Microsoft Internet Information Server 4.0 Sourcebook


Internet Research

ISSN: 1066-2243

Article publication date: 1 December 1998




Arias, R. and Pasch, G. (1998), "Microsoft Internet Information Server 4.0 Sourcebook", Internet Research, Vol. 8 No. 5.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 1998, MCB UP Limited

Microsoft Internet Information Server 4.0 Sourcebook

Microsoft Internet Information Server 4.0 Sourcebook

Michele Petrovsky1998John Wiley & Sons, Inc.660 pp.ISBN 0-471-17805-5US$34.99John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 605 Third Avenue, New York, N.Y.

Keywords Internet, Software

Contrary to what its title suggests, only a fraction of this book is dedicated to the Internet Information Server version 4.0 (IIS 4.0). The bulk of it deals in detail with the installation, configuration and administration of the Windows NT Server 4.0, and presents an outdated and rather useless description of IIS 3.0 and some of its tools.

Petrovsky uses examples mostly related to IIS 3.0, and a few related to the beta 2 release of IIS 4.0. However, according to Microsoft documentation, the search engine bundled with IIS 4.0 (called "Index server") offers new features that are not only powerful but also simplify its configuration. For example, the index server can take advantage of active server pages (ASP), and it provides a Microsoft Management Console (MMC) "snap-in" for easy configuration. The book does not cover any of these features, because the chapter devoted to the index server (chapter 14) is based on an older version (version 1.1) of this engine. Readers who need to start working directly with IIS 4.0 should not have to waste their time learning how to manage software that is different both in appearance and internal features to the version advertised in the title.

Most of the material about Windows NT Server 4.0 is related to the administration of IIS and may be useful for network administrators and Web masters who are not yet familiar with the NT operating system. However, experienced NT users would gladly trade some of the NT chapters for a more detailed coverage of topics like active server pages (ASP) and the Internet Server Application Program Interface (ISAPI).

Writing books about rapidly evolving software is a risky undertaking. In this arena, the publisher has to compete with the books prepared by the software company itself, as well as with the more dynamic media, like related Web sites. By upgrading just the title and spicing up the contents of the back cover, the publishers may manage to increase their sales, but their reputation suffers when readers are thus misled.

Rodrigo Arias Internet ConsultantGrete Pasch Graduate School of Library and Information Science SZB 564, University of Texas at Austin

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