[sf-lug] My favorite simple little Linux tips

Mike Higashi mhigashi at gmail.com
Fri Jul 30 15:38:42 PDT 2010

As time goes by, I'm always surprised to learn that there are Linux
users who still don't know about some of the simplest Linux tips.
Here are a few of my favorites:

1)  Don't use www.google.com to search for Linux related subjects.

  Got your attention? Good, because the search page you really need
  to use is:   www.google.com/linux

  This brings you to Google's Linux-specific search engine, which
  includes results from forums and mailing lists, and excludes
  non-related subject matter that happens to include the same
  search terms.

  (Especially valuable for excluding web pages that cover the same
  topic for proprietary operating systems.)

  This ranks as my all-time favorite tip for Linux users.

2)  Did you just use the 'cd' command to change directories, and
want to return to the previous directory?  Use 'cd -' to revert back
to where you were before.

  This is such a simple trick that I've been assuming that most
  Linux users who were familiar with the command line already
  knew about it, but found out recently that this is not always
  the case.

  This tip is especially valuable if the directory name involved is a
  long one, as it saves a huge amount of typing.

  Only the most recent directory name is saved, so if you are in
  the directory "foo", execute 'cd ../bar', followed by 'cd ../baz',
  typing 'cd -' once will flip you back to "bar", and then a second
  time will put you back into "baz".  The directory "foo" is no
  longer reachable with this technique.

  (To switch back and forth between more directories, study up
  on the 'pushd' and 'popd' commands.)

3)  When using vim, instead of typing ':wq' to save your work and
quit, type 'ZZ' instead.

  This is another so-simple-it-doesn't-need-repeating tip, except
  that a few months ago I was working with a programmer who
  used vim but didn't know about it, so I figure it's worth including


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