Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Useful and Basic Commands and Shortcuts For Ubuntu Beginners

One of my friends asked me to list useful commands and shortcuts for him to use in his ubuntu distro. I listed some pretty useful ones and am also sharing them over here.

Basic Commands

Alt + F1: Opens application menu.
Alt + F2: Opens run command(something similar to run command in windows)
Ctrl +Alt + FN: Switch to TTYN terminals
Ctrl +Alt + F7: Switch to X Display
mkdir <dir_name>: Create a directory
cd $HOME: Set the current path as your home directory
cd /: Set the current path as root filesystem

Privileged commands: Note that most of these commands require you to have sudoers privilege which is specified in /etc/sudoers file.

sudo su: Run the shell as root user.
sudo su user: Run the shell as the user specified
sudo command: Run the specified command with root privilege
gksudo command: Run the specified command as graphical root mode.(used for graphical programs)
passwd: Change your password

Basic Network Commands

ifconfig: Displays information about network. Also, ifconfig interface would give information about the specified interface.
iwconfig: Displays information about wireless network
ping host_or_IP: Pings to check if the specified host or IP is online or not. Also useful for knowing if you are connected to some other network eg. internet.
host ip_addr: Displays hostname for specified IP address by querying nameservers specified in /etc/resolv.conf
ifup interface: Bring the specified network up.
ifdown interface: Bring the specified network down.
ssh user@hostname -p PORTNO: Establish SSh connection to specified host and port number and login as specified user.

Commands For Package Management: These commands require root privilege so either escalate privilege to root by sudo su command or precede each commands with sudo.

apt-get install package1 package2 .. packageN: Download and install the package(s) specified.
apt-get install -d package: Just download the packages(no installation)
apt-get update: Update packages information.
apt-get dist-upgrade: Perform distro version upgrade.
do-release-upgrade: Perform distro version upgrade.
apt-get remove package: Remove the specified package(s).
apt-get -f install: Fix packages problem.
dpkg --configure -a: Fix broken packages.

Other/Misc. Commands

id: Displays user and group IDs for current user.
uname -a: Displays all kernel information
gedit: Open text editor
nautilus: Open nautilus file manager
gksudo nautilus: Open root nautilus file manager
lsb_release -a: Get information about installed ubuntu version

These are some of the commands that has come in my mind as of now. I might update this list when some other commands come into my mind. By the way, TAB is very useful in terminal as it allows auto-completion and suggestion of commands and files in ubuntu. What this means is if you type do- and then press TAB, it will auto complete the command to do-release-upgrade thus saving some important time. Also be sure to share the useful commands in the comment section below.