Unix Power Tools, Third Edition

Unix Power Tools, Third Edition

Very occasionally a book is written about or for Unix System Administration, or Unix in general. If the author or publishers get the mix right it receives acclaim. Very, very occasionally one of those books achieves legendary status, by finding its way onto 98% of all Unix Sysadmins book shelves. This book is one of those legendary tomes. Just about every Unix Sysadmin I know has a copy of this sitting alongside books like Evi Nemeth’s “Unix Sys Admin Handbook”. OK so it has a lot of information that isn’t new to most sysadmins, but that’s not where the beauty of the book lies. The real treasure is found in the countless nuggets of Unix info that have been long since forgotten, or yet to be learned. In my humble opinion, a true Unix Classic! If like me, you earn a living from Unix, then think of this book as a carpenter would his set of chisels. You don’t use them for every job, but when needed, can prove invaluable.The mark of a craftsman is his familiarity with his tools, the speed with which he can use them to solve simple problems, and his cleverness in using them to solve more complicated challenges. The latest edition of Unix Power Tools explores the standard Unix tools in greater depth than ever, and with better coverage of Linux, FreeBSD, and even the Darwin environment of Mac OS X. It’s also been improved by the addition of sections on Perl and Python, programming languages that can often solve Unix problems more adeptly than any specific utility. This detail-filled book distinguishes itself from other guides for Unix gurus with its organizational structure (it’s a series of articles that can be absorbed sequentially or individually) and carefully designed and executed index. Like its esteemed predecessors, this book is one you will keep handy.

The authors have achieved a nearly ideal balance in the pages of this book. It’s not just a collection of recipes (such collections tend to leave you hanging if you want to do something a little differently), it’s not just a book of documentation (books like that have application mainly as references for people who know a lot already), and it’s not just a conceptual how-to guide. Unix Power Tools is all of those things, and the overall effect is impressive indeed. If you work with any flavor of Unix, whatever your level of experience, you will benefit by having this book. –David Wall

Topics covered: How to work efficiently, elegantly, and creatively with the Unix tool suite, as well as (to a lesser extent) with Perl and Python scripts. Tips and strategies on customization, document generation, process management, and networking abound in this wisdom-rich volume.

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