Attempt at defining standard extension to Linux in form of Bash functions
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Standard Aliases

Make Linux more user friendly with this collection of Bash functions!

They provide commands that should be in Linux by default, or just abbreviations of commands that are provided, but are so commonly used that they deserve a shorter name and/or a set of configurable “sensible” options. When abbreviated command is executed, these predefined options are combined with the actual ones. Also most of the commands send their output to a pager if it doesn't fit the screen.

Collection was made for Debian based Linux (Ubuntu, Mint, ...) with Gnome desktop environment, but most commands will work on any system that has Bash shell and GNU Coreutils installed. For OS X see instructions.

There are currently 211 commands.

How to…


$ git clone
$ cd standard-aliases
$ ./install


$ ./uninstall


Below is a list of most useful commands. If you want to check out the full list see LIST OF ALL COMMANDS.


Name Runs Description
l ___displayOutpu... List or display directory contents in pager using short listing format.
e echo "$@" Print text.
c cat "$@" Print file contents.
m ___printOrDispl... Print or display text or file in pager.
v vim -p "$@" Edit file with vim.
q exit Exit bash shell.
te, terminal x-terminal-emul... Open new terminal with same working directory.
? echo $? Print exit code of last command.


Name Runs Description
t, tree1 tree -C -I .git... Print directory structure.
cpdir cp --interactiv... Copy directories safely.
mvdir mv --interactiv... Move directories safely.
rmdir rm --interactiv... Delete directories safely.
mk, md, mkdir1 mkdir --parents... Create directory and descend into.
bk, backup sudo cp --prese... Backup file.
o, openFile __runCommandInB... Open file with default app.
me, makeExecutable if [[ ! -f "$1"... Make file executable or create new bash or python script.
extract if [ -z "$1" ];... Extract archive of any type.
du1 du --summarize ... Print disk space occupied by file or folder.
lo, locate1 locate "$1" </code>... Locate files on filesystem containing pattern in their names.


Name Runs Description
f, please sudo $(history ... Execute last command as super user.
rb, runInBackground nohup "$@" &>/d... Run command in background.
gr __printLinesCon... Print or display with pager lines containing pattern.
grr __printLinesCon... Print or display with pager numbered lines containing pattern in working and subdirectories.
df1 df -h | grep "s... Print available disk space in simplified form.
ip1 /sbin/ifconfig ... Print internal ip.
ip2 lynx --dump htt... Print external ip.
pa, pingAll ping -c 1 -q $(... Ping gateway and google.


Name Runs Description
ch, canhaz if [[ "$__stand... Install package.
ve, version # Check if pass... Print installed and available version of package or command.
wi, whatis1 # Checks if it ... Describe package or command or find available packages with part of name or command.

How To Rename Commands

  • Check if name is already taken by running: $ type <name>
  • Open .standardrc located in your home directory and add a new name in front of function's description.
  • Save and run: $ bash


  • Usually if function only makes Linux command easier to use, either by using a few “sensible” options, or just by sending output to a pager (if necessary), then it has the same name as command, but with number 1 appended at the end. Some examples are: ps1, mkdir1, pgrep1, tree1. Options for this commands are defined at the bottom of standardrc and can be customized by preference.

  • cp, mv, rm and rmdir are the only functions that override already existing commands. They are all run in interactive mode, meaning you get asked for conformation before any destructive operation. If you want to execute them without this prompting, use -f (force) option. rmdir also deletes the directory contents.

  • Command-line completions are automatically assigned to functions, depending on what commands they use.

  • Commands for accessing the “framework”:

    • ty COMMAND – prints function's body (short for type),
    • rc – opens configuration file (~/.standardrc) in default editor,
    • fu – opens standard_functions in default editor.

How It Works

After installation the “framework” consists of three files:

  • standard_functions: It contains Bash functions with long descriptive names. It is located in projects directory.

  • Users .standardrc file: Configuration file that specifies short names for functions. Also defines options that this functions use when they call specific commands. It is located in user's home directory.

  • Automatically generated aliases file: Contains functions with short names that call functions with longer names (as defined in configuration file). It also assigns appropriate command-line completions to the short functions. It is located in ~/.standard_aliases directory.

Every time new Bash shell is started, "framework" checks if any changes were made to the functions or configuration file and if so, it generates new aliases file.

How to run on OS X

  • Install Developer Tools by running:
  • Install Homebrew:
ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL"
  • Install GNU Coreutils:
brew install coreutils
echo '. .bashrc' >> .profile
echo 'PATH="/usr/local/opt/coreutils/libexec/gnubin:$PATH"' >> ~/.bashrc
  • Install other GNU programs (optional):
brew tap homebrew/dupes
brew install grep --with-default-names
brew install findutils --with-default-names
brew install tree