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How To Open Files via Terminal in Ubuntu

Ubuntu 14

The terminal in Ubuntu is a powerful tool that allows you to interact with your system using command line interface. In this article, we will delve into how you can open various types of files via the terminal in Ubuntu.

Quick Answer

To open files via the terminal in Ubuntu, you can use different commands depending on the type of file. For text files, you can use the nano command to open and edit the file, or the cat command to simply view its contents. For video files, you can install VLC and use the vlc command to play the video. And for image files, you can install Eye of GNOME and use the eog command to view the image. Additionally, if you have a GUI available, you can use the xdg-open command to open files in their default applications.

Opening Text Files

Text files can be opened directly in the terminal using a variety of commands.

Using the nano Command

The nano command opens a text file in a simple text editor within the terminal. Here’s how to use it:

nano /path/to/file

In this command, /path/to/file represents the location of your text file in the filesystem. Replace it with the actual path to your file. For example:

nano /home/user/documents/myfile.txt

The nano command opens myfile.txt for viewing and editing directly in the terminal.

Using the cat Command

The cat command displays the contents of a text file directly in the terminal. Here’s how to use it:

cat /path/to/file

Replace /path/to/file with the actual path to your file. For example:

cat /home/user/documents/myfile.txt

The cat command displays the contents of myfile.txt directly in the terminal.

Opening Video Files

To open video files via the terminal, you can use the VLC media player.

Installing VLC

First, you need to install VLC by running the following commands:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:videolan/stable-daily
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install vlc

These commands add the official VLC repository to your system, update your package list, and install VLC, respectively.

Playing Videos

After installing VLC, navigate to the directory containing your video file using the cd command:

cd /path/to/the/directory/which/contains/videos

Then, play your video file using the following command:

vlc "videofilename.fileformat"

Replace "videofilename.fileformat" with the actual name and format of your video file. For example:

vlc "myvideo.mp4"

This command opens myvideo.mp4 in VLC.

Opening Image Files

To open image files via the terminal, you can use the Eye of GNOME (eog) image viewer.

Installing Eye of GNOME

First, install Eye of GNOME by running the following command:

sudo apt-get install eog

Viewing Images

After installing Eye of GNOME, navigate to the directory containing your image file using the cd command:

cd /path/to/the/directory/which/contains/picture

Then, open your image file using the following command:

eog "picturefilename.fileformat"

Replace "picturefilename.fileformat" with the actual name and format of your image file. For example:

eog "mypicture.jpg"

This command opens mypicture.jpg in Eye of GNOME.

Using the xdg-open Command

If you have a graphical user interface (GUI) available, you can also use the xdg-open command to open files in their default applications:

xdg-open /path/to/file

Replace /path/to/file with the actual path to your file. The xdg-open command opens the file in the appropriate application based on its file type.

Conclusion

In this article, we’ve covered how to open text, video, and image files via the terminal in Ubuntu. Whether you’re working in a server environment or just prefer using the terminal, these commands provide a powerful way to interact with your files.

How can I open a specific line in a text file using the `nano` command?

To open a specific line in a text file using nano, you can use the -c option followed by the line number. For example, to open line 10 of a file, you can use the command nano -c +10 /path/to/file.

Can I edit a text file directly in the terminal without opening a text editor?

Yes, you can use the sed command to edit a text file directly in the terminal. The syntax is sed -i 's/old_text/new_text/g' /path/to/file, where old_text is the text you want to replace and new_text is the replacement text.

How can I open multiple text files simultaneously in `nano`?

You can open multiple text files simultaneously in nano by specifying their paths separated by spaces. For example, nano file1.txt file2.txt will open both file1.txt and file2.txt for editing.

Is it possible to play videos in the terminal without installing VLC?

Yes, you can use the mpv command-line media player to play videos in the terminal. Install it using the command sudo apt-get install mpv. Then, run mpv /path/to/video to play the video in the terminal.

How can I resize an image using the terminal?

You can use the convert command from the ImageMagick package to resize an image in the terminal. The syntax is convert /path/to/input_image -resize WIDTHxHEIGHT /path/to/output_image, where WIDTH and HEIGHT are the desired dimensions of the output image.

Can I open a specific image file within a directory using Eye of GNOME?

Yes, you can open a specific image file within a directory using Eye of GNOME by specifying the file name after navigating to the directory. For example, if you are in the directory containing the image file, you can use the command eog image.jpg to open image.jpg in Eye of GNOME.

How can I open a PDF file via the terminal?

You can use the evince command to open a PDF file via the terminal. Simply run evince /path/to/file.pdf, replacing /path/to/file.pdf with the actual path to your PDF file.

Is it possible to open a Microsoft Word document in Ubuntu terminal?

Yes, you can use the libreoffice command to open a Microsoft Word document in Ubuntu terminal. Run libreoffice --writer /path/to/document.docx, replacing /path/to/document.docx with the actual path to your Word document.

How can I open a specific file with its default application using the `xdg-open` command?

To open a specific file with its default application using xdg-open, simply run xdg-open /path/to/file, replacing /path/to/file with the actual path to your file. The command will open the file in the appropriate application based on its file type.

Can I open files located on a remote server using the terminal in Ubuntu?

Yes, you can use SSH (Secure Shell) to access files on a remote server using the terminal in Ubuntu. Use the ssh command followed by the server’s IP address or domain name to establish a secure connection. Once connected, you can navigate to the desired directory and open files using the commands mentioned earlier.

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