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Introduction to Linux - A Hands on Guide
This guide was created as an overview of the Linux Operating System, geared toward new users as an exploration tour and getting started guide, with exercises at the end of each chapter.
For more advanced trainees it can be a desktop reference, and a collection of the base knowledge needed to proceed with system and network administration. This book contains many real life examples derived from the author's experience as a Linux system and network administrator, trainer and consultant. They hope these examples will help you to get a better understanding of the Linux system and that you feel encouraged to try out things on your own.
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I found that the best book is just sitting down at a linux box and doint it yourself with the MAN pages, and access to the internet. I havn't used any Linux books in a while, but here are a few titles for you:
UNIX for dummies (also Linux for dummies)
UNIX in plain english
Peter Nortons complete guide to Linux
Linux Programming Bible (if you want to develope, this is a MUST HAVE)
These are just to name a few, you can go to barnes and noble, they have a huge selection. Also, be sure to get a few programming books, (QT, PEARL, GNU C++, Linux/UNIX shell scripting, etc...)
When I started with Linux, I've bought 'Special Edition, Using Linux' (ISBN: 0789721805). This book, apart from being quite out of date, is very technical and detailed. It pretty much throws everything in your face, but it covers vast areas of Linux. (I would give it 3.5 out of 5 starts).
If you are just starting with Linux, you should remember that Linux is very dependent on its distribution. So I quickly had to purchase a Debian dedicated book (even though Special Edition gives many Debian exceptions). Debian GNU/Linux Bible (ISBN 0764547100) is alright, but far from being complete. It will give you a good start and good review of the main concepts. (3 starts out of 5).
Both of these books can serve as a good reference and a good starting guide, but none of them will provide you with ground-to-space knowledge. I don't think that there is a single book out there that can do that, cause Linux is such a wide and wild creation. I agree with the other guys that the Web is the best resource for Linux. And if you want to buy a book as a starting guide, make sure you buy distribution dedicated one.
First, you should know that I was a COMPLETE newbie... didn't know what BASH was. The only thing I did know was how to change directory.
I picked up the Linux Bible, but shouldn't have. It was cute, and touched on a lot of topics that I never thought would be readily available, such as some of the remote X stuff. I have since picked up two books that I love: Running Linux and Linux in a Nutshell, both by O'Reilly. I'm not a sales rep. Running Linux is pretty much to the point of how to do a lot of basic administration tasks. Linux in a Nutshell is basically all the MAN pages compiled in book form. I don't like stopping what I'm working on to pull MAN pages, so it was either buy this book or print out all those pages. These two books have stayed close to my computer. They don't solve every question, but what book does?