Book Image

Bash Quick Start Guide

By : Tom Ryder
Book Image

Bash Quick Start Guide

By: Tom Ryder

Overview of this book

Bash and shell script programming is central to using Linux, but it has many peculiar properties that are hard to understand and unfamiliar to many programmers, with a lot of misleading and even risky information online. Bash Quick Start Guide tackles these problems head on, and shows you the best practices of shell script programming. This book teaches effective shell script programming with Bash, and is ideal for people who may have used its command line but never really learned it in depth. This book will show you how even simple programming constructs in the shell can speed up and automate any kind of daily command-line work. For people who need to use the command line regularly in their daily work, this book provides practical advice for using the command-line shell beyond merely typing or copy-pasting commands into the shell. Readers will learn techniques suitable for automating processes and controlling processes, on both servers and workstations, whether for single command lines or long and complex scripts. The book even includes information on configuring your own shell environment to suit your workflow, and provides a running start for interpreting Bash scripts written by others.
Table of Contents (10 chapters)

Essential system commands

This category of commands refer to executable files that are almost definitely installed on your system, and not implemented in Bash itself. All of these commands are specified by the POSIX standard, and so systems that aim to implement that standard should have them available.

The ls command

The ls program prints human-readable listings of directories. By default, with no arguments, this list is just the names of each file in the current directory, printed horizontally for readability:

$ ls
books  documents  music

If we add the -a flag, we can include dot files in our output, files beginning with a period:

$ ls -a
.  ..  .bashrc  .profile  books  documents  music

Note that this output includes the...