Hello friends, this is the Termux tutorial. In this article, you’ll learn about how to use Termux? Its interface, basic commands, zipping and unzipping files, and many more. Upon completing this tutorial you’ll be able to use Termux hassle-free. This article is basically a full Termux Tutorial and at the end of this article, there will be a downloadable Termux tutorial basic commands PDF file. So make sure to download it.
What Is Termux?
Termux is an Android terminal emulator that creates a Linux environment in your device in which you can install so many packages that are available for operating systems like Kali Linux. So it’s like a lightweight Linux system on your device and you can install almost every Linux packages in Termux. Also, the packages that can perform various types of attacks.
Do You Need To Root Your Phone To Use Termux ?
You can run the Termux application on both rooted and non-rooted android devices. So it is not compulsory to root your phone for just using Termux. Although, if you have a rooted phone, it’ll be beneficial for you because, in an unrooted device, there are some limitations.
How To Install Termux ?
Termux is available on PlayStore and F-droid too. You can download and install it from both sources. But, I would recommend you to install it from F-Droid because Google play builds of Termux are no longer updated.
After you click the link above, you’ll be redirected to the F-droid site. From there download the latest version of Termux. I would recommend you to download the F-droid application from that site to manage Termux and all its add-ons conveniently.
When you’ll open Termux for the first time, you’ll see your Termux as shown in the image below.
With the help of your keyboard, you can write commands or anything that you want. To erase what you’ve written use your keyboard’s delete button. To hide the keyboard, press the back button of your phone.
If you’ll swipe from left to right, a session tab will appear. From there you can create different sessions by clicking on a new session, it will help you to run multiple programs at a time. But you can only create up to 8 sessions at a time.
By holding anywhere on the screen, you’ll see options like Copy, Paste, and More options. In More options, there are options like Autofill, Password, Kill process, etc. You can close the session that you are currently active on by selecting Kill process and then press enter.
There are few additional buttons like the escape button, Ctrl, and Alt buttons above your keyboard and if the keyboard will be hidden it will move to the bottom of your screen.
Basic Commands of Termux Tutorial
Below are some basic commands that you can use in your Termux application.
Give Termux internal storage access
After you enter this command, a message will pop up. Whether to allow storage access to the Termux application or not. Click on allow to give storage permission to our Termux application. So that you can access files and folders of your internal storage within Termux.
Update packages list in Termux
As I told you earlier that Termux just creates a Linux environment. So you can use almost all commands that we use in Linux distros.
apt list , you’ll see the list of available, installed, and upgradable packages. This list is stored locally in your Termux and you need to update it. If there is a new package or a new version of the package available on the internet. It won’t show you until you update the list. While installing some package that is not in your local list, will give you unable to locate package error.
How to update the list?
To update list type
apt update . After you run
apt update command, the apt package manager will fetch the latest list from the internet, and then it will update the local list. It requires internet so make sure you are connected to the internet.
After it is done, you’ll see a message like “16 packages can be upgraded run
apt list --upgradable to see them”. That means the newer version of 16 packages is available. To see those 16 packages that can be upgraded to the latest version type
apt list --upgradable . In the same way, type
apt list --installed to see the list of installed packages only.
How to update those packages?
apt upgrade and hit enter, to upgrade upgradable packages. This
apt upgrade command will download all the upgradable package’s latest version and then install it in your Termux. It can take some time to complete. It usually depends on your internet speed.
Installing and Uninstalling Packages
To install a package, you can use
apt install command. Let’s say, I want to install python in my Termux, so I’ll type
apt install python . This will install python package in my Termux.
apt install <package-name> apt install python
To uninstall a package use
apt remove and package name. For example to remove python package from Termux type
apt remove python.
apt remove <package-name> apt remove python
Alternatively, you can use
pkg install and package name to install package and to uninstall
pkg uninstall and package name.
pkg install <package-name> pkg uninstall <package-name>
Manual of all commands
You can know more about any command by referring to its manual. For example, If I want to know more about
apt commands. I can refer to the manual of
apt. But first, we need to install manual in our Termux using the apt package manager.
apt install man
The above command will install man package. In this man package, you’ll find the manual of almost every command. To open manual of command just type
man and then command. Like to open manual of apt command. I need to type
After you are done reading, press q to close the manual.
