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C Book Recommendations

This is a discussion on C Book Recommendations within the C Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; I'm beginning to learn C with the book " Beginning C " by Ivor Horton. The experience so far is ...

  1. #106
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    I'm beginning to learn C with the book "Beginning C" by Ivor Horton. The experience so far is quite good. The author explains things in detail for each of the programs used as an example in the text. The most interesting of it is that the books provides a lot of real programs - quite complicated stuffs - at the end of every chapter. For instance, when introducing arrays he exemplified this concept by writing a tic -tac-toe game, or for loops he introduced the Simple Simon game. Quite simple but real stuffs...

    The only drawback is that while the book seems quite easygoing as I read (concepts, etc...) the exercises seem rather hard. When I read I find things clear, but when it comes to exercises I find it hard... Perhaps I don't understand the book thoroughly enough...?

    Anyway, this is a good book I want to recommend. I assumes no previous knowledge or experience with programming.

  2. #107
    spurious conceit MK27's Avatar
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    Jon Erickson's HACKING: The Art of Exploitation

    I just realized I started learning C 3/4 of a year ago because (qv) WBAI's "off the hook" had their quarter annual pledge drive offering Jon Erickson's "HACKING: the art of exploitation". I knew some perl, hadn't read a really interesting book in a long time and -- being really impovrished yet, selfish, and to this day feeling guilty -- I couldn't afford their $75 pledge so ordered it at a discount from some bunch of creepy capitalists! And I still haven't finished it!

    I might as well say it's the best book on computers I've ever read, as there's less than twenty of those anyway (!shame). And I just said it's ten months later and I still haven't finished it yet! I could have written a book twice this length in time it has taken me to get half way through!

    So I intend to update this when I'm done. The book is not strictly on C. There is a bit of perl and shellcode, etc. I'm not and never have been interested in computer terrorism and neither is the author, who is even younger than me but claims to be a "vulnerabilty researcher and security specialist". It's a serious attempt to be exactly what I'm about to claim: a very serious introduction to the discipline using (mostly) networking and cryptology as the focus, but assuming the reader at page 1 has little to no programming experience. I would never recommend it as a language using book for anything but C, tho. But I'm recommending it hardily for C.

    There's a CD and gcc and gdb and of course it's about exploitation so right away you get introduced to pointers, overflows, and what your memory is. Technically, I'm at page 241 of 473 and the left half is thick with greese. It's kind of "meta-"; a layman would need another intro C text to proceed closely thru the discussion. But the purpose really is "meta-" technical. I say this in a greatly admirationable way because i appreciate it and you might too! Of course my observations about the whole form of the thing will have to wait BUT

    It's literary in it's procession, like you were investigating a mystery -- first you get let in on this stuff about memory allocation, and then you get let in on the potential exploits related to memory allocation and overflow, and how this relates to networking, including little tidbits like how a ubiquitous fencepost error was exploited in early SSH. There's no jokes or garbage, he proceeds quickly and cleanly thru the material. Sockets, network layers, a mini-web server, etc.

    Mostly I think it is a very great introduction to memory management issues, including lots of practical examples in an intriguing context, for total beginners (like me) with serious intent. It would be especially great for linux types, since's that's the cd, or possibly for anyone wanting to learn linux while programming, since that's the setup.
    Last edited by MK27; 02-19-2009 at 10:49 AM.
    C programming resources:
    GNU C Function and Macro Index -- glibc reference manual
    The C Book -- nice online learner guide
    Current ISO draft standard
    CCAN -- new CPAN like open source library repository
    3 (different) GNU debugger tutorials: #1 -- #2 -- #3
    cpwiki -- our wiki on sourceforge

  3. #108
    Registered User Sharke's Avatar
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    A word about Prata's "C Primer" -

    I'm currently learning C from the 5th edition of this book. While it is an excellent book in many ways, I do have some misgivings. Mainly, I do not think it's suitable for someone who has no programming experience at all. It would be if the first 120 pages or so weren't so long winded - in my opinion they go into far too much detail about the different data types and their sizes on different systems. Prata also spends far too much time in the beginning on conversion specifiers and modifiers.

    Sure, introduce these things - but in my opinion there is no need for the beginner to learn every single type of specifier and data type and promotion/demotion rule at that stage of the game. Set out the basic principles and put the rest in the appendix.

    I've programmed before in a couple of other languages but even so I found myself getting confused and a little bored going through this first part of the book. Prata even sees fit to inform the reader that "under K&R C, but not current C, float is automatically converted to double." Why confuse a beginner with that kind of useless information at a point in the learning curve when he or she is likely to feel a little "shaky" anyway? The C style of programming can be daunting enough to someone who has only programmed in a higher language like Python before, without being bombarded with excruciating minutia like this!

    Great for an existing programmer who wants to learn C thoroughly from scratch, but not so great for a total beginner IMO. Also his explanation of pointers is somewhat confusing for beginners.

    On the plus side, the exercises at the end of each chapter are great - very well composed and satisfying to complete.

