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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Security Warrior
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Cyrus Peikari, Anton Chuvakin
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
You really should check out this book...

Target AudienceIntermediate to advanced programmers, network administrators, or security administrators who need an in-depth understanding of how software and systems can be exploited.
ContentsThis is a detailed guide on how to reverse-engineer and analyze software and systems for vulnerabilities and exploits.
The book is divided into five parts:
Part 1 - Software Cracking - Assembly Language; Windows Reverse Engineering; Linux Reverse Engineering; Windows CE Reverse Engineering; Overflow Attacks
Part 2 - Network Stalking - TCP/IP Analysis; Social Engineering; Reconnaissance; OS Fingerprinting; Hiding The Tracks
Part 3 - Platform Attacks - Unix Defense; Unix Attacks; Windows Client Attacks; Windows Server Attacks; SOAP XML Web Services Security; SQL Injection; Wireless Security
Part 4 - Advanced Defenses - Audit Trail Analysis; Intrusion Detection Systems; Honeypots; Incident Response; Forensics and Antiforensics
Part 5 - Appendix
Review"Know Your Enemy". This phrase is on the cover of the book Security Warrior, and it is an apt subtitle for the book. Very few security books on the market today do more than just tell you about the types of software and network attacks that exist. Peikari and Chuvakin go beyond the "what" of attacks and show you "how" to exploit systems and software.
This book is definitely geared to the experienced developer or network administrator. For instance, the first eight pages is an explanation of assembly language, registers, stacks and the like. Each following chapter on reverse engineering then takes that knowledge and walks you through how to analyze an executable using tools that you can purchase or download. Obviously, if you have absolutely no assembler language knowledge, you'll be lost here. But if you have that background, you'll start to learn how hackers develop exploits, and how you can build more secure software once you understand the vulnerabilities.
At the end of each chapter, the authors list a number of additional references (both books and websites) that can help you to further your understanding of the material presented. This is a great addition if you are looking to focus in on a particular type of attack, like those related to wireless security. At the website for the book, they have also made sample programs available that can be used by the reader to work through exercises in the book. For instance, when they present information on reverse engineering, they also provide a sample program that you can analyze and crack. A perfect way to lead the reader from theory to practical knowledge.
The argument could be made that this book could be used by crackers to learn how to break software. The reality is that this information is already out there. A book like this will help those who are trying to prevent break-ins understand the methods that are being used against them. And henceforth, the sub-title "Know Your Enemy".
One caveat about the book... Be very careful with the material presented in the reverse engineering section. Under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), reverse engineering can be considered a crime in certain circumstances. The authors acknowledge this, and that's probably why they provide their own sample programs for you to work on. Still, just remember that this knowledge, if misused, could land you in some very hot water.
My only complaint about the book... The sumo wrestlers on the cover really needed to be bigger... :-)
ConclusionThis is one of the few books that goes beyond the "what" and deals with the "how" of system and software security. A thorough reading and study of this book will arm you with the tools and knowledge you need to analyze and bight back against software

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Beginning PHP 5 and MySQL: From Novice to Professional
Publisher: Apress
Authors: W. J. Gilmore
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Excellent resource

This book was an excellent introduction to PHP 5. Coming from a J2EE background, Gilmore's precise and detailed explanations helped me understand what PHP 5 had to offer, engineer to engineer. Gilmore's book assumes that you're intelligent, and that you're interested in the details. He then explains those details in depths. All in all, an excellent book.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid
Publisher: Basic Books
Authors: Douglas R. Hofstadter
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Nothing Short of mind-changing, Darwin & Newton beware!

What a terrific book! I'm only halfway through, but am searching for a copy so i can finish reading it. It's truly a tremendous book. I started it thinking I'd learn some more about math (I was introduced to the book by a math teacher) but found way more than that. I literally see the world in a different way, and am constantly thinking about the ideas presented in GEB. It's an intellectual journey you'll never quite recover from. Absolutley Brilliant!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Sams Teach Yourself SQL in 10 Minutes, Third Edition
Publisher: Sams
Authors: Ben Forta
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
A great book if you can get past a few foo-pahs.

If you are a beginner, and have a database to practice SQL on, then this book is for you. If you have never created a database, you will need to in order to use this book. Trouble is, the book tells you how to create the database in Appendix A, and Appendix A is not very thorough. If you succeed in blindly creating your database, the book is excellent thereafter.
Some of the coding does not follow current ANSI standards, but it works.
I was an absolute raw beginner when I picked up this book. It served me well. Had I tried the companion "21 day" book by SAMS first, I would have quit trying before I learned SQL. Thankfully, I read this book first.