Top 10 Best Cheat Sheets and Tutorials for Linux / UNIX Commands

by on November 5, 2008 · 29 comments· LAST UPDATED November 16, 2013

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Cheat sheet act as a reference tool which provides cut and paste kind of commands to complete a specific task. I often recommend following set of best cheat sheets to students and IT professionals. It include Linux / UNIX command and shell scripting.

Unix Toolbox

This document is a collection of Unix/Linux/BSD commands and tasks which are useful for IT work or for advanced users. This is a practical guide with concise explanations, however the reader is supposed to know what s/he is doing.

=> Visit UNIX Toolbox

UNIX Tutorial for Beginners

A beginners guide to the Unix and Linux operating system. Eight simple tutorials which cover the basics of UNIX / Linux commands.

=> Visit UNIX Tutorial for Beginners

Linux Command and Learning Shell Tutorials

You have Linux installed and running. The GUI is working fine, but you are getting tired of changing your desktop themes. You keep seeing this "terminal" thing. Don't worry, this site will show you what to do.

=> Visit Learning the shell

Learn UNIX in 10 minutes

This is something that I had given out to students (CAD user training) in years past. The purpose was to have on one page the basics commands for getting started using the UNIX shell (so that they didn't call me asking what to do the first time someone gave them a tape).

=> Visit Learning UNIX in 10 minutes

How To Look Like A UNIX Guru

This lecture takes you through the basic commands and then shows you how to combine them in simple patterns or idioms to provide sophisticated functionality like histogramming. This lecture assumes you know what a shell is and that you have some basic familiarity with UNIX.

=> Visit How To Look Like A UNIX Guru

Linux command line reference

Another very good Linux command line reference for common operations.

=> Visit Linux Command Line Reference

Linux-Unix cheat sheets - The ultimate collection

Links to good reference material on various topics.

=> Visit Linux-Unix cheat sheets - The ultimate collection (dead link removed)

Alphabetical Directory of Linux Commands

This directory of Linux commands is from Linux in a Nutshell, 5th Edition. You can view total 687 commands to get a description and list of available options.

=> Visit directory of Linux commands

A Sysadmin's Unixersal Translator (ROSETTA STONE)

A simple and nice lookup table for Linux / UNIX / BSD commands.

=> Visit Sysadmin's Unixersal Translator (ROSETTA STONE) (PDF version)

BigAdmin - System Administrator Resources and Community

Sun has BigAdmin portal with tons of information regarding UNIX, shell scripting and much more.

=> Visit BigAdmin System Administration Portal- Shell Commands (dead link removed, added link)

Please feel free to suggest some of the UNIX cheat sheets / tutorials, I did not mentioned here in the comments.

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This entry is 1 of 2 in the Best Resources for Linux & Unix series. Keep reading the rest of the series:
  1. Top 10 Best Cheat Sheets and Tutorials for Linux / UNIX Commands
  2. 30 Best Sources For Linux / *BSD / Unix Documentation On the Web

{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jadu November 6, 2008 at 12:08 pm

great info; most of the books you mentioned are useful.


2 Raj November 6, 2008 at 3:37 pm

Hey, some of your screenshots got mp3 player; otherwise a good collection of cheat sheets.


3 Amit Agarwal November 7, 2008 at 2:29 am

Very good info. But I think you should have also mentioned some of the most popular blogs, I think that is the best way to learn Unix/Linux.


4 chris November 7, 2008 at 5:09 pm

i personally learn by break & fix (obviously on a dev) big learning curve, my first intro to linux was gentoo


5 goestin November 11, 2008 at 4:33 pm

Very very nice indeed, especially #1 howto vpn over ssh: brilliant!

tnx a lot!


6 dante November 25, 2008 at 12:52 am



7 Shaunak Bangale June 9, 2009 at 1:43 pm

Thanks for the collection..With this,It is inspiratory for a beginner to learn linux commands..


