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Starter Kit

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gqblue2003

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Post Tue Mar 27, 2007 5:22 am

Starter Kit

I am currently going to school for CIS. Majoring in Forensics, ISS or analytical (have not decided yet). I am trying to get a head start on some things. I have taken A programming class using pseudo code. I enjoyed the class but wanted to start learning a real language. But I am afraid of messing up my computer at home.
I do not know how to set up a safe lab on my computer. I know little to nothing about real programming on a real computer. Should I purchase a cheap computer to play on or is there not much real risk in just programming. I have just an average computer that I upgraded some. I could use a major rundown so far as software and such.  ???
"A man who finds no satisfaction in himself will seek for it in vain elsewhere."
        
                                   La Rochefoucauld
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heffnercj

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Post Tue Mar 27, 2007 7:56 am

Re: Starter Kit

Well in general unless you are doing some type of driver or kernel programming, you aren't going to mess up your computer. If you code a program incorrectly, it will crash but won't affect the system as a whole (OK, there are some ways you could hose up your system, but you'd have to really be trying).

I'm assuming you're running Windows, so about the only built in development tool is going to be debug. What software you need depends on what programming language you want to learn - personally I would suggest learning C at first, but there are plenty of other languages out there. Interpreted languages are easier to learn, such as Perl and Python.

For writing programs in C on Windows I prefer to use Dev-C++ from bloodshed.net; very straight forward for writing simple programs, but has more powerful features when I want them. You can also get Windows interpreters for Perl and Python from activestate.com.
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shawn

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Post Tue Mar 27, 2007 3:09 pm

Re: Starter Kit

You could try VMWare.
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LSOChris

Post Tue Mar 27, 2007 3:30 pm

Re: Starter Kit

if in your courses they havent started talking about using virtual machines they are doing you a huge disservice. like shawn said, check out vmware.
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gqblue2003

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Post Fri Mar 30, 2007 11:44 pm

Re: Starter Kit

I have only taken ONE programming class. Most of the other classes are General education for my degree. We use virtual labs but have not done any coding other than writing pseudo code which does not execute at all. So I do not know if I am doing something wrong unless someone tells me.

Thank you everyone for your input so far.
Last edited by gqblue2003 on Mon Apr 02, 2007 3:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
"A man who finds no satisfaction in himself will seek for it in vain elsewhere."
        
                                   La Rochefoucauld
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gqblue2003

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Post Tue Apr 03, 2007 2:40 am

Re: Starter Kit

I guess I was just a little worried about doing this kind of stuff on my computer. I have always been a trial and error baby. After I cut open a battery to see how it works and got into some trouble for it. I started thinking , a little, about if I would mess something up. Then I got into computers and forgot that lesson for a while, until I was reminded. So I am a slightly paranoid about just dredging into waters I have not explored.
"A man who finds no satisfaction in himself will seek for it in vain elsewhere."
        
                                   La Rochefoucauld

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