Microsoft Cloud Authors: Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Serafima Al, Janakiram MSV, John Katrick

Related Topics: Microsoft Cloud

Microsoft Cloud: Article

.Net Book Review: Mono: A Developer's Notebook

A How-To Book Using Mono on Linux

The authors of this book, Edd Dumbill and Niel Bornstein, are well known in both the Linux and .NET communities, and are well suited to write a book on the Mono project. Edd Dumbill also coauthored Linux Unwired and XML-RPC, and is an Editor at Large for O'Reilly books. Niel Bornstein also wrote .NET and XML, and is now a consultant for Novel in the Linux and open source practice group.

This book is one of the O'Reilly series of "Developer's Notebooks," so it is basically a cookbook of "how-tos" and is intentionally thin on theory. This allows the book to concentrate on the details of exactly how to perform common tasks; for instance, the book gives the commands needed to download and install Mono, and to compile and run a simple program on the three main supported platforms: Windows, Linux, and Mac. The format used in most of this book is to present a "lab exercise" type of task, and then give the solution to the task in two to four parts. After a description of a task, the first part is a "How do I do that" section that shows exactly how to complete the task. The next section, "How it works," talks a bit more about how the .NET classes work, things to watch out for, and often a bit of history about why a function behaves as it does. Some tasks also have a "What about" section that covers some "gotchas" or advanced applications of the technique just discussed. Most tasks conclude with a "Where to learn more" section, which references the MSDN library or Internet sites where more information and details can be found.

The book gives an overview of Mono, C#, and the NET framework; it is enough to get started, but everyone will need more complete references to complement this book. The chapter on the .NET framework only covers a few areas such as working with files, strings, and regular expressions, but these are some of the areas where many developers will hit their first snags, and those snags are what this book is designed to help with. It also covers two of the Mono tools, the disassembler for looking inside assemblies, and NUnit for testing.

The area with the most extensive coverage is on how to use Gnome and GTK# for writing GUI interfaces under Linux. The GTK# API is popular with developers coming from a Linux background. The book covers Linux Gnome tools such as Glade for layout, DocBook for help, Gecko, GConf, drag and drop, and internationalization. When this book was written, System.Windows.Forms was still far from complete, and so it is mostly absent from this book.

As you would expect from these two authors, XML is fully covered, including reading and writing XML files, the DOM classes, validating XML with DTDs, and serializing and deserializing C# classes to and from XML files. .NET uses XML in many ways, and this book gives a good overview of how to use most of them.

The chapter on remoting shows how to display ASP.NET Web pages using the Mono Web Server, XSP. It also covers sockets and remoting, and touches on security and cryptography. This chapter also includes a short introduction to database access using .NET, including how to create, connect to, and work with MySQL databases, as well as disconnected databases. Although this section is well written, anyone doing any significant database programming will need other books to fully understand how to use databases in .NET and Mono.

The final chapter is on advanced topics, including configuring and building projects under Linux using config and make, a section with hints on writing code to work on both Windows and Linux, running Java code in .NET using IKVM, the Mono basic compiler, and compiling to take advantage of generics.

The purpose of this book is to help developers get up to speed on using Mono. It is an excellent book for Linux developers who want to learn enough .NET to get started. It is an excellent book for Windows programmers who want to get started with .NET on Linux, because it gives details on how to install and configure Mono, and compile and execute programs in a Linux environment. It does this in a very cookbook style that does not assume any previous knowledge of Linux. This book is not for beginning programmers - it is too shallow and concise for that. This book is meant for experienced developers who just need a little help with some specific tasks.

I would rate this book a "must have" for programmers getting started with Mono and .NET on Linux, and the wallet-friendly price of $24.95 makes this book a real bargain that will pay for itself several times over.


Title: Mono: A Developer's Notebook
Author: Edd Dumbill and Niel M. Bornstein
Publisher: O'Reilly
ISBN #: 0-596-00792-2
Price: US $24.95

More Stories By Dennis Hayes

Dennis Hayes is a programmer at Georgia Tech in Atlanta Georgia where he writes software for the Adult Cognition Lab in the Psychology Department. He has been involved with the Mono project for over six years, and has been writing the Monkey Business column for over five years.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...
Enterprises have taken advantage of IoT to achieve important revenue and cost advantages. What is less apparent is how incumbent enterprises operating at scale have, following success with IoT, built analytic, operations management and software development capabilities - ranging from autonomous vehicles to manageable robotics installations. They have embraced these capabilities as if they were Silicon Valley startups.
The standardization of container runtimes and images has sparked the creation of an almost overwhelming number of new open source projects that build on and otherwise work with these specifications. Of course, there's Kubernetes, which orchestrates and manages collections of containers. It was one of the first and best-known examples of projects that make containers truly useful for production use. However, more recently, the container ecosystem has truly exploded. A service mesh like Istio addr...
Predicting the future has never been more challenging - not because of the lack of data but because of the flood of ungoverned and risk laden information. Microsoft states that 2.5 exabytes of data are created every day. Expectations and reliance on data are being pushed to the limits, as demands around hybrid options continue to grow.
Poor data quality and analytics drive down business value. In fact, Gartner estimated that the average financial impact of poor data quality on organizations is $9.7 million per year. But bad data is much more than a cost center. By eroding trust in information, analytics and the business decisions based on these, it is a serious impediment to digital transformation.
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
As IoT continues to increase momentum, so does the associated risk. Secure Device Lifecycle Management (DLM) is ranked as one of the most important technology areas of IoT. Driving this trend is the realization that secure support for IoT devices provides companies the ability to deliver high-quality, reliable, secure offerings faster, create new revenue streams, and reduce support costs, all while building a competitive advantage in their markets. In this session, we will use customer use cases...
Digital Transformation: Preparing Cloud & IoT Security for the Age of Artificial Intelligence. As automation and artificial intelligence (AI) power solution development and delivery, many businesses need to build backend cloud capabilities. Well-poised organizations, marketing smart devices with AI and BlockChain capabilities prepare to refine compliance and regulatory capabilities in 2018. Volumes of health, financial, technical and privacy data, along with tightening compliance requirements by...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
DevOpsSummit New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DXWorldEXPO within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of bus...
With 10 simultaneous tracks, keynotes, general sessions and targeted breakout classes, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO are two of the most important technology events of the year. Since its launch over eight years ago, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO have presented a rock star faculty as well as showcased hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors! In this blog post, we provide 7 tips on how, as part of our world-class faculty, you can deliver one of the most popular sessions at our events. But before reading...
DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that "Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO" has announced that its Call for Papers is now open. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Financial enterprises in New York City, London, Singapore, and other world financial capitals are embracing a new generation of smart, automated FinTech that eliminates many cumbersome, slow, and expe...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICOHOLDER named "Media Sponsor" of Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO. ICOHOLDER give you detailed information and help the community to invest in the trusty projects. Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO has opened its Call for Papers. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO also offers s...
DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, examined the regulations and provided insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence arou...
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo have announced the conference tracks for Cloud Expo 2018. Cloud Expo will be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, and November 6-8, 2018, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DX Expo within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive ov...