8 kas@hil July 2, 2009 at 10:55 am

Very usuefull information.


9 sandeep k pandey July 19, 2009 at 4:52 am

hiii i am sandeep
i want to say you thanks


10 anonymous March 13, 2015 at 12:01 am

thanks for letting us know “sandeep k pandey” that ur name is sandeep..


11 Girish Mahajan July 27, 2009 at 1:18 pm

More to add–


tail -10 access_log.2009-01-19 | awk '/go/ { print $13 }'

it will grep the /go/ apps and cut the 13 th delem’s …. isnt its great !
Rogers 87 100 95
Lambchop 66 89 76
Barney 12 36 27

You can perform calculations like this:

awk '{print "Avg for",$1,"is",($2+$3+$4)/3}'
Avg for Rogers is 94
Avg for Lambchop is 77
Avg for Barney is 25


cat access_log.2009-01-19 | grep $1 | cut -f13 -d" "| awk '{ request += $1 } END { print request }'

ll -R . | grep "jpg\\|mp4\\|3gp\\|gif" | grep "Apr\\|May\\|Jun" | awk '{print $5"\t" $6}'

ps auxwww | grep daemon | grep -v grep | awk '{print $11}'

cat /home/girish/script/ReportTool/user/letmeuse.2009-02-05 | cut -f1 | awk '{print substr($1,1,6)}'| sort -nr

cat /home/girish/script/ReportTool/user/letmeuse.2009-02-05 | cut -c1-6 | awk '{print $1,"=",$2,",",$3}'

mitLOAD DATA LOCAL INFILE ‘/tmp/tbl_change_2.sql’ INTO TABLE ‘tbl_operator_ip’ FIELDS TERMINATED BY ‘\t’ LINES TERMINATED BY ‘\n';

To Read Key And Value from the properties file……..

KEY VALUE :: tail -1 temp |awk -F= 'END { printf "keys=%s\nvalues=%s\n", k, v }
{ k = k ? k s $1 : $1; v = v ? v s $2 : $2 }
' s="|"


12 sithara August 16, 2009 at 9:16 am

Hai… thanks.Very good informations.


13 sonu September 19, 2009 at 12:11 pm

i like you linux cammond


14 vadhiraj.A.Kulkarni April 29, 2010 at 9:13 am

Thanks alot for the facilities provided-:)


15 Anonymous June 17, 2010 at 8:51 pm

Very good collection for UNIX/LINUX. Thank you.


16 kroger18 October 24, 2010 at 3:09 am



17 Rashed June 7, 2011 at 11:34 am

It is help ful for every body.


18 echo9 July 8, 2011 at 7:29 am

Whoa! What an awesome collection!
thx bro :)


19 Raj November 10, 2011 at 8:29 pm

Can anyone tell me where I can take a shell scripting, perl, python course in Southern California.?


20 Mea December 19, 2011 at 8:03 pm



21 shikhar April 17, 2012 at 6:57 pm

good information


22 Rusty April 24, 2012 at 6:34 am

Hey I really like the site but the collection of cheat sheets is a broken link


23 nixCraft April 24, 2012 at 12:46 pm

It appears that two links are broken. I’ve removed the same.

Thanks for the heads up!


24 Sonu Gumbhir June 7, 2012 at 11:18 am

This is very good collection. Thanks for it.


25 ranjit Kandukuri January 7, 2013 at 12:49 pm

Thanks it really worth…..


26 shashank agarwal May 3, 2013 at 11:18 am

Reaaly good and helpful links.. i will refer all of you to go through these links its really worth to spend time in it..


27 Ryan July 27, 2013 at 2:15 am

Another good tutorial if you want a comprehensive introduction to the Linux command line is :



28 mani August 23, 2014 at 6:30 am

thanks for good collections


29 C. Beerse March 3, 2015 at 2:09 pm

The missing cheat sheet: The manual pages! On the commandline try `man command` (as in `man man`) and see the details of the command.


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