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Re: Help!

Kent West wrote:
> I'm thinking more along the line of entering a command name, such as
> foo, not knowing how to use it, and it comes back with some info such as
> "Usage: foo input_file output_file to foo-ify an input-type file to an
> output-type file; see 'man foo" for examples and more information"
> rather than just returning to the command prompt with no feedback
> whatsoever, or worse, "Invalid data".

{grey@mania:~} apt-get
apt for linux i386 compiled on Aug  5 2005 13:37:24
Usage: apt-get [options] command
       apt-get [options] install|remove pkg1 [pkg2 ...]
       apt-get [options] source pkg1 [pkg2 ...]

[ rest snipped as it takes another 30 or so lines... ]

{grey@mania:~} grep
Usage: grep [OPTION]... PATTERN [FILE]...
Try `grep --help' for more information.

{grey@mania:~} tar
tar: You must specify one of the `-Acdtrux' options
Try `tar --help' for more information.

    ....  Been pretty much the standard for years.  This isn't Solaris of the
1990s where if one didn't know man one was dead in the water.  Oddly enough
back in the 1990s when I first ran headfirst into the unix world (16ish years
old at the time, no less) it was thanks to Netcom and that wonderful
"Internet" thing.  Of course the only way to access it was to dial into Netcom
with a terminal program (Telix anyone?  No?  Terminate?) and use the shell on
one of their severely overloaded Solaris boxes.  I remember the package I got
from them.  A 4 page pamphlet with my username, password, recommended software
for various tasks (elm for mail, trn for news, gopher for... gopher, l'il
before http here) and the coup de grace...  how to use man.

    Trust me, compared to back then today is self-documenting in the way you

         Steve C. Lamb         | I'm your priest, I'm your shrink, I'm your
       PGP Key: 8B6E99C5       | main connection to the switchboard of souls.

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