Windows IT Library UPDATE--June 18, 2003

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Windows & .NET Magazine


June 18, 2003--In this issue:

1. Book Review
- CWNA Certified Wireless Network Administrator Official Study Guide (Exam PW0-100), 2nd edition

2. Announcements
- Windows & .NET Magazine Connections: Fall Dates Announced
- Fight Spam and Viruses, and Secure Exchange 2003!

3. New from Windows IT Library
- Security
- A Guided Tour of the Common Information Model Repository
- Developing Management Applications

4. New Books in Print
- The Ultimate Windows Server 2003 System Administrator's Guide
- Windows 2000 Quick Fixes

5. New eBooks
- Windows 2003: Active Directory Administration Essentials
- The Insider's Guide to IT Certification

6. Windows IT Library Top Five
- Microsoft Windows NT Server Administrator's Bible: Option Pack Edition
- A+ Certification: How to Pass Your Exams
- Microsoft Windows NT Secrets: Option Pack Edition
- The Microsoft Outlook E-mail and Fax Guide
- Undocumented Windows NT

7. Events
- Security 2003 Road Show

8. Contact Us
See this section for a list of ways to contact us.

==== Sponsor: Windows & .NET Magazine ====

Insider's Guide to IT Certification eBook
Get the eBook that will help you get certified! The "Insider's Guide to IT Certification," from the Windows & .NET Magazine Network, has one goal: to help you save time and money on your quest for certification. Find out how to choose the best study guides, save hundreds of dollars, and be successful as an IT professional. The time you'll save preparing for your certification exams will more than make up for the time you spend reading this book. Order your copy today!

==== 1. Book Review ====

CWNA Certified Wireless Network Administrator Official Study Guide (Exam PW0-100), 2nd edition
Principal author: Devin Akin
Publisher: McGraw-Hill/Osborne
Published: February 2003
ISBN: 0072229020
Paperback, 557 Pages
Price: $69.99

Stop by your local newsstand and flip through the latest computer or business magazines. More than likely, you'll find news items or articles about wireless computing. Lately, the media has concentrated a lot of attention on wireless technology, with an emphasis on reporting the potential benefits and advantages for business people who are constantly on the move.

Book publishers also are capitalizing on the interest in wireless technology. If your present job (or one that you aspire to) involves working with wireless networks, you should add "CWNA Certified Wireless Network Administrator Official Study Guide (Exam PW0-100)" to your reading list. Now in its second edition, this text targets IT professionals responsible for administering, installing, designing, managing, and supporting wireless networks. The book is vendor neutral and provides the information you need to know to obtain wireless network training and certification. Anyone who wants to take the PW0-100 Certified Wireless Network Administrator (CWNA) certification exam should regard this book as mandatory reading. If you don't plan to pursue a full-time career as a wireless network administrator but you want to find out what wireless computing entails and why the technology has generated so much interest, the book's opening two chapters are worth reading.

Chapter 1, "Introduction to Wireless LANs," begins with a history of wireless LANs (WLANs) and looks at current WLAN standards. The chapter then explores the use of wireless technology. For example, you might set up a WLAN as the entry point to a conventional wired network. Alternatively, you might deploy a wireless network as an extension to an existing wired network because additional wiring is too expensive or because your building's structure makes installing more cable difficult or impossible.

A very popular reason for using wireless is the mobility that it provides to users. A common example is warehouse workers who use handheld wireless devices to update stock entries as they fill orders.

Chapter 2, "Radio Frequency (RF) Fundamentals," explores RF behaviors, the principles of antennas, and the mathematics that underpin RF. The chapter looks at the four areas of RF mathematics and how each area pertains to the calculation of WLAN power requirements. Some IT professionals might argue that such grassroots knowledge of RF is unnecessary, but the authors of this book believe that "to a wireless LAN administrator, an understanding of RF concepts \[such as these\] is essential to the implementation, expansion, maintenance, and troubleshooting of the wireless network."

