Book Reviews

Find Networking Answers Fast

This book takes the best of a dozen Sybex books on networking with Windows NT, Novell, Netware, and Unix.

Networking Complete is a compilation from more than a dozen networking titles published by Sybex, including Network+ Study Guide, MCSE: Networking Essentials Study Guide, Mastering Netware 5, and Mastering Local Area Networks, with excerpts from a bevy of well-known contributors, such as Mark Minasi, James Gaskin, Christa Anderson, Matthew Strebe, James Chellis and David Groth. 

Networking Complete is broken down into five main sections--networking fundamentals; network hardware and software; network design, maintenance and troubleshooting; intranets, extranets and interconnecting networks; and network security--divided up into 26 chapters. It also has a robust Appendix that explores certification topics, and a well-rounded Glossary of networking terms. One need not read this text from front to back to benefit by its depth. 

Networking Complete isn't a misnomer--the breadth of its coverage spans both Windows NT and non-NT networking operating systems, with Novell Netware and Unix getting more than adequate representation. 

The NT coverage is thorough and concise. Administrative tasks, underlying OSI concepts, real-world troubleshooting tips are investigated in an easy to understand fashion. Chapter 15, is adapted from Minasi's Mastering Windows NT Server 4, offers an excellent overview of cross-domain management in an NT environment. The discussion of trusts is especially well done, which includes a one-page how-to that describes the process of establishing trusts between domains step by step. 

As for the other networking operating systems, Novell Netware and Unix are particularly well covered. The four chapters that make up Part V do a commendable job of detailing the security issues an administrator might encounter when working with Netware 5, Unix and Virtual Private Networks. Those who focus on one operating system are often taken aback when faced with the issue of integrating other operating systems into their standard. Networking Complete can be valuable in such a situation. 

Still, Networking Complete does suffer because it tries to cram in everything, and I found it to be weak on some topics. However, this is a minor point when one considers the scope of the discussions it does include and the price one pays for all that information. 

On the whole, Networking Complete is a solid reference that should be on the shelf of all networking professionals and amateurs. If you've caught yourself forgetting some network concept, term or strategy, in all likelihood you can find it in this book. 

About the Author

Warren E. Wyrostek, M.Ed., MCNI, MCT, MCSE+Internet, CIW CI, CCNP is devoted to technology education. Warren's main joy comes as a Contract Trainer in Prosoft, Microsoft, and Novell technologies. At heart he is a teacher who loves what education offers.

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