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:



May 19, 2015 - A Look At The New Commandlinefu
I've put together a short writeup on what kind of newness you can expect from the next iteration of clfu. Check it out here.
March 2, 2015 - New Management
I'm Jon, I'll be maintaining and improving clfu. Thanks to David for building such a great resource!

Top Tags



Jump to a directory, execute a command and jump back to current dir

Terminal - Jump to a directory, execute a command and jump back to current dir
(cd /tmp && ls)
2009-01-27 00:41:04
User: root
Jump to a directory, execute a command and jump back to current dir


There are 3 alternatives - vote for the best!

Terminal - Alternatives
( cd $DIR; command; )
2011-03-29 13:16:00
User: sanmiguel
Functions: cd
Tags: bash cd

Obviously the example given is necessarily simple, but this command not only saves time on the command line (saves you using "cd -" or, worse, having to type a fully qualified path if your command cd's more than once), but is vital in scripts, where I've found the behaviour of "cd -" to be a little broken at times.

pushd /path/to/dir ; command_to_execute; popd
cd /path/to/dir && command_or_script; cd -;

Know a better way?

If you can do better, submit your command here.

What others think

Great line.. something I do need quite often! Thanks

Comment by kille 367 weeks and 3 days ago

couldn't you just do `ls /tmp` ?

Comment by xsawyerx 367 weeks and 1 day ago

xsawyerx, the point is that any command could be used instead of ls.

root, thanks for this tip, one of my favorites!

Comment by int19h 364 weeks and 3 days ago

it keeps me in the new directory - is that the point?

Comment by grep 364 weeks and 3 days ago

I use this constantly. It doesn't really "jump back", though. The parentheses create a new subshell, and the chdir happens only in that subshell. This means that you can do things like this:

for d in d1 d2 d3; do (cd $d && do_something_here) & done

Comment by mkc 364 weeks and 1 day ago

this must only work on some distros? I end up in the same directory

Comment by nottings 364 weeks and 1 day ago

mkc: what's wrong with just doing for d in d1 d2 d3; do $d/do_something_here); done ?

Comment by nottings 364 weeks and 1 day ago

nm... i see why

Comment by nottings 364 weeks and 1 day ago

if having a subshell doesn't work for whatever reason (like if you want to be able to set variables from within that dir) then you might want to consider:

pushd /some/dir; do_something_cool; popd
Comment by woxidu 359 weeks and 3 days ago

Usually I just use 'cd -' to get back to the directory I was previously in.

Comment by deltaray 318 weeks and 1 day ago

Isn't this a command substitution rather than a subshell executed list of command? Although command substitutions are executed in a subshell, using the syntax

(cd dir; foo)

seems a better idea to me.

Comment by adeverteuil 207 weeks and 3 days ago

Oh. command prompt. Got it. I take back my comment.

Comment by adeverteuil 207 weeks and 3 days ago


Comment by gadmyth 206 weeks and 1 day ago

agree with mkc

Comment by jasee 142 weeks and 1 day ago

Your point of view

You must be signed in to comment.