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BOOK REVIEW: Linux Shell Scripting Cookbook, Second Edition

The tag lines for this book, “Quick answers to common problems” and “Over 110 practical recipes to solve real-world shell problems, guaranteed to make you wonder how you ever lived without them” are understatements when you look at what you have learned from reading this book. In today’s fast paced world, web developers should find themselves digging deeper into shell scripting to tame and control certain tasks which are better suited to run as shell scripts, rather than by some other overkill languages. This is no longer just a job for your local sysadmin.

The first thing that impressed me about this book, is the young age of one of the authors, just 23 years old. It is nice to see that the younger generations are enthusiastic and curious enough to do the magical things which are being demonstrated in the book. The second thing that impressed me on just page 3 of the book, was that I could now remove countless snippets of code that I have spread out all over the place (Google Drive, gists at github, etc.) and just refer to this book when needed. No more Googling for that awkward command for which you can’t remember all the commands, syntax and parameters for. Of course one could and should always refer to all command man pages, but you need to have a general clue of which commands are suited to your requirements.

Although there are countless scripts written and available on the net, downloading and using them doesn’t make one an expert user. By following this book, you will quickly have a mindset that you can do what you want to do because it will change your attitude towards shell scripting and the way you begin to think about solving a particular problem. There is way too much content to list what you can learn from this book, so take a look at the table of contents.

Highly recommended for anyone who is serious about shell scripting and task automation in general.

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