Understanding the prompt and running programs

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Missions: Finding the command line on Windows

Understanding the prompt and running programs

With Git Bash open, you see a black box with white text. It will look something like
this screenshot.

The prompt, provided by bash, shows you:

  • Your username on your computer
  • Your computer’s name
  • The current working directory

It is called a “prompt” because bash is waiting for you to tell it what to do!

You can type commands into this prompt and it will print the result. For example, type the following command and press enter. The program you execute will print your username and then exit; once it exits, the prompt awaits your next instruction.

whoami

Because this runs in the same environment as your other Windows apps, you can even launch graphical Windows programs from this prompt. For example, type just:

control

into the prompt, and press enter. You should see the Windows Control Panel open up in a separate window!