2) Finding information:
2.1) Basic built-in commands and documentation: Built in to the system and available via a console, terminal window or help menu:
If all is going well you have a nice graphical desktop with all the familiar controls and menus available. If for any reason that is not the case and you're seeing only the white text on a black screen of a default console, it's essential you know how to navigate the user interface:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtual_co ... -interface
) quote ref:
Usually in Linux, the first six virtual consoles provide a text terminal with a login prompt to a Unix shell. The graphical X Window System starts in the seventh virtual console. In Linux, the switching is performed with a key combination of Alt plus a function key – for example Alt+F1 to access the virtual console number 1. Alt+Left arrow changes to the previous virtual console and Alt+Right arrow to the next virtual console. To switch from the X Window System, Ctrl+Alt+function key works. (Note that users can redefine these default key combinations.)
Some further information can be found in section B3 and B4: different terminal-emulators are explained in B3.1; followed by the command-line editors in B3.2 The basic commands for the command line are introduced in section B4.
If you have the graphical X Window System up and running and need to do something at the command line, you will normally just start your favourite or desktop default "terminal window" program. Xterm is always there. The general term "terminal" can refer to either.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_Virtual_Consoleshttp://www.bellevuelinux.org/console.htmlhttp://www.bellevuelinux.org/terminal_window.html
Every time you install an application it installs its user manual on your machine. These are called “man pages” for short. The quality and style depends on the author. It may be new-user friendly, very technical, very short, or just poor. Some are excellent. To access the man page you open a terminal window and type the man command and the name of the program or command you're interested in, for example:
Code: Select allman mplayer
This will open the mplayer man page. You can use up/down and page up/page down keys to navigate through the document. Typing the letter 'q' will quit the man page browser and return you to the prompt.
You will also find the man pages online in many places. Try “man mplayer” in your favorite search engine.
--help: Many commands have a help file. It uses the normal standard of command name followed by a space followed by --help or -h with some programs. To view the copy command help e.g.
If a help page is very large you can use the pipe "|"command (The pipe command uses the output of one command as the input of the next command) This together with the "less" command (The less command displays output one screen size at a time) You can use up/down and page up/page down keys to navigate through the document. Typing the letter 'q' will quit and return you to the prompt.
cp --help | less
mv --help | less
ls --help | less
whatis: The "whatis" command will give you a very short description of any installed application. e.g. whatis (space) name_of_application.
$ whatis xterm
xterm (1) - terminal emulator for X
$ whatis iceweasel
iceweasel (1) - a Web browser for X11 derived from the Mozilla browser
$ whatis man
man (7) - macros to format man pages
man (1) - an interface to the on-line reference manuals
$ whatis whatis
whatis (1) - display manual page descriptions
More documentation is found in /usr/share/doc. Open your favorite file browser and navigate to that directory. Most installed applications will have a subdirectory of the same name that contains various text or archive files that you can click on to see more information. The package maintainers will often include a read me file that describes what they did to configure the package for the Debian system. This information tends to the technical, but often gives some useful clues.
Most GUI (graphical) applications access files here via their help menus.table of content