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Pro Linux System Administration (Expert's Voice in Open Source) 1st Edition

13 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1430219125
ISBN-10: 1430219122
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

James Turnbull is the author of five technical books about open source software and a longtime member of the open source community. James authored the first and second books about Puppet, and works for Puppet Labs, running client services. James speaks regularly at conferences including OSCON,, FOSDEM, OpenSourceBridge, DevOpsDays and a number of others. He is a past president of Linux Australia, has run and serves on the program committee of and OSCON. James is Australian but currently lives in Portland, Oregon. His interests include cooking, wine, political theory, photojournalism, philosophy, and most recently the Portland Timbers association football team.

Dennis Matotek works as a systems administrator for Hitwise Pty. Ltd. This business relies heavily on open source technology as the backbone for its infrastructure systems. Dennis was the technical reviewer of Pulling Strings with Puppet: Configuration Management Made Easy by James Turnbull (Apress, 2008). Dennis has many years of experience in systems infrastructure management that covers Microsoft products to IBM iSeries, but predominantly Linux.

Peter Lieverdink was born in a small Dutch country town in 1973. He owns a pair of clogs, but has never eaten tulips. On his 22nd birthday, Peter moved to Australia, and after briefly spending time in a office cubicle, he now runs a small business called Creative Contingencies Pty. Ltd. The business depends on open source software for infrastructure and development as well as daily office tasks. Peter specializes in web application development and helping other businesses implement open source solutions using Linux on both desktops and servers.

Product Details

  • Series: Expert's Voice in Open Source
  • Paperback: 1080 pages
  • Publisher: Apress; 1 edition (June 22, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1430219122
  • ISBN-13: 978-1430219125
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 2.1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #648,441 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Konstantin Kondakov on June 26, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I always liked "Apress" books and keep purchasing them side by side with O'Reilly titles. Most "Apress" books and authors give very "in the trenches" and "gotcha" oriented approach, while O'Reilly seems very dry . Well, here we have 1053 page volume that is trying to cover most issues and applications that any Linux sysadmin will come across. Plenty of advise, plenty of "do that", "do not do this" options. However, I gave it only 3 (three) stars - here is why:

1) A lot of "entry level" stuff that takes at least 15%-20% of the book. You just do not call the book "Pro" and show "grep localhost /etc/*" on page 97. All previous pages are written about history of Linux, why you need a Linux server, blah-blah - that can be easily skipped. Just randomly opened a page .. page 358 - how to use "df -h" command and what it does. What a revelation! IMHO, a book called "pro" need to spend a lot of time dealing with nitty -gritty stuff - like building HA systems, integration of Spamassassin+postfix+clamav, integration of SVN+Wiki+Bugzilla+Apache - we have built a similar system here, but I would love to read more from authors who know how to architect a scalable solution for 200+ servers. That would be "Pro"

2) The second drawback is very selective choice of applications at hand. I know that Puppet, for example, is an excellent package and has plenty of features - but would you mention at least Cfengine that been long enough and has a huge installation base?! Give a half of page explaining pros/cons Cfengine vs Puppet - and explain your choice for Puppet (Chapter 19) - yet give people an option to explore Cfengine. Or Chapter 10 gives a verdict to Postfix - "postfix is much easier to understand, configure and troubleshoot" - so no reference to Sendmail!!! OK, I agree with you - but can you give a half-page reference list to Sendmail choices?
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By WM on September 26, 2009
Format: Paperback
I have found this book useful, being a Windows admin who doesn't drop into a Linux terminal session very often. The book contains the usual man pages, "history of Linux", etc. The real reason to purchase it is the included advice and recipes. Every chapter that I have read has a real "I've done this many times" feeling to it. I have yet to find a technical mistake in the information that I have gotten from this book (I can't say that about most websites).

This book is not a complete reference to the most popular utilities or the newest distributions. It falls short of a complete Linux reference due to the fact that the authors seem to only discuss tools that they have personal experience with. This book also won't teach you how to become a top-notch Linux System Administrator. What it will do, is quickly point a non-Linux system administrator in a possible direction when they need to make configuration changes. I have also found that this no-batteries-or-Internet-required reference comes in handy when working on Linux machines in remote locations.

A Windows or Mac system admin may find this book a welcome addition to their technical library. A Linux system admin may want to look elsewhere.
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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful By J. I. Doumet on October 18, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Turnbull, Lieverdink & Matotek should do a public service to PRO Linux Administrators and possibly drop the Pro from their Pro Linux System Administration book. For once I totally agree with all the other reviewers (never mind there are only two) of this book in the fact that this is NOT an advanced server title. That is about the only serious complaint I have since accidentally enough since I am not anywhere close to being a seasonal Linux user, much less a PRO.
Now lets suppose I managed to liquid-paper those three words from the cover: I have got the BEST RH/Ubuntu_LTS beginners administration and setup book available; do mind that before purchasing this title. By the way, those are the only two flavors of Linux Server covered in the book which is very fine to me: One paid one free.
In my case I did my homework while looking to replace my previous Linux books: Red Hat Bible and Amazon's bestselling Linux Server book (titles and authors intentionally incomplete.) I have read both of them AND 80% of this one so far.
What I am surprised about is the fact that I did not know there was a student course in Linux book writing, complete with a very strict TOC and Topic coverage. I have come to believe that ALL THE authors of Linux books, at least those available at my local book store, did attend. If you read most Linux Server books or at least browse through their TOC-even regular Linux flavor titles-they cover THE SAME TOPICS: Firewalls, DHCP/DNS/Apache, Networks, SSH, OpenLDAP, etc. I spent a couple of afternoons flipping through pages of these titles and I was very surprised that the topics were not really similiar; THEY WERE THE SAME. My question at that point was: Is there any difference in the book you buy besides the amount of coverage to each topic?
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though I haven't gone through the entire book i found what i was looking especially stuff on Open VPN and Rsync and other backup tools. This book is a must have for the new system administrators or for those whom Linux is not their forte and for others who need quick brushups and tips.Though not perfect the content is well defined.Its not as advanced as some of the other books out there but it certainly simplifies stuff. So before you bad mouth the book please write a book of your own.Job well done to James Turnbull I certainly will put the book to good use
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