Terminal: an interface where the user types and executes text based commands.
I’ll admit that when I first opened the terminal in 2014, I disliked it. At the time, I strongly believed that using a Graphical User Interface, such as Finder on Mac, was much faster for things like deleting, copying, and creating files and folders. The tutorials and articles I would read kept insisting that the terminal was ðŸ”‘, though, so I kept going.
I’m glad I pushed through and kept learning to use the terminal! Eventually, with practice and consistency, the understanding and speed came. Now I barely use the GUI for managing my file system.
That said, the road wasn’t all smooth. There were a lot of terminal commands thrown at me during my journey. How was I supposed to memorize all of them??!!? At once?!?!
To prevent you from going through the same anxieties. I compiled a list of my Top Fave â¤ï¸ Terminal shortcuts. ðŸ˜
ls List files and directories (Folders)
cd Change directory
pwd Print Working Directory (Shows the full pathname of the current working directory)
touch Create a new file
mkdir Create a new directory
cp Copy files or directories
mv Move (rename) files or directories
rm Remove files
rm -r Remove Directories & files in
Note: Therm command is really powerful. It deletes files/directories without recovery. (It doesn’t go to the trash bin)
Ctrl + A Gets the cursor at the beginning of the line
Ctrl + E Gets the cursor to the end.
Cmd + k (Mac) `Ctrl + L (Linux/Mac) Clears the Terminal Screen
And now for my absolute favorite â¤ï¸: Tab auto-completion!
If you’re trying to remember a command, type at least one letter and hit tab twice and it will show you all the commands available based on the typed characters. If you type enough characters and only one match is left then it’ll auto-complete it for you. This works with all UNIX commands and even your file system.
Now go on and jump into your terminal, start playing with it & work your way towards becoming the terminal-ator. ðŸ˜Ž
If you liked this post, make sure to hit the hit the green heart! ðŸ’š
For more puns and code tips follow my journey on twitter @clickclickonsal
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This article originally published on the Color Coded Medium publication
Top comments (54)
CTRL-r to search through your bash command history:
This is easily my favorite as well.
Sometimes even faster,
!lsrepeats the last command that started with ls (or any other sequence of characters).
Oh, this is really cool! I'm gonna keep this in mind next time I run into this!!!!
Tanks for the tip!!!
Just a heads up,
touchisn't actually meant to create files (although it does it if the specified string doesn't exist), it is meant to update a file's timestamp (in case you point it to an already existing file).
You could also add the
<operator - which does the same as
cat, but is actually meant to redirect stuff into the stdout of your terminal.
Oh wow, I didn't know that about
touch. Thank you for clarifying this here.
I tried the
<& that didn't seem to work on mac or linux.
or this (which means basically "write data to the file until you meet EOF label"):
>will rewrite contents of the file
>>will append to the end of the file
Weird, I've tried it in both systems and it works flawlessly.
Just to be sure, did you type in
< filetoread? A lack of example might've been the problem in my post.
sudo !!when you forgot to put sudo in front of last command.
True! This is a good & powerful command. I'd like to mention that always understand what it is you're trying to do when you're using
"open ." to open your current directory path in a Finder window in Mac
drag drop a file or directory into terminal from any application to automatically copy the text into the terminal window (handy for changing into directories within terminal)
Thanks for sharing your tips! These are awesome!
I use the first one all the time! I forgot to mention that one! :-)
The second one I didn't know about! That could come in handy in the future!
I learned something new! :-) Thank you, Scott!
My pleasure! Enjoy!
I am the only dev at my job that uses command line Git...I am the only dev at my job that doesn’t think that Git sucks. I think people confuse the GUI with the underlying tech, ie, “I can’t find my stash in SourceTree, I really hate Git”.
I come from a strange time. Started on a PC using DOS a bunch to add Extended Memory and Shadow Memory to play games.
I “locked” down my windows install by renaming win.exe to tim.exe. I did a lot in the command prompt.
