# System administration
The best ways I have found to administer my computer is with basic bash commands in a virtual terminal or when I am in a GUI, an x terminal (you can open lots of these, more than the 6 VTs.), or with another powerful shell, the well kept secret of mc (Midnight Commander), with a file manager, editor, and lots more handy tools that runs in command line or an x terminal.
If you use the gui log in, you will be on virtual terminal 1 (most installs default to 6 of these terminals) and your x session will be running in virtual terminal 7.
You have mouse support in the command line with gpm unless it has been disabled, so copy and paste is just as easy in virtual terminals as it is in x.
From a virtual terminal, you can switch from one terminal to another by holding down the alt key and pressing one of the function keys F1 - F6. If you are in x, hold down the control key as well as the alt and F<N> key and you will go that terminal. The terminal that was first used to login will be busy and if x was run from that terminal, the error messages generated by x will be shown. The others will display the login prompt until it is used to log in to an account. To return to x from a virtual terminal, press alt and F7 and you are back to your x session.
To change to the root account, use these commands from your user account. Note the change in the prompt.
[fancy@tinwhistle fancy]$ su -
Remember, whatever you command in root (it's the "god" mode. You can bless or destroy at your whim) usually gets done if enough system is left to carry out the command.
Sit on your hands and read at least 3 times before pressing the enter key when in root.
If you have Midnight Commander
and press return and the Midnight Commander shell should run. Type control-o and you are in bash. Type control-o and you are in mc.
will give lots of info. You can use Midnight Commander in either user or root accounts.
Midnight Commander article
w screen shots, etc.
You can do the normal linux copy/paste with the mouse from one virtual terminal to another by left clicking and swiping text in one, alt-FN to switch to the virtual terminal you wish to paste into, and middle click will paste the text that was swiped in the first virtual terminal into the file at the blinking cursor position.
To surf the internet from the command line, I recommend installing links
as it displays most pages reasonably. Also, you can use it to post your questions about Linux here using it. Remember to refresh the posting page after login.
There should be no fear of the command line as it is actually easier to use than the gui. All that is necessary is to know the commands
If you have zgv installed, you can even view images from the console command line if you want.