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The only Linux commands you need



  • Reading @Chris-Kawa's comment elsewhere implying he thinks Linux is "complicated" compared to Windows (though I'm sure he can cope really)....

    Just on the Linux topic, I was musing that there are only really 3 Linux commands you need to know to do most things:

    1. man: Everything you need to know is here.
    2. ls: Whenever looking for inspiration for what to do next, this is your go-to command. If someone is looking over your shoulder to make sure you're working, do a lot of ls -lR /.
    3. grep: Whatever you're trying to achieve, you're likely to use this.

    With these 3 you can cover most of your Linux needs. Anyone need to use anything else?

    BTW, I don't include history (which you should immediate alias to h), as that's a shell in-built. Typing this frequently reminds you what you did 10 seconds ago, so it's always worth it.


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    If you're referring to what I think you're referring you misunderstood. I was actually implying Linux is easier (for Qt development at least), since all of the tools are usually present on the system or natural to acquire (same channel as with other software). This makes developing Qt on Windows a lot harder, because everything is Linux centric and the same steps are not so conventional or streamlined on this platform.

    I was also implying that you should not have to read through pages and pages of man or any tutorial for what is achieved with a simplistic, fat green "upload" button elsewhere.

    I'm also saying that Linux users just have a lot higher pain threshold because the environment they live in is so harsh and they've adapted with millions of small workarounds that seem natural now to them, but magic and quirks to others.

    BTW, I don't include history (which you should immediate alias to h), as that's a shell in-built.

    See, that right there is what I'm talking about. It's ultra obvious to you and a stupid thing to not know, but a newbie now needs to google what an alias or a shell built-in means or come up with a magic keyword to pass to man to find that out. For non-linuxian this is gibberish.

    To not be comletely off-topic whenever I venture into Linux I find myself using a lot of sudos, chmods and apt-gets, so I'd add these to the list.



  • @Chris-Kawa
    My background is that I started in the days when boys were boys, men were men, and computers knew their place. Brought up on Unix, and I loved it. Then Windoze came along and introduced the "point-to-crash" interface. After years & years of that, for my Qt work I have gone back to Linux, and for me it's like a breath of fresh air.

    Of course people should have to go man before doing anything. The trouble is that "simplistic, fat green "upload" button" looks enticing, but it can (and does) do almost anything to the PC. I have spent untold time trying to rescue friends' machines from the consequences of pressing it. Computers were meant for a few people only (like me) to understand and be paid a lot of money to operate, not for the Great Unwashed.

    I'm also saying that Linux users just have a lot higher pain threshold because the environment they live in is so harsh and they've adapted with millions of small workarounds that seem natural now to them, but magic and quirks to others.

    I just don't see it that way. I see the Windows environment as the harsh, painful one, requiring workarounds & magic. ("You need to go into The Registry for this one, but don't blame us if you lose your whole PC as a consequence.")

    If you use more than, say, 20 apt-get installs total you have too much disk space. Try reducing. OTOH, apt-get update; apt-get upgrade liberates me from the awful experiences of using Windows Update. sudo should require the user to pass a small exam before being allowed to use it. chmod is Unix's way of saying "If you don't know what you're doing leave my files alone".

    :)


  • Lifetime Qt Champion

    @JonB said in The only Linux commands you need:

    sudo should require the user to pass a small exam before being allowed to use it

    Full ack!


  • Qt Champions 2017

    @JonB said in The only Linux commands you need:

    1. man: Everything you need to know is here.

    Like anyone does that ... the copy-paste design pattern stack overflow style is much faster (and easier).

    1. ls: Whenever looking for inspiration for what to do next, this is your go-to command. If someone is looking over your shoulder to make sure you're working, do a lot of ls -lR /.

    I agree. That's similar to the "eer" we use when speaking. It means nothing but gives time for our brains to catch up. The only thing I'm not sure about is whether this is just because our brains are slow, or simply because the thing we say are complicated. Personally, I'm leaning towards the former.

    1. grep: Whatever you're trying to achieve, you're likely to use this.

    True. Especially when sifting through verbose man pages; this one is a life saver.

