Posts tagged reference
This is a short list of the books that I have found absolutely indispensable and why. Do an Amazon search for the title exactly as displayed and you should find an exact match. Let me know and I will look up the ISBN numbers if you need.
Mike Meyers’ Network+ Certification Passport
The number one no-fooling-around book on the Network+ exam objectives and points, and a great reference after you’ve taken the exam. This is the ONLY book I used to prep for Net+. The chapters on different cable types, terminations, and specifications is quite handy to have lying around. Not a very large book, it may get stolen as mine did!
Included software rating: 10.0. The tests are great and really prepared me for the exam.
Learning Unix for Mac OS X
This is a Macintosh book, in a Windows IT list? Well, technically it’s more about Unix than OS X, and I found that what I learned here (when I was still a Mac user), has carried over to different distros of Linux that I have tried. So the commands are good, the book is small and cheap, and if you have a Mac or want one, it’s a double plus.
No included software.
Instant HTML Programmer’s Reference
An oldie but real goodie. No frills, no “reviews”, “goals”, “checkpoints”, or “exercises”. Just tables of HTML commands and values, graphics of on-screen examples, and the definition, usage, and options of every HTML command there is. Super-logically laid out. Small, thin and lightweight, can be taken anywhere. Answers can be found in under a minute without using the excellent index or ToC. Has references to every RFC or standard within HTML you may care to look up in a lifetime.
No included software.
Microsoft Windows XP Professional resource Kit
Another huge book. 1,706 pages. Every single one tells you something useful or vital to installing, using, supporting, repair, or understanding Windows XP (still the most prevalant desktop OS in the world). Since this book is from Microsoft Press, and was written by “The Microsoft Windows Team”, I take the information at face value. If you want to know more about security policies, the registry, system monitor, Windows backup, Windows Explorer, the system tray, the log on and log off process, Windows and networking (wireless, wired, high-speed, modem, satellite, tin can and an ethernet cable, Windows drivers, CAB files, NTFS, FAT32, how Windows deals with large drives, CD-ROM drives, USB drives, what a Group Policy Object is, what a windows domain is, what programs come with Windows, how to install Windows, how to repair Windows…. this is the book. In my mind, you can’t really understand any version of Windows without reading one of the MIcrosoft Team books so they can explain it how it really is.
Included software rating: 10.0. 120 shareware admin + testing apps, searchable copy of the book, further eBook reading on GPOs. This is a great disc.
New Perspectives on Microsoft Office Access 2003, Comprehensive, Second Edition
Yes, a textbook. After reading textbooks on every computer subject known to man, I’ve generally grown to loathe them. This one, of course, focuses on Microsoft Access. Many IS specialist love to remind someone how only secretary’s use Access, but that’s not true. I know a software development house in Jacksonville, FL, right now, that uses MDB files as their product databases, 500 MB size limit constraint and all. Plus, access is useful as a home database program, or for your small LAN. So this book is written well, the exercises are long but you build on the same DB throughout the chapters, and the screen shots are well thought out and well placed so that you don’t have to hunt far in the heat of battle to find exactly the function you need in the mess of options that is Access 2003.
Computer security consultants who have never used Access would be wise to learn much more about it, and VBA (visual basic for applicatoins). VBA is a load of fun but beyond the scope of this particular book. This tome I keep on the shelf as my Access 2003 reference when I’m caught in a tight spot. Your mileage may vary, and I’m always open to discussing good DBA books.
Included software rating: 3.5. Lame copies of the work in the book and I think some clip art.
Flash 8 ActionScript Bible
I did a LOT of AS coding in Flash to get my college degree. There’s really two types of Flash books: ones that focus on the GUI, and ones that focus on the ActionScript. Since AS drives me nuts and I can’t remember most of the commands or string formats, I chose to keep this book and re-rear it on a semi-regular basis to remind me of the ActionSript conventions that I may be forgetting since graduating. If you want to be a web developer, you need to know Flash and Actionscript. This book will help.
Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Administrator’s Pocket Consultant
Truly it’s almost a pocket book. 564 pages of Server 2003 goodness. No troubleshooting, no feature lists, no rhetoric. Just down-to-business instructions on how to do just about everything that comes built-in to the server OS. I carry it with me on new site builds, and it’s good reading for those who want to understand more about how Windows networks work. Like the Windows XP Resource Kit, it is also published by the Microsoft Press, so the facts are in there. Many items and concepts apply to other Windows server platforms. Where this book will be valuable is in 10 years when we’ve all moved to Server 2008 and then Server 2012, and after a few years of that, we still have some 2003 boxes but no one remembers how to work on them.
No included software.