Then I became a .NET developer. Visual Sudio has always been either a click-me interface or use keyboard shortcuts interface. It rarely required command line. Even now I use it more with the Nugget Package Manager Console but still, for the last 10 years or so I haven’t used the command line much.
Then I got a Mac and I’m back to mostly terminal, (iTerm). So in my career I have gone from command line to GUI and back to command line.
I am one of the only people at my job that uses command line Git...I am also one of the only people at my job that doesn’t think that Git sucks.
I think people blame GUI errors on the platform, ie, “I cant find my stash in SourceTree, Git really sucks”.
Aw, that sucks to hear :-/ Git is awesome & I couldn't imagine developing without it!
I think you should try & give a tech talk at your job and show them the tips and tricks to using git on the command line. :-)
A couple of things:
checkout iterm2.com/ when you have some spare time. I think it's better than the default OSX Terminal
if you work on computer you own you don't really need your name and computer's name in the prompt, this way you can save some room in the window
Thank you. Actually that terminal was iterm2! I'm a huge fan of it! :-)
Bullet point 2 is a really good tip. I think I'll do that now because you're right! Freeing up real estate on the terminal is a plus!!!
Ctrl + uis the first nature of
Ctrl + l:)
I personally do both mechanically.
echo 'something' somewhereand
echo 'something' >> somewhereis also a beginner one that helps quite often, say adding items in a
Whoa! I love everyone who's been sharing their tips as well! I've always used
Ctrl + Cto jump to a fresh new line. Now I know that I can do
Ctrl + uto clear out my terminal! :-)
The echo command is awesome as well! I forgot to mention a lot of good ones. 😅
rmcannot be your favorite shortcut. I would suggest using
Whoa! It Cannot be my favorite shortcut? That's a very aggressive statement.
Everyone is entitled to their own opinions and they will determine what they consider their favorites.
rmis a very powerful command & I recommend everyone who's using it to fully understand what it does which I mention in my blog post.
It's one of my favorite shortcuts because when I delete stuff with it I know that it has been completely removed from my computer.
It's a bad practice to use
rm— you're def entitled to your own opinion but be open to suggestions as well. You cannot always be right. Using
rmis a bad practice. Things can go wrong and you can end up deleting your OS.
It is not bad practice to use
rm. It is bad practice to use
rmif you don't know what it does, but the same goes for running any command in the terminal.
The terminal is a very powerful tool & anything you run in it should be ran with a good understanding of what it is doing.
Let's agree to disagree here.
==>(Cmd + k (Mac) `Ctrl + L (Linux/Mac) Clears the Terminal Screen)
In macOS Sierra, its Ctrl + L. Ctrl + k does not work.
That's because It's not
Ctrl + K, it's
Cmd + K:-)
Yup, works fine! Both are working
Cmd + Kand
Ctrl + L
The z command is one of my favorites. You just type
z dirand it searches all directories you visited for a directory name containing dir and jumps to the best match.
I kept the post tailored to beginners to make it easier to get familiar with the terminal.
The z command looks pretty cool but it doesn't have documentation on how to set it up, and this is one of the things I found hard for me in the beginning. I can figure out how to it up but not everyone can.
Maybe it would be cool for you to write a blog post on it ? Or maybe even submit a pull request on how to set it up.
To your .zshrc file.
I used this blog post to turbocharge my terminal. (The post recommends iTerm over the classic Terminal but everything works as expected in Terminal)
When my friend showed my tab auto-complete it changed my life lol
Word! Tab auto-complete, completes me 😂❤️
it is good to alias rm to trash command.. it will become a life saver decision 😊
Typically when I alias things I will alias them to something shorter. I see no reason to alias rm specifically.
when I use alias it be something like this
It's about reducing key strokes 😃
telnet pliutau.com 8080- snake game :)
That's so cool!!!
How did you make your terminal prompt look this way? It looks very familiar, but I can't remember where did I see this.
I'm using this.
Cool, thank you!