    With these 3 you can cover most of your Linux needs. Anyone need to use anything else?

    Don't you wish. This triad doesn't even come close to the swiss army knife of linux, and of course as we are talking frankly, not every linux was made the same, so what your favorite distro has the regular Joe's does differently. The moment you need something more than just navigating directories you're stuck. Then you're going to discover cp/mv/ln, updatedb+locate, find, chown+chmod, tar, nano/vim/mcedit, ssh+scp and the more esoteric awk, bash and whatnot. Of course if you're a programmer you're most certainly going to need to use nm and/or objdump/elfdump (and yes, you're going to need to know what the heck ELF is). These last go hand in hand with grep obviously, because nobody has time to read the great wall of china in text. And it goes without saying that each of these utilities requires its own set of command-line switches ... it's great fun, no doubt. After you've memorized most of the crap, everything's a breeze, I won't argue with that, but then again, I can see why people just want to write code instead of reading yet another bible on yet another tool for yet another thing that they're needing 1% of the time.

    BTW, I don't include history (which you should immediate alias to h), as that's a shell in-built. Typing this frequently reminds you what you did 10 seconds ago, so it's always worth it.

    Also it has this great feature allowing you to execute what you did 10 seconds ago, because you couldn't be bothered to remember the 35 switches you copied from SO.

    @Chris-Kawa said in The only Linux commands you need:

    This makes developing Qt on Windows a lot harder, because everything is Linux centric and the same steps are not so conventional or streamlined on this platform.

    Yes, Chris, Qt is linux-centric in a sense, and indeed the dev process on linux is more streamlined, however it's not "harder" on windows, it's just more .... convoluted, shall we say. The biggest pain on windows is satisfying the dependencies, whereas on linux you just pull whatever dev packages you need.

    I'm also saying that Linux users just have a lot higher pain threshold because the environment they live in is so harsh and they've adapted with millions of small workarounds that seem natural now to them, but magic and quirks to others.

    Real men are bred and tempered in the harsh weather, we take pride in the pain! ;)
    Jape aside, when you really break your linux, say the freaking initramfs gets corrupted, the vmlinuz image goes kaput or of course grub decides you had a too good a day, then the real pain commences ...
    As a former windows user I can tell you that you have it good with the drivers, although in all fairness the linux world caught up quite a lot. It used to be endless fun to get a driver that's not exactly standard ...

    @JonB said in The only Linux commands you need:

    sudo should require the user to pass a small exam before being allowed to use it.

    That's why wise men have deny all in their sudoers config. :)


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    @JonB said in The only Linux commands you need:

    Computers were meant for a few people only (like me) to understand and be paid a lot of money to operate, not for the Great Unwashed.

    A small tangent on that. Computers were initially purposed for good-for-nothings like me, who wanted to calculate stuff that nobody needs. Sometimes I muse what a waste of CPU the GUI is, when all a computer is doing, and was purposed to do, is arithmetic (hence the name).


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    @JonB I think you're describing the state of the world as it was something like 20 years ago... Go ahead and go to a coffee shop on the corner and convince the young mother with three kids clicking away on her ipad with her designer made fingernail to read man pages... or the scarf and beard equipped "artist" with his fruit machine... what you described is just not the world we live in anymore...

    Computers were meant for a few people only (like me) to understand and be paid a lot of money to operate, not for the Great Unwashed.

    A bit of nostalgia there, huh? I get you, good times. Well... welcome to 21st century I guess :) Things have long since worked that way.

    @JonB said in The only Linux commands you need:

    I see the Windows environment as the harsh, painful one, requiring workarounds & magic. ("You need to go into The Registry for this one, but don't blame us if you lose your whole PC as a consequence.")

    Again I think you're describing the world as it was, not as it is and has been for the past decade or so. I don't remember the last time I had to change something in the registry. Usually I'm reminded of it because QSettings still uses it as the default storage place for some obsolete reason.

