You’ve watched vloggers and read blog posts on this new kid on the block in the Linux community called EndeavourOS. You’ve downloaded the ISO image and had a successful install. After extensively trying the likes as Ubuntu, Linux Mint, ZorinOS or any other non-Arch-based distro out there, you’re ready to take the plunge.
At first glance, the OS seems to greet you very friendly with an attractive looking Xfce desktop, it has no GUI package for Pacman but you’ve read and viewed the reviews, so in this stage, it doesn’t bother you because you’re ready to learn this, quite intimidating looking OS.
You might have consulted the wiki, various internet searches and asked the help from the community. These helplines all give the same solution, run certain command lines… You simply copy or preferably type them over in the terminal and… HURRAH, IT WORKS!!!!!!…. But what have you actually typed in the terminal?
A powerful tool
As you might have experienced, these commands aren’t magic but very powerful tools to maintain and to stay on top of your system. You can compare them with what the steering wheel, the transmission box and the foot pedals are for a car. Use those commands in a wrong balance, just like a car, you will lose control and your system is directing your machine towards a crash.
In this series, I’m going to give a little more background on those most used mysterious-looking code words called commands.
This command doesn’t actually beat around the bush what it’s doing, it simply adds a new user or a group to the system.
First, make sure you have root privileges and the easiest way is by entering:
$ sudo su (I’ll explain that one later in the series) then type in your password and then type:
# adduser [username}
This is an example of the screen you’ll see:
adduser johndAdding user 'johnd' ... Adding new group 'johnd' (1001)... Adding new user 'johnd' (1001) with group 'johnd' ... Creating home directory '/home/johnd' ... Copying files from '/etc/skel' ... Enter new UNIX password: Retype new UNIX password: passwd: Password updated successfully Changing the user information for johnd Enter the new value, or press ENTER for the default Full name:  Room number:  Work phone:  Home phone:  Other:  Is the information correct? (Y/N): Y
As you can see you can add extra info in the dialogue box and when you hit ENTER the new user is added.
The apropos command searches manual page names and descriptions for a user-supplied keyword. Following is its syntax:
apropos [OPTIONS] keyword ...
And here’s what the tool’s man page says about it:
Each manual page has a short description available within it. apropos searches the descriptions for instances of keyword. keyword is usually a regular expression, as if (-r) was used, or may contain wildcards (-w), or match the exact keyword (-e). Using these options, it may be necessary to quote the keyword or escape (\) the special characters to stop the shell from interpreting them. The standard matching rules allow matches to be made against the page name and word boundaries in the description. The database searched by apropos is updated by the mandb program. Depending on your installation, this may be run by a periodic cron job, or may need to be run manually after new manual pages have been installed.
Basic usage is simple. Just pass the keyword you want to search as input to the apropos command.
produced the following result:
dmesg (1) - print or control the kernel ring buffer
Of course, you can pass multiple keywords as well.
apropos dmesg whereis
Following is the output in this case:
dmesg (1) - print or control the kernel ring bufferwhereis (1) - locate the binary, source, and manual page files for a...
Search for exact keywords
By default, the input you pass to the apropos command isn’t searched exactly. For example, if you pass ‘who’ as an input, like this:
$ apropos who
You’ll also see the tool producing results containing words like ‘whoami and this isn’t an exact search. However, you can force apropos to search for exact keywords by using the -e or –exact command-line options.
$ apropos --exact who
In this case, the results are cleaner and the system prompts you with the exact keyword search.
More on Linux commands come to you in part 2.