MirBSD manpage: help(1)

HELP(1)                      BSD Reference Manual                      HELP(1)


     help - help for new users and administrators


     This document is meant to familiarize new users and system administrators
     with OpenBSD and, if necessary, UNIX in general.

     Firstly, a wealth of information is contained within the system manual
     pages. In UNIX, the man(1) command is used to view them. Type man man for
     instructions on how to use it properly. Pay especially close attention to
     the -k option.

     Other OpenBSD references include the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) lo-
     cated at http://www.openbsd.org/faq, which is mostly intended for ad-
     ministrators and assumes the reader possesses a working knowledge of
     UNIX. There are also mailing lists in place where questions are fielded
     by OpenBSD developers and other users; see

     System administrators should have already read the afterboot(8) man page
     which explains a variety of tasks that are typically performed after the
     first system boot. When configuring any aspect of the system, first con-
     sider any possible security implications your changes may have.

The Unix shell

     After logging in, some system messages are typically displayed, and then
     the user is able to enter commands to be processed by the shell program.
     The shell is a command-line interpreter that reads user input (normally
     from a terminal) and executes commands. There are many different shells
     available; OpenBSD ships with csh(1), ksh(1), and sh(1). Each user's
     shell is indicated by the last field of their corresponding entry in the
     system password file (/etc/passwd).

Basic Unix commands

     man     Interface to the system manual pages. For any of the commands
             listed below, type man <command> for detailed information on what
             it does and how to use it.

     pwd     Print working directory. Files are organized in a hierarchy (see
             hier(7)) called a tree. This command will indicate in which
             directory you are currently located.

     cd      Change working directory. Use this command to navigate throughout
             the file hierarchy. For example, type cd / to change the working
             directory to the root.

     ls      List directory contents. Type ls -l for a detailed listing.

     cat     Although it has many more uses, cat filename will print the con-
             tents of a plain-text file to the screen.

     mkdir   Make a directory. For example, mkdir foobar.

     rmdir   Remove a directory.

     rm      Remove files. Files are generally only removable by their owners.
             See the chmod(1) command for information on file permissions.

     chmod   Change file modes, including permissions. It is not immediately
             obvious how to use this command; please read its manual page
             carefully, as proper file permissions, especially on system
             files, are vital in maintaining security and integrity.

     cp      Copy files.

     mv      Move and rename files.

     ps      List active processes. Most UNIX-based operating systems, includ-
             ing OpenBSD, are multitasking, meaning many programs share system
             resources at the same time. A common usage is ps -auxw, which
             will display information about all active processes.

     kill    Kill processes. Used mostly for terminating run-away/unresponsive
             programs, but also used to signal programs for requesting certain
             operations (i.e., re-read their configuration).

     date    Print the current system date and time.

     mail    Access mailbox.

     logout  Log out of the system.

     When a command is entered, it is first checked to see if it is built-in
     to the shell. If not, the shell looks for the command in any directories
     contained within the PATH environment variable (see environ(7)). If the
     command is not found, an error message is printed. Otherwise, the shell
     runs the command, passing it any arguments specified on the command line.


     man(1), whatis(1), whereis(1), afterboot(8)


     This manual page was written by
     Aaron Campbell <aaron@openbsd.org> and first appeared in OpenBSD 2.6.

MirBSD #10-current             October 17, 1999                              1

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