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Programming Principles and Practice Using C++

This is a "beginners" programming book for C++. It's about 1200 pages, and that alone probably made its first editors wince. Big books are expensive to produce and end up carrying big price tags. The editors surely groaned in pain when told that the author also intended to use color liberally throughout the text - and not just as informative markers here and there, but also for photographs! That costs even more production money.

Title Last Comment
Hardening Linux  
- Oh, a book on iptables? No. Oh, sure, this does cover iptables, but this is a complete, soup to nuts Linux security book, starting with installation and proceeding right through to what to do if you have been breached. About the only thing not covered is web server security which, as the author explains, needs a whole other book. -

Buffer Overflow Attacks  
- This is a deeply disturbing book. I thought things were getting better, that buffer overflows were going away as programmers learn to avoid them. but the authors explain that is an illusion: it's just that the reporting slacked off. -

Virus Research and Defense  
- This book by Symantec's chief researcher should scare you, because the bad guys are winning the virus wars. This book can be heavy geek territory. If you aren't fascinated by the details of executable programs and the like, some of this will be hard sledding. But if you are the type who likes to take things apart to see how they work, this is for you. -

Sendmail Milters  
- With libmilter, sendmail can call other programs to help determine the disposition of a message. There can be multiple external programs, and sendmail makes calls at different points -

PHP 5 Power Programming  
- I've really been meaning to get into PHP. I can see the advantages, but as usual, lack of time to learn enough to be comfortable has kept me mired in my old cgi includes. I was happy to see this book, and hoped it wouldn't be too far over my head. -

Point and click Linux!  
- I groaned when I first looked at this book. First, there's that exclamation point in the title. Bitter experience has taught me that an exclamation point usually means something I am not interested in. Second, there are "Easy to follow videos on DVD" included with the book. That's often an "Uh-Oh" by itself. Then there's a splash above the title "Have Linux up and running in 5 minutes or less with the incredible SimplyMEPIS bootable CD-ROM " -

Linux|Unix Application Development  
- If I had to pick one word for this book, I'd choose "thorough". Give me the luxury of a few more and I'd add "sumptuous", "enthralling" and maybe even "riveting". -

Perl 6 Now: The Core Ideas Illustrated with Perl 5  
- Perl 6 scares me. It probably wouldn't have shaken me up so much if I hadn't read Larry Wall's State of the Onion 2003. I'm sure Larry didn't intend to frighten anyone, but he is so intense and often so obscure. He can be fun to read, too, but his expositions on Perl 6 really made me a bit nervous. I'm not alone, at least with regard to fearing Perl 6 -

Randal Schwartz's Perls of Wisdom  
- Randal Schwartz was co-author of the first and second editions of the Perl Camel Book> and of another of my favorites, Learning Perl -

Automating Unix and Linux Administration  
- This isn't a book for rank beginners; it assumes that you know a thing or two about system administration -

Mac OS X Power Hound  
- 0ob Griffiths is the creator of Macosxhints.com and you could describe this book as a loosely organized version of the better hints and tips you'll find there. -

Understanding Open Source and Free Software Licensing  
- I honestly didn't think I'd find this as interesting as I did. As important as licenses are, an annotated listing of them didn't sound like anything I wanted to flop back on the couch with. However, the author has managed to make this both interesting and educational. -

Linux|Unix Cookbook Second Edition  
- When this book fell out of its shipping envelope, it made quite a thunk as it hit my desk. No wonder: at almost 800 pages, this is quite a chunk of reading material. -

- I'm sure that the Spamassassin developers are doing the best they can, but the sad fact is that the spammers are winning the war. -

How Linux Works  
- Subtitled "What every superuser should know", this is a good techie overview of Linux. This is not the book you hand to Grandma (unless Grandma is a system admin), but it is a very well done Linux guide/introduction. -

Creating Cool Web Sites  
- I think the one thing that impressed me the most about this book was that the author didn't mention FrontPage or any other Web creation tool. He didn't even mention using Word, other than as a cautionary "Don't". No, he suggests Notepad, Mac TextEdit, or vi, pico etc. That alone is so refreshing. -

The Official GNOME 2 Developer's Guide  
- I'm more of a command line kind of guy, but there are things better done in a graphical treatment. When this is true, I often resort to HTML, but that isn't always suitable either. Most of what I've read about GUI programming has left me feeling daunted by the learning curve, and the writing itself has mostly been difficult to read and unsatisfying -

Mac OS X 10.3 Panther Little Black Book  
- Actually, there's nothing "little" about this. It's over 500 pages of very precise and specific Panther detail. Don't let the redundant title (OS Ten 10.3 ???) set you back: this is a good guide to Panther. -

Wicked Cool Shell Scripts  
- I often take a dim view of books that use superlatives in their titles. I also don't think there is anything "wicked cool" about shell scripting in general: if you need anything complex at all, Perl or something else is probably a much better way to to it. Shell scripting gets awfully nasty awfully fast. -

