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What is Linux?

Linux is an UNIX compatible operating system *kernel*.

A kernel is but one (very important) part of an operating system.

This kernel was written from scratch by Linus Torvalds with assistance from a loosely-knit team of hackers across the net. It aims towards POSIX and Single UNIX Specification compliance.

Combined with the GNU utilities you get GNU/Linux which is the correct term for an complete OS.

It has all the features you would expect in a modern fully-fledged Unix, including true multitasking, virtual memory, shared libraries, demand loading, shared copy-on-write executables, proper memory management, and TCP/IP networking.

Linux was first developed for 32-bit x86-based PCs (386 or higher). These days it also runs on (at least) the Compaq AlphaAXP, SunSPARC and UltraSPARC, Motorola 68000, PowerPC, PowerPC64, ARM, Hitachi SuperH, IBM S/390, MIPS, HP PA-RISC, Intel IA-64, DEC VAX, AMD x86-64 and CRIS architectures.

Linux is easily portable to most general-purpose 32- or 64-bit architectures as long as they have a paged memory management unit (PMMU) and a port of the GNU C compiler (gcc).

Some basic commands

These Unix compatible 'commands' are not part of the Linux kernel. The are all separate programs that are used on many other operating systems. The unifying property of these commands is that they are all FreeSoftware, and most all are CopyLeft.

GNU/Linux/Unix commands A-Z
bcbinary calculatorbc
catconcatenate files and print on standard outputcat >test , cat file1 file2 >file3
cdchange working directorycd ~
chmodchange file access permissionschown guest.users filename
chownchange owner and group of a filechmod u+x filename, chmod 770 filename
cmpcompare two files byte by bytecmp file1 file2
cpcopy a file or directorycp -d -p -R
dateshow system datedate
dfshow free disk spacedf -h
difffind differences between two filesdiff -u file1 file2
dushow disk use of file(s) or directorydu -s
echodisplay a line of textecho "Hello world"
fgbring a process to the foregroundfg [jobnr]
findfind files on name, date, owner, permissions etcfind ./ -name *.kdelnk
ftpFile transfer protocolftp
grepprint lines matching a pattern ls -alR |grep txt
headshow first lines of text filehead textfile
ircInternet Relay Chatirc -c #squat fnord
jobsshow running or stopped jobsjobs
killkill a processkill -9 PID
killallkill process by namekillall -9 netscape, killall -HUP daemon
lessa better version of more less textfile
lslist files in directoryls -a -l -R
lynxA text browserlynx
mailBasic mail implementationecho "Test" | mail -s "Test" guest
manshow manual page on commandman command
mkdirmake directorymkdir newdir
moreview text file screen by screenmore textfile
mvmove file or directory to another placemv file1 file2
ncftpA better ftp clientncftp -u username
netstatShow network statisticsnetstat -r
picoedit a text filepico filename
pineA mail clientpine
pingSend small package to check if a machine is up & reaction timeping localhost
psshow currently running processesps aux
pwdprint working directorypwd
rmremove a file or directoryrm -r -f
rmdirremove directoryrmdir newdir
sortsort a filesort filename
sshA more secure version of telnetssh -l username host.domain
tailshow last lines of text filetail -f textfile
telnetRemote logintelnet
topdisplay top CPU processestop
touchchange file timestampstouch -t 10210000 filename
trtranslete or delete charactersecho "test" | tr [:lower:] [:upper:]
uniqshow only the diffenent lines from a text fileuniq filename
uptimeshow the time the system is running (and system load)uptime
vithe unix text editor vi filename
wccount bytes, words and lines in fileswc -l filename
whoshow who is logged onwho
whoamiprint effective useridwhoami
yesoutput a string repeatedly until killedyes hello

The best way to find information on how to use a command is the man command. This command tells you a lot of specific information on a command. Try man man for a start.

Some handy function keys

Linux Function keys
[CTRL]-zBring a program to the background
[CTRL]-cStop a program
[CTRL]-dEnd of input file
[ALT]-[F1]..[F6]Switch to terminal TTY1..6 (depends on configuration)
[ALT]-[F7]Switch to X (if running)
[CTRL]-[ALT]-[F1..6]Switch from X to text terminal
[CTRL]-[ALT]-[BACKSP]Kill X-window (in mode 5, X will restart)
[CTRL]-[ALT]-[DEL]Reboot or halt (depends on configuration)

copied and extended from: PUSCII - #


--> Debian,GNU,:Category:Linux Distributions,Linus Torvalds,FSF,Unix


Deutschsprachige Linux Study Guides als PDF

How to pronounce Linux?

Like Linus Torvalds says it


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