Linux software

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Users primarily interact with their XO through activities that follow the Sugar human interface.

Since the XO's software is based on the Fedora Linux distribution, hundreds of other utilities and programs either come as part of the OS image or can be installed using tools such as yum. This page lists a small fraction of them.

Basic commands

You type the commands in a Terminal activity.

  • cd  : change directory (e.g. cd {path to directory}
  • cp  : copy (e.g. cp {path to file} {path to destination})
  • df  : display size and available space on each file system. (USB drives and SD cards appear as subdirectories of /media)
  • ls  : lists all in the directory (similar to "dir/w" on a Windows system)
  • ls -al  : lists everything in directory, including hidden directories (similar to "dir/ah" on a Windows system)
  • mkdir : make a directory (e.g. mkdir path/to/directory}
  • mount  : list available file systems; also make a USB drive available (e.g. mount /media/usb_drive_label''}
  • nano  : a simple text editor for changing files (e.g. nano path/to/file}) If the file is in the working directory, then you only need to type the file name.
  • pwd  : print working directory (tells you what your current directory is)
  • reboot : restart the computer
  • rm  : remove (e.g. rm /path/to/file})
  • su : switch user, command. Commonly used to go to/from root and 'olpc' accounts.
  • sudo : Allows running of commands as root from the normal olpc account.
  • umount  : unmount a USB device
  • unzip  : will unzip or uncompress a file or bundle of files. (useful with .xo and .xol bundles)

Note: the command-line option -r (recursive) makes some commands recursive, e.g. cp -r will copy the entire directory.

You can enter most commands followed by --help to get basic help and a list of the command's options.

Advanced commands

  • wget  : get file from web (e.g. wget {url_to_file}
  • rsync : Advanced remote copy/mirror/update files/directory function

Expert commands

  • ifconfig  : reports your IP address, shows network connections (enter command in root)
  • telinit 3 : shuts down sugar (the graphical environment), giving you a text-only Linux mode
  • telinit 5 : starts up sugar (the graphical environment) after having done "telinit 3" to stop it
  • iwconfig : reports wireless network info
  • halt -p : shutdown

Popular packaged software

  • firefox : Popular web browser
  • opera : Popular web browser
  • gtkpod : Software for connecting to and synchronizing with your Apple iPod.
  • mc : (i.e. Midnight Commander) Command line file/directory manager.
  • picasa : Picture organizer and uploader for Google's Piscasa online web folders.
  • thunar : File/directory manager
  • XMMS : Multi-media viewer/player.

Many of these are graphical programs that use the X Window System. The XO's Sugar user interface uses X as well, but presents a different, simpler user interface than traditional programs.

Popular addon/plugin software