What's this?

commandlinefu.com is the place to record those command-line gems that you return to again and again.

Delete that bloated snippets file you've been using and share your personal repository with the world. That way others can gain from your CLI wisdom and you from theirs too. All commands can be commented on, discussed and voted up or down.

If you have a new feature suggestion or find a bug, please get in touch via http://commandlinefu.uservoice.com/

Get involved!

You can sign-in using OpenID credentials, or register a traditional username and password.

First-time OpenID users will be automatically assigned a username which can be changed after signing in.

Universal configuration monitoring and system of record for IT.

Stay in the loop…

Follow the Tweets.

Every new command is wrapped in a tweet and posted to Twitter. Following the stream is a great way of staying abreast of the latest commands. For the more discerning, there are Twitter accounts for commands that get a minimum of 3 and 10 votes - that way only the great commands get tweeted.

» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu
» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu3
» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu10

Subscribe to the feeds.

Use your favourite RSS aggregator to stay in touch with the latest commands. There are feeds mirroring the 3 Twitter streams as well as for virtually every other subset (users, tags, functions,…):

Subscribe to the feed for:



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 - 12,034 results
cat /usr/share/dict/words | egrep '^\w{13,}$' | egrep -iv '(\w).*\1'
2014-09-29 12:52:09
User: hackerb9
Functions: cat egrep

This is the most straightforward approach: first regexp limits dictionary file to words with thirteen or more characters, second regexp discards any words that have a letter repeated. (Bonus challenge: Try doing it in a single regexp!)

echo "DISK:";df -Pl | grep -v "Filesystem" | awk '{print $5,$6}' ; echo "MEM:" ; free -mto | awk '{ print $1,$2,$3,$4 }'; echo "CPU:"; top -b -d1 -n1 | grep Cpu | awk '{print $2,$3,$4,$5,$6,$7,$8,$9}';echo "LOAD:"; cat /proc/loadavg
2014-09-29 12:43:52
User: injez
Functions: awk cat df echo free grep top

Monitoring system in one line :

DISK : disk space

MEM: memory ( mem , swap, Total)

CPU : all information about cpu activity

LOAD : load average

history|awk '{print $2}'|sort|uniq -c|sort -rn|head -30|awk '!max{max=$1;}{r="";i=s=100*$1/max;while(i-->0)r=r"#";printf "%50s %5d %s %s",$2,$1,r,"\n";}'
2014-09-29 12:40:43
User: injez
Functions: awk head printf sort uniq

Top 30 History Command line with histogram display

rsync -arvz -e 'ssh -p 2233' --progress --delete [email protected]:/path/to/folder /path/to/local/folder
2014-09-26 10:42:26
User: nadavkav
Functions: rsync

Useful, when you need to backup/copy/sync a folder over ssh with a non standard port number

tcpdump -tnn -c 2000 -i eth0 | awk -F "." '{print $1"."$2"."$3"."$4}' | sort | uniq -c | sort -nr | awk ' $1 > 10 '
2014-09-26 01:15:23
User: hochmeister
Functions: awk sort tcpdump uniq

capture 2000 packets and print the top 10 talkers

kpartx -av <image-flat.vmdk>; mount -o /dev/mapper/loop0p1 /mnt/vmdk
2014-09-25 23:05:09
User: rldleblanc
Functions: mount

This does not require you to know the partition offset, kpartx will find all partitions in the image and create loopback devices for them automatically. This works for all types of images (dd of hard drives, img, etc) not just vmkd. You can also activate LVM volumes in the image by running

vgchange -a y

and then you can mount the LV inside the image.

