The plan was to go from ‘Packaging’ right to the obvious sequel ‘Automated Packaging’. And I am working on that book. However, since AutoPkg uses property list files for the recipes, I needed to introduce property list file formats and all the tools, quirks and caveats.
So the sidenote on property lists grew into an appendix. And it kept growing. Then I thought it would be a waste to explain property list files but not talk about preference files. And once you explained preference files, you should also introduce configuration profiles, especially custom profiles. Profiles are property lists after all.
So I moved the chapter on property lists into a new iBook. And I added chapters on preferences and configuration profiles, leading to a cumbersome, but memorable title. (‘PR3’ for short.)
So, here we are, not a sequel, but a ‘sidequel’. I will of course continue writing ‘Automated Packaging’ once this book is published.
PR3 is not quite done yet. I am still getting great feedback from the proofreaders. (Thank you!) But all the small pieces that are still missing or need refinement should fall in to place next week and I aim to release on March 20. (Deep breaths!)
And there will be updates to the iBook (like with ‘Packaging’) as I find more typos and learn more in future.
As with ‘Packaging’ the main target audience is either an administrator who is new to the Mac platform or a Mac user who is new to Mac administration and management. However, the proofreaders have all told me, there are many nuggets and pieces of new information for experienced admins as well.
You can also pre-order and get the book automatically, as as soon as I press the ‘Publish’ button!
Overall, writing these books is a great experience. It is a great chance to dive deeply into a topic. It is also a great chance to give back to the community that is amazingly generous in sharing knowledge and experience. There are many more topics on my list that I would like to write books on.