Get Prepped

MCSE Designing Windows 2000 Web Solutions Study Guide proves a worthy tool.

MCSE Designing Windows 2000 Web Solutions Study Guide is a test-prep book that covers many topics, albeit briefly. It addresses the basics such as TCP/IP, directory services and COM, and they're covered from the standpoint of the Web server realm. The best parts of the book cover cluster technology and network load balancing (NLB)—and, of course, security is mentioned.

This book starts with the best of what it takes to keep a public server up and running, NLB and clustering technology. Availability is the name of the game and, as any experienced administrator knows, it's one thing to know what NLB is and a whole other thing to install and configure it. The book does a good job at walking the reader through this arduous process. The book even goes into detail regarding the two modes of Layer-2 configurations, multicast and unicast, although I recommend that any administrator who wishes to install NLB seek additional documentation from TechNet.

Concepts like topology, systems management, TCP/IP, capacity planning and directory services are addressed. The chapter on security fits right in with MCP Magazine contributing editor Roberta Bragg's three As: Authentication, Authorization and Access! This chapter even covers the hashing algorithm. An example of this would be to represent the key in numerical form, fold and add, divide by a prime number and then use the remaining as an address.

The book actually begins to cover the nitty-gritty you'd expect from a fine Microsoft Press book in just one chapter—and it's the shortest chapter, at that. This chapter focuses on Microsoft Exchange Server configuration. In the classes I teach, I refer to this chapter as meat. It's a solid chapter (Hint: It's Chapter 9).

For you programmers out there, Chapter 10 does a good job of discussing Component Data Objects; although for network pros, this chapter is a passage of time. To ensure that I covered this chapter well, I sought the opinion of an expert-programming buddy of mine who declared it a good start. From a neophyte programmer's standpoint, I enjoyed the exercises regarding the installation and configuration of Component Services in Windows 2000. Thank goodness for wizards!

This book is perfect if you're looking to learn the basics of Web solutions, along with some good tidbits on security best practices.

About the Author

Michael Rodgers, MCSE+I, MCSA, MCT, A+, is a professor at Dyersburg State. He has seven years' experience as a technical trainer and consultant for Piranha Technologies, a network and security managed solution provider.

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