System Books on Windows OS

Windows System Programming 3E

The advantages of the first book "Windows System Programming":
1. It covers broader topics, nearly all the topics you need to know as system developer
2. It has some useful performance comparison using concrete codes
3. It has some helpful comparisons with Unix counterparts

The dawbacks of this book:
1. Most topics are just skin deep, especially Dll/Mem/Net related chapters
2. The writing style is not perfectly clear(at least to me)

In general, it's a good starting point. After reading this, you will know what to deep into.

Windows Via C/C++ 5E

The second book may be the most famous windows system programming book:
1. It covers core system programming topics in great detail: Dll/Thread/Mem etc
2. It explains these topics clearly with useful code examples
3. BUT, its coverage is somewhat narrow, no file i/o, networking, security
4. This books only tells you HOW, very few about WHY is mentioned.

In general, this book should be your reference book in daily work

Windows Internals 5E

The last book covers broad range of os topics in great detail. But it only tells How/Why the underlying system works. It just helps you to understand the system components. It's not for any programming purpose directly. But as you deep into windows system developing, you will need this book eventually.

But this book only show those internals using plain text or some kernel debugging tools, no os source code is exposed, no guidelines on how to change/modify the source code and rebuild it to see the effects. Its the main drawback of this book, compared with linux counterparts.

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