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Learning Unix for Mac OS X Tiger by Dave Taylor

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Chapter 11. Where to Go from Here

Now that you’re almost to the end of this guide, let’s look at some ways to continue learning about the Unix side of Mac OS X. Documentation is an obvious choice, but it isn’t always in obvious places. You can also learn how to save time by taking advantage of other shell features—aliases, functions, and scripts—that let you shorten a repetitive job and “let the computer do the dirty work.”

We’ll close by seeing how you can use Unix commands on non-Unix systems.

Documentation

You might want to know the options to the programs I’ve introduced and get more information about them and the many other Unix programs. You’re now ready to consult your system’s documentation and other resources.

The Terminal’s Help Menu

An excellent first place to seek further information is the Apple Help system included with the Terminal application. Lots of Mac users automatically ignore the Help menu, mainly because Apple’s version of “help” in the early days didn’t amount to much. But with Mac OS X Tiger, that’s a mistake, because therein lies plenty of useful information. Many of the Terminal’s Help topics are specifically about the Terminal application itself, but you’ll also find plenty of other interesting topics to read about, including:

  • Copying a file

  • Finding out which directory you’re in

  • Learning about Unix commands

  • Listing the contents of a directory

  • Paths in Unix

  • Printing a Terminal session

  • Root or administrator privileges

  • Setting Unix permissions

Figure 11-1 shows a sample ...

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