Top 18 Most Important Linux Commands

Have you just switched to Linux and need help with the commands? We’ll help you with our tips + tricks article.

If you’ve just made a move to Linux, you should familiarize yourself with the basic commands you can enter in the Terminal window. But even as an experienced Linux user, you may not always have all the powers in mind. That’s why we’ve put together the essential Linux basic commands for you.

The 18 most essential Linux commands

To enter Linux commands, you must first open a terminal window. The terminal – also called shell or console – is a tool you can use to give commands to the computer. In Ubuntu, for example, you open the terminal with the key combination [Ctrl] + [Alt] + [T] . Alternatively, you can also access the terminal via the dashboard. There you enter your commands behind the command prompt.

1. cat

Linking files: With the “cat” command, you can display files and link content.

2. CD

Change directory: By entering the command “cd”, you change to the following higher directory.

3. clear

Clear input window: With the command “clear” you clear the input window and delete all previous inputs.

4. cp

Copy files and directories: With the command “cp” you can copy files and directories to another location.

5. date

Date and time: You can use the “date” command to display the date and time.

6. df

Show file system and storage space: The “df” command opens the file system and shows the storage space.

7. exit

End the session: With “exit”, you leave a program, a terminal or a UNIX network.

8. find

Search for files in the directory tree: With “find”, you can find specific files in the often confusing directory structures.

9. free

Use of the main memory: The command “free” shows you statistics on the use of the main memory.

10. info

Help file: You can use the “info” command to display a help file.

11. kill

Killing processes: The “kill” command kills a process. To do this, you have to pass its process ID as a parameter. You can determine the IDs of the running processes with the command “ps -ef”.

12. ls

Show contents of directories: “ls” shows you all files that are in your current directory.

13. man

Calling up the manual: Use the “man” command to open a manual page with information on the command or application.

14. mv

Move files and directories: The “mv” command moves files and directories within the folder structure.

15. passwd

Change password: With the command “passwd” you can change your password.

16. pwd

Display the current directory: If you no longer know which directory you are currently in, you can display it with the help of “PWD”.

17. reboot

Restart the computer: The “reboot” command will restart your computer.

18. rm

Delete files and directories: With the help of “rm”, you can delete individual files and entire directories.

19. unlink

Delete files: You can also delete files with “unlink”, but unlike “rm”, you have no options

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