Book Image

Rust Essentials - Second Edition

By : Ivo Balbaert
Book Image

Rust Essentials - Second Edition

By: Ivo Balbaert

Overview of this book

Rust is the new, open source, fast, and safe systems programming language for the 21st century, developed at Mozilla Research, and with a steadily growing community. It was created to solve the dilemma between high-level, slow code with minimal control over the system, and low-level, fast code with maximum system control. It is no longer necessary to learn C/C++ to develop resource intensive and low-level systems applications. This book will give you a head start to solve systems programming and application tasks with Rust. We start off with an argumentation of Rust's unique place in today's landscape of programming languages. You'll install Rust and learn how to work with its package manager Cargo. The various concepts are introduced step by step: variables, types, functions, and control structures to lay the groundwork. Then we explore more structured data such as strings, arrays, and enums, and you’ll see how pattern matching works. Throughout all this, we stress the unique ways of reasoning that the Rust compiler uses to produce safe code. Next we look at Rust's specific way of error handling, and the overall importance of traits in Rust code. The pillar of memory safety is treated in depth as we explore the various pointer kinds. Next, you’ll see how macros can simplify code generation, and how to compose bigger projects with modules and crates. Finally, you’ll discover how we can write safe concurrent code in Rust and interface with C programs, get a view of the Rust ecosystem, and explore the use of the standard library.
Table of Contents (13 chapters)

Starting with Rust

Rust is a programming language developed at Mozilla Research and backed up by a big open source community. Its development was started in 2006 by language designer Graydon Hoare. Mozilla began sponsoring it in 2009 and it was first presented officially in 2010. Work on this went through a lot of iterations, culminating in early 2015 in the first stable production, version 1.0.0, developed by the Rust Project Developers, consisting of the Rust team at Mozilla and an open source community of over 1800 contributors. Since then, Rust has developed in a steady pace; its current stable version is 1.20.0.

Rust is based on clear and solid principles. It is a systems programming language, equaling C and C++ in its capabilities. It rivals idiomatic C++ in speed, but it lets you work in a much safer way by forbidding code that could cause program crashes due to memory problems. Moreover, it makes concurrent programming and parallel execution on multi-core machines memory safe without garbage collection--it is the only language that does that. By design, Rust eliminates the corruption of shared data through concurrent access, called data races.

This chapter will present you with the main reasons why Rust's popularity and adoption are steadily increasing. Then, we'll set up a working Rust development environment.

We will cover the following:

  • The advantages of Rust
  • The trifecta of Rust--safe, fast and concurrent
  • The stability of Rust and its evolution
  • The success of Rust
  • Using Rust
  • Installing Rust
  • The Rust compiler
  • Our first program
  • Working with Cargo
  • Developer tools
  • The Standard Library