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am 15. April 2000
Unix has earned itself quite a reputation for its potent tools, used for batch editing of text files (like program output). Sed and Awk are two of these tools. Sed is a direct descendent of Ed, the original Unix line editor, which employs regular expressions, a powerful method for description of patterns in text, for operations like substitute, append or delete. Awk is a complete scripting language with programming structures like conditionals, loops, functions etc., developed in 1970's by Alfred Aho, Brian Kernighan and Peter Weinberger (hence A-W-K). The trio has also written a book on Awk.

Dale Dougherty (in the 2nd edition with Arnold Robbins, maintainer of GNU Awk and author of several more books on Awk programming language) have made a good job in making a thoroughly readable tutorial on Sed and Awk. However, it remains a mystery to me how they succeeded to fill no less than 407 pages with it. Mind you, Sed and Awk are not really some big monsters. There exist something like two dozens of operators in Sed (most of them you will probably never use), and the syntax of Awk mimics those of C programming language, so it is likely that you know it already. Once you grok the idea of regular expressions, you should become a proficient user of Awk in about 30 minutes.

In conclusion, go buy the book if your need to manipulate text files on Unix and you think you need a lengthy tutorial with a gentle learning curve. Otherwise, short references on Awk and Sed, like the ones in "Unix Power Tools" and a bunch of examples showing some tricks you might not think of, will probably be more useful. In addition, it is good to know that during the nineties, much of the focus has drifted from Awk to Perl, so you might consider a book on Perl as well.
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am 12. Mai 2000
I was very interested in learning sed and awk, and so picked up this book. Like most O'Reilly titles, it is an excellent piece of work. I learned a great deal and was able to get started and pump out some useful code after spending some time with this book. However, I soon found that when it came to tackling some very difficult tasks with sed and awk, this book didn't seem to serve me very well as a reference. I have a feeling that sed and awk are not the sort of thing that one could learn with just one book; there are so many applications for these tools that one must choose what one wishes to do, and find the right books to supplement this excellent text.
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am 30. Mai 2000
Say what you will about the depth of this book. I am here to tell you that on more than one occasion this book has saved my bacon. Several times in different environments I needed to use sed to correct data in flat files. Once I used sed to change the format and numbers when we wanted to match accounting numbers to a different system. I haven't used that much awk. However there has been occasion to transfer awk programs from one Unix to a different Unix flavor. I found that the regular awk in this book was newer than the newawk in the other system. I Still keep the book handy incase I get squeezed for time and have to manipulate files. However I am learning more and more to appreciate PERL on those occasions.
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am 26. August 2011
All of sed and awk that most unix users know, including many professional administrators, is 's/this/that/' and '{ print $1 }'

But there is so much more these two tools can do. And this book shows you how. In each of the two major parts things are laid out in a logical manner building up knowledge thoroughly from the ground up, all supported by lots of well explained examples.

Both, sed and awk, rely heavily on regular expressions and the authors don't let you down in this area either. Chapter 3 is dedicated to equip you with a well enough working knowledge of regular expressions. It surely is not as thorough as Jeffry Friedl's "Mastering Regular Expressions", but the chapter packs a lot of information into the 29 pages. Especially with awk, there are quite a number of different versions out there and they are not quite identical in feature scope. Differences among some major implementations are discussed as well. Finally, in the appendices, you can find a quick reference for both sed and awk.

As thorough (and even beginner friendly) as the book is, it does have one drawback: it is old. Much of the sample code deals with manipulating troff files or uucp logs. Both things many unix/linux users of today have no idea about. The reliance on such old samples is not a problem per se, they still do the job of demonstrating concepts and usage of sed and awk quite nicely. But these samples are much less applicable to sed/awk users today than they were twenty years ago when the first edition of this book was published. What I also think would be badly needed in an updated third revision is a discussion of how to use these tools with non-English charactersets and Unicode.

While this is an excellent book for learning to use sed and awk much more effectively, let's hope that the authors sometime get around to do an overhaul, provide samples which are more accessible today and also add a chapter or two about using these tools with the much larger and inherently more complex charactersets in common use today.
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am 12. Januar 2011
Dieses Buch ist unentbehrlich für den UNIX Entwickler und Administrator. Viele Anregungen mit AWK und SED vereinfachen die tägliche Arbeit mit UNIX und schaffen Freiraum für Automatisierungskonzepte.
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am 24. Mai 2013
Eigentlich hatte ich mir "sed & awk" gekauft weil ich meine Kenntnisse mit sed vertiefen wollte. Dafür ist es auch sehr gut geeignet. Allerdings erklärt der Arnold Robbins sed von den Grundlagen an bis hin zu aufwändigen sed-Skripten. Damit ist es auch für Anfänger geeignet.

Mit awk verhält es sich im Buch genauso. Alles wird erklärt, von den Anfängen bis zu den komplexen Skripten.

Für jemanden, der nicht nur online lernt ein sehr gutes Buch. Natürlich gibt es zu diesen beiden betagten Unix-Werkzeugen eine Menge an Tutorials und Beispielen im Internet, aber das schmälert nicht den Wert dieses Buches.
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am 1. Februar 2000
Even if you've done a lot of Unix scripting (mostly in Perl as I did), this book will change the way you get your work done. Not only does it show you what can be done with awk, far easier than in Perl. It also is a great intro to regular expressions. This one gave me the basics I would have needed years before. ;-)

Plain, understandable language, very good tutorial. Keep "Unix in a nutshell" close, if you ned sed and awk references, because that's not what this book is good for.

Someone here said that this book saved him from carpal tunnel, and believe him, it will also save YOU. ;-)
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am 17. September 1998
Just finished it. Great book for beginners, tends to focus a bit on the non-programmer. However, it is revealing, showing you how to automatically edit things you usually do manually. Could have used some exercises, and some special problems at the end of each chapter, so you could practice what you learned in that chapter. Great book otherwise.
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am 20. März 2014
Wer darüber nachdenkt sich dieses Buch zu kaufen sollte eventuell vorher "Classic Shell Scripting" des selben Verlags lesen.

Dieses Buch beschreibt hervorragend sed & awk, aber eben nicht mehr. Viele Dinge in dem Buch machen natürlich nur Sinn oder ergeben einen Nutzen wenn man fundierte Shell-Scripting Fähigkeiten vorweisen kann.
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am 3. Juli 1998
This book took me from a state of loathing and ignorance of awk, to a complete awk fanatic, nowadays most of my scripts have some awk in them somewhere. Use this book to learn about the tools, and keep it within reach of your command prompt and you will unlock the power of the tools discussed.
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