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Common Linux Commands

Below are common Linux commands that can be used at the terminal, or CLI (command line interface).

Note that these apply to all distros of Linux, whether CentOS, Fedora, Debian, or others.

cat [filename] - Display file’s contents to the standard output device (usually your monitor).
cd /directorypath - Change to directory.
chmod [options] mode filename - Change a file’s permissions.
chown [options] filename - Change who owns a file.
clear - Clear a command line screen/window for a fresh start.
cp [options] source destination - Copy files and directories.
date [options] - Display or set the system date and time.
df [options] - Display used and available disk space.
du [options] - Show how much space each file takes up.
file [options] filename - Determine what type of data is within a file.
find [pathname] [expression] - Search for files matching a provided pattern.
grep [options] pattern [filesname] - Search files or output for a particular pattern.
kill [options] pid - Stop a process. If the process refuses to stop, use kill -9 pid.
less [options] [filename] - View the contents of a file one page at a time.
ln [options] source [destination] - Create a shortcut.
locate filename - Search a copy of your filesystem for the specified filename.
lpr [options] - Send a print job.
ls [options] - List directory contents.
man [command] - Display the help information for the specified command.
mkdir [options] directory - Create a new directory.
mv [options] source destination - Rename or move file(s) or directories.
passwd [name [password]] -Change the password or allow (for the system administrator) to change any password.
ps [options] - Display a snapshot of the currently running processes.
pwd - Display the pathname for the current directory.
rm [options] directory - Remove (delete) file(s) and/or directories.
rmdir [options] directory - Delete empty directories.
ssh [options] user@machine - Remotely log in to another Linux machine, over the network. Leave an ssh session by typing exit.
su [options] [user [arguments]] - Switch to another user account.
tail [options] [filename] - Display the last n lines of a file (the default is 10).
tar [options] filename - Store and extract files from a tarfile (.tar) or tarball (.tar.gz or .tgz).
top - Displays the resources being used on your system. Press q to exit.
touch filename - Create an empty file with the specified name.
who [options] - Display who is logged on.
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