What is the function of terminal?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by macrbest, Sep 6, 2013.

  1. macrbest macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #1
    I would like to find out what Terminal is used for. I have seen this program before and I do not have the sight idea what it is.
     
  2. Darth.Titan macrumors 68030

    Darth.Titan

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    Oct 31, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #2
    Terminal allows you to execute Unix commands from a command-line shell. Similar to the DOS prompt in Windows, just using a completely different (and superior) language.

    If you don't know what you're doing, leave it alone.
     
  3. notjustjay macrumors 603

    notjustjay

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Canada, eh?
    #3
    Yup. It's very powerful and you could seriously screw up your system if you executed commands blindly (say, delete every file on your entire hard drive). However, it can be extremely handy for writing and running scripts, coding and compiling software, or just running commands that are more work to do using the GUI.

    For example, here's a quick command that I could run from a Unix shell (which is what Terminal is):

    > cp ~/pics/Cruise*.jpg /Archives/Photos

    To do the same thing in Finder, I would need to open up my home folder, then the pics folder, then sort the files by type, then highlight all the ones that start with the word "Cruise", then open up another Finder window for Archives, then Photos, then drag and drop (and hit Option to copy, not move). One little command gets all that done super quick.

    It's not for everyone, but if you want it, it's very powerful.
     
  4. ElectronGuru macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2013
    Location:
    Oregon, USA
    #4
    Good posts, I'll add a bit more...

    The relevance of Terminal to non geeks is when you want to make a system configuration change, beyond what the standard/GUI interface allows.

    Apple introduces some new default you don't like (or removed one you do like) and its not in system prefs, google it's name and chances are someone has published a fix you can paste into terminal.
     
  5. colourfastt macrumors 6502a

    colourfastt

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2009
    #5
    Those under the age of 40 have probably never seen a command line.
     
  6. macrbest thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #6
    Can you create a dedicated internet connection through terminal? I would also like to find out if you can speed up an internet connection through the use of a proxy server. If so, how do you set it up?
     
  7. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    Location:
    New England, USA
    #7
    Terminal is a dark, scary place! For a total non-geek, like me, just the mention of Terminal causes the hairs on the back of my neck to stand up! Just knowing that there is very little I can do to screw up my computer elsewhere, but knowing I could cause terminal troubles in Terminal keeps me away.

    It ain't called Terminal for nothing!:eek:

    OK, and for real....those who have reasonable knowledge of what they are doing find Terminal very useful and efficient...just not me!:p

    :D
     
  8. macrbest thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #8
    I did not exactly get a straight answer as to whether or not it could be used to enhance internet connectivity.
     
  9. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #9
    Yes it can enhance internet connectivity, but you have to know exactly what you're doing and what needs to be done is different in every case.
     
  10. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #10
    It will be routed to you shortly, just enjoy some other tidbits of the www in between, like this for example.

    You sometimes have to be patient for more than seven hours in order to receive the information you do not look for.

    ----------

    Basterd, always, always have to get into my way. Enjoy this then. :mad:
     
  11. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603

    GimmeSlack12

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #11
    Yes and no, mainly because of ....
    Exactly. And most likely any "enhancement" would be not really worth it. Anything you can do on your Mac can be done via the Terminal. Start reading up on some basic navigation of the file structure via the terminal, it's really not that scary and it's pretty rare that you'd 'accidentally' delete or harm anything.
     
  12. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

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    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #12
    ???:confused:??? I thought we were on friendly(-ish) terms? Too much of the happy juice perhaps? Oooo, pretty pictures...
     
  13. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #13
    You have been around long enough to remember this SPECIFIC debacle. No more pretty pictures, as SU does not let me add more sites to its stupid list. Probably have to make bookmarks, oh, I hate those, I always make them, but always rm them later.
     
  14. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #14
    I wasn't aware that anyone still followed through with that posting. No harm done, I know you better than that. You get a little backslash, once you become one who knows nearly *. At least I'll keep you on young and alert.
     
  15. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Location:
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    #15
    There are many many things you can do from terminal, but if you don't know what you are doing you can create a terrible mess. Don't go monkeying around with terminal commands unless you really know what you are doing.

    Terminal goes way way back to Multics and the earliest *NIX.
     
  16. macrbest thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #16
    I am trying to undo a possible attempt from someone who may have change settings while my computer was logged in. If I reformat/reinstall snow leopard or upgrade to mountain lion would this clear any changed settings?
     
  17. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #17
    While Terminal is the tool for it, you could just use Console to look for the probably setting change and then use the normal method of whatever setting has been changed.

    Check the Console for hints.

    It is a bit drastic depending on the changed settings, but if you have to do so, do a CLEAN INSTALL.

    To create a Clean Install (formerly known as Erase & Install) of Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard (the 19 USD Upgrade DVD is a fully working retail version of Mac OS X and does not need a prior installation of Mac OS X on the Mac), follow one of the following guides:

    For OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion:
     
  18. Giuly macrumors 68040

    Giuly

    #18
    What is even the problem? Your internet connection seems to work after all.
     
  19. benwiggy macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #19
    Settings are mostly stored in .plist files inside the user account (<user>/Library/Preferences).
    Reinstalling the OS is irrelevant and unnecessary, particularly if you would then restore your user account.

    The easiest thing to do is to restore your hard drive/user account to a version from your backup from before the settings were changed.
    You do have a backup, right?

    And make sure no one can access your computer while you're away from it.
     
  20. satcomer macrumors 603

    satcomer

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    The Finger Lakes Region
    #20
    Type in terminal:
    Code:
    man networksetup
     
  21. macrbest thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #21
    I unfortunately did not create a backup because I didn't have a spare drive to install it onto. After you type in man network then what?

    For some reason when the other computer is on with the terminal application in the application bar my internet connection drops. How do you explain this? I don't like the feeling of having someone else determining when I use my computer.

    They do not pay for the internet connection and do not have permission to do what ever it is that they setup.
     
  22. satcomer macrumors 603

    satcomer

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    The Finger Lakes Region
    #22
    Man is Terminal is short for Manual, hence the Terminal code
    Code:
    man networksetup
    will show you how to setup the TCP/IP stack in OS X. This seems to be over your head so don't even try it.
     

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