Topic outline

  • 1. UNIX vs Linux

    25 - 31 January 2021

    Did you ever wonder where Linux came from and why it sounds similar to UNIX? In our first week we'll discuss the history of Linux and the philosophy behind it. Then you will get ready for the hands-on exercises in the coming weeks by collecting your personal Linux account. You'll find this week's activities below.

    The commands you will learn this week are: chfnlogoutpasswd and who am i.

  • 2. A session with Linux

    1 - 7 February 2021

    In this week you will go through a longer session with Linux and get a better chance to see and "touch" the terminal and the shell. We start by exploring the system environment and then move on to screen handling.

    During the live-session we will go through the following session together. The commands are simple and limited to getting information from the system. You get the recording of the session and the full transcript for reference later. You have three assignments to submit by the end of the week.

    This week's commands: cal, clear, date, echo, exit, hostname, ncal, reset, resize, top, uptime.

  • 3. Files and directories

    8 - 14 February 2021

    In the design of the Unix operating system the file is an abstraction way beyond a mere container for data. As a result this unit is longer than the others. We will walk through the commands to view, copy, delete files and directories . We will cover the list command to understand the meta information of files and learn to navigate the file system. In parallel we also learn how to get help from the system's on-line help system.

    In this week you will learn the commands apropos, cat, cd, cp, file, help, info, ls, man, mkdir, mv, od, pwd, rmdir and tree.

  • 4. Text editor

    22 - 28 February 2021

    Write programs to handle text streams, because that is a universal interface
    Doug McIlroy

    Next to files text is a major topic in Unix. In this unit we look at text editors.

    The objective of this week is to understand what a modal text editor is and why a terminal based text editor has to be modal. Then we start learning the single-key commands used in the original Unix editor ed and its successor vi, the cult editor in the Unix world.

  • 5. Interacting with others

    1 - 7 March 2021

    Already in the early 1960s with the advent of time-sharing computers people already passed messages through shared files. It was easy to implement as long as all worked in the same computer. Over time, for it to work across incompatible computers a complex web of gateways and routing systems developed. They all had their own formats of e-mail addresses. The common format today, username@domain, was created in 1971. Applications like messaging and chat are also very old ideas, which went through similar developments.

    In this week’s unit you will get to know those original tools for viewing users logged on at a specific time, write and talk to them get information on users who are on- and off-line and finally how to mail them - all in the command line.