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LinuxProgramming.com: Book Review: The Multi-Boot Configuration Handbook

Oct 21, 2000, 19:47 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Lou Grinzo)

"An exhaustive and nearly exhausting examination of the issues, tools, and techniques related to running more than one operating system on the same computer. If you're interested in running any two or more of Linux, FreeBSD, BeOS, OS/2, DOS, and any flavor of Windows on the same system, this book could be just the thing you need at 2AM when things so seriously wrong, or you simply can't figure out how to do something simple in a multi-OS setup. Highly recommended."

"Somewhere in a parallel universe there exists a world blessed with a computer industry that has at least as much diversity and choice as ours, but mercifully lacks the mind-numbing details we often have to deal with in building multiple-OS systems. Most programmers have run into this at one time or another, either when building test systems, or perhaps when "midnight installing" Linux in a strictly all-Windows work environment. Until we find a way to visit that other universe and its computer utopia, we'll have to continue to endure building and living with what can be some mind-boggling combinations of hardware and software. Given that situation, Roderick Smith's The Multi-Boot Configuration Handbook is a must have for anyone who needs to create and maintain such systems."

"The most obvious question about this book is: How could it possibly take the author over 600 pages to cover this topic? The book is not padded with gratuitous illustrations and screen shots (although it does make quite good use of them), ala the endless code listings in many programming titles we've all seen. The page count comes from the broad scope Smith took in addressing the topic. Instead of talking about just setting up a computer than can boot different OS's and leaving it at that, he spends a good part of the book talking about general interoperability issues, like common file formats, sharing disk space between different OS's, emulators, and backup strategies (you know a book is complete when the author even gets down to backups, everyone's least favorite topic)."

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