Saturday, January 23, 2010

Book Review: Windows 7 Inside Out

I've been diving into this book, and it has turned out to be a treasure trove of information. Want to know how to set up custom file sharing settings? How about all of those crazy questions about wireless printing? This book will answer those questions, and even give you details about the tech stuff inside of Windows 7.

Windows 7 is turning out to be a winner. It works well, doesn't give me a ton of popup messages, and does what it's supposed to do. I still have questions about it, and want to know more about tweaking and tuning it, and Windows 7 Inside Out answers those questions.

The authors, Bott, Siechert, and Stinson, are experts in their field, and were privy to insider information during the development of the operating system, or OS. They know what they're talking about. They also had almost unlimited access to Microsoft for tech research, and they ironed out the details. The accuracy of the text is uncanny. If the book says to "click here for X," you can count on clicking there for "X."

The thickness of the book is daunting, but don't let that fool you. The book is well laid out, and the table of contents makes sense. I have no trouble finding the information that I want.

I particularly like chapter 8, "Organizing Files and Information." This is a must-read for anyone using, or thinking about using, Windows 7. Chapter eight goes over the layout of Windows Explorer, and the features that you can now have mucho control over (in a much more intuitive way than in the past). The authors even cover what to be careful about, and where to use caution. They go into greater detail in later chapters.

The chapter on security is something that I wish previous versions of Windows came with! If you set up a home network, you should read this chapter before you go "live." This book will also walk you through the actual setup of your home network. Want to plug your computer into your modem, your router, or go wireless? "Inside and Out" will walk you through it.

Throughout the text, there are little "windows" of text that are labeled as "Inside Out," like the title of the book. These are snippets of insight into the actual workings of the OS. They explain what Windows is really doing when you click on something, or choose a certain menu option. These little gems make the text more palatable, and add a touch of realism.

The book covers so much, that it would be unreasonable to expect a full account here. There is ten tons of info there, and it even includes a fully searchable electronic version on CD, with a few extras.

In a nutshell, this text will help anyone that is wanting to learn the ins and outs of Windows 7. The table of contents will guide you toward your target, and the information is spot on. This book is a keeper.


Gary said...

I'm fixin' to get a new laptop, and Costco has an HP w/17" monitor, 4gb RAM and 500gb HD for under $700. I will check to see if it is loaded with Windows 7 or an earlier version of shoots and slides.

Of course you understand that you will now be my PC guru... that is unless I opt for a MACBook :D

Just John said...

Gary, if it's not pre-loaded with 7, it probably comes with a free upgrade. It's worth the trouble to upgrade!

Macs are nice, if you don't like money. Odd that they now have Intel processors and run Windows...

Anonymous said...

So, John, I take it that you like this Windows 7, that it's NOT the utter BS and disaster that Vista was?

B Woodman

Just John said...

Yep; fair assessment. Gates' goons finally got one right from the start.

SJBill said...


I bought a Dell Core i7 laptop running 64 bit Windows 7 -- a screamer! All applications worked just fine. Drivers for pre-existing devices were available, so everything works.

So far, the OS seems pretty decent, but will get the book on your recommendation.

My thanks and S/F!

Lisa Moore said...

This particular OS has come a long way. Despite the negative reception of the previous version, this version really takes the cake. There are a lot of new features in this version which aren't evident or obvious during the first time you use it. I hope this book covers all of them.