As I mentioned earlier, the book is exactly 280 pages. It is starts out with a nifty preface that is followed by six chapters focusing on system configurations, then another six chapters related exclusively to network configurations, and two more derived from the latter six, since they cover network services in great detail (again, configuration!).
Please check out the attached table of contents below. As you can see, the title of each chapter is followed by one or more words that explain the “main theme” of that particular chapter. This is to be appreciated, because you may be pretty interested in IPv6 network configurations right away.
Table of Contents:
Chapter 1: System Configuration—Disks
Chapter 2: System Configuration—Keeping it Updated
Chapter 3: System Configuration—Software Package Management
Chapter 4: System Configuration—System Management
Chapter 5: System Configuration—Jails
Chapter 6: System Configuration—Tuning Performance
Chapter 7: Network Configuration—Basics
Chapter 8: Network Configuration—Tunneling
Chapter 9: Network Configuration—PPP
Chapter 10: Network Configuration—Routing and Bridging
Chapter 11: Network Configuration—IPv6
Chapter 12: Network Configuration—Firewalls
Chapter 13: Network Services—Internet Servers
Chapter 14: Network Services—Local Network Services
The author himself also divides the book into the aforementioned three segments. Throughout the system configuration chapters, we are given general pointers that should be respected when configuring and managing a FreeBSD OS, especially if tweaking performance is important to us. We are also presented with some “unique” characteristics of FreeBSD that are useful for those that aren’t familiar with it yet.
The second segment centers around how to set up and configure numerous network interfaces, protocols, PPP over Ethernet and/or serial, IPv6, and firewalls (neither routing nor bridging, since these are key requisites in network infrastructures). This segment will show you real-world applicable examples of how to set up a solid, robust, and secure network.
Nowadays it shouldn’t surprise anyone that network services are a must, especially with servers. It’s a no-brainer that web services such as Web, Mail, DNS, FTP, and NTP are critical. The same goes for local network services, like the DHCP, SMB, TFTP, and NFS. The third section is split into two chapters: one for Internet servers and another for local network services that mentions everything you need to know about daemons!
If you have read some of my earlier book reviews, then you know that I always pay attention to and analyze the correlation between the book’s subtitle and what it delivers in reality. Some books promise much more than they deliver. Others target a particular audience and yet deliver general content that’s “good” for everybody, not only those in that niche.
In this case, the book delivers exactly what it promises. The subtitle goes like this: “Building, securing, and maintaining networks with the FreeBSD operating systems.” Needless to say, this is what the book is all about. Now all that's left to tackle is whether its style is easy to follow and how the author explains and approaches those topics. That’s what you’re going to find out from the next section.
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