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Overall, Ford's Apache 2 Pocket Reference does what it promises to do. According to the preface, this is to "Summarize Apache's command-line options and the configuration directives for the modules in the standard distribution." Applicable to version 2 of Apache, this guide is a solid companion to the server software. With chapters on the server environment, URL mappng, access controls, caching, SSL support, logging, proxying, and several other more advanced areas of operation, the book is a handy reference to have.

Something to keep in mind, however, is that it is intended to be a reference for administrators; as such, many commands and code examples are far above the ability level of an inexperienced user such as myself. From my standpoint, however, this guide is becoming more and more indispensable as my ability level increases, mainly due to the simplicity of layout.

With an included index, and fairly logical chapter layout, commands are easy to find, and the provided explanations and code examples are easily followed. The main downfall of Apache 2 Pocket Reference, in my opinion, is the text formatting in code examples. It is often confusing, though I wouldn't go so far as to call it difficult to follow, if the command is not previously understood. Again, though, since it is intended as a reference book, I can't really complain.

Overall, I would rate the Apache 2 Pocket Reference as a well-written, useful reference material for users of intermediate experience levels and upward. For the beginner, perhaps fora and http://httpd.apache.org/docs/ are better resources.

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