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REVIEW: "Windows XP Personal Trainer", CustomGuide

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  • Rob, grandpa of Ryan, Trevor, Devon & Ha
    BKWNXPPT.RVW 20041221 Windows XP Personal Trainer , CustomGuide, 2005, 0-596-00862-7, U$29.95/C$43.95 %A CustomGuide %C 103 Morris Street, Suite A,
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 18, 2005
      BKWNXPPT.RVW 20041221

      "Windows XP Personal Trainer", CustomGuide, 2005, 0-596-00862-7,
      %A CustomGuide
      %C 103 Morris Street, Suite A, Sebastopol, CA 95472
      %D 2005
      %G 0-596-00862-7
      %I O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.
      %O U$29.95/C$43.95 800-998-9938 fax: 707-829-0104 nuts@...
      %O http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0596008627/robsladesinterne
      %O http://www.amazon.ca/exec/obidos/ASIN/0596008627/robsladesin03-20
      %O tl n rl 1 tc 2 ta 1 tv 3 wq 1
      %P 452 p. + CD-ROM
      %T "Windows XP Personal Trainer"

      The introduction indicates that this is a graphically oriented
      presentation, similar to the "Windows XP Killer Tips" (cf.

      Chapter one contains very basic preliminaries. A complete novice
      could easily start with this work, and it is heartening to see that
      there is much more explanation than is usual with texts of this type.
      The fact that the illustrations are all in black and white may,
      however, create some problems when dealing with the highly coloured
      screens of Windows XP. In addition, I noted a number of errors in
      identifying different items. The windows themselves, and various
      components and operations, are covered in chapter two. Standard tools
      and functions are explained in chapter three, although it seemed
      rather odd to include activities such as font and paragraph
      formatting. Chapter four starts with some basic explanations of files
      and folders before moving on to explain the use of Windows Explorer to
      deal with them. This extends to coverage of alternate views (such as
      Details and dual pane) and also includes a bit of material on the
      DOS/cmd command line interface. Basic desktop customization is
      reviewed in chapter five, and augmented in chapter six. Some entries
      (such as adding entries to the Startup sequence) use procedures that
      may not work in all cases or in broad application. Chapter seven has
      brief introductions to the standard utilities, like Notepad,
      Calculator, and Paint. Some aspects of dealing with digital
      photographs, and a very terse presentation of Windows Media Player,
      are in chapter eight. Maintenance and optimization are outlined in
      chapter nine. These types of activities have inherent risks, and
      while the book makes an effort to explain the options, the
      implications of some functions are not made clear. A short exegesis
      of the Internet and service providers is followed up with fundamental
      documentation for Internet Explorer and Outlook, in chapter ten. An
      elementary precis of accounts, passwords, and logging on is provided
      in chapter eleven. Using a network (mapping and sharing drives, etc.)
      is described in chapter twelve, while the more complicated issue of
      setting up a network is in chapter thirteen. (Some careless examples
      and wording in the latter material might preclude the ability to
      successfully set up even a small home network. 255.304.649.3 is
      definitely not a valid IP [Internet Protocol] address, and the
      importance of the non-routable numbers is not mentioned.)

      For rank newcomers to the computer world (and for the field-dependent
      learners), this book does provide more explanation than is common with
      all too many "beginner's" guides. However, as it moves into more
      sophisticated areas, the material is questionable. This would
      probably be my choice to present to someone completely new to Windows
      XP, but I would want to warn the reader about errors and some of the
      later topics.

      copyright Robert M. Slade, 2004 BKWNXPPT.RVW 20041221

      ====================== (quote inserted randomly by Pegasus Mailer)
      rslade@... slade@... rslade@...
      `*If* he finds out.' `If! If is good.' - Pain and Panic
      http://victoria.tc.ca/techrev or http://sun.soci.niu.edu/~rslade
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