Series: Secrets (Book 70)
Paperback: 672 pages
Publisher: Wiley; 1st edition (January 10, 2007)
Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1.4 x 9.3 inches
Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (65 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #2,054,910 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #25 in Books > Computers & Technology > Operating Systems > Windows > Windows Desktop > Windows Vista #1997 in Books > Textbooks > Computer Science > Operating Systems #4522 in Books > Computers & Technology > Software > Microsoft
Somewhere inside these 645 pages is a terrific computer book desperate to get out.Unfortunately, the useful tidbits are buried by the jargon, disjointed outline, and the wince-inducing writing. The authors say "functionality" instead of feature, "enabled" instead of On, and (I kid you not) "circular in nature" instead of "round."But it's even worse that huge chunks of Windows Vista get no coverage at all! Here are a few topics that don't appear in the book, or at least the index: Scanning. Faxing. Flash drives. Monitors. Dial-up connections. Safe Mode. Hibernation. Filename extensions. Network projectors. ReadyBoost. Dynamic disks. Shadow Copy. Burning CDs or DVDs at the desktop. Problem reports. Driver rollback. Driver signing. Ease of Access Center.And there's no information at all about Vista's amazing new speech recognition--only a passing reference in the Tablet PC chapter, even though it works on any Vista PC.So if you get this book, you'll also need ANOTHER book if you want comprehensive coverage of Vista.Meanwhile, huge swaths of the book are padded by pointless tables and listings. Do we really need *26 pages* of symbol-font printouts?Or a half-page table that explains the difference between Small Icons, Medium Icons, Large Icons, and Extra Large Icons? (The table says that "Medium Icons are similar in style to Large Icons, but smaller." Wow, really!?)There are lots of illustrations, but most are full-screen shots, shrunken down to to fit the page. The result is that you can't read any of the text in them.The authors of this book clearly know a lot. But they should have been paired up with writers, editors, and indexers who could help them set that information free.
I really had high hopes for this book as I read Paul Thurrott's articles and am on some of his email lists.My conclusion about this book is that it is more the missing user manual than a real techie book with good insider's technical knowledge. The last time Microsoft included a concise user manual with windows was with Windows 3.11. This book perfectly fills that void. If you are a home user or are trying to enhace your BASIC knowledge of vista, this is a good book.If you are a technical professional in the field, this book is not going to give you any epiphanies. I also didn't like that there seemed to be a healthy dose of filler in the book as well. There are pages upon pages about fonts including many more pages of font character sets. I would guess that less than 1% of the people that buy the book will have any interesting reading that many pages about fonts nor will many people use the font character sets that the authors printed over many pages.I'm Sorry to say that I'm pretty let down by this book. Especially considering that about 90% of the "Secrets" in this book are not secrets but are fairly common knowledge to advanced home and technical users.Please gentlemen, you both have the technical skills and contacts to make a much better book than this. Instead it seems you've made a book that was stuffed with filler and basic info so that you could be one of the first to market after the release of vista.
I bought this book before I upgraded to Vista. I am glad I have it. The book covers everything from which version to buy to upgrading- including some insights about the gotchas found in every microsoft product. The book is well organized. There are plenty of screenshots which are useful because Microsoft has completed changed the look and feel of the Windows Operating system. Everything is different, and this book is useful for finding all the right buttons, and getting up to speed on the operating system without too much developer speak or needless rambling.I find myself turning to this book to figure out how to do a certain task- burn a DVD,CD, transfer files, make a movie, download music, etc....I especially liked the tips throughout the book as it's often the subtle insights that lead to wasting less time wondering how to do something!If you are planning to upgrade or have acquired a machine with Windows Vista, this book is a must have.
I bought this book because of Brian Livingston. I read his weekly ezine called Windows Secrets and have learned a lot from him and his cohorts over the years. After installing Windows' Vista I wanted to do so much more with it so I bought the book. After reading the entire thing, not one of my questions was answered. If you are looking for a book that just gives the highlights of Vista, buy the book. If your looking for a book that reveals the secrets of the techy side of things, keep looking.
A lot of the information is as relevant to XP or OS X as it is relevant to Vista. Mundane topics such as enjoying digital photos, ripping CDs, composing and sending email, managing your calendar... There are seventy-three pages covering fonts and character sets. Only six pages of narrative are dedicated to PowerShell. Yet fonts are not new to Vista and PowerShell is.
If you are skilled with computers this book is not for you. I was very disappointed. No "secrets" here. Just common everyday stuff I already knew. Previous Windows Secrets books were MUCH better.
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