Open a new window here in Ubuntu Linux


One of the things I missed a long time ago in Windows completely was the handy “start” command I could type from a command prompt to open a new Windows Explorer window in whatever directory I was in. Can you still do that? Does anyone use Windows from the command prompt any more?


I have since discovered you can do the same thing in Ubuntu Linux (and any other Linux for that matter of course!). I’m a big fan of Gnome, which uses the Nautilus file manager. If you’re fond of navigating your computer using a terminal, it’s really easy to open a Nautilus window in the current directory. Simply run ‘nautilus .‘ and a new window will open in that directory.

Don’t tell me you’re a keyboard junkie, I am too. I use Vim! Nautilus is still very useful though. Besides it’s obvious use as a file manager It’s dead handy for copying files to a remote server using any number of transmission protocols from ssh and SMB through to plain old ftp. But more on that some other time eh?

Author: Donncha

Donncha Ó Caoimh is a software developer at Automattic and WordPress plugin developer. He posts photos at In Photos and can also be found on Google+ and Twitter.

12 thoughts on “Open a new window here in Ubuntu Linux”

  1. Never heard of that ‘start’ command on CLI. Maybe it was used in Win 3.1 times. Then you’d type start /s or sometinhg like that on DOS to fire up file manager. I mite well be wrong tho

  2. Donncha, you could also create an alias in your .zshrc/.bashrc/whatever file. My machine’s set up so that all I have to type to get a Nautilus window up is type ‘n’. Use the Schwartz!

  3. Thanks for the suggestion Keith, I really have to start customizing my shell again. I used to do it a lot, back in the day when kernels needed recompiling, when new GIMP releases came out and I compiled those, when .. I didn’t use apt-get and start worrying about the important things.

    I should spend some time on this though, it’s definitely worth it!

  4. a real keyboard junkie would never open an inferior GUI app but use something like mc. nautilus isn’t a bad file manager though. KDE is making a new one called Dolphin that isn’t bad either but the K in KDE still stands for Krap

  5. I actually use gnome-open . because gnome-open can be used for opening anything, including PHP files, images, videos, music, binaries, directories, SSH/SMB/HTTP shares, websites etc. with just the one command.

  6. i want to access a remote server named athena with ip where i got an account with name b070214cs..i got a file named googletalksetup.exe in that account.I tried to copy the file to my system but it was showing error .
    so i tried to open the folder and then click-and -drag the file using gnome-open but i always get an error as gtk error cant display..what shall i do to open the file??
    plzz help!!!!!!!

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