|Apparel & Accessories||Books||Classical Music||DVD||Electronics & Photo||Gourmet Food and Groceries||Health & Personal Care||Home & Garden||Industrial & Scientific||Kitchen|
|Popular Music||Musical Instruments||Outdoor Living||Computer Hardware||Computer Software||Sporting Goods||Tools||Toys and Games||VHS Video||Video Games|
Explains all the basic concepts you need to understand in order to use the Linux system. Provides practical examples for every command, plus hundreds of invaluable tips and warnings. Softcover.
Desk references--if they are worth their desk space--have to be immediately appealing for some quirky reason or other. The appeal of Scott Hawkins's ingenious new reference, Linux Desk Reference, is that it sorts basic Unix commands by task.
Flipping through Hawkins's book is like browsing a thesaurus. How many ways can you compare files? diff comes right to mind, but did you know about comm, cmp, diff3, or sdiff for merging diff'ed files? The know-how-return-on-time-investment for browsing the Linux Desk Reference is one of the highest in the Linux library ... for up to five-minute periods.
Not without humor, Hawkins begins his array with a list of man-like utilities. So what are they? Try to guess: apropos, whatis, whereis, info (of emacs fame), and locate, and their associated functions. The lines blur between true POSIX-compliant Unix functions, shell capabilities, and individual applications. You wouldn't have info if you didn't have emacs, which you probably wouldn't have if you didn't have Linux, or you didn't install it yourself. For users of non-open-source versions of Unix (Solaris, Irix, HPUX, etc.), the name-the-synonym game is still playable, but the fun ends sooner.
Ultimately, the meat of Linux Desk Reference is a grammar-less compendium of command-line flags, annotated with notes, warnings, and an occasional example. Root-only executables or actions are flagged as such in the margins. Entries are typically briefer than the man pages output, and the clustering of common commands reflects the "See Also" cross-reference section of a man page. This strategy of organization highlights the relationships between commonly used utilities.
The bash shell has its own chapter (but not tcsh), and Unix daemons have their day. TCP/IP is here, so is general DOS connectivity, mail utilities, NFS's many fragile pieces, and X11 tools. Hawkins's intentions were encyclopedic, and he has succeeded handsomely. The table of contents is like a school yearbook, filled with familiar and forgotten functions.
The book's aesthetic design is mysterious--function names in the primary headers appear in a small font, causing them to be lost against the backdrop of the visually stimulating reference text. The book also contains too many horizontal lines that break the eye's line at nonintuitive junctures. Otherwise, the Linux Desk Reference earns its patch of pine, right between Strunk & White and Roget's. --Peter Leopold
CERTAIN CONTENT THAT APPEARS ON THIS SITE COMES FROM AMAZON SERVICES LLC. THIS CONTENT IS PROVIDED AS IS AND IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE OR REMOVAL AT ANY TIME.