In This Chapter
Why use UNIX?
Doing things with the keyboard
Introducing UNIX commands
Creating text files
Exploring deep inside Mac OS X
As I mention in the first chapter of the book — at the beginning of our Snow Leopard odyssey — UNIX lurks deep beneath the shiny Aqua exterior of Mac OS X. UNIX is a tried-and-true operating system that's been around for decades, since the days when mainframe computers were king. If you don't believe that it's a powerful (and popular) operating system, consider that over half of all Web servers on the Internet use some variety of UNIX as their operating system of choice.
Besides being battle-tested and having a long history, UNIX offers some fantastic features. Unlike the graphical world of Mac OS X, the keyboard plays an integral role while you're using a UNIX-based operating system. Because UNIX is text-based, you'll find that it's evolved a large set of useful keyboard-driven commands that can perform powerful feats that a mouse user just can't easily equal. This chapter examines the role of the keyboard in UNIX operating systems and describes how to execute standard file system commands. You also discover how to use Apple's additional set of commands and install your own commands (and simple programs) from the Internet.
To begin benefiting from the UNIX underpinnings of Mac OS X, get used to doing things with the keyboard. Although mouse skills can be applied to UNIX, you'll generally ...