thumb You can create shortened commands by using aliases. Aliases are very convenient to use for frequently used commands.

For example:

  • sudo apt-get upgrade can be shortened to apt upgrade.
  • sudo apt-get install can be shortened to apt install.
  • sudo apt-get remove can be shortened to apt remove.
  • sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade && sudo apt-get autoremove && sudo apt-get autoclean can be shortened to update.


Assuming you are using Bash, create a .bash_aliases file in your users home directory, if it already doesn’t exist:

touch ~/.bash_aliases

Open up your .bash_aliases :

nano ~/.bash_aliases

Then, add a lines with the following to the file:

alias apt='sudo apt-get'
alias update='sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade && sudo apt-get autoremove && sudo apt-get autoclean'

To apply the changes immediately to your bash profile without having to log out, simply run this:

. ~/.bashrc

or :

. ~/.bash_profile

Now you can install any new package with the syntax:

apt install <package-name>

Remember, because sudo has been added to your alias, you don’t have to type it every time. It will prompt you to use the password the first time, and won’t ask again for the duration of the defined timeout period.

Do note that autocompletion will not work with the alias.

Although these examples have been geared towards Debian and Ubuntu, you can obviously use aliases on any Unix-like operating system. The technique of applying them just varies depending on the shell environment you are using.

If the ~/.bash_aliases file does not work, then add aliases to the end of ~/.bashrc or ~/.bash_profile. For example, in Mac OS X you must create ~/.bash_profile file and then add the aliases.

Arthur Gareginyan

Arthur Gareginyan

Arthur is a designer and full stack software engineer. He is the founder of His personal website can be found at Check out his free WordPress plugins at

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