Lost in Linux and shell commanding?
There are a number of ways to get information about a particular Linux command. Chances are you are using bash shell which is currently the most popular shell of all types of Linux distributions, therefore in a sense, what you mean by Linux commands are bash commands.
So what are the ways to know more about a particular bash / Linux command?
Letâ€™s take Linux command ls for example
ls is probably the most frequently used linux command for listing files under a particular directory, to know more about the command ls, type:
- ls –help
This would generally lists all possible usages or parameters for this command on the current screen.
- man ls / apropos *ls* / man -k ^ls&
This finds and switches to man(ual) pages concerning ls command. â€˜aproposâ€™ or â€˜man â€“kâ€™ searches through all man pages for related information of similar commands on the command or command regular expression. This would come handy if you donâ€™t quite remember the command name.
- info ls
Same as above, but maybe more useful and the viewing / scrolling can be easier. info is usually more complete than man in that man sometimes gets you to refer to info for more information.
- help ls
Finds help topics.
- whatis ls
This outputs a small line of brief description of what this Linux command is for.
- whereis ls / which ls / locate ls
These give the stored locations of the actual program.
- type ls
Presents alias commands defined by the name â€˜lsâ€™.