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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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 ...
8
votes
3answers
762 views

Drag & Drop vs mv - Any difference?

Is there a difference between bulk-moving files with Drag & Drop vs mv? Use case: Volume External_Drive_A has about 8000 files totalling 9GB. External_Drive_B has 74GB of free space. The desired ...
8
votes
1answer
9k 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 ...
8
votes
4answers
5k views

My Automator Workflow fails because it fails to find the git command within the 'Run Shell Script' command? Need help

I have an Automator workflow and one of the actions is to clone a repository. Here's the code for the 'Run Shell Script' action. The command is run within the Bash shell /bin/bash if that matters: ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

Completely clear all output from a Terminal window

I would like to clear all output from a Terminal window (including all historical output) to get it back to a clean state as if you had just opened a new Terminal window, or a new Terminal tab. I can ...
8
votes
2answers
10k views

What does -HUP do when used with killall?

Sometimes when I'm running a killall command from Terminal, a co-worker would suggest or edit my scripts to show killall -HUP. What does the -HUP part do?
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2answers
8k views

How to install CPAN modules from the command line on OS X?

Simple question: How to install CPAN modules on OS-X like normal Linux/Unix way? I just want to type in cpan something like install Perl6::Say for example.
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2answers
468 views

Check if caps lock on in terminal

Is there a way to query the system to tell if the caps lock is on or is off from the command line in terminal.app?
8
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1answer
943 views

How can I take selfie by running a console command on Mac? [duplicate]

I know I can take a selfie with the built-in camera via the Photo Booth app. However, is there a way capture an image via command line, in sort of lolcommits style?
8
votes
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 ...
8
votes
3answers
7k 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 ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Adding a song file to iTunes via the command line without playing the file

I want to add song files to iTunes via the command line. open -a iTunes -g song.mp3 does exactly this. - However it starts playing the song, too. Any way to avoid this?
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1answer
382 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
votes
2answers
15k views

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 ...
7
votes
1answer
6k 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
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 ...
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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. ...
7
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1answer
9k views

Whats the equivalent of the unix tree command on OSX

Whats the equivalent of the unix tree command on OSX (10.8.5)
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2answers
4k 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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5answers
18k 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: ...
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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
votes
2answers
679 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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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
votes
1answer
374 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
3k 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
132 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 ...
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2answers
280 views

Software recommendation: Command line network analyser that shows owning process

I'm looking for something that is a mix of tcpdump, lsof, and netstat. I want to be able to filter like tcpdump, but have an additional column showing the process ID. At the end I'd like to be able ...
7
votes
1answer
327 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 ...
6
votes
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 ...
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3answers
1k 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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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 ...
6
votes
4answers
766 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. ...
6
votes
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
6
votes
2answers
6k views

How can I temporarily suspend some users, hiding them from the login screen?

I have to manage a shared OSX workstation that is used by a rotating cast of characters throughout the year. The login screen quickly becomes cumbersome when users that aren't even around for a while ...
6
votes
2answers
10k 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
15k 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
votes
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
votes
2answers
11k 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
votes
3answers
692 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
votes
2answers
802 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
votes
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
votes
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
3answers
1k views

locate & updatedb - files not found

I ran sudo /usr/libexec/locate.updatedb then locate Radium3 but it returns nothing! but $ ls ~/Library/Containers/com.catpigstudios.Radium3/ Container.plist Data So why doesn't locate see ...
6
votes
1answer
969 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
15k 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 ...