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Unix and Linux System Administration Handbook


Unix and Linux System Administration Handbook Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The twentieth anniversary edition of the world's best-selling UNIX system administration book has been made even more invaluable by adding coverage of the leading Linux distributions: Ubuntu, RHEL, and openSUSE. This book approaches system administration in a practical way and is an invaluable reference for both new administrators and experienced professionals. It details best practices for every facet of system administration, including storage management, network design and administration, email, web hosting, scripting, software configuration management, performance analysis, Windows interoperability, virtualization, DNS, security, management of IT service organizations, and much more. UNIX® and Linux® System Administration Handbook, Fourth Edition, reflects the current versions of these operating systems: Ubuntu® Linux, openSUSE® Linux, Red Hat® Enterprise Linux®, Oracle America® Solaris™ (formerly Sun Solaris), HP HP-UX®, and IBM AIX®.

Book News Annotation:

In this revised edition of Unix System Administration Handbook, 2001, which Tim O'Reilly acknowledges as a worthy competitor, Nemeth (retired, computer science, U. of Colorado) and her coauthors provide an orientation to basic administration, networking, and "greener" aspects of the major flavors of UNIX and Linux in the workplace. In 32 chapters that include recommended reading and exercises rated for difficulty level, they cover the duties of the system administrator starting with writing shell scripts, and move on to identity management, network hardware, data center basics, and notably, "green" IT strategies. The comprehensive handbook includes a brief history of system administration, case for covering the AIX version of UNIX, and trial access to an online edition. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (


The 20th anniversary edition of the world's bestselling UNIX system administration book has been made even better by adding coverage of the leading Linux distributions: Ubuntu, openSUSE, and RHEL. This book approaches system administration in a practical way and is an invaluable reference.

About the Author

Evi Nemeth has retired from the Computer Science faculty at the University of Colorado. She is currently exploring the Pacific on her 40-foot sailboat named Wonderland.

Garth Snyder has worked at NeXT and Sun and holds a BS in Engineering from Swarthmore College and an MD and an MBA from the University of Rochester.

Trent R. Hein is the co-founder of Applied Trust, a company that provides IT infrastructure consulting services. Trent holds a BS in Computer Science from the University of Colorado.

Ben Whaley is the Director of Enterprise Architecture at Applied Trust. Ben earned a BS in Computer Science from the University of Colorado. He is an expert in storage management, virtualization, and web infrastructure.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents Foreword xlii Preface xliv Acknowledgments xlvi

Section One: Basic Administration

Chapter 1: Where to Start 3 Essential duties of the system administrator 4 Suggested background 6 Friction between UNIX and Linux 7 Linux distributions 9 Example systems used in this book 10 System-specific administration tools 13 Notation and typographical conventions 13 Units 14 Man pages and other on-line documentation 16 Other authoritative documentation 18 Other sources of information 20 Ways to find and install software 21 System administration under duress 26 Recommended reading 27 Exercises 28

Chapter 2: Scripting and the Shell 29 Shell basics 30 bash scripting 37 Regular expressions 48 Perl programming 54 Python scripting 66 Scripting best practices 73 Recommended reading 74 Exercises 76

Chapter 3: Booting and Shutting Down 77 Bootstrapping 78 Booting PCs 82 GRUB: The GRand Unified Boot loader 83 Booting to single-user mode 86 Working with startup scripts 87 Booting Solaris 97 Rebooting and shutting down 100 Exercises 102

Chapter 4: Access Control and Rootly Powers 103 Traditional UNIX access control 104 Modern access control 106 Real-world access control 110 Pseudo-users other than root 118 Exercises 119

Chapter 5: Controlling Processes 120 Components of a process 120 The life cycle of a process 123 Signals 124 kill: send signals 127 Process states 128 nice and renice: influence scheduling priority 129 ps: monitor processes 130 Dynamic monitoring with top, prstat, and topas 133 The /proc filesystem 135 strace, truss, and tusc: trace signals and system calls 136 Runaway processes 138 Recommended reading 139 Exercises 139

Chapter 6: The Filesystem 140 Pathnames 142 Filesystem mounting and unmounting 143 The organization of the file tree 145 File types 147 File attributes 152 Access control lists 159 Exercises 173

Chapter 7: Adding New Users 174 The /etc/passwd file 176 The /etc/shadow and /etc/security/passwd files 183 The /etc/group file 186 Adding users: the basic steps 187 Adding users with useradd 191 Adding users in bulk with newusers (Linux) 197 Removing users 198 Disabling logins 200 Managing users with system-specific tools 201 Reducing risk with PAM 201 Centralizing account management 201 Recommended reading 204 Exercises 205

Chapter 8: Storage 206 I just want to add a disk! 207 Storage hardware 209 Storage hardware interfaces 213 Peeling the onion: the software side of storage 220 Attachment and low-level management of drives 223 Disk partitioning 231 RAID: redundant arrays of inexpensive disks 237 Logical volume management 246 Filesystems 254 ZFS: all your storage problems solved 264 Storage area networking 274 Exercises 281

