Leveling Up Your Terminal/Command-Line Navigation

One motivating factor in using a terminal is the productivity gains… that is, once you can sweep the keyboard like an 80’s metal guitarist. Getting a few basic keyboard shortcuts/commands down can drastically improve the usability of the terminal. Let’s take a look at a few of my favorites.

(I’ll be showing off Git Bash in this article, but these commands work in most terminals)


Move to the end of the input ctrl + e

Move to the end of the input

Move to the beginning of the input ctrl + a

Move to the beginning of the input

Move between each ‘word’ ctrl + [arrow left/right]

Move between each 'word'


Delete backwards a whole ‘word’ ctrl + w

Delete backwards a whole 'word'

Delete everything ctrl + u

Delete everything

Open File Explorer

Opening the file explorer at the current location can be super useful. The command varies based on operating system.

(Open file explorer at the current directory. Change ’.’ to be any location!)

Windows: explorer . Unix/MacOS: open .

Open File Explorer


Rerun the last command !!

Rerun the last command

Get the full history of commands history

Rerun command from the History ![#number]



These are shortcuts/commands I find myself going to daily that make the terminal a pleasure to deal with. Are there any I missed that you love? Let us know in the comments!