Using Windows XP Professional

Book Review: "Special Edition, Using Windows XP Professional" by Robert Cowart and Brian Knittel is a helpful reference guide for anyone making the move to XP.

"Special Edition, Using Windows XP Professional" is the latest offering from the QUE Corporation on Microsofts latest operating system. Co-authors Robert Cowart and Brian Knittel do a great job of showing the newest features of this OS.

Seasoned Windows users can skim over the earlier chapters on preparing hardware, installing software and looking at the user interface. The chapters on connecting to the Internet and the network can also be treated as reference materials. Where this book shines, however, is in how it deals with the subject of setting up multiple users on the same system. Although this is not a new feature to Windows 2000 users, the interface and the way in which this feature is implemented in XP is new. The authors do a nice job of explaining the interface and the nuances of the tools.

The writing format and style are conducive to learning and being productive. With many subject tips and troubleshooting sections in each chapter, the problems that can be expected are anticipated and the solutions are provided. This is quite helpful to the XP user, particularly one who encounters problems and may not be confident enough to resolve issues on their own.

This title also comes with an interactive CD-ROM that includes a series of video lessons hosted by the authors that shows the XP interface and how the user can make use of its not-so-common features. This video is optimized to run in Apples QuickTime version 5 and is a little choppy when it is run on a slower CD-ROM device, which kind of makes you wonder why the training video for a Windows operating system is done in Apple software, but that is another matter.

All things considered, this is a quality book written by competent authors, published by a seasoned publishing house. If you are making the move to XP, then this is the reference book that you should have on your computer desk at the ready.

  • Title: Special Edition Using Windows XP Professional
  • Authors: Robert Cowart
  • Publisher: McGraw Hill (
  • Length: 1,217 pages
  • Price: $49.99

Peter MacIntyre is involved in custom software development, design and architecture. He lives in Prince Edward Island, Canada.