Unix Shell Commands
"There are two major products to come out of Berkeley: LSD and Unix.
We don't believe this to be a coincidence."
What Is Unix?
UNIX (depending on who you ask) is:
1. "The operating system from Hell!"
2. "The greatest thing since the Popiel Pocket Fisherman!"
3. "Just another operating system you have to learn (at least enough to navigate in so
you can get what you want and escape with your life -- and your sanity)."
4. "All of the above."
The correct answer is:
"All of the above."
More precisely, UNIX is a multi-user operating system which preceded (and contributed
a lot to) DOS. Believe it or not, Unix is not as intimidating as most people seem to think.
How Much Unix Do I Need To Know?
All you need to know about Unix are a few basic facts about the system, and a few basic
• Unix is case sensitive! The following are all different to Unix:
• When using Unix, always issue commands in lower case. Also, when accessing
directories or downloading files, type the directory or file name exactly as it is
• Unix does not have an "unerase" feature. Be certain before deleting files.
• Unix has many of the same features as DOS, but they are called by different
• Since UNIX has been around for many years, there are a number of good books
on the topic. Choose a simple one -- you probably are not going to take over and
have to administer a system right away. All you need to know is how to change
directories a nd transfer files. Avoid the highly technical tomes. One good text for
the beginner is A DOS USER'S GUIDE TO UNIX by Douglas W. Topham, from
INFOWORLD. It compares the commands in DOS and Unix which correspond to
each other and tells how each is used.
• All the functions in the BBS Internet Connections are also available in the Unix
shell account -- only faster To access TELNET, just enter:
at the Unix prompt. It is the same with Pine, FTP, Lynx (for WWW), Gopher,
• Help is available. If you need assistance with a specific command, you can call up
the MANual page for that command by entering:
(Where is the item you want help on -- without the brackets, of course)
Basic Unix Commands To Remember
The basic commands used in the Unix shell are:
• cd (directoryname)
(Changes directories to the one named. In Unix, you change directories one level
at a time.)
• cd ..
(Changes back up to the previous directory)
(Prints -- displays to the screen -- the "working" or current directory)
(Lists the contents of the current directory to the screen)
• ls -l
(Same as above, but it lists like the DOS DIR command with more information)
(Make a directory -- same as DOS "md")
(Remove a directory -- same as DOS "rd")
("Concatenate," or show a files contents to the screen -- same as DOS "type.")
(Copy -- same as DOS "copy")
(Rename [or "move"] a file -- same as DOS "ren")
(Remove [or "delete"] a file -- same as DOS "del")
(Terminates a Unix Shell session)
(When entered at the end of a command such as "cat" or ls -l", this displays a
page of text, then stops and waits for you to issue the command to go on)
(In the Unix shell, "sends" to your computer -- via ZMODEM -- the file named)
(In the Unix shell, "sends" to your computer -- via XMODEM -- the file named)
(In the Unix shell, tells the remote computer to "receive" a file from your
computer. You need to return to your own computer and tell it to "send" a specific
file or group of files)