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Fedora® Bible 2011 Edition: Featuring Fedora® Linux® 14 by Eric Foster-Johnson, Christopher Negus

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Chapter 4: Using Linux Commands

In This Chapter

  • Understanding the shell
  • Using the shell
  • Working with the Linux file system
  • Using the vi text editor in Linux

This chapter presents a view of Linux from the shell. The shell is a command-line interpreter that enables you to access some of the most critical Linux tools. The shell is powerful, complex, and almost completely unintuitive.

The shell provides one of the most powerful tools for controlling and administering your Linux system. You can perform almost every task on Linux — from installing new software to configuring your network firewall — from the command line. In addition, many commands work best from the command line, providing you with the control and flexibility necessary to set up modern Linux systems. A command line that sports the power of the shell is one of the things that makes Linux stand out against Windows, with its anemic DOS command shell.

Although at first it isn’t obvious how to use the shell, with the right help you can quickly learn many of the most important shell features. In Fedora, bash is the shell command interpreter used by default (and therefore the one used for most of the examples in this chapter). Other shells, such as csh, tcsh, ksh, sh, and others, are also available in Fedora and are therefore also noted in this chapter.

This chapter is your guide to working with the Linux system commands, processes, and file system from the shell. It describes the shell environment and helps you tailor ...

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