Learn To Use The Ubuntu Command Line With CLIcompanion

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ubuntu command lineConsider yourself a bit of a Linux geek, but don’t know how to use the command line? You’re missing out on a lot. Believe it or not, many things are actually easier to do using the command line than with GUI tools, and you can even use Google Apps from the command line if you want.

But getting started in the realm of the command line can be difficult if you’ve been raised on a steady diet of graphical interfaces. Enter CLIcompanion, a program designed to help make learning the command line a little easier. Recently pointed out by OMG! Ubuntu!, this program aims to simplify learning to use the Ubuntu command line.


Just launch this program instead of the standard command line, and you’ll have an index on-hand to help you get started. Best of all, as you learn new command line tricks (using, let’s say, one of the top 3 sites to help you become a Linux command line master) you can add them to the database.

Sound useful? Let’s get started. The program is currently designed with Ubuntu users in mind, so keep that in mind!

Default Programs

Launch the program and, by default, you’ll see a list of potential commands. Scroll through the list to see some basic things you can do with the command line:

ubuntu command line

Below this handy interface, of course, you’ll find a built-in command line ready for your input. You can type the commands in yourself, using the list above as a guide. Or if you prefer, you can use the GUI to launch a command. Just right-click the command in question and away you go:

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learning command line ubuntu

You might be asked for more information, but once you provide it the command will launch. You can then watch what happens in the built-in command line.

The default programs give you a lot to work with, not to mention learn, and will be really useful for you as a beginner. As you learn more however, you might want to add the programs you discover along the way. No problem.

Adding Your Own

Adding custom software is easy, if you think you’re ready. Just click “File” followed by “Add Command“. You’ll see a window like this:

learning command line ubuntu

Fill in the necessary information, including the command you’d like to run and a human-readable description of what it does. If your command requires some input, such as in my example, include a human-readable description of what this input is.

Once you create your command it’s ready for your reference, or for you to run. Here’s what it looks like when I launch my custom command:

ubuntu command line

Now all I need to do is type the names of the packages I want to install and watch the magic happen. Amazing, right?

If this custom stuff doesn’t make sense to you yet, don’t worry: you’ll get it. Just work at figuring out how to use the default commands until you get a handle on how everything works!

Download CliCompanion

Want to get started with CLIcompanion? I thought you might. Head over to CLIcompanion’s LaunchPad page to find an easy-to-install DEB file. Note that the program is designed for use in Ubuntu, and as such does not offer easy Fedora or SUSE packages (yet!)

Do you think this is a good way to learn to use the CLI, or can no GUI do that job? Are you using it yourself to try to learn? Let us know your experiences. Or, if you want, flame me for not offering non-Ubuntu downloads. I like everything.

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Comments (20)
  • Fennec

    use this to install Cli Companion
    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:clicompanion-devs/clicompanion-nightlies
    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get install clicompanion
    Enjoy

  • Fennec

    use this to install Cli Companion
    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:clicompanion-devs/clicompanion-nightlies
    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get install clicompanion
    Enjoy

  • Luckyadrin

    ps -ef to explore task manager but donot work on ubuntu 10.0.1 ???is it ps -aux ??

  • Paul Neaveill

    Cannot speak for others, but this is what it gave me:

    Paul@paul:~$ clicompanion
    /usr/bin/clicompanion:171: Warning: ‘with’ will become a reserved keyword in Python 2.6
    File “/usr/bin/clicompanion”, line 171
    with open(CHEATSHEET, “a”) as cheatfile:
    ^
    SyntaxError: invalid syntax

  • Paul Neaveill

    I agree with jwycliffe227 there. The thing did not run on my wife’s machine, so is about worthless to me.

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This review may contain affiliate links, which pays us a small compensation if you do decide to make a purchase based on our recommendation. Our judgement is in no way biased, and our recommendations are always based on the merits of the items.

For more details, please read our disclosure.
Affiliate Disclamer

This review may contain affiliate links, which pays us a small compensation if you do decide to make a purchase based on our recommendation. Our judgement is in no way biased, and our recommendations are always based on the merits of the items.

For more details, please read our disclosure.