Taking control of my @#$t


Jul 21, 2021
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I have dabbling w linux distros for a bit now. Tried quite a few. Did some VM installs as well but really hav'nt learned much about really managing my system. Its Open Source man. freedom to do as you choose with your stuff. With that said, I would really like to learn how to use the Terminal. Ive read and seen you can really do it all from there. I like that. Is there a certain thread or tutorial recommended for a beginner? Installing and removing software? Navigating the system files and paths?

For you, as you're new, you definitely want to stick with software in the default repositories. At least until you learn a bit about what you're doing and why you're doing it.

To navigate, you just need 'ls' and 'cd'.

You can use 'ls' to show the directories and 'cd' to change to them.

cd directory

To get back to the directory you were in you'd use ...

cd ..

To go up levels, you'd cd ../../

Time will help. Don't rush it.
I'm with KGIII you don't need much in the way of terminal right now. Install and learn the basics first with whatever distro you choose. I would suggest Mint or MX perhaps as good starting points.
Once you get the system installed and running with the software you need for day to day stuff you can learn the terminal. There are may online tutorials from very easy to very difficult but they all teach basically the same thing.

This is one of my favorites. Because it takes it in small bites. Good luck and most of all enjoy the journey :)
In my experience, learning the terminal came when I had a purpose for it. Some time ago coming out of an early MS Windows environment using a word processing program called "WordPerfect", I came to know that the size of saved files in the format of that program was many times greater than if I used a text editor. The waste of precious hard drive space at that time was important because hard drives were small and expensive. Linux had more powerful text editors, so I installed it, and had all my English language files converted to text format. Two things I had to learn about the terminal, one was how to run the text editor, which was vi at the time, and now vim, and two was how to access, arrange and manage my files in the home directory. Since I had texts to write in the form of letters, academic work, personal journal writing etc, I created a lot of text files. They needed to be organised in directories that made them easily accessible. This "file management" task entailed learning how to move about in the filesystem, how to copy, remove and create files and directories and how the operating system "looked after" files and directories with permissions and very significantly, how the shell worked. Hence the terminal was used for file creation and managing tasks. Later the terminal became vital for configuring the system since configuration files in linux are text files which are altered by text editor despite the fact that now many graphical programs have been written to get to those text files. YMMV.

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