For People New to Both FreeBSD and UNIX®

Annelise Anderson

Revision: 43184
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Last modified on 1997-08-15 by .

Congratulations on installing FreeBSD! This introduction is for people new to both FreeBSD and UNIX®—so it starts with basics. It assumes you are using version 2.0.5 or later of FreeBSD as distributed by, your system (for now) has a single user (you)—and you are probably pretty good with DOS/Windows® or OS/2®.

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Table of Contents
1. Logging in and Getting Out
2. Adding A User with Root Privileges
3. Looking Around
4. Getting Help and Information
5. Editing Text
6. Printing Files from DOS
7. Other Useful Commands
8. Next Steps
9. Your Working Environment
10. Other
11. Comments Welcome

1. Logging in and Getting Out

Log in (when you see login:) as a user you created during installation or as root. (Your FreeBSD installation will already have an account for root; who can go anywhere and do anything, including deleting essential files, so be careful!) The symbols % and # in the following stand for the prompt (yours may be different), with % indicating an ordinary user and # indicating root.

To log out (and get a new login: prompt) type

# exit

as often as necessary. Yes, press enter after commands, and remember that UNIX® is case-sensitive—exit, not EXIT.

To shut down the machine type

# /sbin/shutdown -h now

Or to reboot type

# /sbin/shutdown -r now


# /sbin/reboot

You can also reboot with Ctrl+Alt+Delete. Give it a little time to do its work. This is equivalent to /sbin/reboot in recent releases of FreeBSD and is much, much better than hitting the reset button. You do not want to have to reinstall this thing, do you?

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