Macintosh Terminal Pocket Guide Paperback – 5 Jul 2012
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About the Author
Daniel J. Barrett has been immersed in Internet technology since 1985. Currently working as a software engineer, Dan has also been a heavy metal singer, Unix system administrator, university lecturer, web designer, and humorist. He is the author of O'Reilly's Linux Pocket Guide, and he is the coauthor of Linux Security Cookbook, and SSH, The Secure Shell: The Definitive Guide.
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Top Customer Reviews
As a software developer who has recently converted to using OS X as my main development box this book is proving an invaluable reference to working with the Mac Terminal/shell. I must confess that I only recently stumbled across this book after a recommendation by the author replying to a review I wrote for the Linux Pocket Guide (essentially the Linux-based version of this book). The aforementioned Linux reference has long since established itself within arms-reach on a shelf next to my desk, as I'm frequently referring to it when working with locally running Linux-based VMs or boxes running in the Cloud. Although it's still early days, I'm already thinking that this OS X pocket guide will earn a space on my desk right next to the Linux version, as it will not only save me mentally translating Linux commands into OS X parlance (where the syntax can sometimes be subtly different), but it's also a lot of fun to dip into during a brain-frazzle moment and learn a new command or switch.
Much like it's sister volume, this book is A5 in size and only 200 pages long, but it crams in an amazing amount of commands that should cater to all but the most hardcore of power users. It also has several bonus chapters discussing such things as installing the excellent Homebrew package manager (which is bizarrely missing from the default installation of OS X?).Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I had found it difficult to get an overview of what was different about Terminal and Mac's bash vs. other Unix / POSIX / Linux shells. Some unhelpful advice on the web was that you could pick up any UNIX book as Mac Terminal is 'mostly' the same. But if you don't know which commands count as 'mostly' and which don't, that advice is quite useless.
The book is written cleanly, clearly. It assumes computing proficiency but not any special expertise in Mac or other command line interfaces. It explains, with the right amount of historical context, why things are the way they are. It's focused on what seem to be the most practical and useful commands.
I was hoping to find a book that would get me out of the dark and into a comfortable level of knowledge on Terminal. This book did that absolutely perfectly, and saved me from dozens more hours scouring the web for the same. For what you get, frankly, it's underpriced.
So, I also finished Learning Unix for OS X Mountain Lion: Going Deep With the Terminal and Shell. I was wrong. Great book. You can really see what people do that is the same and what they do that is different. Both of these books provide a great a mount of "basic" information for the newbie. I am actually going back to both books as I had to re-image my MacBook and had to go through the process of reinstalling Xcode/CLI for Xcode and Homebrew which are recommend in Macintosh Terminal Pocket Guide and which with I've had great success.
The commands and options are generally given a context of how you might use the commands in the real world. In particular this book was extremely well laid out making it clear to the reader the commands, options, outputs and results of each section. Many books I've previously read on the subject suffer from text overload but this book had a great use of typefaces, shading and style to make it a clear and straightforward read.
Unix commands can be overwhelming and just downright scary if you don't understand them right and enter them in correctly. This book empowers the reader to explore without messing up their systems and risking damage.
Originally, I bought Macintosh Terminal as an e-book. But I soon added a printed copy, which I find much easier to use, especially when working on a MacBook.