You've experienced the shiny, point-and-click surface of your Linux computer—now dive below and explore its depths with the power of the command line.
The Linux Command Line takes you from your very first terminal keystrokes to writing full programs in Bash, the most popular Linux shell. Along the way you'll learn the timeless skills handed down by generations of gray-bearded, mouse-shunning gurus: file navigation, environment configuration, command chaining, pattern matching with regular expressions, and more.
In addition to that practical knowledge, author William Shotts reveals the philosophy behind these tools and the rich heritage that your desktop Linux machine has inherited from Unix supercomputers of yore.
As you make your way through the book's short, easily-digestible chapters, you'll learn how to:
Once you overcome your initial "shell shock," you'll find that the command line is a natural and expressive way to communicate with your computer. Just don't be surprised if your mouse starts to gather dust.
About the Author
William E. Shotts, Jr. has been a software professional and avid Linux user for more than 15 years. He has an extensive background in software development, including technical support, quality assurance, and documentation. He is also the creator of LinuxCommand.org, a Linux education and advocacy site featuring news, reviews, and extensive support for using the Linux command line.
Table of Contents
Part 1: Learning the Shell
Part 2: Configuration and the Environment
Part 3: Common Tasks and Essential Tools
Part 4: Writing Shell Scripts
"I can honestly say I have found THE beginner's guide to Linux."
"The Linux Command Line is the ideal guidebook into the world of the Linux (and UNIX and BSD) command line."
"If you’re new to the command line there is definitely a lot that you can learn from this book."
"This is exactly what a Linux beginner needs to get up to speed quickly. The book goes beyond simply walking through all of the command line utilities, and ventures into the realm of theory and how things work together."
"Anyone who reads this book and makes use of the examples provided will not be able to avoid becoming a Unix command line pro by the time they've hit the end of the book. It provides an excellent introduction to the command line that takes students from knowing nearly nothing to using impressively sophisticated commands."
"Shotts displays a genuine talent for explaining complex material."
"The most approachable tome on the subject."
"If you would like to start using the command line, improve your existing skills, or simply want to discover tools that you were never even aware existed, this book has everything you need, and I wholly recommend it."
"The book is a win and I happily give it a 10/10. Recommendation: Highest."
"If you really want to know your way around a Linux box, this is the book to get."
"The best single source of Linux command line instruction available."
"This is the best introduction to the command-line I have read."
"There is so much information contained within this book, you're almost guaranteed to learn something. I did."
"A perfect companion to more remedial guides to Linux that touch on the command only briefly, and also a terrific bridge to deeper technical programming books. Highly recommended."
"The Linux Command Line is pleasant to read. It has a light tone, while also getting down to business."
"A delightful read and you can hand it to a junior colleague or friend with more limited Unix shell exposure and be confident that they come back significantly shell-wiser and probably happier."
"If you're a novice Linux player, or just want to get beyond the pretty graphical wrapper of your MacBook, put this book at the top of your list."
"Part of the power of the shell is in its almost infinite potential, which most shell users never master, but if you buy and then use The Linux Command Line to its fullest extent, your 'introduction' to the shell will be very impressive."
"There's no system administration in the book, just making your way around a filesystem and the tools you need to get results. It's the kind of skills I think people lose out on when they boot to a graphical interface in Ubuntu, for example, and then never experience these tools."
"Shows you how to do just about everything you are ever likely to want to do with a computer using nothing but the command line and a plain text editor."
"The Linux Command Line gets my highest recommendation for a book that educates and entertains with equal doses of practical knowledge and peripheral anecdotes."