Learning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Released: January 1998
Pages: 336

The first thing users of the Linux operating system come face to face with is the shell. "Shell" is the UNIX term for a user interface to the system -- something that lets you communicate with the computer via the keyboard and display. Bash, the Free Software Foundation's "Bourne Again Shell," is the default shell for Linux, the popular free UNIX-like operating system. It's also a replacement for the standard UNIX Bourne shell, which serves both as a user interface and as a programming language. Like the FSF's other tools, bash is more than a mere replacement: it extends the Bourne shell in many ways. Features include command line editing, key bindings, integrated programming features, command completion, control structures (especially the select construct, which enables you to create menus easily), and new ways to customize your environment.

Whether you want to use bash for its user interface or its programming features you will find Learning the bash Shell a valuable guide. The book covers all of bash's features, both for interactive use and programming. If you are new to shell programming, Learning the bash Shell provides an excellent introduction, covering everything from the most basic to the most advanced features, like signal handling and command line processing. If you've been writing shell scripts for years, it offers a great way to find out what the new shell offers. The book is full of examples of shell commands and programs that are designed to be useful in your everyday life as a user, not just to illustrate the feature being explained. All of these examples are freely available to you online on the Internet.

This second edition covers all of the features of bash Version 2.0, while still applying to bash Version 1.x. New features include the addition of one-dimensional arrays, parameter expansion, and more pattern-matching operations. bash 2.0 provides even more conformity with POSIX.2 standards, and in POSIX.2 mode is completely POSIX.2 conformant. This second edition covers several new commands, security improvements, additions to ReadLine, improved configuration and installation, and an additional programming aid, the bash shell debugger.

With this book you'll learn:

  • How to install bash as your login shell
  • The basics of interactive shell use, including UNIX file and directory structures, standard I/O, and background jobs
  • Command line editing, history substitution, and key bindings
  • How to customize your shell environment without programming
  • The nuts and bolts of basic shell programming, flow control structures, command-line options and typed variables
  • Process handling, from job control to processes, coroutines and subshells
  • Debugging techniques, such as trace and verbose modes
  • Techniques for implementing system-wide shell customization and features related to system security
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oreillyLearning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition
 
4.6

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(0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

good book

By sanju

from chennai,India

About Me Sys Admin

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    Best Uses

      Comments about oreilly Learning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition:

      its useful

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Good Learning Manual

      By octopusgrabbus

      from Undisclosed

      Comments about oreilly Learning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition:

      This is a solidly written book that contained what I needed to learn the rudiments of bash. There are some advanced features I would like to see in it, but, all in all, I am glad to have the book as part of my library.

       
      5.0

      Everything I needed

      By Fabio Alessandro Locati

      from Undisclosed

      Comments about oreilly Learning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition:

      This was exactly the book I needed. I needed to learn quickly the bash... and I did, thanks to this book :)

      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Learning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition Review

      By Germ

      from Undisclosed

      Comments about oreilly Learning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition:

      Reviewer: Germ

      Website: http://www.usalug.org

      The Book:

      Learning the bash Shell

      By Cameron Newham, Bill Rosenblatt

      334 pages

      2nd Edition January 1998

      ISBN: 1-56592-347-2

      Book Link: http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/bash2/

      Code Examples: http://examples.oreilly.com/bash2/

      If you are a user of Linux/Unix, sooner or later you will need to use the shell. The Free Software Foundation's "Bourne Again Shell" is the most widely used. Learning the bash Shell Second Edition by Cameron Newman and Bill Rosenblatt is nearly indispensible in order to gain a fantastic working knowledge of the bash shell. The book is geared towards bash 2.0, but is also relevant to bash 1.x.

      This book is written for beginners and takes you from the basics all the way to system administration. Even the old pros are likely to learn a trick or two. It covers features of bash all the way to the "wow, I didn't know bash could do that!" level. People have come to expect well written, easy to read, and professional books from O'Reilly and this title is no exception.

      Chapter 1 starts with the basics. You will gain knowledge of the directory and file structure, how to install bash as your login shell, and the basics of interactive shell use. The successive chapters will take you all the way to system administration. Each chapter of the book builds on what you have learned in Previous chapters.

      Chapter 2 teaches you about command line editing. You can put bash in edit mode and edit command lines just as you would edit text with a text editor.

      Chapter 3 tells you how to customize your environment. One of the more useful things to me are aliases. Do you use a lengthy command quite often? Create an alias for that command and give your fingers a rest. The authors tell you how.

      Chapter 4 covers basic shell programming. You'll learn how to write and edit shell scripts.

      The book continues with coverage of Flow Control, Command Line Options, Input/Output Processing, Process Handling, Debugging, Getting and Installing bash, and Administration. It finishes with some extremely useful appendices covering Related Shells, Reference Lists, Loadable Built-Ins, Systax, and Obtaining Sample Programs.

      I am no guru, but I know my way around the CLI and one thing I found especially useful for me is Appendix B. It contains lists of options, built-in commands and variables, and I/O redirections among other commands.

      The authors have provided tons of examples from commands to scripts and the major scripts are available for download from O'Reilly at the link above.

      If you just want to be confortable using the command line interface or want to go all the way to a working knowledge of writing your own scripts and administering your system or a network, this is the book for you.

      It's a must have for anyone using Linux/UNIX. I give Learning the bash Shell 5/5 Big Grins.

      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Learning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition Review

      By Dave Rogers

      from Undisclosed

      Comments about oreilly Learning the bash Shell, 2nd Edition:

      I can think of no higher accolade than to say that this book taught me exactly what I needed to know about the bash shell. I plan to make it a required text for the next session of our College's Linux course.

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