Nano the best cmdline text editor
So theres much debate on what text editor you should use in the sysadmin community.
Alot sware by vi/vim personally I use nano and always will, almost all the commands are like a muscle reaction for me :)
I will share with you how to get the most out of this text editor
Keyboard Shortcuts in editor
Check out http://staffwww.fullcoll.edu/sedwards/Nano/UsefulNanoKeyCommands.html for the full list of keyboard commands while in the editor.
The most important ones are
Ctrl+O for writing the file (saving)
Ctrl+X for exiting the editor
Ctrl+- goto line number (it will prompt you for the line number)
Alt+R Search and Replace (Once or All occurances)
Ctrl+W for searching within the file
Next we will dive into some of the advanced options you can use and set as default. You can see the list of options you can set as default by typing
nano --help this should display something like
$ nano --help Usage: nano [OPTIONS] [[+LINE,COLUMN] FILE]... Option GNU long option Meaning -h, -? --help Show this message +LINE,COLUMN Start at line LINE, column COLUMN -A --smarthome Enable smart home key -B --backup Save backups of existing files -C <dir> --backupdir=<dir> Directory for saving unique backup files -D --boldtext Use bold instead of reverse video text -E --tabstospaces Convert typed tabs to spaces -F --multibuffer Enable multiple file buffers -H --historylog Log & read search/replace string history -I --ignorercfiles Don't look at nanorc files -K --rebindkeypad Fix numeric keypad key confusion problem -L --nonewlines Don't add newlines to the ends of files -N --noconvert Don't convert files from DOS/Mac format -O --morespace Use one more line for editing -Q <str> --quotestr=<str> Quoting string -R --restricted Restricted mode -S --smooth Scroll by line instead of half-screen -T <#cols> --tabsize=<#cols> Set width of a tab to #cols columns -U --quickblank Do quick statusbar blanking -V --version Print version information and exit -W --wordbounds Detect word boundaries more accurately -Y <str> --syntax=<str> Syntax definition to use for coloring -c --const Constantly show cursor position -d --rebinddelete Fix Backspace/Delete confusion problem -i --autoindent Automatically indent new lines -k --cut Cut from cursor to end of line -l --nofollow Don't follow symbolic links, overwrite -m --mouse Enable the use of the mouse -o <dir> --operatingdir=<dir> Set operating directory -p --preserve Preserve XON (^Q) and XOFF (^S) keys -q --quiet Silently ignore startup issues like rc file errors -r <#cols> --fill=<#cols> Set wrapping point at column #cols -s <prog> --speller=<prog> Enable alternate speller -t --tempfile Auto save on exit, don't prompt -u --undo Allow generic undo [EXPERIMENTAL] -v --view View mode (read-only) -w --nowrap Don't wrap long lines -x --nohelp Don't show the two help lines -z --suspend Enable suspension -$ --softwrap Enable soft line wrapping -a, -b, -e, -f, -g, -j (ignored, for Pico compatibility)
You can set any of these options as on by adding
set OPTIONNAME in your
~/.nanorc I have set these following options
set softwrap set morespace set const set autoindent
set softwrap will remove the word wrapping from files (not showing the entire line and ending it with $) as this can mess up copying from a file
set morespace will get rid of the blank line between the title and the first line of the file... cause who doesnt want morespace?!?
set const will give a constant update of what line number and colum your cursor is in. I find this useful when troubleshooting code errors on multiple lines
set autoident this will obey idents from previous lines again useful when coding
Another option I find useful at work is the
This will save a backup of the file you editied just encase you nuke it after saving. This will save the unedited version of the file you just saved with a ~ for example I dick up
httpd.conf but with the
-B it saves the undicked file at
If I am working on a complex ticket that I'm not too sure on the outcome of my actions I will use the
-B option inconjunction with the
-C /root/ command this will save all the backups in one place.
You can specify the directory where to keep the backups. If I was sucessfull in my config I just move all the ~ files to a folder stating the ticket number so if needed the changes can be reverted later on
One last thing use the
+ option when you want to open a file at a particular line number for example
nano +30 error.log to open error.log at line number 30
Cause who doesnt like pretty colors?!
For this you will need to obtain the latest version of nano from http://www.nano-editor.org/download.php remove the one that came with your OS and install the latest stable from there
And get the lang pack from github
git clone https://github.com/scopatz/nanorc.git ~/.nano cat ~/.nano/nanorc >> ~/.nanorc
For tests open up a file with some sort of extenstion (
.php .html) and enjoy some syntax highlighting just like vim :P