LOD Communications, Inc.
Postfix: The Definitive guide  
- I have been wanting to take a peek at Postscript for some time I liked Kyle's clear writing and that he included information on multiple domains, security and spam blocking -

Windows XP Annoyances  
- It's misnamed because it really mostly is not about annoyances. Honestly, unlike earlier versions of Windows, there aren't enought real irritations in XP to make a book out of. Sure, there are some stupidities, like the "Category" view for control panel, and the stupidly simplified Search, and this does cover those things and more. But mostly this is a technical guide to XP - setting it up, fixing problems, using it. There are some bigger and perhaps more inclusive XP books out there, but I found this to have reasonable depth of coverage without belaboring the obvious. -

Open Source Network Administration  
- Many tools for monitoring, and troubleshooting networks are included; Sysmon, Oak, Neo, MRTG, tcpdump, netstat, traceroute, etc.. are all covered. -

Linux|Unix Server Hacks  
- I wasn't as enamored of this as were some other reviewers. I wasn't completely unhappy, I don't have any real dislike or serious complaints, but I wouldn't give it the near 5 star rating that Amazon has for it. Maybe 4 stars. It's "good", just not "great". -

Apache Cookbook  
- They included discussion of situations for which there is no satisfactory answer - at least that stops you from searching fruitlessly. -

iPod The Missing manual  
- A Mac user probably will find this helpful, though not indispensable. A Windows user probably needs this much more though. Regardless, buy it. It's well written, and will help you decide what model and accessories you actually need because it will show you all the things you didn't realize an iPod was good for. -

PC Hardware in a Nutshell (3rd Edition)  
- Hardware has never been my strong point, but after more than 20 years of doing this stuff day after day, I have become fairly proficient. I remember when I first opened a PC to upgrade memory. This was back when memory chips had legs on them and came in tubes. Replacing these things was not easy because the little legs were so easy to bend and even break. The chips weren't cheap, and my palms were drenched in nervous sweat. It all worked though, and over the years I've become much more sanguine about hardware in general. There's nothing I'm really afraid to tackle, though there are things I'd just rather not do, either because the procedures are tricky or just more difficult than I'd like. I don't like replacing motherboards, and I don't like replacing almost anything on those very small desktop units where you have to take out floppy drives and cd's just to get at memory. I CAN do those things, but I try hard not to. -

Linux|Unix and the Unix Philosophy  
- The first few chapters were the worst. First, the author's writing style is pretty flat and uninteresting. But more importantly, this is all old hat, sheesh we know all that, tell me something new - it's boring for anyone who has been around Unix for any length of time. -

Sad Macs, Bombs, and other Disasters (4th Edition)  
- Sad Macs, Bombs, and other Disasters (4th Edition) The back cover blurb for this says "Used by Apple's technical support staff". I could believe that, but I'll bet hard cash they aren't using it to support OS X. -

Linux|Unix Security Cookbook  
- Enjoyable and useful. I didn't really expect to learn a whole lot from this, but surprisingly (and happily), I did. It's jam packed with practical advice, and avoids the too often seen slant of many security books that don't understand the concept of "good enough". -

Mac OS X Hacks  
- The first thing I liked about this is something we are starting to see more frequently: some use of color in the text. Photos and screen shots are still black and white (still too expensive to do that much yet), but section headings are nicely set off in purple. Such a small thing, and probably something that will become very common soon, but it enhanced my reading experience. -

Programming Mac OS X, A Guide for UNIX Developers  
- The intent of this book is to introduce Unix developers to Mac OS X. As such, I think it does a pretty good job. -

Mac OS X in a Nutshell  
- This is one of the better Nutshell books. At close to 800 pages, it's jam packed with everything you would want to know about OS X commands. -

Understanding the Unix Kernel  
- I think that part of the problem is the deliberate "bottom-up" approach: this starts out in the first chapter dealing with memory addressing at the hardware level and goes on from there. -

Learning Unix for Mac OS X  
- This is a pleasant introduction to Unix that someone just starting out with Mac OS X will find very useful. Don't bother with this if you are already experienced with Unix or Linux, but if you've never been at a Unix command line in your life, this is a good place to start. -

Halting the Hacker  
- This isn't a heavily technical book. Unlike many of the other security books I've reviewed, this isn't full of tcpdump traces and the like. It is, however, a really excellent overview of security that can introduce a system administrator or a general manager to the subject. -

Mac OS X for Unix Geeks  
- Way out of date now - don't bother. This book lives up to its title. I would have wished it were a bit more than it is, but I can't complain too much: it is a quick introduction to Mac OS X for those of us already comfortable in the Unix world. -

Mac OS X Disaster Relief  
- The problem here is that a LOT of this book was written about early versions of Mac OS X -

Running Linux (4th Edition)  
- "Running Linux (Second Edition) " was published in 1996, and Linux has changed a lot since then. You don't (or shouldn't) need a lot of the excellent technical advice offered within, simply because Linux has evolved beyond the problems that made such advice necessary. Also, much of the advice that is still valid is old hat to folks familiar with other Unix versions such as SCO or Solaris. A person only familiar with Windows will get much more out of this than people already running a Unix OS. -

