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Does it have to be a Mandrake book ----- ? What do you want the book for? To learn Linux or to learn the bits of Mandrake that are unique to Mandrake?? There are lots of good books out there, though I'm not sure I'd recommend a distro-specific one. What if you change distro? Also, there is sooooooo much Mandrake specific info available on the web.
I'd like a mandrake specific book, but you have a point-what if I do change distros. But I want the book for installation (although I found instructions on the web, I just like to have a book at hand), and some Mandrake features. I have used Gnome and KDE, so that's fine, and I also used slackware, but I don't think Mandrake and Slackware are very similar, as Slackware is advanced, and Mandrake, I hear is very user friendly.
I haven't seen any actual book's that are "mandrake specific".
I think that if you check out mandrake's site then there's a deal that includes a copy of the "ultimate guide", but all mandrakes doc's are on the disc anyway.
I've had gentoo running before now, and while it tended to generally easier to administer, it's a hell of a lot more involved to install it (even with the "stage 3 +GRP" method which is "supposed" to be the easiest) hence back with mandrake 10.
As for the install of mandy 10, well I usually go for boxed set disc's (the dvd powerpack disc only option to be precise). then as long as you either have a "spare" windows partition that's not being used or you scrunch things up and make a seperate partition for it, then you can just tell it to go there - quite straight forward.
I understand that it also has an option just to use some empty space in a windows partition - I haven't used that facility myself, but have heard good thing's of it.
You only need the 1 partition for everything - but if you're not sure that you'd want to settle on mandrake, then you may be better off having seperate boot, swap, root and user partitions - that way, if you wanted to try a different distro, you'd just have to install a different one to your root partition - and as long as you install all the same applications, then there's no reason why you should experience any difficulties, just re boot after the install of a different distro and all of your preferences etc should have stayed the same.
Mandrake's a good place to start, because it's aimed at newb's and desktop system's - that's not to say it's only a newb distro. It has all the "goodies" that the so called "advanced" distro's have, but they're usually packaged in a more user friendly way!
edit - p.s. the "boxed set" mandrake disc's have a few "nuisance" facilities already configured i.e. nvidia drivers, real player, etc etc
I bought a book from Amazon for a class. The ISBN is 0-619-13004-0 and the title is "Linux+ Guide to Linux Certification". Many of the steps in the book are for Redhat, but you can still use it for Mandrake too. You can use the book as a reference or read from cover to cover.