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Group Policy: Fundamentals, Security, and the Managed Desktop 1st Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0470581858
ISBN-10: 0470581859
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Manage Every Machine in Your Windows 7, XP, Vista, Server 2003, Server 2008, or Server 2008 R2 Enterprise

Fully updated for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2, Group Policy: Fundamentals, Security, and the Managed Desktop gets you up to speed on the latest Group Policy settings and more. Microsoft Group Policy MVP Jeremy Moskowitz teaches you the major categories of Group Policy, essential troubleshooting techniques, and how to manage your Windows desktops. You'll find full coverage of the updated Group Policy Management Console (GPMC), updated security techniques using Group Policy, and advanced solutions to tough desktop management problems.

Inside this book, you'll learn to:

  • Master all Group Policy functions of Windows, including Windows XP through Windows 7 and Windows Server 2003 through Windows Server 2008 R2

  • Enhance your Group Policy reach with the Group Policy Preferences, ADMX files, and additional add-ons

  • Explore every feature of the GPMC to master your administration effectively

  • Troubleshoot Group Policy using tools, logs, Resource Kit utilities, registry hacks, and third-party tools

  • Manage printers, instantly recover files, and configure Internet Explorer

  • Deploy software to your desktops, set up roaming profiles, and configure Offline Files for all your Windows clients-and manage it all with Group Policy settings

  • Secure your desktops and servers with AppLocker, security templates, and the Security Configuration Wizard

Download bonus chapters to:

  • Script complex GPMC operations with PowerShell, including linking, backup, restore, permissions changes, and more

  • Perform a full lockdown with Windows SteadyState

  • Create a "change management" system with Advanced Group Policy Management (AGPM)

About the Author

Jeremy Moskowitz (Philadelphia, PA), Group Policy MVP, is the Chief Propeller-Head for Moskowitz, Inc. and GPanswers.com. He is a nationally recognized authority on Windows Server, Active Directory, Group Policy, and other Windows management topics. He is one of less than a dozen Microsoft MVPs in Group Policy. He runs the GPanswers.com, ranked by ComputerWorld as a "Top 20 Resource for Microsoft IT Professionals." Jeremy frequently contributes to Microsoft TechNet Magazine, Windows IT Pro magazine and REDMOND magazine. Jeremy is a sought-after speaker at many industry conferences and, in his training workshops, helps thousands of administrators every year do more with Group Policy. Contact Jeremy by visiting GPanswers.com.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 936 pages
  • Publisher: Sybex; 1 edition (May 3, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470581859
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470581858
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1.7 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,098,321 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Aaron Chenoweth on June 24, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What can I say...If you want to learn about Group Policy and how it works, especially on the new Windows 7 and Server 2008 R2 - this is the book for you.
First the bad: You're going to need to setup a few computers to go along with this book. They can be old PC's from your office , virtual computers on a Server or virtual computers on the Internet. They will give you info on how to do this in the book.

Why these computers? Because you're going to be following along in the book and applying everything you learn to these computers. You will set new policies and then test them on the different operating systems and users from this network of computers you created. So now you see in real time how Group Policy actually works and what it does. To me that's what makes this book so great; your applying everything you learn right away to a real computer network. So now you can see these changes actually take place which not only helps me remember what different settings do but now I better understand why and how it works.

I enjoyed Jeremy Moskowitz writing style which provided humor at times but also explained in plain English subjects of Group Policy I just never understood properly until I read this book.
In the end you will learn everything from the basics to the most advanced settings. Plus there are plenty of web links and references to other material in the book, so you will have plenty to go on after your done with this book and may want more advanced learning.
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I've struggled with getting started with this book. The recommended lab is fairly complex to set up to be prepared to run through the examples, requiring several machines. You're best off if you've got an MSDN or Technet subscription and access to a powerful workstation or server that can run several virtual machines at the same time, if you want to actually run through the labs.

The start of the book tries to dump a lot of complex information quickly in a style that is very atypical for technical textbooks. The author's examples are entertaining but can be challenging to tie into the intended take-away. Sometimes the author's asides, analogies, quips and banter can be distracting from understanding the point. This could just be a challenge in that his writing in enjoyable enough you forget you're trying to learn about Group Policy, not about the particular sidebar the author is on about.

Finally, the chapter one examples naming conventions in the charts and figures do not match the naming conventions used in the text - requiring you to spend extra time thinking about which server the text is referring to compared to what the server is labeled in the chart. In particular, the domain is labeled corp.com and widgets.corp.com in the graphic, and referred to as example.com and widgets.example.com in the text. Likewise the corp.com DCs are COPRDC1 and CORPDC2 in the image - but EXAMPLEDC1 and EXAMPLEDC2 in the text. There are numerous other examples like this. In the introductory chapters where you're trying to understand some complex foundation concepts, having to work through this is distracting.

This refers to the paberback 6th edition of this book.
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This is the Bible of Group Policy as far as I am concerned. A must read. A good reference to go back to.

1. Great information.
2. Great Examples you can follow as you read.
3. Good tips on gotchas and covers multiple versions of Windows.
4. Kindle form made it easy to take with me and read.
5. Extra chapters were good.

Some of the not so goods:

1. I got it in Kindle format, and the diagrams and graphics sucked! I could not get a lot of them to show up very good no matter how I formatted it on the screen.
2. You would think book marks would help going back, but I found it better if I copied the bookmarks to my One Note and then kept them there.
3. Extra chapters as I said were good, but I was a bit exhausted from reading it, and I will have to go back and read again.
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This book is a solid reference and an easy and (almost) enjoyable read. The author makes a good effort write in an interesting and fun way, which is a good accomplishment for what is a fairly dry and deeply technical subject. The content is strong to with up to date, useful information on current OS's. By keeping the information pragmatic you have a very useful reference book, on a subject that is still mysterious for many administrators.
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Moskowitz is very knowledgeable and writes well enough, though maybe at times too clever by half. But note that about a third of the way through the book, starting in Ch.6, he begins to advocate for his own company's software, "PolicyPak", which is of course free in a very limited version and not-so-free for real-world use. Having never heard of PolicyPak I found this disconcerting. I ordered a book about administration of networks using Microsoft tools. I didn't realize I was paying - in part, at least - for a sales pitch.

That aside, there is much to learn here. In spite of my annoyance with the included advertisement I can recommend the book as long as you buy it used. Even if you're very experienced you're likely to find some good ideas here.
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