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Windows® Internals: Including Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista, Fifth Edition (Developer Reference) [Hardcover]

Mark Russinovich , David A. Solomon , Alex Ionescu
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)


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Book Description

June 17, 2009 0735625301 978-0735625303 5

See how the core components of the Windows operating system work behind the scenes—guided by a team of internationally renowned internals experts. Fully updated for Windows Server(R) 2008 and Windows Vista(R), this classic guide delivers key architectural insights on system design, debugging, performance, and support—along with hands-on experiments to experience Windows internal behavior firsthand.

Delve inside Windows architecture and internals:

  • Understand how the core system and management mechanisms work—from the object manager to services to the registry
  • Explore internal system data structures using tools like the kernel debugger
  • Grasp the scheduler's priority and CPU placement algorithms
  • Go inside the Windows security model to see how it authorizes access to data
  • Understand how Windows manages physical and virtual memory
  • Tour the Windows networking stack from top to bottom—including APIs, protocol drivers, and network adapter drivers
  • Troubleshoot file-system access problems and system boot problems
  • Learn how to analyze crashes


Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Mark Russinovich is a Technical Fellow in the Windows Azure group at Microsoft. He is coauthor of Windows Sysinternals Administrator’s Reference, co-creator of the Sysinternals tools available from Microsoft TechNet, and coauthor of the Windows Internals book series. David A. Solomon is coauthor of the Windows Internals book series and has taught his Windows internals class to thousands of developers and IT professionals worldwide, including Microsoft staff. He is a regular speaker at Microsoft conferences, including TechNet and PDC. Alex Ionescu is a chief software architect and consultant expert in low-level system software, kernel development, security training, and reverse engineering. He teaches Windows internals course with David Solomon, and is active in the security research community.


Product Details

  • Series: Developer Reference
  • Hardcover: 1232 pages
  • Publisher: Microsoft Press; 5 edition (June 17, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0735625301
  • ISBN-13: 978-0735625303
  • Product Dimensions: 2.3 x 7.4 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #513,702 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
50 of 55 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
Late last week (around 7/2/2009), a small but heavy box showed up at my door. I'd long since forgotten bugging Mark Russinovich last December for a review copy of the latest edition of his Windows internals book: Windows Internals: Including Windows Server 2008 and Windows Vista, 5th edition, co-authored with David A. Solomon and Alex Ionescu, but there it was in my hot little hands. In my odd free moments since then, I've been plowing through this 1,260 page book to see what's new and interesting -- though I obviously haven't had time to read it in its entirety. Keep that caveat in mind as I extoll this book's many treasures.

Here's another caveat: the primary audience for this book is Windows system developers. They're the people who will get the most out of its contents, and my lack of in-depth Windows system programming experience probably explains why my eyes glaze over and my mind goes on vacation as I look at certain sections in the book.

That said, there's a tremendous wealth of information on Windows in here (and from what I can tell, thanks to having recently updated 9 chapters for the upcoming Pearson title "Windows 7 in Depth" it applies nearly 100% to Windows 7 as well as Windows Vista, thanks to relatively little changes in the kernel and other system facilities between these two most recent desktop Windows versions). In particular, these are the topics that I found most interesting and illuminating as I flipped through the book for a first quick pass over its contents (I'll report again from time to time as I dig more deeply into its contents):

Chapter 2 System Architecture: learned a thing or two about device drivers, and how to find them, in this chapter.
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31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Windows architecture July 4, 2009
Format:Hardcover
Windows Internals is one of two "foundation" books that should be on the bookshelf of every sysadmin and win engineer. The other is Windows Server 2008 Inside Out. Between the two you have everything you'll likely want to ever know about the core of Windows.

I have read Stanek and Russinovich's work for years and have the utmost respect for both. As I imagine with most readers, I don't need to know everything about Windows but I do need to know everything possible about certain issues. In this book, this is the kernel, memory management, I/O sub-system (ACPI/PnP) and storage (ntfs).

Clearly Windows Internals is written for system level developers and they'l get the most benefit from this book, but there is a ton of stuff for IT professionals as well. It is not easy reading, you have to know something more about operating systems to understand it.

This book goes into depth, with real world ways you can apply (like practical exercises). I highly recommend this book to developers, sysadmins and win engineers who needs a very indepth analysis of Windows Vista/Windows Server 2008.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gift from the software gods February 19, 2010
Format:Hardcover
The authors have taken an extremely complex subject and cut it up into little bit-size pieces. Laid out, a huge, complex system is there to take in as small chunks of manageable topics.