The book's principal author is Devin Akin, the chief technology officer (CTO) and cofounder of Planet3 Wireless, a company that has created both the Certified Wireless Network Professional (CWNP) program and the CWNA exam. Eight other Planet3 Wireless employees coauthored the book.

The book's layout mirrors how the official CWNA course is taught. The book's early chapters cover the basic building blocks of WLANS, and subsequent chapters discuss the convergence of RF and networking technologies. Each chapter is divided into sections that correspond to the topics you can expect to see in the CWNA exam. Other than the first page, which lists the CWNA exam objectives that the chapter covers, each chapter consists primarily of explanations and of figures, diagrams, and tables that support the theory being discussed.

Each chapter includes a list of key terms discussed in the chapter. Before taking the CWNA exam, you should be familiar with all the terms and know what they mean. After each list of key terms, you'll find a set of review questions (plus answers). These multiple-choice questions have been carefully chosen not only to help you prepare for the exam but also to give you insights into the use of wireless technology in the real world.

Other topics the book covers include wireless network architectures, how WLANs communicate, troubleshooting WLAN installations, how existing WLAN organizations have been set up, and overviews of competing technologies (e.g., HomeRF, Bluetooth, Infrared Data Association--IrDA, and Wireless LAN Interoperability Forum--WLIF). The authors also share their recommendations for ensuring WLAN security.

The book's final chapter concentrates on site-survey fundamentals. A site survey (aka a facilities analysis) is an involved procedure in which the surveyor examines RF behavior, coverage, and interference and makes sure that the appropriate type and amount of hardware is strategically set up. According to the authors, failure to perform a thorough site survey could result in a WLAN installation that "might never work properly." The authors add that "you (or your client) could spend thousands of dollars on hardware that doesn't do the intended job."

A feature of "CWNA: Certified Wireless Network Administrator Official Study Guide" is its only appendix: "RF in Perspective." The appendix points out that, throughout the book, the authors have "provided the technical facts, specifications, and many 'how to' descriptions of wireless LANs; however, without experience working with RF networks, it may still be difficult to understand the big picture." Although the appendix is brief (five and a half pages in length), the information it contains will be helpful to anyone new to wireless technology. The appendix ends with eight points that you should remember when implementing wireless links--for example, "Clear, unobstructed line of sight is required, except perhaps for clients in close proximity to the tower." The book concludes with a handy glossary that defines a variety of wireless terms ranging from protocols and standards (e.g., 802.1d, 802.1x, 802.2, 802.3, 802.5) to Wireless Metropolitan Area Network (WMAN) and wireless workgroup bridge.

For more information about the book, you can visit the CWNP Web site ( ). You'll find links to the book's front and back covers, its introductory pages, the table of contents, its full index, and an excerpt from the chapter about antennas. For those who prefer to read books in electronic format, a downloadable PDF version of this book is available from the Web site.

To test the knowledge you've acquired from reading the book, you can purchase a license for the CWNA Practice Test. This test consists of more than 300 practice questions compiled by the people who create the real CWNA exam. To take the practice test, Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) 5.0 or later must be installed on your system.

Tony Stevenson
[email protected]
Windows IT Library Guest Reviewer

For more book reviews, visit the Windows IT Library Web site.

==== 2. Announcements ====

Windows & .NET Magazine Connections: Fall Dates Announced
Jump-start your fall 2003 training plans by securing your seat for Windows & .NET Magazine Connections Fall, scheduled for November 2 through 6, 2003, in Orlando, Florida. Register now to receive the lowest possible registration fee. Call 800-505-1201 or 203-268-3204 for more information.

Fight Spam and Viruses, and Secure Exchange 2003!
Check out our June Web events, and get expert advice that will help you fight spam and viruses and also help you assess the security risks of Exchange 2003. There's no charge for any of these eye-opening, educational events, but space is limited so sign up now!

==== 3. New from Windows IT Library ====

This chapter concentrates on the Visual Studio .NET database project type. This project type doesn't include Visual Basic (VB) code; rather, it's meant to be used to create, test, run, and manage SQL database scripts, queries, and command files. These scripts and commands let you create new database schemas, change existing schemas, and query and update existing database data.

