19 Outstanding Linux Utilities to Maximize your Productivity

This is a series of cornerstone articles highlighting essential utilities. These are small, indispensable tools, useful for anyone running a Linux machine.

You’ve migrated over from Windows or Mac OS X to the wonderful world of Linux. You’ve selected a Linux distro (after a bit of fruitful distro hopping), chosen a desktop environment, and studied the basic Linux commands. Or you’ve been using Linux for decades, know the operating system like the back of your hand. Whatever your level of experience, you want some really useful free utilities. Software that enriches your workflow, offers new opportunities, and allows you to tap into new innovations. This article picks the finest open source software to maximize the goodness of Linux.

I frequently mention that customization is important. It empowers users and can serve as a way to get people to feel confident doing more complicated things on their computers. It’s a lot easier to think you can learn to code if you’ve already fixed a bunch of little annoyances on your computer.

The series examines both graphical and text based open source utilities. There’s a wide range of software we’ve recommended. There’s genuinely useful utilities, productivity software, and much more. All to download for nothing, and with full access to the source code. They offer great opportunities to enrich your computing experience.

The series is growing. We’re regularly adding new utilities to the series. We recommend you bookmark this page!

Excellent Utilities
tmuxA terminal multiplexer that offers a massive boost to your workflow
lnavAdvanced log file viewer for the small-scale; great for troubleshooting
PaperworkDesigned to simplify the management of your paperwork
AbricotineMarkdown editor with inline preview functionality
mdlessFormatted and highlighted view of Markdown files
fkillKill processes quick and easy
TuskAn unofficial Evernote client with bags of potential
UlauncherSublime application launcher
McFlyNavigate through your bash shell history
LanguageToolStyle and grammar checker for 30+ languages
pecoSimple interactive filtering tool that's remarkably useful
Liquid PromptAdaptive prompt for Bash & Zsh
AnanicyShell daemon created to manage processes’ IO and CPU priorities
cheat.shCommunity driven unified cheat sheet
ripgrepRecursively search directories for a regex pattern
exaA turbo-charged alternative to the venerable ls command
OCRmyPDFAdd OCR text layer to scanned PDFs
WatsonTrack the time spent on projects
fontpreviewQuickly search and preview fonts
fdWonderful alternative to the venerable find

This article complements our recommended software where we recommend many hundreds of applications for all different purposes, not only utility software.

And if you have any suggestions for open source utilities to add to this series, please use the comment feature below. We really love receiving your opinions and thoughts.

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