Useful primer for IIS site builders

This book covers a wide range of IIS-related topics including network protocols, security and administration as well as detailing internet software development. It provides a useful introduction to IIS 6 with a description of the new features and a summary of the architecture and workings of the product.

IIS 6: The Complete Reference by Hethe Henrickson & Scott Hofmann (McGraw-Hill, $98.96)

This book covers a wide range of IIS-related topics including network protocols, security and administration as well as detailing internet software development. It provides a useful introduction to IIS 6 with a description of the new features and a summary of the architecture and workings of the product.

But if you are specifically looking for a resource to help you make a decision on whether to upgrade from an earlier version, don’t read past the first chapter. While the remaining chapters have helpful background information, none of the version 6-specific features stand out from those that equally apply to earlier versions of IIS.

From an experienced developer’s perspective, none of the programming-related chapters provide enough detail to be of assistance. It may have been better to expand on ASP.NET development rather than attempt to cover every supported technology such as COM and ASP, which have now been superseded by .Net. These are large subjects in their own right and the book has struggled to give more than a brief introduction.

Similarly, from an operational point of view some of the administrative chapters appear to be targeting the less experienced reader. For example, the chapter “Bringing it all together” takes the reader through all the steps needed to create a web site from scratch, which would be of great benefit to a novice but would not be of much use to an experienced user.

In summary, if you want help in making the decision “if and when to upgrade” then this probably isn’t the book for you. However, it would be valuable to anyone lacking internet experience who’s looking at setting up a website for the first time.

Nummy is a network engineer and Williams a web developer for New Zealand Trade & Enterprise.

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