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UNIX Commands

Departments and student organizations that publish from Web Central, which runs on a UNIX machine, will have to learn basic UNIX commands for performing common tasks. Personal publishers on UTS or CCWF must learn these commands, too. You type these commands once you are logged on, with Telnet for example, to the machine.


Macintosh users should note that many commands listed below can be performed more easily in Fetch. When a command has a Fetch equivalent, it is noted below.


IDENTIFYING THE CURRENT DIRECTORY

Directories on a UNIX machine are similar to folders on a Macintosh. Just as you can have a folder in a folder in a folder, you can have a directory in a directory, etc. Use the command below to display the current directory.

pwd
Shows you what directory you are in currently, your working directory.


CHANGING DIRECTORIES

Use the commands below to move between directories.

cd   dirname
Connects to the directory named dirname. Use this command, for example, to connect to your publishing directory after you log on. Here are some examples:

cd ~www/student/admissions
cd ~www/its/
cd ~www/research/
cd public_html
Fetch users can select Change Directory from the Directories menu, or they can use the pop-down directory box.

cd   ..
Connects to the directory one level up from the current directory. (That's a cd, space, and two periods.) Use this command, for example, when you are in one of your publishing subdirectories and you want to move up one level.

cd
Connects to your login directory. When you log on, you are automatically placed in your login directory, or home directory. This command takes you back to that directory.


LISTING THE CONTENTS OF THE CURRENT DIRECTORY

Use the commands below to see a list of the files in the current directory. Fetch automatically displays the contents of the current directory.

ls
Lists all files and subdirectories, except for those that begin with a period, such as .links files.

ls   -al
Lists all files and subdirectories (including those that begin with a period), with owners and sizes.


CREATING, REMOVING, AND MOVING DIRECTORIES

Use the commands below to create, move, or remove directories.

mkdir   dirname
Creates a subdirectory named dirname in the current directory. Fetch users can select Create New Directory from the Directories menu.

rmdir   dirname
Removes the subdirectory named dirname from the current directory. Fetch users can select Delete Directory or File from the Remote menu.

mv   dir1   dir2
Moves (renames) the subdirectory (and its contents) named dir1 to dir2. Fetch users can select Rename File from the Remote menu.


MANIPULATING FILES

Use the commands below to copy, move, remove, or display files.

cp   file1   file2
Makes a copy of the file named file1 and names the copy file2.

mv   file1   file2
Moves (renames) the file named file1 to file2. Fetch users can select Rename File from the Remote menu.

rm   filename
Removes the file named filename. Fetch users can select Delete Directory or File from the Remote menu.

more   filename
Displays the file named filename one screen at a time. Fetch users can select View File from the Remote menu.


EDITING FILES

pico   filename
Edits the file named filename with the Pico, an editor that is easy for new users to learn.


CHANGE GROUP AFFILIATION OF DIRECTORIES OR FILES

Note: You must own the file or directory you want to change and you must belong to group you are changing it to.

chgrp   group-name   filename
Changes group affiliation of filename to group-name.

chgrp   -R   group-name   dirname
Changes group affiliation of dirname and all files within dirname to group-name.


GIVE GROUP MEMBERS WRITE PRIVILEGES

Note: You must own the file or directory you want to change.

chmod   g+w   filename
Gives the group write privileges to filename. Any member of the group affiliated with filename can change or delete the file. Use g-w to remove group write privileges.

chmod   -R   g+w   dirname
Gives the group write privileges to all files within dirname. Any member of the group affiliated with dirname can change or delete any file within dirname. Use g-w to remove group write privileges.


  Updated 2006 May 3
  Comments to www@www.utexas.edu