If you're a Linux user, or you know someone who is, you've probably heard of the "command line". But what is it? Is it hard to learn? Will it turn you into a geek?
The command line is something that anybody can learn and enjoy using. It's a special way of interacting with your computer, by typing short commands instead of clicking around in menus.
Although it's easy to use, the command line does take a little getting used to, because it's very different from what most people are used to.
On top of that, there are many different commands. It can take a long time to become an expert without training. You can use this site to boost your Linux skills.
I'll start with a simple statement of fact: the command line is here to stay. It's a powerful, flexible interface that allows the user to control the computer directly, without reference to a GUI.
The Linux command line is a powerful environment for a computer programmer. But it takes time and practice to become proficient at it.
To understand what the command line is, you should first know what it’s not. It’s not a graphical user interface.
The command line sits between your computer and programs. Anything run from the terminal is called a “command” or a “shell”.
You execute a command by typing it into the terminal and pressing return or enter, depending on your shell.
Essentially, it’s everything you type at a prompt or run standalone, like scripts and programs.
You can start a program by typing the name of the program like this:
You don't need a file manager, browsing your file systems is one of the things you can do with the command line.
# list files in directory ls # enter directory cd dir # go up one directory cd .. # go to root cd / # go to home directory cd ~
To view files, you can use these commands
# show file cat filename # show first lines of file head filename # show last lines of file tail filename
Text editing is great on the command line. Especially for config files but also for development.
# vim editor (ZQ to exit) vim filename # nano editor (beginners) nano filename
Moving from soydev to unix hacker really boosts your skills. It makes you so much more proficient at development.
These days you can even use a Linux terminal inside windows, the command line is included on Mac OS X and almost every web server in the world uses the command line.