Basics of the Command Line!

Jacob Jones
3 min readJun 9, 2021


If you need help using basic commands in the command line, this may be something for you! To start, we are going to look at a fresh command window.

Once you are here, you can see at the top of the window what directory (folder) you are currently in! Now to see what other directory’s we can go to we need to see them first! To do that, just type ls. To remember, you just want to LIST what is in the current folder.

Great job! Now we want to go into another folder, or change directory. To do this all you need to do is find what directory you want to go to, for example Desktop! Just type cd desktop/. An alternative, you can type the begging of what you want and hit tab, and it will auto fill the rest for you!

Oh no! What if we went into the wrong directory and want to go back? Easy, all you have to do is type cd ~ and it will go back one directory!

Great job, now that we got that knocked out lets looks at how we can clean up the window so it doesn’t look like a mess! If you just type “clear” in the window, it will delete all the stuff you see above and give you a fresh looking window!

If you would like to learn more about what commands you can use and what there purposes are, just type help.

From here, you can some of the possible command lines your window can use! If you want more information about one of the options just type help and then the name of what command you want to know about. For example, we want to know what the command time does. So lets type help time!

There you go! You now know the basic functions of the command line and how you can teach yourself more!