Author: Robert Cowart & Brian Knittel
Aimed at: Difficult to say
Cons: Covers far too much to be interesting or useful
Reviewed by: Harry Fairhead
This is a huge book of well over 1000 pages. It's big and it's printed in blue - to calm the reader down one must suppose. The paper and printing quality isn't brilliant so many of the screen dumps are fuzzy - but in the main this doesn't matter because you don't really need to see them clearly as they don't convey a great deal of information. In fact this is also true of a great deal of the book. It is described as "In Depth" in the title and this it is - as long as you take it to mean in mind numbing detail from the most basic aspects of using Notepad and Paint to setting up a network.
The book does include some quite interesting bits of information, the sort of thing that makes it worth dipping into. For example, I didn't know that Web View is still the basic technology behind the customisable folders. However, the majority of the content is just a fairly detailed account of the mostly obvious - and you have to ask yourself why read a 1000 page book just for the benefit of the occasional interesting nugget of information. Also by being a complete presentation of Windows 7 it also covers just about all of the features that were in Vista and XP before it. This is, not a good way to add the incremental new knowledge you need to tackle problems with Windows 7.
There are lots of troubleshooting section but these too only cover the fairly obvious - if you have a networking fault make sure the cables are connected, if your modem doesn't connect to your ISP perhaps it is incompatible. There are many difficult problems that arise when using Windows 7 and it is unlikely that this book is going to help.
If you are looking for an encyclopedic overview of Windows 7, mostly at the novice user level but scattered with the occasional less-than-obvious comment, then you might want to consider buying this book. On the other hand if you just want to solve a problem then an Internet search is going to be more effective.