Help with understanding symbolic links


So I am currently on command line basics and reading through Chapter 1 of Conquering the command line and I am having trouble with the symbolic links. Every time I input $ ln -s a.txt b.txt , and then $ ls -l , I get the file exists error and it doesn’t show the results of the symbolic link, instead showing the $ ln a.txt b.txt . I hope that I am explaining this correctly!


Im pretty sure you dont need to enter the “$”. Its been a while since i did that section( im on JS), but the $ symbol represents your computer name.

$ whoami <-----dont type this in the terminal

whoami <-----type this in the terminal


This is correct, the $ symbol simply indicates that “the text to follow should be typed in a terminal” but itself should not be included in the command.

You will notice (at least when using bash, arguably the most popular shell) the prompt will have the user@machine-name <directory> $ – any time you see in a book/guide where they want you to type a command, the command is usually preceded with $.