Execute multiple commands at once
Let’s say we want to execute
apt update and
apt upgrade command at once. We don’t want to wait for
apt update to complete and then type
apt upgrade. We want to type them at once and then after
apt update finishes
apt upgrade will be automatically executed. For that we can use two ampersands (
&&). With the help of
&& , we can write multiple commands at once. Just use
&& after every command and they will be executed in the order you write them.
<first-command> && <second-command> apt update && apt upgrade
The above command is an example of the usage of && command. Not only two, but you can also execute as many commands you want at once with the help of
Let’s see how we can navigate through files and folders in the Termux application. By typing
pwd command in your terminal. You will see the path of the directory/folder you are in. As shown in the image below, I’m in home directory and the path for home directory is printed in the terminal. pwd means print working directory.
pwd #prints working directory
To go one directory up, like if I want to get inside files directory that is above home directory (as shown in the image above). I need to type
cd .. cd means change directory and .. for going one directory up. In the same way, you can use
cd ../.. to go two levels up. No matter where are you, to directly get to home directory type
cd in the terminal. By typing just
cd command in terminal you can get inside home directory.
cd #change working directory to home directory cd .. #change directory to one level up cd ../.. #change directory to two levels up
Lisitng files/directories in Termux
To list all files and directories of the current working directory type
ls in terminal and hit enter. All visible files and directories will be displayed in terminal. (As shown in the image below)
ls #lists files and directories
ls command only displays visible files and directories in the terminal. To display hidden files and directories type
ls -a in the terminal.
ls -a #displays hidden files and directories
To display more info about files and directories, you can use
ls -l command. We can write multiple options of
ls command at once. Like to display hidden files we use
ls -a , to know more info about files we use
ls -l command. So to display hidden files too and also more info about both hidden and visible files we can type
ls -la command.
ls -la #displays hidden files and more info about files
Change working directory to subdirectory
To change the working directory to any subdirectory use
cd command. Type
cd and then the name of directory you want to get in. For example if I want to get in usr directory, I need to type
cd usr in terminal.
cd <directory name> #changes working directory cd usr
To create your own directory, you can use
mkdir stands for make directory. Type
mkdir and then the directory name to create a directory. For example, if I want to create a directory named ‘project’, I need to type
mkdir project command in terminal.
mkdir <directory_name> # creates a directory mkdir project
To create a hidden directory just add a full stop ( . ) before writing the name of the directory. For example, to create a hidden directory named hidden_porjects I need to type
mkdir .hidden_projects command in the terminal.
mkdir .<directory_name> # creates a hidden directory mkdir .hidden_projects
You can also create multiple directories at once using
mkdir command, just type the name of directories that you want to create after mkdir command. For example, if I want to create 4 directories named test1, test2, test3, and test4 at once. I need to type
mkdir test1 test2 test3 test4 command in the terminal.
mkdir <directory_name> <directory_name> mkdir test1 test2 test3 test4
touch command you can create files in Termux. Type
touch and then the file name to create a file. For example, If I want to create a file named code.txt I can do it by typing
touch code.txt command in the terminal.
touch <file_name> #creates a file touch code.txt
As I told you guys earlier to create a hidden directory just add full stop at the beginning of the directory name, same goes of creating hidden files. Just add full stop before the file name. For example if I want to create a hidden file named secret.txt, I can do that by typing
touch .secret.txt in the terminal.
touch .<file_name> #creates hidden file touch .secret.txt
You can also create multiple files at once. Type
touch and then the name of the files that you want to create. For example, if I want to create multiple files named code1.txt, code2.txt, and code3.txt. I can do that by typing
touch code1.txt code2.txt code3.txt command in the terminal.
touch <file_name> <file_name> #creates multiple files touch code1.txt code2.txt code3.txt
Note : Name of files are written in white colour in the terminal and the name of directories/folders are written in blue colour.
