When you have a network in your home or small business, all the computers connected to the network become more flexible and more useful. Your new network will change the way you use your computer, within a few weeks or less, you will definitely wonder how you got along without it. You and the other people connected to your network will find yourself using it without thinking about "the network".
This book begins with a general overview of networks and the things you can do with them. In later chapters, you learn how networks handle data, how different kinds of networks move data from one place to another, and how the equipment at the core of most networks - hubs, routers, modems, and other devices - works.
Next it introduces the important concepts of clients and servers and tells you how to design and install simple wired and wireless networks, how to connect the local network to the Internet, how to build security into your network, and how to use your network for music and video along with computer data.
And finally, the last chapter of the book offers advice about troubleshooting a network and describes some useful tools that might make life a bit easier when it becomes neccessary to find and fix a problem.
Anthony Lawrence of Middleboro, MA says, "If I hired a new employee for my computer consulting business, I'd give them this to read. I'd HOPE that there was nothing in here they didn't already know, but I've seen supposedly knowledgeable people with tremendous knowledge gaps, so this would cover my bases.
"Really it's more for the small business or home user. I can't tell you how many times I've had calls from very small businesses or home users who couldn't afford to pay me to help them with exactly the kinds of things this book covers. That's great, because too often I've felt sorry for them and helped for free: from now on I'll just tell them to get this book.
"I was happy to see that the author did not ignore Linux and Mac OS X. I don't think he ignored much of anything: it's all here, from basic wiring to VPN's. No, it's not deep techy details, but it's more than enough to get you started and might just be all that you need. Best of all, it's completely non-threatening. You'd need to be very tech-phobic to feel frightened by this: the author explains things very gently, yet very completely.
"I lead a little computer club here in our retirement community; I'm going to be waving this around at the next meeting and telling the people they want to get this. Very, very good."
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