Chapter 9: Periodic Processes 283 cron: schedule commands 283 The format of crontab files 284 Crontab management 286 Linux and Vixie-cron extensions 287 Some common uses for cron 288 Exercises 291

Chapter 10: Backups 292 Motherhood and apple pie 293 Backup devices and media 299 Saving space and time with incremental backups 305 Setting up a backup regime with dump 307 Dumping and restoring for upgrades 314 Using other archiving programs 315 Using multiple files on a single tape 317 Bacula 318 Commercial backup products 335 Recommended reading 337 Exercises 337

Chapter 11: Syslog and Log Files 340 Finding log files 341 Syslog: the system event logger 344 AIX logging and error handling 353 logrotate: manage log files 356 Condensing log files to useful information 358 Logging policies 359 Exercises 361

Chapter 12: Software Installation and Management 362 Installing Linux and OpenSolaris 363 Installing Solaris 370 Installing HP-UX 377 Installing AIX with the Network Installation Manager 380 Managing packages 381 Managing Linux packages 382 Using high-level Linux package management systems 384 Managing packages for UNIX 393 Revision control 397 Software localization and configuration 404 Using configuration management tools 408 Sharing software over NFS 411 Recommended reading 413 Exercises 414

Chapter 13: Drivers and the Kernel 415 Kernel adaptation 416 Drivers and device files 417 Linux kernel configuration 421 Solaris kernel configuration 427 HP-UX kernel configuration 431 Management of the AIX kernel 432 Loadable kernel modules 434 Linux udev for fun and profit 437 Recommended reading 443 Exercises 444

Section Two: Networking

Chapter 14: TCP/IP Networking 447 TCP/IP and its relationship to the Internet 447 Networking road map 450 Packet addressing 454 IP addresses: the gory details 457 Routing 465 ARP: the Address Resolution Protocol 468 DHCP: the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol 469 Security issues 472 PPP: the Point-to-Point Protocol 476 Basic network configuration 476 System-specific network configuration 484 Linux networking 484 Solaris networking 494 HP-UX networking 501 AIX networking 506 Recommended reading 508 Exercises 509

Chapter 15: Routing 511 Packet forwarding: a closer look 512 Routing daemons and routing protocols 515 Protocols on parade 518 Routing strategy selection criteria 521 Routing daemons 522 Cisco routers 525 Recommended reading 528 Exercises 530

Chapter 16: Network Hardware 531 Ethernet: the Swiss Army knife of networking 532 Wireless: ethernet for nomads 541 DSL and cable modems: the last mile 543 Network testing and debugging 544 Building wiring 545 Network design issues 547 Management issues 549 Recommended vendors 550 Recommended reading 550 Exercises 551

Chapter 17: DNS: The Domain Name System 552 Who needs DNS? 554 How DNS works 555 DNS for the impatient 558 Name servers 563 The DNS namespace 566 Designing your DNS environment 568 What's new in DNS 572 The DNS database 574 The BIND software 597 BIND configuration examples 618 The NSD/Unbound software 625 Updating zone files 638 Security issues 642 Microsoft and DNS 667 Testing and debugging 667 Vendor specifics 681 Recommended reading 686 Exercises 688

Chapter 18: The Network File System 690 Introduction to network file services 690 The NFS approach 692 Server-side NFS 698 Client-side NFS 706 Identity mapping for NFS version 4 709 nfsstat: dump NFS statistics 710 Dedicated NFS file servers 711 Automatic mounting 711 Recommended reading 717 Exercises 718

Chapter 19: Sharing System Files 719 What to share 720 Copying files around 721 LDAP: the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol 728 NIS: the Network Information Service 736 Prioritizing sources of administrative information 739 Recommended reading 741 Exercises 741

Chapter 20: Electronic Mail 742 Mail systems 744 The anatomy of a mail message 748 The SMTP protocol 750 Mail system design 753 Mail aliases 756 Content scanning: spam and malware 761 Email configuration 774 sendmail 775 sendmail configuration 778 sendmail configuration primitives 782 Security and sendmail 795 sendmail performance 802 sendmail testing and debugging 805 Exim 807 Postfix 828 DKIM Configuration 845 Integrated email solutions 853 Recommended reading 854 Exercises 855

Chapter 21: Network Management and Debugging 859 Network troubleshooting 860 ping: check to see if a host is alive 861 SmokePing: gather ping statistics over time 864 traceroute: trace IP packets 865 netstat: get network statistics 868 Inspection of live interface activity 873 Packet sniffers 874 The ICSI Netalyzr 878 Network management protocols 879 SNMP: the Simple Network Management Protocol 880 The NET-SNMP agent 883 Network management applications 884 NetFlow: connection-oriented monitoring 890 Recommended reading 893 Exercises 894

