1. 10

Collecting (and reading!) books on debugging and debugging stories/journals have become one of my hobbies of late. I’ve noticed that there isn’t exactly a lot of them out there compared to other aspects of software development. Most books focus on specific platforms (Windows is a common one) or tools (GDB, for example). I’m more interested in ones that focus on the practice of debugging.

Here are some that I’ve read, in no particular order.

Andreas Zeller’s book (Why Programs Fail) is probably the best of the ones I’ve read so far. But it’s clear that debugging is one of those things that everyone does but few people talk about, except over the proverbial water cooler. What is something you have read with respect to debugging that is particularly notable?


  2. 2

    You might be better off reading a reverse engineering book like “Reversing: Secrets of Reverse Engineering” by Eldad Eilam (which is ok) rather than how to use a debugger. But to be honest, you’re better of reading 80s/90s cracking tutorials to get a sense of methods/tactics on debugging etc.

    1. 1

      Books or guides on how to use a debugger are explicitly ones I’ve avoided, but the reverse engineering ones are certainly a worthy consideration.

    2. 2

      This definitely falls under the “hobby” end of your request, but there’s a novel about debugging that I really enjoyed. Try “The Bug” by Ellen Ullman

      1. 2

        Just ordered George Polya’s How to Solve It, which I’ve heard great things about - I think I read about it initially in one of Kyle Kingsbury’s blog posts. http://smile.amazon.com/How-Solve-Mathematical-Princeton-Science/dp/069116407X/ref=sr_1_1

        I also enjoyed “Release It”, which taught me about a bunch of things that might go wrong when building a distributed system, and the things you should do to work around them. http://smile.amazon.com/Release-Production-Ready-Software-Pragmatic-Programmers/dp/0978739213/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8