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Centos 6 Linux Server Cookbook

The Centos 6 Linux Server Cookbook is a guide to the running
of Centos in both Server and Desktop mode aimed at beginners and intermediate
users of Linux.

It is written by Jonathon Hobson and made available through
Packt Publishing.
The eleven chapters
cover the main aspects of running the Centos 6 server including Installation and Configuration, Yum packages, Security,
Samba, Bind, Databases, Mail, Apache Web Server and FTP services.

These
are described in enough detail for the new or intermediate user to understand
without being overwhelmingly complex and the book is more than enough to get
even the most trepidatory user up and running with a considerable degree of fluidity.

I was surprised upon reading the first few paragraphs of
this book, as the first recipe described the downloading of Centos 6 on to a Windows
Desktop and running a MD5sum check. It struck me, however, that many users
reading the book will be considering swapping out their archaic old Windows kit
for some nice new Centos software magic, so it does in fact make perfect sense.
The book is delivered as a series of bite sized chunks, each
focusing on performing a specific task, and given the term recipes.
The opening chapter takes you through a variety of installation
methods including a graphical method, a minimal method, a text based method
and the adding of the Gnome Desktop to the installation though not my preference, the minimal Fluxbox, Thunar, Rxvt trio. A guide to re-installing the boot loader is also a welcome inclusion at this point, in the
event of corrupted boot files occurring.
The following two chapters cover configuration and working
with the installation, including guides
to Mailx, NTP, Static IPs, Cron, IPv6, SELinux and Mutt amongst others.
The Yum tool and Security aspects are covered next, updating,
cleaning, automating yum
updates with yum-cron, finding, installing and removing packages & yum priorities are all there.

Security wise we are
taken through the use of sudo,

hardening the shell environment, IPTables, SSH & fail2ban, DenyHosts
and ClamAV, the latter will be useful to people migrating from a Windows
environment and who have become attached to their antivirus programs.
So having set up the nuts and bolts of the Linux system and secured
it, we are ready to move on to slightly more advanced topics, which commence
with the Samba file share program.
We learn quickly how to configure Samba as a standalone
server and enable home directories, hide files & folders, add delete and
disable a user, create a custom share folder and provide a network recycle bin.
Then there is Bind, the domain tool, we are taken through building
a caching-only nameserver, writing zone files and adding zones, deploying a local
server with dnsmasq, logging, wildcards and hardening with chroot.
Next up is the MySql Database, although NoSql is now heavily
used there are many applications suited to MySQL and Postgresql and the basics
of installing these are covered in this section along with Host Based
Authentication for Postgresql.
Mail services with MTA, SMTP, Postfix, Dovecot, SASL is next
with variety of setups taken a look at, including building a local POP3/SMTP
server and Using Postfix and Dovecot to serve e-mails across virtual domains.
The penultimate chapter is working with Apache (or HTTPD)
Web Server and covers
installing the Apache web server with CGI/Perl, PHP,
configuring mod_perl, and
preparing httpd for a production environment, adding a
secure connection to the Apache web server by creating a self-signed SSL
certificate using OpenSSL, Hosting peers by enabling user directories on the
Apache web server and troubleshooting suexec. We also learn Configuring Apache
name-based virtual hosting, Working with publishing directories, vhosts.d,
error documents, directives, and the rewrite rule for virtual hosting.
Finally, we get to working with FTP, Building a basic FTP
service by installing and configuring VSFTP, Providing a secure connection to
VSFTP with SSL/TLS using 
OpenSSL encryption, Implementing virtual users and
directories in standalone mode on VSFTP, Providing an anonymous upload and
download or download only FTP server with VSFTP
So a decent selection of tasks to get your teeth into, all
described in a highly readable and easily digestible manner. The Centos 6 Linux Server Cookbook delivers quick answers to common problems in anodyne fashion.

So head over to Packt Publishing and grab your copy.

Author: Paul Anthony McGowan

Web Technology & Linux Enthusiast, Javascript Afficiado, General Observer Of World Corruption. Builder Of A Variety Of Web Properties And Campaigner Against Serious Government Criminality. Founder of Vorteasy

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