Chapter 22: Security 896 Is UNIX secure? 897 How security is compromised 898 Security tips and philosophy 901 Passwords and user accounts 906 PAM: cooking spray or authentication wonder? 908 Setuid programs 912 Effective use of chroot 913 Security power tools 914 Mandatory Access Control (MAC) 922 Cryptographic security tools 924 Firewalls 932 Linux firewall features 935 IPFilter for UNIX systems 939 Virtual private networks (VPNs) 942 Certifications and standards 944 Sources of security information 947 What to do when your site has been attacked 950 Recommended reading 952 Exercises 954

Chapter 23: Web Hosting 956 Web hosting basics 957 HTTP server installation 963 Virtual interfaces 967 The Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) 971 Caching and proxy servers 974 Scaling beyond your limits 977 Exercises 979

Section Three: Bunch O' Stuff

Chapter 24: Virtualization 983 Virtual vernacular 984 Benefits of virtualization 988 A practical approach 989 Virtualization with Linux 991 Solaris zones and containers 997 AIX workload partitions 1001 Integrity Virtual Machines in HP-UX 1003 VMware: an operating system in its own right 1005 Amazon Web Services 1005 Recommended reading 1010 Exercises 1010

Chapter 25: The X Window System 1011 The display manager 1013 Process for running an X application 1014 X server configuration 1019 X server troubleshooting and debugging 1026 A brief note on desktop environments 1028 Recommended reading 1030 Exercises 1031

Chapter 26: Printing 1032 Printing-system architecture 1033 CUPS printing 1034 Printing from desktop environments 1043 System V printing 1045 BSD and AIX printing 1054 What a long, strange trip it's been 1065 Common printing software 1067 Printer languages 1068 PPD files 1072 Paper sizes 1073 Printer practicalities 1075 Troubleshooting tips 1081 Recommended reading 1083 Exercises 1084

Chapter 27: Data Center Basics 1085 Data center reliability tiers 1086 Cooling 1087 Power 1091 Racks 1094 Tools 1095 Recommended reading 1095 Exercises 1096

Chapter 28: Green IT 1097 Green IT initiation 1098 The green IT eco-pyramid 1099 Green IT strategies: data center 1100 Green IT strategies: user workspace 1108 Green IT friends 1110 Exercises 1111

Chapter 29: Performance Analysis 1112 What you can do to improve performance 1114 Factors that affect performance 1115 How to analyze performance problems 1117 System performance checkup 1118 Help! My system just got really slow! 1131 Recommended reading 1133 Exercises 1134

Chapter 30: Cooperating with Windows 1135 Logging in to a UNIX system from Windows 1135 Accessing remote desktops 1136 Running Windows and Windows-like applications 1139 Using command-line tools with Windows 1140 Windows compliance with email and web standards 1141 Sharing files with Samba and CIFS 1142 Sharing printers with Samba 1149 Debugging Samba 1152 Active Directory authentication 1154 Recommended reading 1160 Exercises 1161

Chapter 31: Serial Devices and Terminals 1162 The RS-232C standard 1163 Alternative connectors 1165 Hard and soft carrier 1167 Hardware flow control 1168 Serial device files 1168 setserial: set serial port parameters under Linux 1169 Pseudo-terminals 1170 Configuration of terminals 1171 Special characters and the terminal driver 1177 stty: set terminal options 1178 tset: set options automatically 1178 Terminal unwedging 1179 Debugging a serial line 1180 Connecting to serial device consoles 1180 Exercises 1182

Chapter 32: Management, Policy, and Politics 1183 The purpose of IT 1184 The structure of an IT organization 1190 The help desk 1196 The enterprise architects 1197 The operations group 1199 Management 1206 Policies and procedures 1215 Disaster recovery 1217 Compliance: regulations and standards 1222 Legal issues 1226 Organizations, conferences, and other resources 1229 Recommended Reading 1231 Exercises 1231

Index 1233 A Brief History of System Administration 1264 In Defense of AIX 1274 Colophon 1277 About the Contributors 1278 About the Authors 1279

Product Details

Nemeth, Evi
Prentice Hall
Hein, Trent H.
Whaley, Ben
Hein, Trent
Snyder, Garth
Hein, Trent R.
Operating Systems - UNIX
Operating systems (computers)
Unix-Unix Administration
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
July 2010
Grade Level:
Professional and scholarly
9.06 x 7 x 1.7 in 1578 gr

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Reference » Science Reference » Technology

Unix and Linux System Administration Handbook New Trade Paper
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Product details 1344 pages Prentice Hall - English 9780131480056 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , The 20th anniversary edition of the world's bestselling UNIX system administration book has been made even better by adding coverage of the leading Linux distributions: Ubuntu, openSUSE, and RHEL. This book approaches system administration in a practical way and is an invaluable reference.
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