Using programs and commands that do not have a graphical user interface (GUI) but are rather controlled by typing text commands into a terminal program, or shell.

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Editing System Preferences via Terminal

Am looking to edit system preferences settings via the command line but cannot for the life of me find the correct names of variables. In Login Options under Users & Groups, I would like to be ...
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2answers
2k views

How can I have my shell always start in a certain directory that is not my home directory

I've tried putting cd /Users/my_name/my_directory/structure in both .bashrc and .bash_login but neither works, i.e. when I open a new terminal window I am in my home (/Users/my_name/) directory. ...
7
votes
1answer
7k views

Is there a command-line BitTorrent client preinstalled on OS X?

On a "bare" OS X 10.8 install, what is the easiest way to grab a largish torrent from the command line (MacTeX, 2.3 GB)? I can't use GUI-only clients, it's a headless system. If no such client is ...
7
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2answers
1k views

“Airplane Mode” in OS X. Alternative command for `rfkill`?

This question is an exact duplicate of this post from superuser.exchange.com. I believe this is a valid question for both of sites and hope I am not (if any) violating stackexchange policies. ...
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6answers
35k views

How do I execute command line scripts?

In Windows, I can create .bat files. I double click it and all lines are interpreted as if I had entered it into the console. In OS X, what file or program do I have to use? If I want write a file ...
7
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1answer
7k views

How to initiate VPN conection from command line?

I would like to save some mouse clicks and keystrokes by initiating VPN connection from command line. Is there tool for this in Mac OS X? Ideally, it should accept VPN connection name and password and ...
7
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2answers
3k views

How can I kill a process using top on OS X?

On other Unixe,s I can use top and then hit K and type the process ID. How can I do that in OS X? I can type kill [the_pid] on its own at the command line and that works. However, I was wondering if ...
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2answers
4k views

How do you record audio from command line with osx?

I've tried ffmpeg but there is no /dev/dsp device.
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1answer
3k views

How can I format the output of ping in bash?

I am using the following script to cycle through a list of IP addresses and report back on the % of packet loss. I'd also like to have the IP address printed first, then its % of packet loss. But I ...
7
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2answers
615 views

How can I process/read checkmarks on a paper form?

I would like to process a large number of scanned paper forms (GUI or command line). I am only interested in reading (custom) checkboxes. The form looks like this: every line has 6 circle-shaped ...
7
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5answers
15k views

How to reset $PATH?

I was trying to add something to $PATH and it went totally wrong. I now can't run any commands such as ls. I've looked at this answer and used the following lines: ...
7
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1answer
2k views

Is there a OS X equivalent for iproute2?

I am searching a command line tool collection like iproute2 on Linux. Network Utility is OK, but I would like it on the command line.
7
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1answer
2k views

Why does it appear that I apparently “do not have access to Command Line Tools” in ML?

I just upgraded to Mountain Lion, and now gcc, make, g++, etc. are not found when trying to launch them in Terminal. So I went to Xcode Preferences, Downloads, and clicked "Install" next to Command ...
7
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1answer
370 views

How can I log into the desktop environment as Root on a new mac running 10.6 or 10.7 without creating a user account?

Under Mac OS 10.5, you could boot a fresh-out-of-the-box Mac into single user mode, mount /, set the root password, and touch .AppleSetupDone - this would allow you to log into the desktop environment ...
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3answers
2k views

Can Finder and the “open” command treat files with .sh or other typical extensions just like .command files?

I am looking for a way to inject some more extensions into the OS X launch services database systematically so that when clicked, they execute in the terminal app just like .command files do by ...
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4answers
1k views

What's the best way to install command line utilities such as GIT?

I'm a Windows/Linux guy that just got my Macbook Air. I do web dev, and am currently trying to setup this machine for some on-the-go development. After some research attempts, I'm wondering: what's ...
7
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1answer
328 views

Get ambient light sensor value from ioreg

I'm using the ioreg command line tool to try and read sensor information available on my computer (iMac). Particularly, I'd like to read the current value of the ambient light sensor. So far, I have ...
7
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1answer
127 views

How to “chroot” a terminal inside a DMG?

