The Practice of System and Network Administration: Volume 1 (3rd Edition)
Book PrefaceThe Practice of System and Network Administration: Volume 1 (3rd Edition)
This is an unusual book. This is not a technical book. It is a book of strategies and frameworks and anecdotes and tacit knowledge accumulated from decades of experience as system administrators.
Junior SAs focus on learning which commands to type and which buttons to click. As you get more advanced, you realize that the bigger challenge is understanding why we do these things and how to organize our work. That’s where strategy comes in.
This book gives you a framework—a way of thinking about system administration problems—rather than narrow how-to solutions to particular problems. Given a solid framework, you can solve problems every time they appear, regardless of the operating system (OS), brand of computer, or type of environment. This book is unique because it looks at system administration from this holistic point of view, whereas most other books for SAs focus on how to maintain one particular product. With experience, however, all SAs learn that the big-picture problems and solutions are largely independent of the platform. This book will change the way you approach your work as an SA.
This book is Volume 1 of a series. Volume 1 focuses on enterprise infrastructure, customer support, and management issues. Volume 2, The Practice of Cloud System Administration (ISBN: 9780321943187), focuses on web operations and distributed computing.
These books were born from our experiences as SAs in a variety of organizations. We have started new companies. We have helped sites to grow. We have worked at small start-ups and universities, where lack of funding was an issue. We have worked at midsize and large multinationals, where mergers and spinoffs gave rise to strange challenges. We have worked at fast-paced companies that do business on the Internet and where high-availability, high-performance, and scaling issues were the norm. We have worked at slow-paced companies at which “high tech” meant cordless phones. On the surface, these are very different environments with diverse challenges; underneath, they have the same building blocks, and the same fundamental principles apply.
Who Should Read This Book
This book is written for system administrators at all levels who seek a deeper insight into the best practices and strategies available today. It is also useful for managers of system administrators who are trying to understand IT and operations.
Junior SAs will gain insight into the bigger picture of how sites work, what their roles are in the organizations, and how their careers can progress. Intermediate-level SAs will learn how to approach more complex problems, how to improve their sites, and how to make their jobs easier and their customers happier.
Whatever level you are at, this book will help you understand what is behind your day-to-day work, learn the things that you can do now to save time in the future, decide policy, be architects and designers, plan far into the future, negotiate with vendors, and interface with management. These are the things that senior SAs know and your OS’s manual leaves out.
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|April 17, 2017|
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