The book is organized to enable you to start off at the very beginning with Linux and grow to become a professional Linux system administrator and power user.
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The focus of this ninth edition of the Linux Bible can be summed up in these ways:
■ Beginner to certified professional: As long as you have used a computer, mouse, and keyboard, you can start with this book. I tell you how to get Linux, begin using it, step through critical topics, and ultimately excel at administering and securing it.
■ System administrator–focused: When you are fi nished with this book, you will know how to use Linux and how to modify and maintain it. All the topics needed to become a Red Hat Certifi ed Engineer are covered in this book. That said, many software developers have also used this book to understand how to work on a Linux system as a development platform or target for their applications.
■ Emphasis on command-line tools: Although point-and-click interfaces for managing Linux have improved greatly in recent years, many advanced features can only be utilized by typing commands and editing confi guration fi les manually. I teach you how to become profi cient with the Linux command-line shell and occasionally compare shell features with graphical tools for accomplishing the same tasks.
■ Aimed at fewer Linux distributions: In previous editions, I described about 18 different Linux distributions. With only a few notable exceptions, most popular Linux distributions are either Red Hat–based (Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Fedora, CentOS, and so on) or Debianbased (Ubuntu, Linux Mint, KNOPPIX, and so on). Although this book most thoroughly covers Red Hat distributions, I have increased coverage of Ubuntu throughout in this edition (because that’s what many of the biggest Linux fans start with).
■ Many, many demos and exercises: Instead of just telling you what Linux does, I actually show you what it does. Then, to make sure you got it, you have the opportunity to try exercises yourself. Every procedure and exercise has been tested to work in Fedora or Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Most work in Ubuntu as well.
■ Lead into cloud technologies: Linux is at the heart of most technological advances in cloud computing today. That means you need a solid understanding of Linux to work effectively in tomorrow’s data centers. Learn Linux basics in the front of this book. Then in the last few chapters, I demonstrate how you can try out Linux systems as hypervisors, cloud controllers, and virtual machines, as well as manage
virtual networks and networked storage.