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Michael C. Feathers
The average book on Agile software development describes a fairyland of greenfield projects, with wall-to-wall tests that run after every few edits, and clean & simple source code.
The average software project, in our industry, was written under some aspect of code-and-fix, and without automated unit tests. And we can't just throw this code away; it represents a significant effort debugging and maintaining. It contains many latent requirements decisions. Just as Agile processes are incremental, Agile adoption must be incremental too. No more throwing away code just because it looked at us funny.
Mike begins his book with a very diplomatic definition of "Legacy". I'l skip ahead to the undiplomatic version: Legacy code is code without unit tests.
Before cleaning that code up, and before adding new features and removing bugs, such code must be de-legacified. It needs unit tests.
To add unit tests, you must change the code. To change the code, you need unit tests to show how safe your change was.
The core of the book is a cookbook of recipes to conduct various careful attacks. Each presents a particular problem, and a relatively safe way to migrate the code towards tests.
Code undergoing this migration will begin to experience the benefits of unit tests, and these benefits will incrementally make new tests easier to write. These efforts will make aspects of a legacy codebase easy to change.
It's an unfortunate commentary on the state of our programming industry how much we need this book.
W. Richard Stevens, Bill Fenner, Andrew M. Rudoff
* *Previous editions sold over 160,000 units! Second Edition (1998) sold over 53,000 in retail alone! *Updates coverage of programming standards, debugging techniques, and covers Operating Systems including Red Hat 9, Solaris 9, HP-UX, Free BSD 4.8/5.0, AIX 5.x, and Mac OS X. *Bill Fenner (AT/T Labs) and Andrew Rudoff (SUN) carry on the tradition of this great work.
W. Richard Stevens, Gary R. Wright
This book's innovative approach helps readers at all levels to truly understand how TCP/IP really works. Rather than just describing what the RFCs say the protocol suite should do, TCP/IP Illustrated uses a popular diagnostic tool so you can actually watch the protocols in action. By forcing certain conditions to occur (connection establishment, timeout and retransmission, fragmentation, etc.) and watching the results, Rich Stevens provides insight into how the protocols work, and why certain design decisions were made. Written in his well-known style with lots of examples, Stevens shows how current, popular TCP/IP implementations operate (SunOS 4.1.3, Solaris 2.2, System V Release 4, BSD/386, AIX 3.2.2, and 4.4 BSD), and relates these real-world implementations to the RFC standards.