This page lists system-administration related tools recommended for use in a shell environment (terminal/console), with suggestions for reliable and easy to install software for common Gentoo Linux needs.
Most of these packages are in the stable branch, but some useful and otherwise high quality software is still in the testing branch. Testing branch packages may be made available for installation by accepting a keyword for a single package, however packages from the testing branch should only be used after taking note of any risks.
To reference a new piece of software here, please read the adding to this page section.
See recommended applications for graphical software.
|FDUPES||app-misc/fdupes||Identify duplicate files residing in specified directories.|
|Midnight Commander||app-misc/mc||GNU Midnight Commander is a text based file manager.|
|n³||app-misc/nnn||Missing terminal file manager for X.|
|ranger||app-misc/ranger||Console file manager with VI key bindings providing a minimalistic curses interface with a view on the directory hierarchy.|
|Vifm||app-misc/vifm||Console file manager with vi(m)-like keybindings. Offers familiar navigation for vim junkies.|
See also the article on file managers.
|acpiclient||sys-power/acpi||Attempts to replicate the functionality of the 'old' apm command on ACPI systems.|
|AcpiTool||sys-power/acpitool||Linux ACPI client, allowing you to query or set ACPI values. It provides informations on battery status, AC adapter presence, thermal reading, etc.|
|cpuid||sys-apps/cpuid||Linux tool to dump x86 CPUID information about the CPUs.|
|hwinfo||sys-apps/hwinfo||Small utility created by OpenSUSE to gather information on system hardware.|
|Neofetch||app-misc/neofetch||Simple information system script, presents pretty system info in terminal.|
|pciutils||sys-apps/pciutils||Utilities dealing with the PCI bus. Run lspci to list PCI devices.|
|resolve-march-native||app-misc/resolve-march-native||Eesolve GCC flag -march=native, read the CPU id product family codename.|
|usbutils||sys-apps/usbutils||Get information on USB devices.|
See also hardware detection.
|iftop||net-analyzer/iftop||Display bandwidth usage on an interface.|
|IPTraf-ng||net-analyzer/iptraf-ng||Console-based network monitoring utility.|
|Layer Four Traceroute (LFT)||net-analyzer/lft||An advanced traceroute implementation.|
|nload||net-analyzer/nload||Console application which monitors network traffic and bandwidth usage in real time.|
|vnStat||net-analyzer/vnstat||Network traffic monitoring.|
|wavemon||net-wireless/wavemon||Curses based monitor for IEEE 802.11 wireless LAN cards.|
|Xprobe||net-analyzer/xprobe||Active OS fingerprinting tool. This is Xprobe2.|
|Yersinia||net-analyzer/yersinia||FrameWork for layer 2 protocol attacks. Working on DHCP, STP, IEEE 802.1q and also some other Cisco proprietary network protocols.|
|bat||sys-apps/bat||cat(1) clone with syntax highlighting and Git integration.|
|most||sys-apps/most||Enhanced pager (alternative to more and less) with colored highlighting.|
Also consider emerging app-editors/vim with
|autojump||app-shells/autojump||Change directory command that learns.|
|Generic Colouriser||app-misc/grc||Generic colouriser that beautifies system log files or command output.|
|wgetpaste||app-text/wgetpaste||Command-line interface to various pastebin-like websites.|
|Xclip||x11-misc/xclip||Command-line interface to X selections (clipboard).|
See also the shell article for available command-line interpreters.
|atop||sys-process/atop||Resource-specific view of processes.|
|htop||sys-process/htop||Interactive process viewer (improved alternative for top), with easy function-keys for process management.|
|Iotop||sys-process/iotop||Simple top like I/O monitor.|
|lsof||sys-process/lsof||Lists open files for running Unix processes.|
|NCurses Disk Usage (ncdu)||sys-fs/ncdu||Curses-based disk usage tool, with easy navigation through the filesystem tree to see du results.|
|pydf||app-admin/pydf||Enhanced df (disk free) tool, which uses colors and a semi-graphical representation of disk usage.|
Terminal multiplexers manage several applications simultaneously on the command line. Often they manage sessions in the background and allow reattaching if a terminal is closed or a connection lost. Some also permit some form of session saving, even across reboots.
When connecting to a remote shell or executing commands that take a long time to complete, it is good practice to run some sort of session manager to allow reattaching to a session in case of crashes, errors or lost connections.
|byobu||app-misc/byobu||GPLv3 text-based window manager and terminal multiplexer.|
|dtach||app-misc/dtach||Run a program detached from the terminal and reattach to it later. Useful for long emerges for example. May be unmaintained. See also app-misc/abduco .|
|dynamic virtual terminal manager||app-misc/dvtm||Console window manager for working with multiple console based programs. Works with app-misc/abduco to provide session management.|
|screen||app-misc/screen||Screen manager with VT100/ANSI terminal emulation.|
|tmux||app-misc/tmux||Terminal multiplexer. Used with the continuum and resurrect extensions, can restore environment after reboot.|
|Mytop||dev-db/mytop||top clone for mysql. N.B. a customized mytop is included in >=dev-db/mariadb-5.3.|
|Pass||app-admin/pass||Stores, retrieves, generates, and synchronizes passwords securely using gpg, pwgen, and git.|
|Visual Binary Diff (VBinDiff)||dev-util/vbindiff||Visual diffing tool for binary files.|
|Whowatch||app-admin/whowatch||Interactive who-like program that displays information about users currently logged on in real time.|
Adding to this page
The applications listed here should be widely useful, and of sufficient quality, to merit inclusion. This page is a work in progress.
If you regularly use a desktop software package from the Gentoo repository and can confirm it is of excellent quality, stable and of broad appeal for common tasks, please add it to the list ! The software should at least be maintained (i.e. relatively recent commits to the source; have periodic releases; not have too many reported bugs; most bugs should be getting fixed rather than accumulating, etc.), and preferably be well documented and from the stable branch. Please don't use this page just to promote a package because you like it, are an author or have other interest etc.
- Gentoo for Network Admins — a guide for forging Gentoo into a fully-fledged, network-debugging Swiss army knife.
- Recommended applications — applications recommended for use in a graphical environment (X11, Wayland)
- Shell — command-line interpreter that offers a text-based interface to users.
- Terminal emulator — emulates a video terminal within another display architecture (e.g. in X).
- Useful Portage tools — a list of helpful Portage-related tools.