Applescript in a nutshell  
- Applescript is Apples's scripting language. Although Mac OS X includes Perl, Python, Ruby and more, it also has Applescript. Right off the bat I might as well say it: I don't like Applescript very much. It's picky and arbitrary, and anything but user friendly. On the other hand, if you aren't trying to do too much with it, it is very useful for controlling Mac OS X applications, and you can always farm the harder parts out to Perl or whatever. Or vice versa: you can use "osascript" within shell scripts even. -

Leo Laporte's Technology Almanacs  
- Leo Laporte has pulled off the rather amazing feat of writing books enjoyable by just about any level of computer user. -

Mac OS X (second edition) - The Missing Manual  
- I love that Apple has gone in this direction. It's wonderful, because it opens up whole new worlds for Unix folk. It also helps the Linux software market and vice versa: if you write software for one, a port to the other should certainly be a lot easier than a port to Windows. -

Sendmail Performance Tuning by Nick Christensen  
- When I first picked this up I really didn't expect much. I expected that this would be a rather ordinary rehash of typical performance tuning advice -

The Future of ideas by Lawrence Lessig  
- Have you ever thought that if the telephone company had not been under monopoly constraints the Internet as we know it might never have happened? -

TCP/IP Network Administration  
- Examples are now given for both Sun and Linux systems, and both Samba and Apache get good attention. My first edition is 454 pages; this is now almost 700. -

Windows Admin Scripting Little Black Book  
- This is a jumbled and disorganized pile of stuff. The "stuff" isn't necessarily bad stuff, but it's a mess of registry hacks, Kixstart and WSH scripts, shareware utiliies and DOS batch files all piled together with very little coherence. -

Unix Unleashed  
- This book covers Unix by using both Solaris and Red Hat as examples. And that's the problem: this is really two pretty good 500 page books. -

AIX Survival Guide  
- Most reviewers have spoken very highly of this book. I hate to be the wet blanket, but I didn't think it was quite that good.

It's not a bad book, at all. I have to learn a bit about AIX for one of my clients, and I will say that this certainly gives me a head start on the curve. But I just had some bad feelings about some of the more general advice given (like the author's habit of adding SCSI devices on a running system or shutting down by simply "sync;sync" and powering off) to make me feel a little uncomfortable about the whole book. -

Linux|Unix Cookbook by Michael Stutz  
- Another winner from No Starch Press, who's motto is "more stuff, less fluff". This is the most practical daily use Linux book I've seen so far- highly recommended for anyone getting started with Linux. -

The Book of SCSI, 2d Edition  
- This is one of those unusual books that manages to convey highly technical information in a very readable and understandable way. At my very first reading, I thought it was a little disjointed; it felt like the chapters were somehow out of order. However, after going back for a second time, I then thought that the order made perfect sense. -

Perl for Web Site Management  
- I wish I had this book back when I first started my web site- it would have saved me a lot of time and trouble. -

Network Printing by Todd Radermacher & Mathew Gast  
- I'll give this a lukewarm endorsement. It's pretty good for what it covers, but it leaves out too much. Perhaps the title should have been "Network printing from the viewpoint of a BSD-centric administrator". -

Linux|Unix Performance Tuning and Capacity Planning  
- Strangely, there's a review of this at Amazon that complains about the book being too general, not Linux specific. In fact, it is very Linux specific. -

Hacking Linux Exposed : Linux Security Secrets & Solutions  
- Like Hacking Exposed, every subject here is introduced, explained with complete examples, and then suggestions for countermeasures are explained. There are also three interesting case studies presented in the appendices. -

Red Hat Certified Engineer Linux Study Guide  
- Overall this book is choppy: subjects are often referenced but not explained until much later, and sometimes they are not explained at all. -

All-In-One Sair Linux and Gnu Certified Administrator Exam Guide  
- The cover of this book proclaims "All-in-One is All You Need". It surely is not. In fact, if you were to rely upon this as "both a study guide and an on-the-job reference" (as the cover blurb suggests), you'd probably flunk the certification exam and not last long at your job. -

Network Intrusion Detection  
- This is NOT a general security book. It is very specifically what the title says it is: a book about detecting network activity. -

Linux|Unix File Systems  
- "Linux File Systems" is not entirely trustworthy. For example, the book includes the "Linux Partition HOW-To". That refore refers to limitations like 128 MB swap partitions which have since changed -

Linux|Unix Shells by Example by Ellie Quigley  
- Ellie Quigley is really an excellent writer-the text is clear, the examples are well chosen- this is a thoroughly enjoyable book. -

Just For Fun by Linus Torvalds and David Diamond  
- If you are curious about the personality that lies behind Linux, you'll want to read this. It's not well written; in fact it is frustrating and sometimes difficult to read. Never mind that. Pretend instead that you have the opportunity to sit on a porch and listen to David Diamond and Linus chat. This would, in fact, make a great audio book. -

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