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Expert C Programming: Deep C Secrets
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Expert C Programming: Deep C Secrets

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  782 ratings  ·  43 reviews
This book is for the knowledgeable C programmer, this is a second book that gives the C programmers advanced tips and tricks. This book will help the C programmer reach new heights as a professional. Organized to make it easy for the reader to scan to sections that are relevant to their immediate needs.
Paperback, 384 pages
Published June 14th 1994 by Pearson
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Average rating 4.32  · 
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 ·  782 ratings  ·  43 reviews

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Aug 13, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: computer-science
When you've read K&R and start to ask /why/ C is written the way it is, it's time to graduate to _Expert C Programming: Deep C Secrets_. As much as K&R is the touchstone for all things C, there comes a point fairly soon in your career where you won't need to refer to it any longer. C in indeed a small language, and it's possible to keep all of it in your head.

Van Der Linden has created a collection of things that you won't necessarily need to know until /after/ you've learned C. What's an activa
Archit Taneja
Jan 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
The funniest tech book I've read until now. I was all aaargc aaarghv when it got over. ...more
Vasil Kolev
Mar 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: tech
Fun and nice book, with some interesting puzzles, but some parts are very outdated. It could definitely use an update, especially the comparison with C++, the integration of lint in all compilers, etc.
Josh Davis
This was a great little refresher on C. I first learned C by going through the classic K&R book back in high school. As Expert C Programming is quick to point out, C has changed quite a bit from then.

As far as information goes, it covered some really great topics and explained things really well. I definitely feel that I have a better understanding not only of the C language, but of how the C code actually translates into assembly/machine code, which is ultimately what inspires some of how C wor
Elias Daler
Dec 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2018
What a wonderful book!

What I liked the most about it is not that it shows tricky things in C, but it's also full of interesting stories, fun jokes and explanations about why some things in C the way they are.

I'd recommend to read it to everyone, even those who don't plan to write in C, it's just interesting on its own. :)
Varad Deshmukh
Nov 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It requires skill to write a book on a programming language that a reader can use as something more than a manual. Yes, manuals are important, and an ardent programmer treats them with reverence. But they are often dull and daunting to a novice in the field, or to a sufficiently experienced programmer who wants to connect with a programming language, but not necessarily by digesting through a prosaic format of instruction.

Peter van der Linden successfully manages to circumvent the problem. A C
Nov 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Provides a lot of good foundation for writing good systems code, especially in C. As usual, some of the information is dated, and I can't say I agree with all of the suggestions, but it covers a lot of useful ground. I had mostly absorbed much of this information already just from the culture at Sun (and the book is a bit Unix/Sun-centric). ...more
Brennan Moore
Jan 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
"deep c secrets" is the sub-title -- amazing! -- nuf said. ...more
Apr 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely fantastic book! My copy is from 1994 (27 years ago as I write this). It's fascinating what has changed and what hasn't changed in that time. Memory, especially, has changed a lot (well capacities have - as the author was well aware they might if you happened to be reading his book as long as "five years" after he wrote it).

You don't even have to have a serious interest in C to get a lot out of this book. It is chock full of humor and lore (and a lot of poking fun at Microsoft and Inte
William Jojo
Mar 26, 2021 rated it really liked it
First the rating - 4 stars. This would be 5 if it was not so old. Honestly, there are parts of this text that are no longer relevant. But there are many good examples of relevant code here as well. Much of this text has stood the test of time.

Being a nostalgic person, I loved the old stories of things that broke in production and what the causes were. This book was simply well written with brevity and levity in equal portions.
Aretas Paulauskas
Dec 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
Pretty heavy stuff on C language and its more advanced and lesser known parts about the C language. Highlighted some places for future reference but there were not many as some parts are outdated a bit and were already known.

Also, the theory presented in this book shall be applied immediately or else thy shall forget it at the start of next chapter.
Apr 25, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
OK book for the time

Read it for the history of C, the 90s approach to understanding C++ (which led directly to Java) and the time capsule of the period just before Sun engineers’ hubris started to catch up with them.
Daniel Volpato
Let's say the deep secrets containing in this book were rotten and gotten corrupted by time. There is too much old, deprecated, anachronistic information, so reading it isn't worth the time you may spent trying to find information that is still relevant. ...more
Rutvik Patel
Aug 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Even if you are not using C language, read it at least for FUN!
Jul 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: software
A bit outdated but a good history lesson.
Dana Robinson
Mar 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A fascinating book. It's very old, but still useful and the historical digressions are interesting if you are of a certain age. Highly recommended to anyone stuck coding in C. ...more
yom bombadil
Feb 13, 2021 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: computer-science
Wow, what an amazing book!

Truth to be told, I read the last 100 pages today and maybe I am more excited than what I should be.

Amazing "deep secrets" of the C programming language, with incredible background stories related to the topics explained in each chapter. Very useful exercises that lead you to think and learn what has been explained.

Lot of low-level programming and also technical stuff (related to hardware) that might get you to become an expert C programmer and let you think and investi
Jun 27, 2016 rated it it was ok
I vote for this book to be renamed Quirky Differences Between Arrays and Pointers, and Other Fun Stuff Only Tangentially Related To C. That's basically all this book is. I was expecting expert-level, clever techniques for writing safer, cleaner C code, and instead I got way more than I needed to know about arrays and pointers, then a bunch of fluff stuff. Though I admit, the fluff stuff was quite fun. My favorite was the very end of the book, How to make Oobleck. ...more
Jan 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This book fills a serious gap in computer programming books: expert level texts. This is not a book to teach you C. This is a book for experienced C programmers who want to kick it up a few notches. No, I don't think I ever directly used the things I learned from this book in any development project, but I got a deeper understanding and appreciation of the language. Take that, K&R! ...more
Nick Black
Nov 27, 2008 rated it it was ok
Eh, more valuable for the fun sidebars offering insight into Sun development processes than any other content -- the comp.lang.c FAQ covers most of what van der Linden covers here. I borrowed this from a coworker back in my short stint as a systems programmer for CNN, while I was a sophomore, and never owned it.
Mar 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: computer-science
Good book, explains several details about the language, many times introducing the historical background behind them, and keeping it fun with stories and anecdotes related to the chapter's subject.
It has its years though and is outdated in some respects, an example is the blind insistence in dynamically linked code and how you should not statically link.
Aug 04, 2007 rated it really liked it
Essential reading from one of the authors of the Sun ProC compiler. It also walks you through writing a simple BASIC interpreter. What I mostly remember is gaining a rock-solid knowledge of how to read and write complex C declarations.
May 29, 2010 added it
You will learn a lot about better programing styles. You would also be able to relate many of the OS related concepts ans how they are used. You would get to learn how memory management is done efficiently.
Michael Bond
Jul 24, 2015 rated it really liked it
Indeed it is a good second book on C. The coverage of pointers and arrays was excellent. I cannot blame the book for being outdated a couple of decades later; I just read quickly through those sections. I would not use the chapter on C++ to actually learn it.
Jan 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An excellent book on C and a good companion to the book The C Programming Language. It goes into more subtleties and arcana of the language and full of interesting stories, lore, and jokes about the language.

If you like C, you'll like this book.
Feb 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comp-sci
This book is awesome simply for the subtitle.
Dec 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Fringes of C with a touch of humor = Win.
Cameron Sung
Mar 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
One of the best books on the language of "C". A must-have for expert programmers and advanced coders around the world. ...more
Ankit Kumar
Aug 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Expert will also find Something out of it that would amaze them.
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