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Good morning guys.... I'm very new to this forum plus by the 6am this morning I should've installed for the first time ubuntu 11.04. I barely know what I'm doing ...
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  1. #1
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    Unhappy New Member Intro


    Good morning guys....
    I'm very new to this forum plus by the 6am this morning I should've installed for the first time ubuntu 11.04. I barely know what I'm doing so I'll be posting lot's of questions. Please be patient, I'm very fluent in windows but not in Linux. I'm curently taking Linux at my college as part of the degree that I'm seeking (Cyber Security).

    Here goes the first question...

    what is the output of the :
    uname -a? I really don't know what ( -a ) means

    Thanks
    Maelo9x

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer hazel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maelo9x View Post
    Good morning guys....
    Here goes the first question...

    what is the output of the :
    uname -a? I really don't know what ( -a ) means

    Thanks
    Maelo9x
    "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."

    The first port of call in finding out about any Linux command is to read the manual page. You use the man command for this. Open a terminal and type man uname. it will explain what the command does, and list all the options and what they do.

    You have already noticed that options are represented by single letters preceded by a dash. That's worth remembering. As a tip to get you started, "-a" is an option used by many commands and it stands for "all". Try typing uname with various options and then uname -a, and you'll see what I mean.

    btw homework questions are not encouraged here. We'll help you all we can but we won't give you the answers off pat.
    "I'm just a little old lady; don't try to dazzle me with jargon!"
    www.hrussman.entadsl.com

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Roxoff's Avatar
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    Hi maelo9x, welcome to the forums.

    I'll just back up what hazel says. Officially, homework questions are not allowed, you'll annoy many of the good volunteers here if you post up "here's my homework, what's the answer?". But if you get stuck and post "here's my question and my attempt at an answer, and here's what's appears to be failing", you're likely to get plenty of hints.
    Linux user #126863 - see http://linuxcounter.net/

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  5. #4
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    Red face

    Quote Originally Posted by Roxoff View Post
    Hi maelo9x, welcome to the forums.

    I'll just back up what hazel says. Officially, homework questions are not allowed, you'll annoy many of the good volunteers here if you post up "here's my homework, what's the answer?". But if you get stuck and post "here's my question and my attempt at an answer, and here's what's appears to be failing", you're likely to get plenty of hints.
    Ditto hazel and Roxoff. Welcome to the WONDERFUL world of Linux. It has cured my MS Windows addiction!

  6. #5
    Linux Engineer MASONTX's Avatar
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    welcome to the forum. By now I gather you are on linux. Great to have you join us.
    Registered Linux user #526930

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    Unix/Linux commands are programs that work a lot like mathematical functions, e.g. to compute f(x), you might type something like "f x" on the command line. However the "f" might do something more than just output a number. Uname is one such "function".

    The "man" command is another "function". It takes one parameter: a search string. If you type "man uname", it will search the pre-installed manual database for the "uname" manual page. There you will see a list of "options" that control how the "uname" program works. You will find "-a" is one such option.

    In linux, the most common (but certainly not the only) shell program is "bash". Bash is an easy-to-use, line-interpreted programming language. It is easy because it just takes one line of text and breaks it up into words, where a word is anything in between spaces. The first "word" is the command name, every thing after that is either an "option", or a "parameter". An "option" controls what the program does, where a parameter specifies input to the "function", like a file name. There is a convention in Linux and Unix that says, any "word" starting with a hyphen, like "-a" is a program option, and everything else is a parameter.

    Specifying options on the command line is a bit like checking check-boxes in a dialog box before pressing "OK". Specifying parameters is more like typing words into text-fields of the dialog box before pressing "OK". Believe it or not, using the command line can actually be faster than using dialog boxes in a GUI, once you have memorized the options and what they do. But the "man" command is always there if you forget, and even the best of us use it several times a day.

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