I'm doing security research and for that purpose I use an SHA-2 encrypted DMG to store the tools and files I work with (containing confidential client info), to protect them from forensic examination ...
7
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1answer
302 views

Verify Time Machine Encryption from the Command-Line?

Is it possible to verify whether a given Time Machine volume (for example, returned by tmutil machinedirectory) has encryption turned on? This is for regulatory compliance, so it needs to be fully ...
7
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2answers
2k views

AirDrop: How to access AirDrop from command line?

I was looking for an option to use Airdrop to sync a set of directories between two computers. I want to achieve this wirelessly(hence chose Airdrop w/o having the computers connect on a network or ...
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6answers
5k views

Why use the terminal in daily non-programming life

Disclaimer: I'm a Windows boy awaiting his first mac. I never bothered learning/using command-line interfaces. I've been looking at the Terminal Tips and Tricks topic and I don't see how any of those ...
6
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4answers
8k views

PageUp and PageDown keys for Irssi (IRC) in Macbook?

I cannot find the keys on my mackbook. I need them to go page-up and page-down in irssi (IRC). I have tested the tips here but they do not work. They model some different Up/Down, not the traditional ...
6
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3answers
942 views

Can I use GNU ps on OS X?

We can install GNU coreutils via brew. But there's no ps in the utils. Can we use gnu ps in OS X? I'd like to use GNU ps as it has more options and features.
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4answers
764 views

Can I modify a terminal command to do additional stuff?

I've looked into aliases, functions... but I have not come up with anything satisfying. Let me give you a couple of scenarios: 95% of times that I cd into a folder, I follow up with a ls command. ...
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2answers
2k views

Change my shell to a different bash version at /usr/local/bin/bash?

How can I set my /usr/local/bin/bash (which is the 4.2 version that allows auto-completion of 'cd to directory with directory name') to be my default bash for a new window instead of my regular ...
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4answers
1k views

Shell script to determine the file size in a folder recursively

Can anyone provide me with a shell script that I can run against various folders to see where large files are lurking? Many thanks
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2answers
1k views

Are Bash, Bourne, and Korn shells compiled into one binary in OSX?

On OSX 10.8, if you compare the binaries for bash, sh, and ksh, a few different shell options, they are the same size. If you take it further and cmp the binaries, there seems to be only a ...
6
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1answer
5k views

How to repair Homebrew permissions after installing as root?

I run brew as root, now it's defunct. No updates anymore. How to fix? $ brew update && brew upgrade error: Unable to append to .git/logs/HEAD: Permission denied error: Unable to append to ...
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2answers
9k views

How to manage tunnels as background processes from a shell script?

I need to set up a couple of ssh-tunnels from a shell script. I've tried running them as bg tasks using: #!/bin/sh ssh -L 3000:server1:5029 me@server2 & ssh -L 3001:server3:3306 me@server2 & ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

Change the default application (for a file extension) via script/command line?

Is there a way to define the default application for a file extension via an Apple script, command line command (like defaults write [...]). I know that you can change it manually via the information ...
6
votes
3answers
14k views

Netcat -e on Mac OS X

I'm a newbie macuser coming from Debian, and I'm a big command line user. One one my preferred one is netcat (aka nc on mac). I especially loved the -e option which enabled to create a process that ...
6
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1answer
2k views

How to launch TextMate (and probably other software) from the command line?

I am very new to Mac, coming from Linux. I am using TextMate, and I suddenly discovered I do not know how to launch TextMate from command line. Using completion, nothing looks like TextMate. Where ...
6
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2answers
10k views

Can't install Xcode Command Line Tools on Mountain Lion

I try to install the most recent (july 25) version of Command Line Tools (xcode44cltools_10_76938107a.dm), downloaded from https://developer.apple.com/downloads/, but are stopped with the error ...
6
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3answers
641 views

Terminal command to bring up shutdown dialog?

