There is one more thought I want to add: I don’t consider this book complete yet.
This doesn’t sound like the best endorsement, so let me explain:
Apple is not only deprecating technologies for macOS deployments (imaging, NetBoot), but the pace for macOS releases is changing as well. I started writing this book in October, shortly after the release of High Sierra. However, with every update to 10.13 it became clear that Apple was not standing still. They kept iterating, sometimes quite drastically.
The iMac Pro introduced Secure Boot and we realized that NetBoot-based workflows would need to be retired much faster than initially assumed. Secure Boot also makes booting off external drives quite inconvenient. While this is great from a security standpoint, it removes yet another option for installation workflows.
Then they announced that macOS Server would be stripped of nearly all services, again including NetBoot/NetInstall. 10.13.4 added a very useful option to
startosinstall. Just recently, Apple changed the infamous HT208020 article (a.k.a. Imaging Killer). I was adding, removing and rewriting parts of the book until the literal last minute.
Not even the proofreaders have seen the final version. (Can’t blame the remaining typos on them.) Existing workflows (or planned workflows) had to be adapted for the new hardware and updates.
I don’t expect this will stop at 10.13.4, or 10.13.5 or any time soon. We will have to update our practices to be more adaptable, and that includes writing books. I expect that 10.13.5 and future updates, new hardware with new features, and then 10.14 (whatever Apple will call it) will bring more changes.
Digital books are software, and can be treated as such. I wanted to “release early and often.”
When you buy the book now, you will receive new versions from the iBooks Store when I publish updates with new information, workflows and solutions. I plan to keep this up with the remaining 10.13 updates and all the way to the 10.14 release (presumably this fall). So by the end of this year, you should have a book with great information on how to install High Sierra and how to upgrade to and install 10.14.
Like for an app in the App Store, I have to consider how long it makes fiscal sense to maintain free updates. After the 10.14 release, I will evaluate the effort spent and make new plans from there. I will certainly write about that here.
There are also some parts of the book that I would have liked to have a bit more detail. I had set the myself the goal to get the book out before WWDC and 10.13.5, so some things had to put on the ‘later’ list. So, in addition to new content forced on us by updates and upgrades, I will keep improving, fixing, and adding to useful content as well.
I have done this with my “Packaging” book, which is on its seventh update. (The eighth is in preparation.)
I believe that “macOS Installation for Apple Administrators,” as it is now, already has a lot of great information and is well worth buying and reading. It will get even better.
At the end, a short request for help: The book is self-published. There is no big marketing machine behind this. If you like the book, then please leave a review on the iBooks Store. Apple’s stores segregate reviews by region, so every single review makes a big difference.
You can also help by recommending the book to another MacAdmin or presenting it at your local MacAdmins meeting, or just by simply sharing or re-tweeting my posts on social media.