command line

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Explain Shell

6th February 2022 - 5 minutes read time

If you are working on the Linux command line then sometimes you'll do a search to find out how to run a command that performs a task. I don't usually copy and paste commands in unless I can see what is going on, which used to mean spending time going through man pages and documentation trying to find out what this or that flag does.

That all changed when I found, which will extract the parameters of a command and tell you all about what the different flags will do.

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Grep Context

27th June 2020 - 4 minutes read time

Grep is a really powerful tool for finding things in files. I often use it to scan for plugins in the Drupal codebase or to scan through a CSV or log file for data.

For example, to scan for user centric ViewsFilter plugins in the Drupal core directory use this command (assuming you are relative to the core directory).

grep "@ViewsFilter(\"user" -r core

The -r flag here recursively scans the 'core' directory. This command returns the following output.

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Overwriting Command Line Output With PHP

12th April 2020 - 6 minutes read time

The other day I was trying to print some output to the command line and then overwrite the output afterwards. It turns out that there are a couple of ways to do this so I thought I would detail a few of them here.

By far the simplest way of doing this is to run the "clear" command, which we can run via the system() function in PHP. This will clear the output of the command line ready for you to print out whatever you need. The downside to this is that the entire terminal window is cleared. Another downside is that once the output is complete scrolling up will reveal the output that was cleared out.

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Read Contents Of SSL Cert From The Command Line

4th January 2019 - 3 minutes read time

Whilst it is possible to view the contents of an SSL cert from within most modern browsers I occasionally find the need to use the command line to find out the same information. I find this useful when renewing certificates as browsers can occasionally cache certificates for longer than expected, causing false results.

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Syncing Files Using The Windows Command Line

10th November 2010 - 5 minutes read time

To sync files using the Windows command line you will need to use the xcopy command. The default action of this program is to copy a file or directory from one place to another, but you can give it flags to tell it to sync the files. There are a few flags available (use xcopy /? to see them all) but you will probably only want to use the following:

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Using Custom Properties In Phing

8th January 2009 - 4 minutes read time

Phing allows you to set up certain parameters that can be used throughout the rest of the script. These might be used to define a non standard build directory, or to store database connection details that can be written to the connection file during the build.

Properties are defined using the property element, which you should place at the top of your build.xml file in order to make it easy for other developers to see what is going on. The following example defines a property and the uses the main target to print the property out.

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<!-- build xml -->
<project name="myProject" default="main">
 <property name="property1" value="value1" />
 <target name="main">
  <echo>property1: ${property1}</echo>

Running this build.xml file will product the following result.

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