Little Girl's Mostly Linux Blog

Apropos

Apropos

This page was last updated on July 18, 2009.

One-word search

  • The apropos command searches the manual page names and descriptions. If you don’t know the command for what you’d like to do in the terminal window, type this command in a terminal window, replacing foo with whatever it is you’re looking for:
  • apropos foo
    • For example, if you want to know how to get rid of a file, type:
    • apropos delete

      or:

      apropos remove

      If you don’t find anything, try other words that are similar to the one you already used. Sometimes software authors use different words to describe their commands/programs than you would.

  • Another way to do the same search is with the man -k command:
  • man -k foo

Two-word search

  • To do a more refined two-word search using apropos, type this command in terminal window, replacing foo and bar with the search terms:
  • apropos foo | grep bar
    • For example, if you’re looking for text editors, type:
    • apropos text | grep editor
  • Another way to do the same search is with the man -k command:
  • man -k foo | grep bar


Obligatory Happy Ending

And they all lived happily ever after. The end.

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