Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Shorthand at the Linux CLI

Some of the very useful shortcuts of the CLI are

  • / :- root directory
  • ./ :- current directory
  • ./command_name :- run a command in the current directory when the current directory is not on the path
  • ../ :- parent directory
  • ~ :- home directory
  • $ :- typical prompt when logged in as ordinary user
  • # :- typical prompt when logged in as root or superuser
  • ! :- repeat specified command
  • !! :- repeat previous command
  • ^^ :- repeat previous command with substitution
  • & :- run a program in background mode
  • [Tab][Tab] :- prints a list of all available commands. This is just an example of autocomplete with no restriction on the first letter.
  • x[Tab][Tab] :- prints a list of all available completions for a command, where the beginning is ``x''
  • [Alt][Ctrl][F1] :- switch to the first virtual text console
  • [Alt][Ctrl][Fn] :- switch to the nth virtual text console. Typically, there are six on a Linux PC system.
  • [Alt][Ctrl][F7] :- switch to the first GUI console, if there is one running. If the graphical console freezes, one can switch to a nongraphical console, kill the process that is giving problems, and switch back to the graphical console using this shortcut.
  • [ArrowUp] :- scroll through the command history (in bash)
  • [Shift][PageUp] :- scroll terminal output up. This also works at the login prompt, so you can scroll through your boot messages.
  • [Shift][PageDown] :- scroll terminal output down
  • [Ctrl][Alt][+] :- switch to next X server resolution (if the server is set up for more than one resolution)
  • [Ctrl][Alt][-] :- change to previous X server resolution
  • [Ctrl][Alt][BkSpc] :- kill the current X server. Used when normal exit is not possible.
  • [Ctrl][Alt][Del] :- shut down the system and reboot
  • [Ctrl]c :- kill the current process
  • [Ctrl]d :- logout from the current terminal
  • [Ctrl]s :- stop transfer to current terminal
  • [Ctrl]q :- resume transfer to current terminal. This should be tried if the terminal stops responding.
  • [Ctrl]z :- send current process to the background
  • reset :- restore a terminal to its default settings
  • [Leftmousebutton] :- Hold down left mouse button and drag to highlight text. Releasing the button copies the region to the text buffer under X and (if gpm is installed) in console mode.
  • [Middlemousebutton] :- Copies text from the text buffer and inserts it at the cursor location. With a two-button mouse, click on both buttons simultaneously. It is necessary for three-button emulation to be enabled, either under gpm or in XF86Config.


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