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Command Line Utilities for the Terminal


When working on Linux command line you would like to utilize command line tools that help you become more productive. There are a lot of things that you can do. Actually you can even choose what kind of shell to run on your command line. I’ll talk a little bit about this and show you a tool called zsh.


zsh is a type of (smarter) shell that gives you a lot of productivity. I’ll show you some really cool stuff that you can do with zsh below.

Some default settings for zsh

  • Add colors to your terminal

edit your ~/.zshrc and add the following at the end of the file.

export CLICOLOR=1
export LSCOLORS=GxFxCxDxBxegedabagaced

So your terminal would look something like this.

  • Display your current working directory
export PS1='%m %1d$ '

This displays the machine name (%m) and the trailing component of the current path (%1d).

  • zsh-autosuggestions

This is a smart utility that records your historical commands so as to predict what you are going to do in your future commands. You can press → key to autocomplete the commands.


The following are some default configs that I load on my machine. Since zsh loads configs from ~/.zshrc you would need to import your environment variables as such into ~/.zshrc. You can also put stuff into ~/.bashrc and have ~/.zshrc source them instead.

  • For ~/.bash_profile

Use zsh shell instead of default bash shell

  • For ~/.zshrc
source ~/.zsh/zsh-autosuggestions/zsh-autosuggestions.zsh

# Prettify your zsh shell
export PS1='%m %1d$ '
export CLICOLOR=1
export LSCOLORS=GxFxCxDxBxegedabagaced

source ~/.bashrc
  • For ~/.bashrc
# load nvm
if [ -s ~/.nvm/ ]; then
        source ~/.nvm/

# load nvm on a mac
export NVM_DIR="/Users/username/.nvm"
[ -s "$NVM_DIR/" ] && . "$NVM_DIR/"  # This loads nvm

# git tab completion (homebrew)
if [ -f `brew --prefix`/etc/bash_completion.d/git-completion.bash ]; then
    . `brew --prefix`/etc/bash_completion.d/git-completion.bash

# load avn
[[ -s "$HOME/.avn/bin/" ]] && source "$HOME/.avn/bin/" # load avn


27 Oct 2016