    If you use more than, say, 20 apt-get installs total you have too much disk space

    Trust me, I don't use Linux anymore than I have to so I never have anything on it over the absolute bare minimum needed for what I need to do at that moment. Usually my Linuxes, after I'm done with them, go promptly to a virtual machine images heaven ;) I know there are a lot of tux lovers here and I'm sorry you have to read this ;)

    OTOH, apt-get update; apt-get upgrade liberates me from the awful experiences of using Windows Update

    It got a lot better lately. It doesn't nag you as much, you can schedule it and it won't force you anymore. To be completely fair I always envied Linux to have a central place to get all the software, but seeing how people can't fix their problems by upgrading because their distro doesn't have the new version yet... pros and cons I guess.

    chmod is Unix's way of saying "If you don't know what you're doing leave my files alone".

    It's been a while, but isn't that required when you download anything executable from the web?



  • @Chris-Kawa

    Go ahead and go to a coffee shop on the corner and convince the young mother with three kids clicking away on her ipad with her designer made fingernail to read man pages

    At the risk of being shot down in flames.... What "young mother with three kids" has time to go to a coffee shop, or even to designer-decorate her fingernails? Not the ones I know... ;-) However, I do know semi-middle-aged mothers (with older children) who have pressed to install Windows software and now can no longer use their PC till I go round to sort it out! :)


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    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EmCA7EwE3rY

    @JonB said in The only Linux commands you need:

    At the risk of being shot down in flames....

    Wish granted: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrSkhiKPFyk ;)

    What "young mother with three kids" has time to go to a coffee shop, or even to designer-decorate her fingernails? Not the ones I know... ;-)

    Oh, don't be pathetically naive. Mothers used to go to the field and nurse there in between the hard labor, so nowadays young mothers have it real tough, so much so I'm about to cry. Many of the young mothers I've known and have observed have half their time free, sipping coffee and smoking chatting up other young mothers, while their hubby is killing himself at some dead-end job. So much for gender parity ...



  • For a non developer end user I would say Linux is more complicated for some things. If for whatever reason they need to go to the command line then this can be scary and intimidating. I would say for regular OS things Linux requires more command line than Windows. As most things Windows can be done through configuration dialogs.

    For developers I would say it is about the same. I generally use the command line while developing in both OSes about the same amount. git, grep (git grep in windows), make, etc.

    For long term however, learning Linux tends to make you better at maintaining all OSes IMO. You learn to dig into the information a bit better. Maybe man pages are huge factor here.

    I prefer installing libs through package managers though. It is just so much cleaner and easier to automate.


  • Lifetime Qt Champion

    @fcarney For me as developer the Windows CMD is scary! There is a reason why Microsoft finally started to improve it (after how many decades?).
    To be honest I don't want to develop on Windows ever again! I'm happy I can develop on Linux - it is way better for software development than Windows in my opinion (I was developing on Windows in the past also). Being able to use command line is one of the basic abilities of a software developer in my opinion - and here Linux/UNIX shine :-) On my Linux development machine I don't care much about fancy UI, it's simple and light XFCE with a terminal with many tabs, IDE, browser...



  • @kshegunov said in The only Linux commands you need:

    Oh, don't be pathetically naive. Mothers used to go to the field and nurse there in between the hard labor, so nowadays young mothers have it real tough, so much so I'm about to cry. Many of the young mothers I've known and have observed have half their time free, sipping coffee and smoking chatting up other young mothers, while their hubby is killing himself at some dead-end job. So much for gender parity ...

    I was really careful about how I phrased my (potentially controversial) comment. I would not have dared to write as you have written here! :)

    So your sentiment is that young mothers should basically give birth in an Internet cafe while typing man to learn Linux commands? ;-)


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    @JonB said in The only Linux commands you need:

    I was really careful about how I phrased my (potentially controversial) comment.

    Me too, I went light on you, I know you're unused to such speech.

    I would not have dared to write as you have written here! :)

    Well, east-of-eden political correctness isn't much of a thing. I call it as I see it, and as you can tell I don't like holding back.

    So your sentiment is that young mothers should basically give birth in an Internet cafe while typing man to learn Linux commands? ;-)

    No, my argument is that your argument about young mothers not having designer fingernails, or facebooking over their ipads is wrong. I'm far from the idea that people should give birth at the field, which they used to, but I also despise putting childbirth as an excuse for not doing any job/work for ages (3 years around here) and complaining what hard work raising kiddos is. It's work, no doubt, but it ain't hard labor.


