Hi, I just finished reading the "Getting Started with Cubieboard" (http://bit.ly/1AvORLm) book. For anyone who is starting out, it's a good overview of the Allwinner-based boards from Cubietech and other manufacturers. It discusses the process of downloading an OS distribution, updating and compiling the bootloader and kernel, and configuring your board to work as a home server. Additionally, it touches on how to interact with the hardware, showing the steps to connect a switch and an LED to the board.
For me, the chapter on manually installing an OS was the most helpful. I'm familiar with Linux but far from an expert, and this section explained the various options and decisions that are required when configuring an OS. It shows how to set up the OS on an SSD rather than on the SD card, which is something that many users will want to do.
The chapter on setting up a home server was also useful. While it was not specific to the Cubieboard, the services that are discussed in this chapter are typical of those that would be used in many installations. Topics include remote access, scheduling jobs, setting up web/proxy/file/torrent servers, and installing a personal cloud.
There's a section on the FEX configuration file, how it is used, and how it can be modified. This chapter, as well as the one on troubleshooting, are pretty brief. While the information is good, I would have appreciated more depth. Also, there's an appendix with a cheatsheet of some commonly-used Linux commands. Again, it's not specific to the Cubieboard, but I was glad to have it available as a convenient reference.
Overall, this book is well written, and was easy for me to read and understand. I hope that the authors follow up with a second book that covers more advanced topics, but for those who think, "OK, I just got my Cubieboard, now what do I do with it?", it's a great guide.
Thank you for this review :D