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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Anti-Hacker Tool Kit, Second Edition
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media
Authors: Mike Shema, Bradley C. Johnson
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Most practical security tool book on the market

"Anti-Hacker Toolkit" (AHT) is a first-rate, hands-on, learn-by-following-along security book. It's advertised as a complement to Foundstone's "Incident Response" and "Hacking Exposed" titles, but it contains more than enough original material to stand on its own. Even if you've used all of the tools described in AHT, you're sure to gain insight on using many of them in unique and creative ways. Throughout the book, I was impressed by the authors' attention to detail. They seem to have anticipated the sorts of questions both beginners and experts might have regarding numerous security tools. AHT contains balanced material on both UNIX and Windows applications. It is particularly strong with regard to integration of BSD tools. In a world where many believe "free" and "open source" equal "Linux", attention to BSD was very welcome. Several chapters were especially useful. These included discussions of netcat, the X Windows System, and Windows enumeration using the PStools. Furthermore, over two hundred pages are devoted to incident response and digital forensics. The authors discuss how to image and investigate systems using commercial and open source solutions. I appreciated their desire to steer clear of theory in favor of providing hands-on examples. AHT continues the recent Osborne McGraw-Hill tradition of including numerous case studies which reinforce the proper use of tools in real-world environments. AHT is a must-have book for 2002. (Note that it is NOT related in any way to the book "Hackers Beware," as alluded to by a previous reviewer.) Even if you've been using security tools for years, you're sure to find new approaches to better assess or secure your enterprise. This book belongs next to any of Foundstone's other titles on your bookshelf.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Sams Teach Yourself ASP.NET in 21 Days (2nd Edition)
Publisher: Sams
Authors: Chris Payne
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
Very tricky for starters

I'm not sure what to rate this book yet so I'm giving it a 3. I'm about 2 days in and couldn't get past the day 1 exercise. I thought I'd post here incase anyone experienced the same.

I had a number of problems getting the first page to load (listing 1.2). It ended up being a problem with my .NET SDK install. Anyway the fix for this is to goto the command prompt and go to c:\windows\microsoft.net\v1.1.4322\

Then run:
aspnet_regiis -r

This will re-register all your .NET dlls.

Other then the huge headache of getting the first lesson working I'm looking forward to getting deeper into the book.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: The Art of Deception: Controlling the Human Element of Security
Publisher: Wiley
Authors: Kevin D. Mitnick, William L. Simon, Steve Wozniak
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Much-needed complement to books on network security

Kevin Mitnick has put together an excellent book, that fills a major gap in the computer and network security literature. The examples are realistic (I suspect more than one is a thinly-veiled example from real life) and clear depictions of the principles they illustrate. The book is well-organized, and most importantly, it gives sound advice on how to defeat the social engineer. The suggested information security policies at the end of the book are worth the price of the book all by themselves. This is a must-read for information security professionals and corporate executives. It is nice to see that Kevin Mitnick has returned something of value to the world.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Practice of Programming
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Brian W. Kernighan, Rob Pike
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
Doesn't go beyond the basics

I really wanted to see more on software engineering, testing tools, etc. I think this book, if done well, would have been a huge tome. Instead, it is not a very insightful book for an experienced programmer. While it would be very useful for a novice or intermediate programmer, I'd have to recommend Code Complete over this one.