Many Linux commands you type at a shell prompt are not that different from the commands you would type either in MS-DOS or in Windows (from the MS-DOS prompt). In fact, some commands are identical.
What follows are some common commands used at the MS-DOS prompt in Windows 9x, and in Linux, as well as a basic example of how the command is used at the Linux shell prompt. Note that these commands usually have a number of options. To learn more about each command, read its associated man page (for example, type man ls at the shell prompt to read about the ls command).
Table C-1. Similar Commands
|Command's Purpose||MS-DOS||Linux||Basic Linux Example|
|Copies files||copy||cp||cp thisfile.txt /home/thisdirectory|
|Moves files||move||mv||mv thisfile.txt /home/thisdirectory|
|Closes prompt window||exit||exit||exit|
|Displays or sets date||date||date||date|
|Deletes files||del||rm||rm thisfile.txt|
|"Echoes" output on the screen||echo||echo||echo this message|
|Edits files with simple text editor||edit||pico[a]||pico thisfile.txt|
|Compares the contents of files||fc||diff||diff file1 file2|
|Finds a string of text in a file||find||grep||grep this word or phrase thisfile.txt|
|Formats a floppy||format a: (if floppy's in A:)||mke2fs (or mformat[b])||/sbin/mke2fs /dev/fd0 (/dev/fd0 is the Linux equivalent of A:)|
|Displays command help||command /?||man[c]||man command|
|Creates a directory||mkdir||mkdir||mkdir directory|
|Screens through a file||more||less[d]||less thisfile.txt|
|Renames a file||ren||mv||mv thisfile.txt thatfile.txt[e]|
|Shows your location in the file system||chdir||pwd||pwd|
|Changes directories with a specified path (absolute path)||cd pathname||cd pathname||cd /directory/directory|
|Changes directories with a relative path||cd ..||cd ..||cd ..|
|Displays the time||time||date||date|
|Shows amount of RAM and use||mem||free||procinfo|
a. Pico is a simple text editor; other editors you can use in place of pico include emacs and vi.
b. This formats a disk for the DOS filesystem.
c. Or you can use info for some commands.
d. You can also another pager, called more, to scroll through a file a screen at at time.
e. The mv command serves double-duty, because it can both move a file and, if you want to rename a file in the same directory, you "move" that file to the same directory with a new name, as in this example.