Aside from it having been an amazing amount of work (insert appropriate smiley here), it was fantastic! When I started writing the book, I had been writing articles in the field for some time. Nevertheless, it was a real kick to move from a short, magazine format to a book. Anytime I've covered something in an article, I tried to explain things in a way that I wished someone had explained it to me. Writing "Linux System Administration: A User's Guide" gave me the opportunity to create the book I would have wanted to have and to present information in a way that respected the reader's intelligence. I'm not a "RTFM" guy. Forcing people to learn by intimidation is not my way. System administration is no more magic than anything else -- I've always believed that people want to learn this stuff and that the person who has been put in charge of the system isn't stupid. Consequently, I'm always inviting people to try things out for themselves. With the book, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to reach people in a new and exciting way.
Linux is exciting because it has opened up so many possibilities in such a short period of time. These days, I'm hard at work writing my second book and I look forward to sharing that excitement with a whole new audience.
If you could start writing "Linux System Administration - A User's Guide" all over again, would you make any major changes?
As I mentioned in the book, Linux (as with all dynamic things) is a moving target. I don't know that I would make any _major_ changes, but Linux has evolved since I wrote the book and some new things have been added or have become popular. If I were starting today, I would certainly look at some of those things and they might become part of the book.
That said, I wrote "Linux System Administration - A User's Guide" with the intention of concentrating on concepts, on things that won't change with the fashion of the day, and being as release agnostic as possible. I wanted the information I provided to be something that outlived the book's publication date. I also wanted it to be useful to people regardless of what distribution they were running, whether it was Red Hat, SuSE, Slackware, Debian, or whatever.
What's your take on the adoption of Linux in the enterprise? Do you think it will give a boost to security?
By subscribing to our early morning news update, you will receive a daily digest of the latest security news published on Help Net Security.
With over 500 issues so far, reading our newsletter every Monday morning will keep you up-to-date with security risks out there.