10 Basic Linux Commands That Every Linux Newbies Should Remember

Linux has had a significant impact on our lives. At the very least, your Android phone contains a Linux kernel. Getting started with Linux, on the other hand, will only cause you inconvenience for the first time. Because on Linux, rather of simply clicking the launcher icon, you should usually use terminal commands (as you did on Windows). But don’t worry, we’ll show you 10 basic Linux commands and vital commands to get you started.

10 Basic Linux Commands That Help Newbies Get Started

When we talk about Linux commands, we’re really talking about the Linux operating system. These ten basic Linux commands will not turn you into a genius or a Linux expert; instead, they will assist you in getting started with Linux. It will assist Linux newcomers in doing daily fundamental operations in Linux by using these Linux basic commands or, as I prefer to call them, Linux top commands (because of their usage).

So let’s get started with the list of 10 Linux Basic commands –

1. sudo

This SuperUserDo is the most important command Linux newbies will use. Every single command that needs root’s permission, need this sudo command. You can use sudo before each command that requires root permissions –

$ sudo su

2. ls (list)

Just like the other, you often want to see anything in your directory. With list command, the terminal will show you all the files and folders of the directory that you’re working in. Let’s say I’m in the /root directory and I want to see the directories & files in /home.

root@LinuxAndMint:~# ls
Desktop  snap

3. cd

​Changing directory (cd) is the main command that always is in use in the terminal. It’s one of the most Linux basic commands. Using this is easy. Just type the name of the folder you want to go in from your current directory. If you want to go up just do it by giving double dots (..) as the parameter.

Let’s say I’m in /home directory and I want to move in usr directory which is always in the /home. Here is how I can use cd commands –

$ cd /usr

4. mkdir

Just changing directory is still incomplete. Sometimes you want to create a new folder or subfolder. You can use mkdir command to do that. Just give your folder name after mkdir command in your terminal.

~$ mkdir folderName

5. cp

copy-and-paste is the important task we need to do to organize our files. Using cp will help you to copy-and-paste the file from the terminal. First, you determine the file you want to copy and type the destination location to paste the file.

$ cp path-to-source-file destination-path

Note: If you’re copying files into the directory that requires root permission for any new file, then you’ll need to use sudo command.  

6. rm

rm is a command to remove your file or even your directory. You can use -f if the file need root permission to be removed. And also you can use -r to do recursive removal to remove your folder.

$ rm myfile.txt

7. apt-get

This command differs distro-by-distro. In Debian based Linux distributions, to install, remove and upgrade any package we’ve Advanced Packaging Tool (APT) package manager. The apt-get command will help you install the software you need to run in your Linux. It is a powerful command-line tool which can perform installation, upgrade, and even removing your software.​In other distributions, such as Fedora, Centos there are different package managers. Fedora used to have yum but now it has dnf.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo dnf update

8. grep

You need to find a file but you don’t remember its exact location or the path. grep will help you to solve this problem. You can use the grep command to help to find the file based on given keywords.

$ grep user /etc/passwd

9. cat

As a user, you often need to view some of text or code from your script. Again, one of the Linux basic commands is cat command. It will show you the text inside your file.

$ cat CMakeLists.txt

10. poweroff

And the last one is poweroff. Sometimes you need to poweroff directly from your terminal. This command will do the task. Don’t forget to add sudo at the beginning of the command since it needs root permission to execute poweroff.

$ sudo poweroff


As I indicated at the beginning of the article, these 10 basic Linux commands will not instantly turn you into a Linux geek. It will assist you in getting started with Linux at this early stage. Begin using Linux with these fundamental commands and set a goal of learning 1-3 commands every day. 

So that’s the end of this article. I hope that was useful to you. Please submit any interesting or useful commands in the comments section below, and please share this article with your friends.