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Do I need to learn the Command Line?

Many new Linux users wonder how much work is involved in switching from Windows or Apple to Linux.  The number one question is, “Do you need to learn the command line?”  The answer depends on what you want to be able to do with Linux.  Not everyone will require the same knowledge of commands, and in fact some users might not need it at all. You can get the solid basics of Linux by subscribing for free to our new content by email, by Session messenger, or RSS feed.

If you’re looking to just do basic computing tasks, such as surfing the web, using popular software, or editing documents, then you definitely do not need to learn Linux commands.  There are many versions (called distributions) which favor beginner users because so much of the functionality to set up and use these operating systems is done through a graphical interface.

Mint with Cinnamon

Our recommended choice for beginners is Linux Mint with the Cinnamon desktop environment because it’s graphical interface and experience is so similar to Microsoft Windows.  With Mint, there is minimal command line knowledge required to set up and use the system.  The only time that you’d really be required to use the command line is either installing software that isn’t in the operating system’s default app store (which is called the package manager) or debugging system errors.

If you’re installing software, then the majority of the time the software provider is going to provide you with the commands required to install their software.  All a beginner would need to do is copy and paste the commands into the terminal and understand the rudimentary basics of how the terminal functions (which could be learned in under an hour).

When it comes to technical support, it depends on the type and severity of the problem as well as where you’re turning to for support.  If you’re getting support through a free online forum, then you’d be required to know the basics to be able to implement the suggestions given to you.  Also it’s possible that the random forum participants will expect you research and figure things out on your own.

However, if you want to speed up your transition and have a seamless and easy experience, you can reach out and schedule a consultation with our team.  We can be your back-up resource to help you resolve any issues and answer your questions, so you can either skip the command line or learn it at your own pace outside of a crisis.

Ultimately, you do not need to know the command line to use Linux for most basic desktop tasks, and this is especially true if you use our company’s resources and help. You will get a lot out of subscribing for free to our new content by email, by Session messenger, or RSS feed.

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