Starting as a programmer

I’d like to get my first job as a C++ programmer. All my life i was doing system admin/engineer work on UNIX systems. I did some PHP programming for a spam generating company a few years back but that’s it. I was wondering what tips you guys might have, should i try to start at a big corpo or maybe a small job in a small company to learn the rules. Also do i need aportfolio type deal ? I have some of my code i can show ofcourse but i don’t know how to do that (paste a link in the CV?). OH yeah i’ll be starting in Poland, for now i want to start half-time (i still have my primay job, but it’s the kind of job i sit for 8 hours and watch youtube).

My biggest problem i think is the fact i have no programming education, no school no training all i know i learned myself, i don’t know how to turn this into a good thing.

Any help is much appreciated.