Conceptually, the book breaks down into a number of different sections that dont necessarily run sequentially. The first section covers the installation of the basic operating system, after which the basics are introduced followed by installation of additional optional components . The second section covers configuring your machine to connect to the Internet and introduces some of the applications you may find useful. The third section covers topics necessary for networking your machine, including an introduction to user accounts. The fourth section covers more advanced topics such as security and advanced administration, with the fifth and final section covering how the Linux operating system includes everything necessary to develop a Web site.
Following is a brief description of the chapter structure. Every chapter builds upon the knowledge amassed in the previous chapters and highlights concepts that may be applicable to other operating systems you may have used, such as Microsoft Windows.
Chapter 1 provides support to the existing Fedora 2 documentation in taking you through installing the operating system, how to start and stop the operating system, and how to work with it using the bash shell and GUIs provided.
Chapter 2 introduces the Linux basics, explaining fundamental topics such as pipes, user accounts, and installing and configuring hardware. The chapter also looks at how to resolve problems and fine-tune your installation for maximum flexibility and performance.
Chapter 3 discusses how you configure your installation to connect to the Internet or your own network so you can start to send and receive e- mails and, if necessary, use the Internet to discover and download some of the optional packages we cover in the next chapter.
Chapter 4 introduces the applications that you may typically want to use, such as a Web browser and office applications to MP3 players. The similarities to Windows applications that you may be familiar with are highlighted, and this chapter introduces the bewildering array of applications that comes with Fedora 2 and where to find more.
Chapter 5 presents a detailed explanation of the filesystem and covers topics such as mounting drives , managing files and directories, and using the shell to generate and manipulate the output from predefined or custom scripts.
Chapter 6 tackles the notion of the shell, which you have been using in the first five chapters of the book, to type commands and execute them. We will examine the shell more closely and look at combining commands into a script, build logic into scripts, and get them to run in specific circumstances.
Chapter 7 introduces the basics of security, including information on user accounts and how to manage these, and setting permissions and privileges.
Chapter 8 introduces the concept of packages, which provide additional components or applications that are not installed by default, and explains how to install and/or remove these. The chapter concludes with an explanation of how you tackle compiling applications when only the source code is available or needs to be tailored.
Chapter 9 provides you with the information necessary to install and configure networking components such as File Transfer Protocol (FTP) servers, Web servers, file servers, print servers, and moreall on the same machine.
Chapter 10 explores security, a complex topic, but this chapter explains the kinds of problems you should consider and are likely to encounter. It discusses how you can secure your machine using a firewall and how to perform a vulnerability assessment with best practices.
Chapter 11 covers advanced administration topics such as analyzing log files to track down problems, backup and archival strategies, how to install applications from source code, and general housekeeping tasks to ensure all is running smoothly.
Chapter 12 presents a detailed recipe for rebuilding the Linux kernel, which is at the heart of the Fedora operating system.
Chapter 13 covers scripting using the Perl programming language to automate the common task of managing the log files. It does this by providing a Perl primer, followed by some common examples of Perl scripts and a sample application that monitors common logs and provides a Web-based user interface to the application.
Chapter 14 discusses how to contribute to the Fedora project, from finding and reporting bugs , to contributing new code and patches, to writing tutorials and documentation.
Chapter 15 presents a survey of some of the more interesting applications that are available for Fedora, focusing in particular on system administration software and application development tools.