A Guided Tour of the Common Information Model Repository
This chapter examines the classes and associations that hold the elements of most interest to users of Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI). These elements include the WMI system classes that define the properties and methods relevant to WMI's security model, the classes that define the WMI provider architecture, and the classes of the Common Information Model (CIM) schema. By the end of the chapter, you should have enough knowledge of the structure of the repository to move through it confidently.

Developing Management Applications
This chapter highlights the COM APIs that let you interact with Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) so that you can manage your objects. After you read this chapter, you should be knowledgeable about virtually every key aspect of writing a managed application. The first half of the chapter covers the basics, probably enough information for most people; the second half covers more advanced topics.

==== 4. New Books in Print ====

The Ultimate Windows Server 2003 System Administrator's Guide
This book was written for system administrators and other IT professionals who manage a Windows environment. Administrators coming from other OSs, such as UNIX, will find numerous familiar technologies as well as many significant conceptual differences. Seasoned Windows 2000 and Windows NT administrators will find many familiar aspects, but also many significant differences that will require a general updating of their technical skills. The addition of Active Directory (AD), a new domain model, advanced authentication technologies, and the enhanced Microsoft Management Console (MMC) are just a few examples of entirely new or expanded OS features.,4096,0201791064,00.html

Windows 2000 Quick Fixes
This book provides fixes to common problems in a clear, well-organized fashion. It extensively troubleshoots both the Windows 2000 Professional and the Win2K Server editions, taking power users through installation, complex networking configuration problems, and important backup and security concerns.

==== 5. New eBooks ====

Windows 2003: Active Directory Administration Essentials
Whether you're an expert with Windows 2000 and Active Directory (AD), a Windows NT administrator who's read all the trade journals and a Win2K test lab, or new to AD, this book is for you. Based on actual product code, the book touches on key topics that many Windows texts fail to mention. This free eBook is delivered as each chapter is written. You can download chapters at the following URL:

The Insider's Guide to IT Certification
This book is a comprehensive how-to manual that will help you conserve your time and money while you become certified. This book will help you choose the right certification to study for, the right materials and methods to study with, and the proper ways to prepare for the exams.

==== 6. Windows IT Library Top Five ====

Microsoft Windows NT Server Administrator's Bible: Option Pack Edition
This book, with specific coverage of the Windows NT 4.0 Option Pack add-ons, can help you plan, install, configure, manage, optimize, and connect NT Server 4.0 to the Internet.

A+ Certification: How to Pass Your Exams
This book walks you through all the skills tested in the Computing Technology Industry Association's (CompTIA's) CompTIA A+ certification exam--both the A+ Core Hardware exam and the A+ OS Technologies exam.

Microsoft Windows NT Secrets: Option Pack Edition
Packed with the kind of notes, tips, and workarounds that come only from years of working day-in and day-out with a product, this book will help you optimize the performance, reliability, and security of your network.

The Microsoft Outlook E-Mail and Fax Guide
Written for Microsoft Outlook end users and the administrators who support them, this volume explains all the real-world tasks that you're likely to encounter when working with Outlook, plus many timesaving techniques that take you beyond the basics.

Undocumented Windows NT
This book documents what goes on under the covers in Windows NT. Three experts share what they've dug up on NT through years of hands-on research and programming experience. The authors dissect the Win32 interface, deconstruct the underlying APIs, and decipher the Memory Management architecture to help you understand operations, fix flaws, and enhance performance.

==== 7. Events ====
(brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine)

Security 2003 Road Show
Join Mark Minasi and Paul Thurrott as they deliver sound security advice at our popular Security 2003 Road Show event.

==== Sponsored Link ====

Integrate FAX into Exchange/Outlook (Whitepaper, ROI, Trial)

==== 8. Contact Us ====

About the newsletter -- [email protected]
About technical questions --
About product news -- [email protected]
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