beanz Magazine

Command Line Interface (CLI) Part II

Juan Lupion on Flickr

Take your CLI skills to the next level as you combine, redirect, and script commands.

Last time we spent some time getting comfortable with the command line and using a terminal. Here, we’ll be continuing where we left off with learning how to use the command line interface to control your computer.

We’ll be discussing a few common built-in programs that come with the terminal, how to combine commands together, how to redirect the output of a command into a file, and just exactly how the terminal even finds commands and programs in the first place. Finally, we’ll have our first little taste of writing our own terminal commands by doing some bash scripting.

To follow along, first open up a terminal on your computer. Now try typing nano and hitting enter. You’re actually now in a tiny text editor and it should look something like the following:

Go ahead and type a little bit of text and hit Ctrl-X to exit and save. You’ll be prompted to give it a filename. You can actually call it anything, but I’ll call it test.txt. Nano is a convenient little program for doing quick edits on the command line, especially if you’re remotely controlling another computer over SSH, but that’s a topic we’ll cover in a future article.

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