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C++ for programmers

The past week has been quite interesting.

As part of my new job I’m supposed to learn C++. When I heard that someone is actually gonna make me learn that language I was totally excited. I’ve been trying to learn C++ on my own for quite a while now, but have never been able to come to terms with all the language’s features on my own. It’s simply one of those things that are very hard to learn without someone with real-life experience in that language helping you out on the sidelines. The fact that you’re doing it without it being your duty, but only as a side note, is even harder, since discipline is all up to you.


Enter my savior.


One of the most important C++ learning discoveries I’ve made was to find one of the best books I have ever read that tried to teach me this language:

Thinking in C++, by Bruce Eckel. Not only is this one of the best C++ books around for beginners in C++(and I’ve read many…), it is also available totally free for download, in two volumes. You can also buy the printed version on Amazon.


I won’t do a full review here, as I’m not yet fully done with the book yet, but:

If you are already a programmer and all you want to do is learn C++, this is the book for you.

It actually does what the cover promises: it makes you think in C++, so once you hit something you don’t know, you’re likely to solve it or understand it because this book also teaches you all the “why”s, not just the “how”s.


Since this is all about .Net, I’ve decided to put Visual Studio .Net to the test.

For each program I wrote and compiled on VS 6, I created a solution in VS.Net 2003 and did exactly the same program, compiled it and ran it.

I can say this:

With around, why is anyone still using VS6?

Since allows you to create totally CLR free C++ programs, there’s no reason you shouldn’t import most of your current C++ workspaces and start using right away. You get great benefits:

-         A much better IDE, including better Intellisense, collapsible code, tool tips and all the other productivity enhancements in Vs.Net.

-         The world’s best debugger. You know it.

-         You can even do straight out C programming in, (All C++ compilers support this)

o       Actually, my wife is currently writing her homework for the university(a course in the C language) in Vs.Net




Other books people tell me are a “must read”:

Effective C++

More effective C++

Effective STL



SBC recommends more books:

Modern C++ Design: Generic Programming and Design Patterns Applied

Advanced C++ Programming Styles and Idioms


and Dana says that it's not always feasible to do a full workspace converstion. I do wonder what problems you encountered. Anyway, here's a link to an MSDN article explaining the importing issues between VS6 and VS.Net


Expand the desktops gallery

MSDN VB blog section