Generally, when a new version of software comes out I like to spend some time just reading and familiarizing myself with what is new before I dive in and start tinkering. This means both searching through community blog posts as well as occasionally plunking down some cash on Amazon for a book. My first recommendation if you are buying technical books of any flavor is to buy a digital rather than paper copy. I love the user experience of a good old fashioned physical book when reading a novel or some quality nonfiction, but when it comes to technical books I want two things: portable, and searchable.
Mastering System Center 2012 Operations Manager by Bob Cornelissen, Paul Keely, Kevin Greene, Ivan Hadzhisky, Sam Allen, and Telmo Sampaio is highly readable, which is pretty rare.
There are very few technical titles that I have started and been willing to read more or less cover to cover without succumbing to boredom. Admittedly, I skimmed the beginning part on ITIL MOF et cetera–useful but nothing that hasn’t been said before– and the Powershell section at the end is nice as a reference, but feels a bit like it was tacked on last minute. With that said, I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is new to SCOM or who works with SCOM, but doesn’t get to play with it as their full-time job.
I agree with the comments of some of the Amazon reviews that “Mastering” might not be the best title for this series, but titles are the children of publishing companies and marketing folk, not authors.
At least for the moment, this is the best overview of SCOM 2012 in book form out there right now.
The general System Center 2012 Unleashed book which touches on each of the 2012 system center releases has some noteworthy names attached to it, but based on my reading a few months ago it came out way too early to have anything really useful in it.
I will reserve final judgement until after March 7th when the new System Center 2012 Operations Manager Unleashed title comes out, but at 1536 pages I suspect that book will be more reference and less reading.