The Useful CLI Applications Listing

Recently, I have had a few people ask me about the various CLI applications that I use and what I could recommend to them.

I figured I would post a list for those who are interested. I highly encourage those who read this to respond with other applications that they use which are not on this list .


  • abcde - A CD ripping frontend.
  • aumix - A sound mixer.
  • LastBASH - A Last.FM stream player.
  • lltag - A music file tagger and renamer with CDDB support.
  • MPD - The music player daemon.
  • ncmpc - An ncurses-based client for MPD.
  • Shell.FM - A Last.FM stream player.

(As per request -- I don't play that many as you see)

  • bs - The game of Battleships.
  • Lexter - A word puzzle game that resembles Tetris.
  • NetHack - THE dungeon exploration game.


  • CenterIM - A multi-protocol instant message client that supports SSL and PGP encrypted messages. It is a fork of CenterICQ
  • ELinks - A full-featured web browser (as much as a text-based browser can be :p).
  • Irssi - A modular IRC client.
  • Mutt-ng - An email client based off of mutt.
  • OpenSSH - The secure shell server & client.
  • podget - A simple podcast aggregator.
  • rTorrent - A BitTorrent client that is based on libTorrent.
  • Snownews - An RSS aggregator.

Honorable Mention -- Decent applications I have tried but don't use:

  • Raggle - An RSS aggregator written in Ruby.
  • WeeChat - A modular IRC client with a built-in nick list.


  • abook - An address book which works great with the mutt/mutt-ng mail client.
  • BashBurn - An excellent cd/dvd burning shell script.
  • GNU Screen - A manager that multiplexes a physical terminal between several processes.
  • scrot - A screen capturing utility.
  • Twin - Its full name is Textmode WINdow environment and it functions exactly as the name implies. It draws and manages text windows just like X11 does for graphical windows.
  • vim - The highly configurable and much beloved text editor.
  • vimdiff - Another handy vim tool that shows the differences between two or three versions of a file.


  • Dmidecode - Reports information about your system's hardware.
  • GNU Midnight Commander - The midnight commander file manager.
  • htop - An interactive process viewer that is superior to top.
  • MultiTail - Think of it just like tail. However, MultiTail lets you view multiple files at once with syntax coloration.


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