File Name: Building Virtual Machine Labs: A Hands-On Guide.pdf
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Virtualization is a skill that most IT or security pros take for granted. The sheer number of choices and requirements can be a daunting challenge to face for beginners and veterans alike. With this book, you'll learn how to build a robust, customizable virtual environments suitable for both a personal home lab, as well as a dedicated office training environment. You will learn how to: - Understand the mechanics of virtualization and how they influence the design of your lab - Build an extensive baseline lab environment on any one of five commonly used hypervisors (VMware vSphere Hypervisor, VMware Fusion, VMware Workstation, Oracle Virtualbox, and Microsoft Client Hyper-V) - Harden your lab environment against VM escapes and other security threats - Configure the pfSense firewall distribution to provide security, segmentation, and network services to your virtual lab - Deploy either Snort or Suricata open-source IDS platforms in IPS mode to further enhance the flexibility, segmentation and security of your lab network - Deploy Splunk as a log management solution for your lab - Reconfigure the provided baseline lab environment to better suit your individual needs Easy to follow steps and illustrations provide detailed, comprehensive guidance as you build your custom-tailored lab. Both IT and security professionals need practice environments to better hone their craft. Learn how to build and maintain your own with Building Flexible Virtual Machine Labs
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
Solid foundation for IT learning!
By Ryan S
I'm going to say that I think this books is foundational. It approaches a challenge that many IT students face with great detail. To learn so many of today's advanced computer and networking issues you need a decent lab. This book will walk you through the initial set up and then some to help you create an exceptional lab environment regardless of what software/hypervisor you choose to build with. A choose your own adventure of virtual lab set up instructions only you're not killed by a circle of snarling chimpanzees on page 36.
Pros - Very detailed. Steps that people new to the technology can follow. Great use of images to ensure reader is seeing what the author thinks they should be seeing. Author knows his stuff.
Cons - Margins are big, font is a little bigger than necessary. Some images could have been smaller to allow some content to flow better, more efficiently. Some grammar and spelling issues but seriously, the content is whats important.
Again, my "cons" are nit picky and easily remedied in the second edition. New author, he's learning too! It really is a good book if you want a solid foundation for IT learning.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful.
Obviously you can run more virtual machines simultaneously with better performance if you have a top of the line ...
By Amazon Customer
I've worked in IT for over a decade, and went through that struggle to break into an IT job, and later an infosec job. Everyone that is trying to break into IT or infosec knows the struggle of not being able to get the job because you don't have experience and can't get experience because you don't have the job. There's ONE reliable way to break through, and that's to build a home lab and learn the skills on your own time. This allows you to be able to enthusiastically and truthfully answer interview questions, or show competence on the job.
Every interview I've done on either side of the table has included the question "tell me about your home lab". If you're lacking experience but you can enthusiastically tell me about how you've setup a virtual lab on your laptop or spare hardware, configured Active Directory, virtual pfsense firewall, SIEM, Apache/IIS, and hacked it and secured it, then you'll win points during the interview.
Once you've broken into IT or infosec you can't rest for long. It's a lifelong learning process and if you don't continue to learn and do in your personal lab then you'll likely get left behind and become irrelevant. Yes, a home lab is a must even for seasoned professionals.
This is the book I wish I'd had many years ago when I was googling all of this info and learning it the hard way. The author does an outstanding job of explaining the underlying hardware and software needed for a virtual lab, and walking the reader through setting it all up step by step. There are multiple free hypervisor options to run your lab, and step by step instructions are included for each one.
You don't need to sink a lot of money into building a virtual lab. All you need is a computer with decent hardware specs and this book to guide you. Obviously you can run more virtual machines simultaneously with better performance if you have a top of the line laptop or desktop, but you can get started and learning with much less.
Every time someone has asked me how to break into IT or infosec I've always said that you need to get busy in your home lab to build your experience, knowing that building that lab is a pretty big challenge for newcomers. Now you have an excellent book that will hold your hand step by step through the process.
I don't often buy books because I have a Safari Books Online membership and can read an unlimited number of books online on any device, but this book was well worth the cost and I learned a few things from it even after so many years in the game.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
A Research Lab Rosetta Stone
By Trent T.
Wonderful step by step manual with screenshots. Content is an A+. There is a lot of content in this book (I mean look at it's size). The publishing itself is a bit lacking. (grainy pictures, needing edits). A second edition pumped out by an actual publisher would make this a 5 star purchase. This is a must have for anyone wanting to safely learn a thing or two about the tools at a security engineer's disposal.
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