The authors know their subject, and don't try to impress you with their knowledge. Also, they are unbiased about the topic. No operating system is perfect, but after reading the book, at least you'll know why things don't work properly. (For example, why does the OS hang if you put in a blank DVD?)

There is an awful lot of meat in this book. Some topics you'll want to skip, some you'll want to memorize: but it will put you at the front of the pack, because so much of what you learn is vital to being the best IT professional you can be.

Excellent, just excellent.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Open the hood and get your hands dirty in the engine August 21, 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
You don't have to be a C/C++ developer to enjoy this book, it's for anyone who wants to dig into the guts of Windows. The book provides a guided tour of Windows internals using the Sysinternals tools and other free utilities from Microsoft's web site. If you're worried that this material doesn't apply to Windows 7, don't worry, most of it does, and there are nice videos on the Channel9 page of the MSDN site which go over some of the differences between Vista and 7 to fill the gaps. Importantly, this is a hands-on book with lots of tool walk-throughs to bring the abstract material to life, so start with the topics which interest you the most (security, networking stack, I/O, whatever) and jump around the chapters while sitting at a test computer, you don't have to read it cover to cover like a textbook.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Windows Internals (not just for geeks) September 3, 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I ordered the book on the basis of my admiration of Mark Russ.. brilliance & in his layman speak about matters as intense & technical as an O/S kernel. However, when i received the book I found it just as crisp in its detail, very low key on the techno speak & abundant with detailed easy to understand technical material.

It doesn't leave you googling for explanation on any aspect that it mentions, all the detailed and inter-related topics are simply there.

I found myself reading aspect of the kernel that in reality are of no interest to me, simply read them there because the explanation was crisp, precise and so easy to follow.

Love the book, excellent value for money via Amazon through which I buy all my technical books even though I'm in Sydney - Aust.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Helped
I need a more detailed description of some functionality. As it turns out the project went in a different direction. It was handy.
Published 3 months ago by Rdubbu
5.0 out of 5 stars Must Have
This book covers allot of ground and is very indepth.
It is a Must have for anyone wanting to learn more about Windows internals.
Published 7 months ago by David Ledbetter
5.0 out of 5 stars Mastering Windows Systems Administration
Knowing the various corners of Microsoft Windows can be useful in optimizing and troubleshooting software applications and systems for the platform. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Michael Gautier
5.0 out of 5 stars Great learning tool
Author's Mark Russinovich, David Solomon, Alex ionescu make this a great resource for anyone interested in delving deeper into the operating system. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Roadglide
5.0 out of 5 stars Just what I wanted
Great beginners look at the internal workings of the Windows operating system. Just what I was looking for. I've already e-mailed author.
Published 12 months ago by solo98221
5.0 out of 5 stars Windows Internals Series are very reliable
I really like it and its content is very reliable and accurate. I appreciate the presentation of the work and how it addressed the issue in question.
Published 12 months ago by PABLO ZURITA CACERES
5.0 out of 5 stars Depth off the deep end
If you want to know what makes Windows tick, this reference provides an EXCELLENT nuts and bolts reference for how everything really works under the hood. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Andrew Malcolm
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book!
This is a must have book. This book develops from concepts discussed in Windows Server 2003 to Windows Server 2008. The major changes are the security tokens. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Anupam Kumar
5.0 out of 5 stars Now THIS is a Proper Windows Internals Book
The intro to this book states that it is a direct descendant of Helen Custer's Internals of NT.

If, like me, you bought that book and were disgusted by the light and... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Stephen Mann
5.0 out of 5 stars A phenomenal Windows book, but not for the impatient
I became hooked on the abilities of the System Internals' psexec at an old job, and just knew that I had to know more about the cryptic inner workings of Windows. Read more
Published 22 months ago by Andrey Norin
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Topic From this Discussion
Windows Internals 5th: Amazon release date is here.
According to MS Press - http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/books/12069.aspx - the new release date is May 20. B&N shows the same date.
Feb 4, 2009 by Tim Song |  See all 26 posts
Does this cover Win7?
No. 6th Edition was intended before end of 2009, but apparently they did not manage to do it.
Aug 3, 2010 by Boris Dusek |  See all 3 posts
Difference with "Windows Internals: Book and Online Course Bundle... Be the first to reply
Boeing 787 Be the first to reply
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