Many computers come with an interface, but few people know about it. An interface is a command-line system that grants you access to the operating system of your computer. In simple words, it is an area of convergence of multiple programs that run on your computer. You can manage it through an app on modern computers.
While other companies require you to open the Command Prompt or download it from the Microsoft store manually, Apple Inc. has facilitated the users by providing the pre-installed application, Terminal, in the Mac family as its interface.
Despite this, several users have no clue what the Terminal is capable of or why it is there. It is among those applications that go vastly unnoticed. A more significant percentage of people do not even know where to access it. If you face any confusion or doubts about its accessibility and functions, you would greatly benefit from this guide on mac how to open terminal. Once you learn how to open and navigate the Terminal, it dramatically refines your experience with Mac.
What Is So Special About the Terminal?
Suppose you accidentally stumble upon it one day with no prior knowledge. In that case, you may mistake it as a complex system with unintelligible tech language that has nothing to do with an average user. However, the navigation is easy, and learning can change your mind and open your eyes to its unparalleled brilliance.
You can manage all the critical programs from one place by using the Terminal. It is like an engine control room in an airplane that lets you start, control, or stop the operations. To engage with the functions on your Mac, all you have to do is enter the right commands in the Terminal. You may think of the commands as magic spells as both are specific combinations of words that grant you the privilege most do not have, and learning their correct combination is crucial.
Finding the Terminal
Before you try any command or learn the functioning, it is essential to know where the Terminal is located. You can look for it, and consequently open it, in several ways that are easy to follow. Some of them are listed below:
It has the index of all programs, files, and applications present in your Mac. You can access it by clicking the Control key, followed by the Space key. Once you have opened the spotlight, all you have to do is type “terminal” then select the application.
As suggested by its title, it is primarily designed to help you find your desired data on the computer. You can open the Finder effortlessly, as its icon is apparent on the left-hand side of the screen. It takes you to the Terminal if you simply type the name.
The Layout of the Terminal
If you find it confusing when you first open it, learning about its layout can alleviate your concerns. The Terminal typically has a black screen with white text in small font. It shows some information about the OS (Operating system) of the Mac. There is also a cursor shaped like a white rectangle that indicates where to type. It is where you will write and execute your commands.
An excellent feature in the Terminal is that you can modify its layout to your liking. After you open the app, look for the "Terminal" icon, then follow this path; Terminal>Preferences>Profiles>Modify an existing profile. You can then customize the app by changing the color-coding, font style, cursor, and many other features of the layout.
What Can the Terminal Do?
You can administer a wide range of functions by navigating the commands. Several blogs and videos list different commands, but here are the most practical and fun things you can accomplish with the Terminal:
- Transfer Files
You no longer need to visit different folders to copy and then paste the files-a time-consuming process. The Terminal can do that for you, provided you know the right command. If you would like to move the file from one folder to another, use ditto [location 1] [location 2]. Replace “Location 1” with the name of the folder where your file is currently present and “Location 2” with the folder where you want to transfer it. Without any additional spaces or periods, hit the Enter key, and it is done!
- Download Files Directly
Instead of opening the browser and waiting for it to load, you can directly download a file as long as you have its URL! Additionally, the Terminal also allows you to specify the folder where you want to save it. There are two steps to complete this,
- cd ~/Downloads/
- curl -O [URL of the file]
In the first step, you may replace “Downloads” with the folder you prefer to save your files. In the second step, paste the URL of the source. Next, hit Enter for your download to complete.
- Read Interesting Texts
You can generate random and interesting jokes, inspirational quotes, remarkable poetry, and several other texts through the Terminal. For this, you need to download the app Fortune first. Follow these steps to perform the download:
- ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install)" < /dev/null 2> /dev/null
- brew install Fortune
As these are two commands, remember to hit Enter after each. You can then have fun with Fortune!
Problems with the Terminal
While the functions are efficient, there are some aspects you should know before using the Terminal. For instance, you must copy and paste the commands exactly as you find them; additional symbols or space can manipulate the whole operation. Some of the functions can cause unintended and devastating data loss, like the one that is meant for deleting a folder. It commonly happens when two commands are only slightly different and you enter the wrong one.
So, it is best if you steer away from trying such commands. You can look for alternative apps to perform each of the risky operations in a much safer manner.