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UNIX Power Tools » (Third Edition, Updated and Expanded)

Book cover image of UNIX Power Tools by Shelley Powers

Authors: Shelley Powers, Tim O'Reilly, Mike Loukides, Jerry Peek, Joe Johnston
ISBN-13: 9780596003302, ISBN-10: 0596003307
Format: Paperback
Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
Date Published: October 2002
Edition: Third Edition, Updated and Expanded

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Author Biography: Shelley Powers

is a long time user of the Unix operating system. He has acted as a Unix consultant, courseware developer, and instructor. He is one of the originating authors of Unix Power Tools and the author of Learning the Unix Operating System by O'Reilly.

Shelley Powers is an independent contractor, currently living in St. Louis, who specializes in technology architecture and software development. She's authored several computer books, including Developing ASP Components, Unix Power Tools 3rd edition, Essential Blogging, and Practical RDF. In addition, Shelley has also written several articles related primarily to web technology, many for O'Reilly. Shelley's web site network is at, and her weblog is Burningbird, at

Tim O'Reilly is the founder and CEO of O'Reilly & Associates, thought by many to be the best computer book publisher in the world. O'Reilly also publishes online through the O'Reilly Network ( and hosts conferences on technology topics. Tim is an activist for open source and open standards, and an opponent of software patents and other incursions of new intellectual property laws into the public domain. Tim's long term vision for his company is to help change the world by capturing and transmitting the knowledge of innovators.

Mike Loukides is an editor for O'Reilly & Associates. He is the author of System Performance Tuning and UNIX for FORTRAN Programmers. Mike's interests are system administration, networking, programming languages, and computer architecture. His academic background includes degrees in electrical engineering (B.S.) and English literature (Ph.D.).

Book Synopsis

With the growing popularity of Linux and the advent of Darwin, Unix has metamorphosed into something new and exciting. No longer perceived as a difficult operating system, more and more users are discovering the advantages of Unix for the first time. But whether you are a newcomer or a Unix power user, you'll find yourself thumbing through the goldmine of information in the new edition of "Unix Power Tools" to add to your store of knowledge. Want to try something new? Check this book first, and you're sure to find a tip or trick that will prevent you from learning things the hard way.

The latest edition of this best-selling favorite is loaded with advice about almost every aspect of Unix, covering all the new technologies that users need to know. In addition to vital information on Linux, Darwin, and BSD, "Unix Power Tools" 3rd Edition now offers more coverage of bash, zsh, and other new shells, along with discussions about modern utilities and applications. Several sections focus on security and Internet access. And there is a new chapter on access to Unix from Windows, addressing the heterogeneous nature of systems today. You'll also find expanded coverage of software installation and packaging, as well as basic information on Perl and Python.

"Unix Power Tools" 3rd Edition is a browser's a magazine that you don't read from start to finish, but leaf through repeatedly until you realize that you've read it all. Bursting with cross-references, interesting sidebars explore syntax or point out other directions for exploration, including relevant technical details that might not be immediately apparent. The book includes articles abstracted from other O'Reilly books,new information that highlights program tricks and gotchas, tips posted to the Net over the years, and other accumulated wisdom.

Affectionately referred to by readers as "the" Unix book, UNIX Power Tools provides access to information every Unix user is going to need to know. It will help you think creatively about UNIX, and will help you get to the point where you can analyze your own problems. Your own solutions won't be far behind.

Table of Contents

How to Use This Book
Pt. IBasic Unix Environment
2Getting Help32
Pt. IICustomizing Your Environment
3Setting Up Your Unix Shell43
4Interacting with Your Environment70
5Getting the Most out of Terminals, xterm, and X Windows92
6Your X Environment124
Pt. IIIWorking with Files and Directories
7Directory Organization147
8Directories and Files154
9Finding Files with find171
10Linking, Renaming, and Copying Files201
11Comparing Files218
12Showing What's in a File234
13Searching Through Files247
14Removing Files262
15Optimizing Disk Space277
Pt. IVBasic Editing
16Spell Checking, Word Counting, and Textual Analysis295
17vi Tips and Tricks308
18Creating Custom Commands in vi336
19GNU Emacs353
20Batch Editing367
21You Can't Quite Call This Editing390
Pt. VProcesses and the Kernel
23Job Control435
24Starting, Stopping, and Killing Processes451
25Delayed Execution488
26System Performance and Profiling500
Pt. VIScripting
27Shell Interpretation513
28Saving Time on the Command Line542
29Custom Commands571
30The Use of History593
31Moving Around in a Hurry617
32Regular Expressions (Pattern Matching)633
34The sed Stream Editor668
35Shell Programming for the Uninitiated698
36Shell Programming for the Initiated741
37Shell Script Debugging and Gotchas775
Pt. VIIExtending and Managing Your Environment
38Backing Up Files787
39Creating and Reading Archives808
40Software Installation822
Pt. VIIICommunication and Connectivity
43Redirecting Input and Output885
47Connecting to MS Windows951
Pt. IXSecurity
48Security Basics969
49Root, Group, and User Management982
50File Security, Ownership, and Sharing994




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