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Book review: UNIX to Linux Porting by Alfredo Mendoza et. al

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Converting a brilliant and specially customized C or C++ application from a generic UNIX OS to GNU/Linux has the potential to be painful, costly and time consuming. From comical personal experience I find that Murphy smiles and laughs at such rich complexities. “UNIX to Linux Porting: A Comprehensive Reference” gives psychological handle bars for those of you that wish to plan or enact a porting project for the first time and a comprehensive reference for the more experienced. This book details the main differences between Solaris, AIX, HP-UX and GNU/Linux. The three authors: Alfredo Mednoza, Chakarat Skawratananond and Artis Walker have the pedigree of professionals comprehensively working for a prolonged period within the UNIX universe.

This tome is a solid 720 pages. The first three chapters give a whirlwind introduction to porting methodology. The second chapter on scoping helps project planners zoom in on what are arguably the most crucial aspects of planning resources: How big is the projects scope? What are the areas of complexity? Without answering these questions correctly any project may easily turn into the iconoclastic nightmare overrun project.

The early chapters make it clear that a porter needs to know both the target and the source operating systems.

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