Microsoft Windows Server 2003 hasn't been standing still. First, there was SP1, the biggest service pack in Windows history. Second, there've been loads of additional downloads (including SharePoint Services and plenty of Unix interoperability tools). Now there's R2, which integrates all those goodies, together with some new features you can't get any other way. Thankfully, there's an authoritative guide to all these improvements: Mark Minasi's Mastering Windows Server 2003, Upgrade Edition for SP1 and R2.
If you already own Minasi's indispensable, colossal Mastering Windows Server 2003, this book will accompany it, not replace it. Its 24 chapters don't overlap at all with the previous book, except for one chapter on Terminal Services, where SP1's major changes only make sense in the context of a complete discussion of the feature.
What's in the new book? Here's just a taste. From SP1: access-based enumeration, which lets you create a file share and keep people from even seeing folders in that share they don't have access to. Data execution prevention, an improvement in worm-resistance that touches practically all of Windows. The new Security Configuration Wizard. Even a new way to keep folks from stealing data on their USB drives.
And from R2: Print Management Console, which (finally!) centralizes and simplifies printer management. Active Directory Federation Service (ADFS), for improving communication between forests without compromising security. Plus several new storage features: better reporting, more flexible quotas, and improved replication.
All in all, Minasi demystifies dozens of features, many of which have only been documented poorly or obscurely before. Which means his new book will be as useful as his old one: You'll wear it out. Bill Camarda, from the October 2006 Read Only