this 2nd edition. Even when I knew a command, Steve added a new twist; use ps -auxww vice ps -aux for process listings, or netstat -natup vice netstat -a for active sockets. I repeatedly wondered if Steve hadn't read my mind before writing LA:ABG, since most questions were answered seconds after I formed them. Steve also explains new aspects of the 2.4 kernel and Red Hat 7 (xinetd, iptables, etc.) that other so-called "Red Hat 7" books neglect.
On the down side, the book had a few typos, and pages 527-8 seem to misinterpret TCPDump output. I would have liked more information on SSH, too. Be aware that the book is Red Hat-oriented, since it contains a "publisher's edition" of RH 7. Workarounds for other distros are given, and Steve even criticizes certain aspects of Red Hat's file structure!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
This book is really interesting and helps you to learn a lot from Linux. a good value. I recommend it
Published 14 months ago by reviewer
4.0 out of 5 stars good intro guide to linux
I knew more from on the job then the book had, but there was still some interesting points of reference
Published 14 months ago by vuhx
5.0 out of 5 stars The title says it all, this is a great book to learn basic Linux...
A well organized book that covers the topic advertised nicely. Glad I got this title. The title says it all, this is a great book to learn basic Linux administration!
Published 18 months ago by Cycleguy
5.0 out of 5 stars Great start for labs
I use the labs and it is good and I use the reference stuff to work on labs for System Administration
Published 20 months ago by Susana Wong
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow
Great Author!! Great Book !!

Buy it !! You'll become a good Linux admin, this is your the beginning of the way to become Pro.
Published on May 4, 2012 by Khalid
1.0 out of 5 stars Kindle edition is worthless
The kindle edition of this book is worthless, some of the numbered steps have part of the number cut off(on my Kindle Fire all of it is cut off in somecases) in addition the lack... Read more
Published on March 19, 2012 by Mitch Patterson
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book especially for the beginners.
Excellent book especially for the beginners (or even intermediate level admins). Linux contains so many topics to cover. This book is very well written. Read more
Published on February 22, 2012 by Pen Name
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent for the novice Linux user
This book was assigned for a course I took. It is perfect for both the new and slightly experienced Linux user.

Why I say user? Read more
Published on January 25, 2012 by Marc Mest
5.0 out of 5 stars book is perfect
I am a college student and the bookstore at my college did not have this book.. thank you so much for this book and sorry for the late feedback, I thought my mother said she took... Read more
Published on January 23, 2012 by John Gradberg
3.0 out of 5 stars Kinda Dissapointing
I thought about giving this book 2 stars, but decided on 3. It isn't a bad book, which 2 stars would indicate. Read more
Published on December 26, 2011 by stefer
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