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Pro JMX: Java Management Extensions by J. Jeffrey Hanson

Book Review Team
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<pre>Author/s : J. Jeffrey Hanson
Publisher : Apress
Category : J2EE
Review by : Lasse Koskela
Rating : 5 horseshoes
</pre>
I wasn't completely new to JMX when I picked up this book. Yet, I felt uncomfortable with how fast the author dove into details that would be relevant to someone who's about to write a JMX implementation, not to a regular user of the technology.
The book's structure is also a bit inconsistent, in my opinion. For example, the author jumps into describing the history and patterns of distributed management system design in chapter 5 -- after two introductory chapters and two very code-focused chapters.
As an advanced manual to itty bitty details of how connectors etc. are implemented, this book is excellent. It's too bad that the back cover doesn't give any indication of this focus. If you're looking for a guide to learn or "just" use JMX, I'd suggest looking elsewhere.


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[ May 12, 2004: Message edited by: Book Review Team ]
Don Stadler
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Posts: 451
Why did you give it a 9, Lasse? I got the feeling you were definately disappointed with Pro JMX. 9 to me means practically perfect.
Did the book get into what kind of problems JMX is useful for at all, or was it just the implementation-level guide you mentioned?
Book Review Team
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Lasse gave 5. My fault.
Lasse Koskela
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Posts: 11962
    
    5
Originally posted by Don Stadler:
Did the book get into what kind of problems JMX is useful for at all, or was it just the implementation-level guide you mentioned?
The book is definitely useful if you're looking at "advanced" stuff like writing your own MBeanServer implementation or building a whole architecture on top of a JMX engine like MX4J (a la JBoss). The author did describe in what scenarios JMX is useful, even if those descriptions were a bit "high-level". There was just some kind of a gap between the high-level stuff and the deep-down stuff. Based on the back cover, for example, I would've expected a lot more guidance for simply "writing MBeans" which is what most people dealing with JMX do in practice.
The "5" I gave was given from a "regular Joe" point of view, which, I hope, is clear from the review.


Author of Test Driven (2007) and Effective Unit Testing (2013) [Blog] [HowToAskQuestionsOnJavaRanch]
Don Stadler
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Joined: Feb 10, 2004
Posts: 451
Thanks, Lasse. Yes that was pretty clear. My point of confusion was the initial 9 horseshoes rating, which led me to think there might be hidden virtues which you failed to mention....

What I'm looking for is a JMX book which

a) gives me the 'ordinary programmer' guide to how to write MBeans.

and b) some guidance about the kind of problems they are useful in solving.

I tend not to use tools just for the sake of using them! Opinions anyone?
[ May 14, 2004: Message edited by: Don Stadler ]
Lasse Koskela
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Joined: Jan 23, 2002
Posts: 11962
    
    5
I read the TSS review chapters of JMX in Action some two years ago when I needed to get up to speed with JMX quickly. It did a good job then. It doesn't cover the latest developments of the JMX spec, though.

I remember hearing less than admirable opinions about JMX: Managing J2ee Applications with Java Management Extensions. Another book that you might want to browse in your local bookstore would be Wiley's JMX Programming.
Pradeep bhatt
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Joined: Feb 27, 2002
Posts: 8919

Originally posted by Book Review Team:
Lasse gave 5. My fault.


Hi "Book Review Team",
I thought you were Lasse.


Groovy
Lasse Koskela
author
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 23, 2002
Posts: 11962
    
    5
Originally posted by Pradeep Bhat:
Hi "Book Review Team",
I thought you were Lasse.

Do I look like a team? :roll:
I'm not that fat... Yet
Pradeep bhatt
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Joined: Feb 27, 2002
Posts: 8919

Originally posted by Lasse Koskela:

Do I look like a team? :roll:
I'm not that fat... Yet


hehe..
Pradeep bhatt
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Joined: Feb 27, 2002
Posts: 8919

Lasse

Which book do you recommend for JMX?
Lasse Koskela
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Joined: Jan 23, 2002
Posts: 11962
    
    5
Originally posted by Pradeep Bhat:
Lasse

Which book do you recommend for JMX?

For learning JMX from scratch, see my 2nd reply to this thread.
Pradeep bhatt
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Joined: Feb 27, 2002
Posts: 8919

Sorry I missed you post.
Book Review Team
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<pre>Author/s : J. Jeffrey Hanson
Publisher : Apress
Category : J2EE
Review by : Valentin Crettaz
Rating : 8 horseshoes
</pre>
According to many sources, software infrastructure is becoming increasingly and needlessly complex to develop and hard to manage. Moreover, the effective management of software and its underlying resources is even harder when dealing with systems operating in highly distributed environments. As a consequence of this sad reality, software maintenance and development costs are skyrocketing in proportions never seen before.

The primary goal of Pro JMX is to expose the value proposition of the Java Management Extensions (JMX) and to demonstrate how JMX can solve the aforementioned issues in both the desktop and enterprise Java worlds. Initially, the author starts by introducing some basic concepts about system resource management and then delves deeper into the three-level model of JMX (instrumentation, agent, and distributed services) by presenting the different types of MBeans and how they are exposed by agents to remote clients. Advanced topics, such as, remote lookups, security, and distributed management system design are also handled. Finally, a comprehensive list of many free and commercial JMX products is given.

Even though I have found this book to be an excellent resource about JMX, my only complaint would be that some parts could have been written in much simpler terms. This detail aside, my advice to all those who find remote software management to be a pain in the neck is to jump off your Aeron chair, grab a copy of Pro JMX at your local bookstore and stick yourself deep into your La-Z-Boy for a relaxing reading experience.


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