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Review Network Security 1 and 2 Companion Guide (Cisco Networking Academy Program)

Discussion in 'Articles, Reviews and Interviews' started by tripwire45, Nov 26, 2006.

  1. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Review by James Pyles
    November 26, 2006

    This book is not meant to be used alone. It is the 'companion guide' to the Cisco Networking Academy Network Security curriculum, courses 1 and 2. If you've ever taken any courses through the Academy, you know that much of the work is done online as well as 'hands on' with Cisco hardware and software. Books such as this one supplement the 'in-class' experience.

    Does that mean the book is without worth by itself? Of course not. There is a great deal to be learned by using the book as a 'stand alone' resource. Just keep in mind that there is more value added when you consider this book as one element in an overall educational process. That's how the Cisco Academy works. Now that I've said all this, it's time to open the book up and see what's going on inside.

    A quick look at the bios of the author and technical reviewers discloses what you might expect; people with significant backgrounds in networking. Of course, they all hold numerous Cisco certifications (CCNA, CCNP, CISSP, and so on). The author Antoon 'Tony' Rufi also instructs several academy courses so I'd expect him to be familiar with the teaching as well as the production side of network security.

    When I saw that Chapter 1 in Course 1 started out with the topic 'The Need for Network Security', I was concerned that the book might be a little light on 'doing' and a little 'heavy' on theory. Fortunately, I was wrong in this case. The 'gatekeeping chapter' of the book provided the necessary information to introduce the overall topic without getting 'wordy'. Chapter 1 appropriately sets the stage for what is to come. As with all the chapters, this one ends with a summary and a short quiz to test the reader's comprehension of the material (the accompanying CD contains interactive activities and a command-line reference).

    The book references numerous practical labs that can only be accessed if you are actually taking the Academy courses or have purchased the lab companion book for these courses. I went to both Amazon and Cisco Press online but didn't immediately find links to those materials. I finally found the Fundamentals of Network Security Lab Companion and Workbook by doing a search of the Cisco Press site. It would have been nice though, to see a link from the 'Network Security' book's page to the lab manual.

    'Network Security 1 and 2 Companion Guide' is everything I've come to expect from a Cisco Press instructive textbook. Theory is well balanced with practice and when coupled with hands on experience, this book makes a fine addition to the ranks of Cisco Academy course texts. The student with a CCNA certification or possessing equivalent knowledge who wants to move into Cisco Network Security would be well advised to learn from Rufi's book.

    Understand though that the only way to take full advantage of what 'Network Security' has to offer is to either take the Cisco Academy Courses, or to also purchase the lab companion and necessary equipment and construct your own Cisco lab. I asked and answered this question before; can this book stand alone as a resource? The answer is yes but with a caveat. If you only buy this book, you are only buying one component in an overall structure. Reading this book will make you want to eat the whole coursework 'pie'; not just one piece.

    One last question that may be on your minds; 'why write a review of a Cisco Press book for a Linux site?' If you are a Linux sysadmin or want to be, you are or will be working with a variety of hardware and software platforms. Given the popularity and wide-spread use of Cisco solutions as well as the undeniable need for network security experts, learning from Cisco's 'Network Security' material can only enhance your abilities.
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  2. zimbo
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    zimbo Petabyte Poster

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    Thanks once again trip! Umm how about since we now have a dedicated forum for it we have the whole review here instead of having to visit linuxKB? If time is a problem then send me the articles in full and i dont mind posting them for you. :biggrin just a thought...
     
    Certifications: B.Sc, MCDST & MCSA
    WIP: M.Sc - Computer Forensics
  3. tripwire45
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    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    I'm "spreading the wealth" I have quite a number of books heading my way and I thought I'd host them on three different sites: The Linux Tutorial, Tech-Unity, and CF. The last two reviews I've done were for TLT but I don't necessarily want folks at CF or TU not to be aware of them, so I post "notices" on the "non-host" sites. When I post full reviews here, I'll provide links to the reviews on the other two sites.

    I figured I'd do two reviews per site. I posted the last two at TLT, I'll post the next two at TU and so on, in round-robin order. This will keep any one site from being buried in my reviews plus, some of the reviews are on Microsoft related books so you can be sure they'll be posted either at TU or here. No worries. :wink:
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  4. AJ

    AJ Administrator Administrator

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    I for one would like to thank trip here for his concise and non-biased reviews the text books given to him. They are without prejudised, concise and informative. This is without the most informative part of CF and I hope that I'm not the only one who applaud Trip for his input in this.


    Thanks a lot Trip and please keep up the good work.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCSA (messaging), ITIL Foundation v3
    WIP: Looking at doing ..................
  5. tripwire45
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    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    Aw shucks, AJ. You're making me blush. :oops:

    Thanks.
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  6. zimbo
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    zimbo Petabyte Poster

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    ah good point... i been reading your reviews from the days i joined TLT.... Totally agree with AJ!
     
    Certifications: B.Sc, MCDST & MCSA
    WIP: M.Sc - Computer Forensics
  7. Joogla

    Joogla New Member

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    Thanks guys for this information

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  8. Boffy

    Boffy Megabyte Poster

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    mmmmmm, 6 years too late :(
     
    Certifications: BSc Computer Game Technology, A+
    WIP: MOS 2010

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