I know how to shutdown a Mac from Terminal, but is there a way to actually bring up the shutdown dialog you get from Apple → Shut Down…?
6
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2answers
633 views

How do I “Get Info” from the command line?

Related to this question: http://superuser.com/q/514528/90435 Via http://osxdaily.com/2010/10/12/find-out-where-a-file-was-downloaded-from/ I find out that you can use 'get info' though Finder to ...
6
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4answers
3k views

Is there a better way to shutdown/restart OSX?

Whenever I want to shutdown/restart OSX I click on the menu, select shutdown, and then click the box for not saving the session, and then click OK. Then there's always at least one program that ...
6
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3answers
1k views

How to view man pages in a web browser?

Which .conf file do I need to edit in order to view man pages in a web browser? I'd like to use Google Chrome to do this. Is this possible?
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3answers
3k views

Opening a terminal window to a specific directory from a bash script

How can I write a bash script in Mac OS X that opens a Terminal window in a specific directory? I'd assume something like: open /Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app But that does nothing (maybe ...
6
votes
1answer
869 views

Can I play chess on my Mac from the command line?

If I were feeling insufficiently geekish on any particular day, and thus found the GUI Chess App to lack an appropriate amount of tech credibility, is there a way to play chess on my Mac from the ...
6
votes
1answer
14k views

How do I find what packages I've installed via terminal?

I've been learning the shell for a few weeks and have installed several packages. I know/remember what some of them are, like oh-my-zsh and emacs 24 (which was a nightmare to upgrade to), but not sure ...
6
votes
3answers
6k views

Change file association in terminal?

Is there a method for associating file types with applications via terminal? I thought ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.launchservices.plist might do it, and I also have seen: Why is a command line ...
6
votes
1answer
5k views

How to control AirPort wireless radio from the command line?

I want to know how to control (specifically turn off) the networking (specifically AirPort - I want to turn off the radio) from the command line (specifically from bash in Terminal.app, being run by ...
6
votes
4answers
15k views

How to download command line tools in xcode 4.5

I just installed xcode 4.5 and need to install the command line tools. The apple documentations says (with very little detail) that there is a download section in the preferences pane. I have yet to ...
6
votes
3answers
7k views

Command Line Tools fail to install OS X Lion 10.7.3 Xcode 4.3

I'm trying to install the command line tools to get gcc, make, and other goodies after a Lion upgrade. I went to Preferences → Downloads in Xcode and attempted to install the command line tools. At ...
6
votes
1answer
882 views

How to access /dev/mem in OSX?

How I can access /dev/mem (or /dev/kmem, /dev/pmap) equivalent device in OSX? As far as I know it was removed in some point. Can I create this node manually somehow or any other way of dumping the ...
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2answers
4k views

Child process exited with status 254 error when extracting a tar.xz file

I'm trying to extract a tar.xz file with tar in Mac OS X Lion. I'm using bsdtar 2.8.3 - libarchive 2.8.3. I'm able to use tar to extract anything else I've tried (.zip, .tar, .tar.gz, etc.), but when ...
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2answers
2k views

Mac renames itself automatically - host name is incorrect in terminal

I've got a handleful of macs (all with unique names) and on occasion it prompt a notice about saying another computer on the network as this name and adds a (2) or (3) to my mac. How can I set the ...
6
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3answers
1k views

How can I initiate a modem connection from the command line?

I am looking for a way to initiate a PPP connection with my EVDO modem from the command line instead of having to go to System Preferences -> Network and hit "Connect".
6
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I update iTunes Match from the command line?

I use iTunes Match to access my iTunes library at work. I added some new music to my library (back at home) recently, but I forgot to run the "Update iTunes Match" command to ensure that the songs ...
6
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2answers
245 views

How to automatically watch for file changes and perform a custom action inside shell?

For example, I'd like to automatically run YUI Compressor whenever I edit a JavaScript source file to output a compressed version. Ideally the process does not run in the background but in a ...