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March 4, 2004

"Squid: The Definitive Guide": Web Caching with Squid to Get the Most from Your Internet Connection

Sebastopol, CA--The giant squid is an intriguing creature. Cousin to mussels, snails, and octopi, it is the largest spineless animal in the world and sports the largest eye of any living creature (as big around as a dinner plate). It is also an highly intelligent and alert predator, accelerating relentlessly after its prey by means of water-jet propulsion. Although the popular web caching software Squid was not named for this interesting cephalopod (rather, the code name it was given during its development simply stuck), its intelligent design, speed, and flexibility suggest that it has plenty in common with its namesake. Scientists know little about the deep-sea squid, as it has never been studied live in its natural habitat. Likewise, network and system admins have found information about the web-caching Squid equally elusive. Until now. Squid: The Definitive Guide (O'Reilly, US $44.95) by Squid creator Duane Wessels, draws together complete details on installing, configuring, and running Squid in one accessible volume.

The most popular web caching software in use today, Squid works on a variety of platforms, including Linux, FreeBSD, and Microsoft Windows. There are numerous arguments for web caching with Squid: it improves network performance by reducing the amount of bandwidth used when surfing the web and makes web pages load faster. It can even reduce the load on your web server. As Wessels explains, "By caching and reusing popular web content, Squid allows you to get by with smaller network connections. It also protects the hosts on your internal network by acting as a firewall and proxying your internal web traffic. You can use Squid to collect statistics about the traffic on your network, prevent users from visiting inappropriate web sites at work or school, ensure that only authorized users can surf the Internet, and enhance your privacy by filtering sensitive information from web requests."

Squid: The Definitive Guide will help readers configure and fine-tune Squid for their particular situation. Newcomers to Squid will learn how to download, compile, and install code. Seasoned users of Squid will be interested in the chapters that tackle advanced topics such as high-performance storage options, rewriting requests, HTTP server acceleration, monitoring, debugging, and troubleshooting Squid.

A comprehensive guide to all aspects of web caching with Squid, the book covers the following topics in detail:

  • Compiling and installing Squid
  • Running Squid
  • Using Squid's sophisticated access controls
  • Tuning disk storage for optimal performance
  • Configuring your operating system for HTTP interception
  • Forwarding requests to other web caches
  • Using redirectors to rewrite user requests
  • Monitoring Squid with the cache manager and SNMP
  • Using Squid to accelerate and protect HTTP servers
  • Managing bandwidth consumption with Delay Pools
  • Considered long overdue by network and sys admins, Squid: The Definitive Guide provides much-needed help to those tasked with setting up and maintaining one or more Squid caches. Squid novices and veterans alike will appreciate the wealth of valuable information gathered into this book.

    Additional Resources:

    Squid: The Definitive Guide
    Duane Wessels
    ISBN 0-596-00162-2, 441 pages, $44.95 US, $65.95 CA
    order@oreilly.com
    1-800-998-9938; 1-707-827-7000

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