Funny Things to do under Linux Terminal

Getting bored under Linux? How’s that even possible? You can do almost anything under Linux. But if you need to have some fun, try these things!
In this tip, I’ll show you: cowsay, cowthink, star wars using Telnet, the fun man pages, cmatrix, bb, aafire, pacman4console.

Note: This tip is intended to be for ubuntu users, this would certainly work on other distributions, but you might need to change some commands depending on your Linux distribution.

Make an ASCII cow talk or think:

This needs to install the following package: cowsay

sudo apt-get install cowsay

then type something like:

cowsay 'Hi I am a weird cow!'

Here’s the result:

cowsay 'Hi I am a weird cow!'
< Hi I am a weird cow! >
        \   ^__^
         \  (oo)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
                ||----w |
                ||     ||

And you can use many other options to make the cow look different. Here’s a few examples:

cowsay -d 'I am tired of eating grass...'
< I am tired of eating grass... >
        \   ^__^
         \  (xx)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
             U  ||----w |
                ||     ||

or you can also make other animals/shape using the -f option, for example:

cowsay -f sheep 'Uh oh'
< Uh oh >
            ||    ||

To get a list of values for the -f option, just type:

cowsay -l

Note that you can also use cowthink, like that:

cowthink '...interesting'

Watch Star Wars using Telnet:

Open Terminal and type:


Enjoy the movie!

Watch the matrix (yet another Matrix screen-saver like program):

  1. Open Terminal
  2. Install cmatrix using this command:
    sudo apt-get install cmatrix
  3. Just type:
  4. Use ctrl+c to quit, and type this for more help on this program:
    cmatrix --help


Read some funny man pages:

Take a look at those man pages:

I think most of them are just made up.

Enjoy a little ASCII wood fire or fireplace:

You have to install the package libaa-bin.
In a terminal, type this:

sudo apt-get install libaa-bin

High quality ASCII animation:

Just install the bb package, typing this:

sudo apt-get install bb

then just type


Read some of the funny errors you can get under Unix:

Some other stuff to try:

ncmatrix – Like cmatrix but using the network activity

8 Comments so far »

  1. kapil said

    December 23 2009 @ 3:10 AM

    this is the best manual for fun on LINUX ..
    I really enjoyed it !!
    thanks !!

  2. vicky said

    June 23 2010 @ 6:23 AM

    i like the cmatrix screensaver.

    i just tried it.
    its really cool n nice.

  3. China Mike said

    July 27 2011 @ 2:18 AM

    I have to agree with another poster. This is/was enjoyable and Wanda is still swimming around my screen–I’ve grown fond of her!

  4. axeofgod said

    June 23 2012 @ 2:34 PM

    i just discovered this page, and wanted to thank you for making my ubuntu experience that much more interesting!

  5. Meenakshi Sundaram said

    August 28 2012 @ 8:01 AM

    having fun with the commands !!!!! nice one !!!!

  6. pony said

    November 24 2012 @ 4:45 PM

    To access facebook from linux terminal install fbcmd–

  7. Ravi said

    August 23 2013 @ 11:38 AM

    Nice. Thank you

  8. artem said

    May 31 2015 @ 5:46 AM

    Fancy meta tags radio stream output, For real geeks who like terminal 😉

    just write one line in terminal;)

    #$ ogg123
    #$ wget -qO- | opusdec – – | aplay -qfdat
    #$ curl -sLN | opusdec – – | aplay -qfdat

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