Man pages provide essential information on Linux commands and many users refer to them often, but there’s a lot more to the man pages than many of us realize.
You can always type a command like “man who” and get a nice description of how the man command works, but exploring commands that you might not know could be even more illuminating. For example, you can use the man command to help identify commands to handle some unusually challenging task or to show options that can help you use a command you already know in new and better ways.
Let’s navigate through some options and see where we end up.
Using man to identify commands
The man command can help you find commands by topic. If you’re looking for a command to count the lines in a file, for example, you can provide a keyword. In the example below, we’ve put the keyword in quotes and added blanks so that we don’t get commands that deal with “accounts” or “accounting” along with those that do some counting for us.
Thanks to Sandra Henry-Stocker (see source)