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Erik-Reis, 123RF.com

The Present and Future Network

System administrators and other IT professionals keep an ear to the present and an eye on the future. It doesn't take long for a computer system that was once on the edge of innovation to become noticeably out of date. And when the word comes from management to "do more with less," the twin challenges of catching up and economizing always result in some unique implementation of the twin directives "embrace the new" and "endure the old."

Admin Magazine brings you an innovative mix of both the old and new. We show you new technologies and tools with the potential for changing the way you do your job every day, and we explore unknown features and unheralded hacks for working with the classic tools of the IT environment. All you need to bring is your own experience, your questions, and your knowledge of how a well-tended network should operate.

This issue starts with a story on the state of migration to the IPv6 Internet protocol, including a look at some services that will let you try out IPv6 right now. We also describe the ingenious Cucumber-Nagios add-on, which brings the power of natural language and behavior-driven development to Nagios.

This month's issue includes plenty for Windows admins, with articles on exploring Windows Virtual Hard Disk format using XP mode for compatibility with legacy applications and managing network services with Windows System Center.

We've also got lots on Linux, including an article on the Fedora Unified Network Controller (Func) and one on the Piranha network management tool; plus, we show you a solution for creating an SFTP jail in Solaris.

Read on for more real-world system administration for real networks.