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  Building Linux Virtual Private Networks (VPNs)
Words from the back cover:
Building Linux Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) focuses on showing you how to get your Linux VPN up and running as quickly as possible. You will learn VPN theory and fundamentals and will master important techniques and tools needed to design and setup your VPN in a reliable, secure, and cost-effective fashion.

This book offers concise, step-by-step instructions for building VPNs based on both standard protocols (IPSec, SSL, SSH, PPTP) and popular Linux VPN solutions (VTun, cIPe, tinc). Through numerous examples and proven practices, you will gain important insights into choosing a VPN solution, installing and configuring it, setting up routing, configuring firewalls, measuring performance, and much more.

Contents Overview:
•Section I: Virtual Private Networks
o Chapter 1: Introduction to VPNs
o Chapter 2: VPN Fundamentals
•Section II: Implementing Standard VPN Protocols
o Chapter 3: Building a VPN with SSH and PPP
o Chapter 4: Building a VPN with SSL/TLS and PPP
o Chapter 5: IPSec
o Chapter 6: FreeS/WAN
o Chapter 7: PPTP
•Section III: Implementing Non-standard VPN protocols
o Chapter 8: VTun
o Chapter 9: cIPe
o Chapter 10: tinc
•Appendices
o Appendix A: Commercial Solutions
o Appendix B: Selecting a cipher
o Appendix C: Glossary

The Review:
This book is great. The first two chapters let you know everything you need to know about VPNs and network topologies, such as info on firewalls, TCP/IP addressing, and routing. The rest of the chapters explain in depth with diagrams and step-by-step instructions about implementing the Standard or Non Standard VPN Protocols, giving you a choice on the best way to design your VPN.

One thing I was surprised to see was the discussion of the PPTP protocol from Chapter 7 in a Linux book. I guess there are times when you need other certain protocols, best described by the authors:

"There are times when you must support PPTP, either because you are forced to connect to a server that only runs PPTP or because you need to support remote Windows machines. In either of these cases, we offer our deepest sympathies.”

Another plus is the ability to download all the code used in the book from their website, especially for those of you that don’t want to spend the time to type the code yourselves.

Conclusion:
Working in the industry for the last 6 years with network administration and security, I wish I had known about this book at the time I was learning about VPNs and firewalls. I haven’t found a better source for info on Linux Virtual Private Networks anywhere.

Review ID Number: 590
  Product Details
New Riders
Review Date: 2004-01-24
Reviewer: Chad Laity
Rating: 10 out of 10
 
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