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    IIT M.Tech. Madhusudan Mothe's book explains C concepts in easy words. Beginner can easily become expert after studying it. It is just relased on 1st Jan 2009. One can see sample chapter at

    Madhusudan Mothe

    or buy a copy from

    Computer Bookshop - Book Details C for Beginners, C/C++/Ms Visual C++

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    Apress c book suggestion

    I got a nice book well outlined instructions, highlighted notes and stuff. Learned to rpogram in about a month so try it:

    Apress.Beginning.C.From.Novice.to.Professional.4th.Edition.Oct.2006
    AUTHORED BY: IVOR HORTON

    THere may be an updated one.

  6. #111
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    Practical C by Steve Oualline. I'm quite fond of this book as it emphasizes good writing style and maintainable code. It also highlights how some needlessly compact their code and/or use cryptic methods which result in the code being difficult to read.

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    C Primer Plus, It covers C99.

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    The C Programming Language - Brilliant book. I came from Java and PHP, and allocation, pointers etc confused me. This book put me on track. But I left C for 9 months, and used PHP 99% of the time as I was working for a web company, so I forgot how pointers, and the language worked. Just getting back on track.

    As well as that I found the VTC Online Univeristy C video good. It works from 'The C Programming Language' so you can follow along. Also had a brilliant lecture set from iTunes U, although I think it's been taken off.

    Im starting my 2nd year at university in a month, will be using C and C++, so give it a year, and I should be well on form.

  9. #114
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    Question Computer Science: A structured programming approach using C by Behrouz A. Forouzan

    This is what we used in our school. Hoped i was able to help. but is this also a good book?

  10. #115
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    Wink A Step-by-Step Guide to C Programming

    I have several C programming books and the one I like best is 'A Step-by-Step Guide To C Programming' by Jean Paul Corriveau. I bought in a second hand store for 75 cents. It appears from some of the seller stamps on the back to be a early college text and was published in 1998.

    I like it because Mr. Corriveau doesn`t assume you have any experience and takes you through each phase of learning one step at a time. He explains what I think is the major downfall of beginners since I am one: syntax and formatting. There are plenty of examples along the way but he doesn`t get bogged down in one area. It is really a good self-teaching book if you can find it.

    If you can find one and buy it you won`t regret it.

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    I find this topic so useful, for I'm just searching for some helpful materials in C! Thanks for the help of the forum. Ha ha!

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  12. #117
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    i use the 《let us c》.the bad thing is that i can not buy it,i printed the whole book.ha ha .
    i come from china, looking for new friend. thank you!

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    Smile Books For Your Refences

    Best hand book is - Author name-Denis Ritchie

    Bcz He is THe Devloper and no body knws better then him.....you can go for that book


    U can also have one ----- THE COMPLETE REFERENCE on C

    Ths book is only for the Working People Reference

  14. #119
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    Just read ONE single book if you are looking to work in Unix or I dont want to be biased if you are looking to work on MS too.

    THE C PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE - BY K & R.

    Read the book, word to word, solve the problems ON YOUR OWN. and you will do well.

    Please Please do not read the following books:

    YASHWANT KANETKAR (What the heck is LET US C?????........Is it like I am strolling on a park and I suddenly decide to learn C....No WAY.....Learning C is a dedicated effort which needs LOTS of time and energy and no LET US C book can help u in that !!.

    BALAGURUSWAMY - Better than LET US C but still Balaguruswamy needs to know a lot of stuff .

    etcetc and loads of other Indian authors.

    These Indian authors were basically Cyber Coolies and want the rest of the population also to be Cyber coolies.

    I am talking from experience as an Indian, AVOID indian books if you want to do well in Programming.

    Thanks

    AMONG other recommendation (ONCE you have completed K& R)

    UNIX- Advanced programming in the Unix environment - Simply the best.
    Last edited by saurav_bhasin; 11-15-2009 at 11:50 AM.

  15. #120
    DESTINY BEN10's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by saurav_bhasin View Post
    Just read ONE single book if you are looking to work in Unix or I dont want to be biased if you are looking to work on MS too.

    THE C PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE - BY K & R.

    Read the book, word to word, solve the problems ON YOUR OWN. and you will do well.

    Please Please do not read the following books:

    YASHWANT KANETKAR (What the heck is LET US C?????........Is it like I am strolling on a park and I suddenly decide to learn C....No WAY.....Learning C is a dedicated effort which needs LOTS of time and energy and no LET US C book can help u in that !!.

    BALAGURUSWAMY - Better than LET US C but still Balaguruswamy needs to know a lot of stuff .

    etcetc and loads of other Indian authors.

    These Indian authors were basically Cyber Coolies and want the rest of the population also to be Cyber coolies.

    I am talking from experience as an Indian, AVOID indian books if you want to do well in Programming.
    I know that there are a lot of mistakes in Yashwant kanetkar's Let us C, but from a beginner's perspective I would recommend it. He has explained the things in very lucid manner and if anyone is from non-programming(i.e learning C as the very first language) background, Let UsC is quite nice. Going directly to KnR is not advised from my side, but different people have different opinions. I'm telling this from my own experience.
    HOPE YOU UNDERSTAND.......

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