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40 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From the ground up, January 22, 2006
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This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
This is the book I've been looking for. Not just 'OS X for Unix Geeks' or 'OS X in a Nutshell', I wanted more. As much as possible, in one resource. 1000+ pages signaled a big yes.

I have yet to read it all the way through, but so far this is a very good guide for those who want not only to learn the general 'Unix way' of computing, but dive under the surface of OS X and examine its specificities in the command line interface, aka the Terminal (/Applications/Utilities/Terminal)

No, this isn't a 'hacks' book, and there's no mention of rsync, for example, but you'll find ample documentation of the underside of OS X--there's a lot more to it than just a GUI, folks.

Educational, yes. Hence 'Practical Guide'; you'll learn a good deal, in almost textbook fashion. Recommended to enhance the power and fun of your OS X experience!
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great reference, November 22, 2007
This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
I got this book as someone who had used UNIX before, but this was many years ago, and I had forgotten a lot. This book is great for picking up the functionalities of various UNIX tools - the explanations are clear and concise. It also works very well as a quick reference. The bulk of the book is devoted to bringing you up from a potentially zero-experience user to someone who can work with ease with editors, shells, and more. Simple examples are included throughout. The back of the book has a 250-page command reference section for quickly looking up how to use a particular command. You could read the whole book and progressively work with UNIX as a self-taught course, or just reference the sections you need.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,000 pages cover basic to advanced shell programming and beyond, April 13, 2006
This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
Mark G. Sobell and Peter Seebach's A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO UNIX FOR MAC OX S USERS is a reference the UNIX/Mac user simply must have at hand: nearly a thousand pages of reference material on everything from basic and advanced shell programming to Mac's OS X filesystem and utilities modules make this the best reference on the market for users who seek either a step-by-step tutorial or a basic browser's reference for problem-solving. Exercises to test knowledge boxed highlights of information make it easy to either refer to for at-a-glance troubleshooting or sit down and study for step-by-step methodology.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Still relevant, useful and better than searching the internet, March 1, 2013
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Andrew Dalgleish (San Francsico, CA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
This is an ideal reference for programmers, system administrators or "power users" with motivation to gain proficiency with the Mac OS X Command Line.

Despite dating itself with its "Mac OS X Tiger Edition" moniker, this book remains very relevant as the UNIX concepts & tools covered by it are fundamental. It shares similar format & content to A Practical Guide to Solaris (also by Sobell), popular with undergraduate university operating systems courses. Its reliability is evident from the extremely short errata: [...]

I found the exercises at the end of each chapter helpful. Solutions for even-numbered exercises are found at [...] Along with the many practical examples, the author highlights tips and optional "bonus" material. About 25% (238 pages) is a handy command reference.

One suggestion: Chapter 9 on The TC Shell is unnecessary. Case in point: since the book was written, the zsh has emerged as a popular, if trendy, alternative to bash. As stated on page 338, "If you are going to learn one shell programming language, learn bash" - thus, learning another shell should be left as an exercise for the reader.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Useful Volume For CLI, December 9, 2009
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This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
I recently switched over to using a Mac. I have experience with Windows and Unix, but was confused by the differences in the Mac CLI until I found this book. It has been a real timesaver as well as an education. It is so much faster to use the CLI on a Mac and this book tells you how to get started. It is clearly written and easy to learn from. I highly recommend this to anyone wanting a good grounding in the Mac CLI.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent intro and reference., August 27, 2009
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D. Dobkin (Sunnyvale, CA United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
This is a solid introduction and reference book for folks who are GUI-literate but not UNIX folks. (I learned UNIX back around 1982 and have desperately tried to ignore it since.) Much more useful than a general UNIX or Linux book, because it includes the specific aspects of OS X that you need to know about: where things are put, what special utilities are available, how the file system is laid out, OS X system management, etc.

The only significant complaint I have is that the book devotes a LOT of space to vim, emacs, and other pure-text editors. The terminal is fine when you need it, but why would you edit text in a non-GUI environment? If you are a serious programmer, you'll want to work in an IDE (integrated development environment) with syntax coloring, hints, debug, etc. These chapters seem like a waste of time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good as expected!, October 4, 2010
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This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
This author has become a sure bet for the books I've purchased from him in the past. The only thing I would mention is there is alot of repeated material in the separate titles. I own the "Linux Commandline Shell practical guide" and also the Red Hat/Fedora practical guide. There is probably more then three quarters of the content that is exact. I guess with all instances the OSes are the same but it is just difficult to spend fifty bucks on three or four books only to have som much repeated content.

But as I said this author's books are very dependable!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I Love This Book, October 29, 2012
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This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
After 25+ years of Windows experience, I reached my limit after the release of Vista and bought a MacBook Pro. This book is incredibly well written and edited and a pleasure for me to read. With very little UNIX experience, I am able to understand the UNIX system, file system, permissions, shell commands, etc. very easily.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, May 6, 2007
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This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
I have several of Mark Sobell's Unix based books and this one is as good as the others which are all excellent. You don't nessecarily need all of them but they are truly tailored to the platform and are a quick way to get to what's important when a new platform presents itself.

If you want to know the underlying MAC, this is for you.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Glad I bought it, September 2, 2014
By 
Dennis (Los Altos, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users (Paperback)
A unique volume! It is in fact a very good Unix book (Linux, actually) modified as necessary to apply to the Macintosh version of Unix. Just what I wanted. And the section on commands has each command start on a new page with the command name appearing in the page header to help you search. Just like a "real" Unix manual!

Yes, it is eight years old. It would be nice if it were reviewed for 2014 accuracy, but I haven't found any problems yet.
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A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users
A Practical Guide to UNIX for Mac OS X Users by Mark G. Sobell (Paperback - December 31, 2005)
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