Deleting files and directories
To delete a file you can type
rm (stands for remove) and then the file name. As I told you earlier you can also delete multiple files at once by specifying file names after
rm <file_name> <file_name> #deletes specified files rm code.txt code1.txt code2.txt
To delete empty directories you can use
rmdir (stands for remove directory) and then the directory names that you want to delete.
rmdir <directory_name> <directory_name> #deletes directories rmdir dir1 dir2
If you will use just
rmdir command to delete a non-empty directory, you’ll get an error. So the simplest way to delete a non-empty directory is to use
rm -rf command and then the directory name.
rm -rf <directory_name> #deletes no empty directories rm -rf dir3
Moving and copying files and directories
To move files or directories in Termux you can use
mv command that stands for move and to copy files and directories you can use
cp command that stands for copy.
To move a directory type mv and then the directory name that you want to move and then the path of the place where you want to move the directory. For example if I want to move termux directory in scripts directory I need to type
mv termux scripts in the Termux terminal.
mv termux scripts mv <directory-name> <path>
The same goes for files, to move a file type mv then file name, and then the path of the place you want to move the file.
mv <file-name> <path>
Now to copy a directory, you need to type
cp -r and then the directory name after that type the path.
cp -r <directory-name> <path>
And to copying file is same as moving a file, Just replace mv with cv, so to copy a file type cp then file name and after that the path of the place where you want to copy the file.
cp <file-name> <path>
View contents of a file
You can view the content of a file using cat command just type cat and then the file name. For example, to view what’s written in a text file named learn.txt, I need to type
cat learn.txt command in terminal.
cat learn.txt cat <file-name>
There are so many text editors available for Linux that you can use in Termux to edit files. The most popular one is the nano text editor, so first, install the nano text editor in your Termux using the apt package manager.
apt install nano -y
After the nano text editor has been installed type nano and then the file name that you want to edit, after that the editor will launch. For example, if I need to edit learn.txt, I need to type
nano learn.txt in the termux terminal.
nano learn.txt nano <file-name>
In the editor after you are done making changes, press Ctrl + O to save the changes and then Ctrl + X to exit the nano text editor.
With the help of Termux API, one can access many features of an Android device directly from the Termux terminal. For example, one can access the camera of an android device directly from the Termux terminal.
Click here or the link given below to visit the Termux tutorial for Termux API, in that you’ll know about how to install Termux API and all the Termux API commands.
Zipping and Unzipping files in Termux
To zip files or to unzip a file you can use zip & unzip packages. Install zip package using the apt package manager. Type
apt install zip unzip -y to install zip and unzip packages.
apt install zip unzip -y #installs zip and unzip
After both zip and unzip package is installed you can now zip files or unzip a file using zip and unzip packages in your Termux application.
Zipping files and directories
To zip a directory type zip -r and then the zip file name and then the name of the directory that you want to zip. For example to zip a directory named projects to a zip file name project.zip type
zip -r projects.zip projects command in your Termux terminal.
zip -r projects.zip projects zip -r <zip-file-name> <directory-name>
To zip a file just type zip then zip file name and then the file name that you want to zip. For example to zip a file named tutorial.py in a zip file named termux-tutorial.zip type
zip termux-tutorial.zip tutorial.py in your termux terminal.
zip termux-tutorial.zip tutorial.py zip <zip-file-name> <file-name>
Unzipping a zip file in Termux
To unzip a zip file just type unzip and then the zip file name that you want to unzip. For example to unzip a file named termux-tutorial.zip file type
unzip termux-tutorial.zip in your Termux.
unzip termux-tutorial.zip unzip <zip-file-name>
So this is how you can zip and unzip files and directories in your Termux application. To know more about zip commands type
zip --help in your Termux terminal.
Last words about termux tutorial
In this Termux tutorial, we learned some basic commands that you can use to perform various tasks in your Termux application. Keep using Termux and you’ll learn more as you use the Termux application. I’ve also created a youtube video about the Termux tutorial that is given below, watch it if you have any doubts.