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Working with terminal

Being able to leverage terminal will make your development experience smoother and much faster. A lot of the modern web development technology uses to the command line (CLI = command line interface). This cheatsheet covers the basic Linux terminal operations that you'll need for any development project


touch creates a file if it doesn't exist, or updates it's modified timestamp if it does exist. A file path is required | touch path/to/file

rm removes individual files. A file path is required. | rm path/to/file

cp copies files. | cp path/to/source path/to/destination

mv moves/renames files. | mv current/path/to/file new/path/to/file


A lot of directory operations are identical to file operations except they require the recursive parameter.

mkdir short for make directory. Creates directories that don't already exist. Throws an error if relative path already exists. | mkdir path/to/directory | Arguments can be added to change it's default behavior. I use mkdir -p path/to/directory because it creates any part of the relative path that doesn't already exist and does not error out if the relative path already exists.

rm allows you to delete entire directories as well, if you provide the correct arguments. | rm -Rf path/to/directory has the -R argument which makes the rm operation run recursively, which is nerd-speak for having it start out at the top of the directory path and working it's way down through that path's descendants. -f is in there to force the operation, suppressing any warnings.

cp copies directories when recursive parameter is passed. | cp -R path/to/source path/to/destination

mv renames/moves directories when recursive parameter is passed | mv -R current/path/to/directory new/path/to/directory

ls lists the files/directories of the current directory. Also accepts a parameter for the directory you want to list. | ls or ls path/to/directory | I rarely type just ls -- I like to pass two parameters to it as they offer more insight and a cleaner presentation. ls -la lists the directory's contents vertically in my terminal and provides me with a list of permissions, owner, group and timestamp information, which can be helpful for debugging.

pwd outputs the absolute path to the current directory. This can be helpful with writing scripts.

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