A brief introduction to Linux

If you’re already familiar with UNIX, you can just skim or skip these topics.

You can spend a lifetime learning UNIX; I’ve worked with it since 1993 and I’m still learning something new every day. The commands in the following topics, limited to what you’ll need for the basics, barely scratch the surface.


Either of these two sites offer a good introduction to UNIX:1

xkcd cautionary

Figure 5: <http://xkcd.com/456> by Randall Munroe



For the purposes of this tutorial, “Linux” and “UNIX” are the same thing. Systems administrators know that Linux and Mac OS Darwin are varieties of UNIX, but you’re not here to be a sysadmin… at least not for today.