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2011-03-12 - Confoo 2011 presentation
Slides are available from the commandlinefu presentation at Confoo 2011: http://presentations.codeinthehole.com/confoo2011/
2011-01-04 - Moderation now required for new commands
To try and put and end to the spamming, new commands require moderation before they will appear on the site.
2010-12-27 - Apologies for not banning the trolls sooner
Have been away from the interwebs over Christmas. Will be more vigilant henceforth.
2010-09-24 - OAuth and pagination problems fixed
Apologies for the delay in getting Twitter's OAuth supported. Annoying pagination gremlin also fixed.




All commands from sorted by
Terminal - All commands - 11,494 results
rpm -qa --qf '%{SIZE} %{NAME}\n' | sort -nr | nl | head -6 # six largest RPMs
2009-03-15 22:18:17
User: mpb
Functions: head nl rpm sort

Low on disk space? Check the largest installed RPMs for delete canditates.

ls -1 | grep " " | awk '{printf("mv \"%s\" ",$0); gsub(/ /,"_",$0); printf("%s\n",$0)}' | sh # rename filenames: spaces to "_"
2009-03-15 18:42:43
User: mpb
Functions: awk grep ls rename sh

This command converts filenames with embedded spaces in the current directory replacing spaces with the underscore ("_") character.

echo "encryptedpassword"|openssl passwd -1 -stdin
for name in larry moe schemp; do useradd $name; echo 'password' | passwd --stdin $name; chage -d 0 $name; done
2009-03-15 12:02:39
User: atoponce
Functions: chage echo passwd useradd

This command is a bit Linux specific, as --stdin doesn't exist for passwd on many Unix machines. Further, useradd is high level in most distributions and Unix derivatives except for the Debian family of distros, where adduser would be more appropriate. The last bit, with chage, will force the user to change their password on new login.

gcal -K -q GB_EN 2009 # display holidays in UK/England for 2009 (with week numbers)
2009-03-15 10:19:52
User: mpb

NB when you run this gcal command in your shell, holidays are highlighted

but this highlighting does not show in the sample output (above).

To find full details on gcal options: gcal --long-help | less

Example for United States, Pennsylvania:

gcal -K -q US_PA 2009 # display holidays in USA/Pennsylvania for 2009 (with week numbers)

Example for Hong Kong:

gcal -K -q HK 2009 # display holidays in Hong Kong for 2009 (with week numbers)

sort file1.txt | uniq > file2.txt
2009-03-14 03:39:32
User: atoponce

'visudo' is installed by default on most Unix-like systems. If not installed, you can get it from the 'sudo' package. 'visudo' will use the text editor found in your $EDITOR variable, whether it's vi, vim, emacs, nano or gedit. After making changes to the /etc/sudoers file, visudo will check for syntax errors, and notify you of them. This is better than 'vi /etc/sudoers', because of this capability. Rule #1 of system administration- if there is a tool that exists for editing config files, use the tool.

gs -q -sPAPERSIZE=letter -dNOPAUSE -dBATCH -sDEVICE=pdfwrite -sOutputFile=out.pdf `ls *.pdf`
2009-03-13 22:34:14
User: oops66
Functions: gs

Merge all pdf files in the directory into one pdf file (the out.pdf file)

ls -l|awk '{print $6,$8}'|sort -d
2009-03-13 19:00:18
User: archlich
Functions: awk ls sort

Can pipe to tail or change the awk for for file size, groups, users, etc.

lockstat -I -i 977 -s 30 -h sleep 1 > /tmp/profile.out
2009-03-13 13:17:53
User: garylittle
Functions: sleep

Lockstat will sample the kernel 977 times per second, and print out the functions that it sees executing on the CPU during the sample. The -s 10 switch tells lockstsat to not only print that function, but also show the call stack (up to 10 deep).

find ~/project -mtime -1 -type f -print | tar jcvf myfiles.tar.bz2 -T -
2009-03-13 13:03:11
User: voyeg3r
Functions: find tar

create tar.bz2 package from files "-type f" modificated today "-mtime -1" in ~/project

rsync -avz -e ssh --files-from=<(find -mtime +30 -mtime -60) source dest
2009-03-13 12:58:28
User: voyeg3r
Functions: find rsync ssh

rsync from source to dest all between >30

for i in $(seq 0 5) ; do echo "5 - $i" | bc -l ; sleep 60 ; done && echo "bye, bye" && shutdown -h now
2009-03-13 12:16:35
User: arctarus
Functions: bc echo seq shutdown sleep

command to turn off your computer when you go home and can not wait

ls /home/user | xargs ls -lhR | less
over myscript.sh
2009-03-13 06:13:21
User: haivu

over works like 'more' or 'less', but it pretty print the source code

leave +15
2009-03-13 06:09:52
User: haivu
Tags: PIM

If you spend most of your time in front of the terminal, leave is a useful reminder. Leave can have absolute form: leave 1555 reminds you to leave at 3:55PM

ls -A
2009-03-13 05:12:01
User: haivu
Functions: ls
Tags: terminal

This command is almost the same as 'ls -a', but it does not display the current dir (.) or parent (..)

find . -name "*.pdf" -print0 | xargs -0 cp -t downloads/
2009-03-13 03:15:27
User: abcde
Functions: cp find xargs

-t, --target-directory=DIRECTORY (copy all SOURCE arguments into DIRECTORY).

bash -x SCRIPT
2009-03-13 00:09:07
User: jcalvert
Functions: bash

Display commands and their arguments as they are executed. Useful for debugging shell scripts.

lsof | egrep "^COMMAND|deleted"
2009-03-12 23:11:26
User: jyoder
Functions: egrep

If your customer deletes a file that is still in use by a process, that space does not get freed up (will not show up in df) until that process either closes the file on its own, or is killed.

convert image123.png -colors 14 -resize 640x480 grubimg.xpm
2009-03-12 22:55:10
User: starchox
Tags: Linux grub boot

* size must be 640?480 pixels

* only has 14 colors

* save it in XPM format

Edit /boot/grub/menu.lst and add


make sure for your path name and hard disk

find . -print | sed -e 's;[^/]*/;|____;g;s;____|; |;g'
2009-03-12 22:25:26
Functions: find sed

NOT MINE! Taken from hackzine.com blog.

It creates a tree-style output of all the (sub)folders and (sub)files from the current folder and down(deeper)

Quoting some of hackzine's words

"Murphy Mac sent us a link to a handy find/sed command that simulates the DOS tree command that you might be missing on your Mac or Linux box. [..split...] Like most things I've seen sed do, it does quite a bit in a single line of code and is completely impossible to read. Sure it's just a couple of substitutions, but like a jack in the box, it remains a surprise every time I run it."

lsof|grep /somemount/| awk '{print $2}'|xargs kill
2009-03-12 18:42:19
User: archlich
Functions: awk grep xargs

This command will kill all processes using a directory. It's quick and dirty. One may also use a -9 with kill in case regular kill doesn't work. This is useful if one needs to umount a directory.

[[ -d dir ]] || mkdir dir ; cd dir
2009-03-12 17:19:13
User: voyeg3r
Functions: cd dir mkdir

For use in scripts this command is very usefull

mkdir -p doc/{text/,img/{wallpaper/,photos/}}
2009-03-12 17:15:58
User: voyeg3r
Functions: mkdir

create tree of dir's in one command