I’ve always been a fan of most of the Step By Step books issued by Microsoft and this book is no exception. It actually gives you more than you expect, including a small, abbreviated section on where to download SharePoint Foundation and how to install it.

There are a host of new features in SharePoint Designer 2010 and this book handles most of what the average person who will be using it needs and more content on what the more advanced user will need, including Business Connectivity Services (the new replacement for Business Data Connectivity in the 2007 version).

Not only is this (as the title mentions) a Step-by-Step tutorial, but there are plenty of screen shots to help guide you through the processes, so you’ll know exactly what you are supposed to be seeing along the way.

I was quite happy with the in-depth handling of Workflows (starting with an ‘Understanding section), along with an entire chapter regarding Branding, and another regarding Master Pages. After coming from the ASP.Net development world, I kind of take Master Pages for granted, normally, but this book makes sure that the reader knows about Master Pages from the ground up, providing an entire chapter on the subject.
But the book doesn’t stop there. There is an entire section on Administrative tasks, along with another on Managing Web Content in the SharePoint Server environment.

All in all, this book takes you from the basics of exploring SPD and how it is laid out, to working with SharePoint sites in the designer , Lists and Libraries in SharePoint all the way through to the more advanced subjects mentioned earlier. This is not only a good book for learning SharePoint Designer 2010, but I’m going to keep it in my library as a reference.