To unmount the image, umount the partition/LV, deactivate the VG for the image

vgchange -a n <volume_group>

then run

kpartx -dv <image-flad.vmdk>

to remove the partition mappings.

sed -e "s/^ $(hostname).novalocal/" /etc/hosts
2014-09-25 15:38:43
User: renoirb
Functions: sed

When booting a VM through OpenStack and managed through cloudinit, the hosts file gets to write a line simiar to ns0.novalocal ns0

This command proven useful while installing a configuration manager such as Salt Stack (or Puppet, or Ansible) and getting node name

perl-rename -v 's/720p.+mkv/720p\.mkv/' *.mkv
2014-09-25 14:07:47
User: benkaiser
Functions: perl

I used this (along with a modified one replacing `mkv` with `srt`) to remove the slight differences in who the provider of the video / matching subtitle was (as they are the same contents and the subs match anyway).

So now VLC (and other video players) can easily guess the subtitle file.

sleep 10 & wait $!
2014-09-25 13:33:51
User: yorkou
Functions: sleep wait

A nice way to interrupt a sleep with a signal.

find . -iname "*.mp4" -print0 | xargs -0 mv --verbose -t /media/backup/
cd tmp ; find . |cpio -o -H newc| gzip > ../initrd.gz
2014-09-24 14:07:54
User: akiuni
Functions: cd cpio find gzip

This commands compresses the "tmp" directory into an initrd file.

mkdir tmp ; cd tmp ; zcat ../initrd.gz | cpio -i
2014-09-24 14:06:38
User: akiuni
Functions: cd cpio mkdir zcat

this command extracts an initrd files into the "tmp" directory

for file in $(find /var/backup -name "backup*" -type f |sort -r | tail -n +10); do rm -f $file; done ; tar czf /var/backup/backup-system-$(date "+\%Y\%m\%d\%H\%M-\%N").tgz --exclude /home/dummy /etc /home /opt 2>&- && echo "system backup ok"
2014-09-24 14:04:11
User: akiuni
Functions: date echo file find rm sort tail tar
Tags: backup Linux cron

this command can be added to crontab so as to execute a nightly backup of directories and store only the 10 last backup files.

date -r 1390196676
zcat error.log.gz | sed 's^\[.*\]^^g' | sed 's^\, referer: [^\n]*^^g' | sort | uniq -c | sort -n
2014-09-24 05:26:24
User: zanhsieh
Functions: sed sort uniq zcat
Tags: sort sed uniq zcat

credit shall fall to this for non-gzipped version:


for line in `docker ps | awk '{print $1}' | grep -v CONTAINER`; do docker ps | grep $line | awk '{printf $NF" "}' && echo $(( `cat /sys/fs/cgroup/memory/docker/$line*/memory.usage_in_bytes` / 1024 / 1024 ))MB ; done
finger $(whoami) | egrep -o 'Name: [a-zA-Z0-9 ]{1,}' | cut -d ':' -f 2 | xargs echo
2014-09-24 01:22:07
User: swebber
Functions: cut egrep finger xargs

Its possible to user a simple regex to extract de username from the finger command.

The final echo its optional, just for remove the initial space

avconv -loop 1 -i company-logo-1920x992.png -t 2 -r 2 logo.avi
find . -name "*.pdf" -print0 | xargs -r0 stat -c %y\ %n | sort|awk '{print $4}'|gawk 'BEGIN{ a=1 }{ printf "mv %s %04d.pdf\n", $0, a++ }' | bash
2014-09-23 06:40:45
Functions: awk find gawk printf stat xargs
Tags: sort awk find xargs

Caution: distructive overwrite of filenames

Useful for concatenating pdfs in date order using pdftk

sed -E "s/"$'\E'"\[([0-9]{1,3}((;[0-9]{1,3})*)?)?[m|K]//g"
tar xvzf <file.tar.gz>
awk '$2 == "/media/KINGSTON" {print $1}' /etc/mtab
complete -W "$(echo $(grep ^Host ~/.ssh/config | sed -e 's/Host //' | grep -v "\*"))" ssh
gs -dNOPAUSE -sDEVICE=pdfwrite -sOUTPUTFILE=merged.pdf -dBATCH `ls | grep foo`
docker images | grep '' | awk '{print $3}' | xargs docker rmi