  • Moderators

    @kshegunov said in The only Linux commands you need:

    No, my argument is that your argument about young mothers not having designer fingernails, or facebooking over their ipads is wrong. I'm far from the idea that people should give birth at the field, which they used to, but I also despise putting childbirth as an excuse for not doing any job/work for ages (3 years around here) and complaining what hard work raising kiddos is. It's work, no doubt, but it ain't hard labor.

    you have to see that in relation.
    The education methods on how to raise once children have changed drastically. People used to tie their offspring to poles in their garden while they worked.

    The hands off, friend > parent style that is more common theses days, makes raising your child a much harder task.



  • @J-Hilk said in The only Linux commands you need:

    People used to tie their offspring to poles in their garden while they worked.

    Those were the days! :) Sigh....


  • Qt Champions 2017

    @J-Hilk said in The only Linux commands you need:

    you have to see that in relation.

    I do, and I specifically noted the relation in my last sentence.

    The education methods on how to raise once children have changed drastically. People used to tie their offspring to poles in their garden while they worked.

    Not where I come from. My grandma was left caring for the infants while her parents were working, because having something to eat is more important than being there for your kid all the time, the first one is needed to live through. My grandfather was sent to collect the straw for the animals (alone!) with their mule after he returned from school (1-4th grade). I don't claim this is right, again, it's how things were. So forgive me for not getting teary when a mother of new complains their partner works too much and she's left with all the child care ... I can hardly believe that the guy wants to work 10 or more hours, but I imagine bringing food and shelter, and ipads and designer fingernails is deemed important enough.

    I realize I must come as a chauvinistic pig, but really I'm not sexist, I just hate hypocrisy. The current state of the debate is that women are discriminated because of their gender, and that thicks me off. It used to be the case, but it isn't anymore. Historically men have taken the most dangerous and most demanding jobs, and they still do, due to simple biology. We are stronger and faster (due to hormones) and after we seed the field, excuse the vulgarity, we are much more expendable. So when I hear that women are misrepresented in say managerial position (which in my conservative country counterintuitively they aren't, as a matter of fact we have one of the best scores in that regard in the EU), I can't help but wonder why the activists aren't concerned that women are misrepresented in construction jobs or welding, or metallurgy or mining. You can't have it both ways, sorry. And don't get me wrong, I don't defend discrimination, but from an equation of a billion variables some people have picked one and made conclusions. Conclusions that are wrong and that have inevitably crept in into policy and law.
    Equal representation is myth, a chimera, that's not equity, it's equality, and Animal Farm makes a great example of what equality looks like. Equal opportunity on the other hand is ultimately desirable and right. And by the way it's already the law. What people should realize is that left to their own devices, people, men and women, are ultimately free to make their own different choices.

    The hands off, friend > parent style that is more common theses days, makes raising your child a much harder task.

    You can't be a friend with your child, sorry. Friends implies equality and you're not really equal with your offspring, you're their parent.



  • Linux commands -> Windows commands suck -> social justice -> Animal Farm

    Makes complete sense! LOL
    Talk about organic conversations.


  • Moderators

    Talk about organic conversations.

    Yeah, you guys are easily triggered :) I only meant to say computers are not just for nerds anymore. I didn't expect the Spanish inquisition...



  • @Chris-Kawa
    Nobody expects The Spanish Inquisition....


  • Qt Champions 2017

    It wouldn't be worth its salt as an Inquisition otherwise, would it? :)

    @Chris-Kawa said in The only Linux commands you need:

    Yeah, you guys are easily triggered

    Yep, sorry about that. But my bud walked head first into that one, voluntarily no less.



  • THAT IS IT! GET THE COMFY CHAIR!!!


  • Moderators

    I don't really want to derail this any further 😉

    Talk about organic conversations.

    So let me just say:
    alt text


  • Qt Champions 2017

    @fcarney said in The only Linux commands you need:

    THAT IS IT! GET THE COMFY CHAIR!!!

    No popcorn?

    sad


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