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How can I learn more about how to use Cygwin/Linux/Mac OS X?

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This FAQ applies to: Any version.

AutoDock and AutoGrid run on UNIX systems like Cygwin, Darwin, Linux, and Mac OS X. I'm unfamiliar with using the command line in these operating systems. How can I learn more?

All Platforms

Use the man command to look up commands in the manual. From a Terminal or shell, type:

      man man

Remember to press the < Enter > or < Return > key at the end of every command: otherwise the computer will not do anything. For example, the command ls is short for "list" and lists all the files and directories in the current directory, so typing:

      man ls

and pressing < Enter > or < Return > would give you the manual page for the list command, ls. The behaviour of commands can be changed by typing a so-called flag after the name of the command, for example to get a simple listing of files, you would type ls, but to get a long listing, use the -l flag like this:

      ls -l

If you don't know the name of the command, you can use the apropos command (or type man -k, where k is short for "keyword") to get a list of all the commands that match, e.g. apropos python would list all the commands that refer to the word "python".



  • There is a nice series of interactive tutorials on using Linux, called Linux Survival.

Mac OS X

  • A gentle introduction to Mac OS X is available from Learning Mac OS X but this does not cover using the Terminal.
  • O'Reilly is a very well-respected publisher of books about UNIX and open source technologies; their "MacDevCenter" has a great series of hands-on tutorials about Learning the Mac OS X Terminal
by morris last modified 2007-04-26 20:01

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