Walk: A Lightweight Terminal Navigator

Linux TLDR
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Navigating files and directories in the terminal using ls and cd commands may seem efficient but can be unproductive, especially for those immersed in them all day.

How often do you hesitate or feel overwhelmed when browsing directories with numerous files, like “/bin“? Navigating through them can be tedious, requiring scrolling or multiple flags to narrow down your desired file or directory.

Linux geeks recommend tools like โ€œRangerโ€ or โ€œExaโ€ to efficiently navigate through files and directories via the terminal.

But today, we’ll explore my current favorite lightweight command-line tool named “walk” for navigating files and directories in Linux.

Tutorial Details

DescriptionWalk – A Terminal Navigator
Difficulty LevelLow
Root or Sudo PrivilegesNo
Host System and ArchitectureUbuntu 22.10 (x64)
OS Compatibility Ubuntu, Manjaro, Fedora, etc.
Prerequisites
Internet RequiredYes

What is Walk in Linux?

Walk is a minimalistic, lightweight terminal navigator developed by Anton Medvedev to accelerate your Linux filesystem navigation, replacing the traditional cd and ls commands.

An important highlight is the seamless navigation through files and directories to conduct fuzzy searches, preview file or directory content, make direct edits using Vim, or delete them.

Let’s now explore the installation process for this tool on your preferred Linux system.

How to Install Walk on Linux

The standout feature of this tool is its availability through multiple installation methods, offering you a wide array of options to suit your preferences.

Install this tool on your Linux system by executing one of the following commands:

$ brew install walk                                                                           #Using the homebrew
$ snap install walk                                                                           #Using the Snap
$ go install github.com/antonmedv/walk@latest                          #Using the Go
$ pkg_add walk                                                                               #For OpenBSD

Alternatively, you can download and move the walk binary file into your bin directory. If you prefer this method, simply follow the steps below.

๐Ÿ“
This method involves performing repetitive manual steps to update it to the latest version with each release.
$ sudo wget https://github.com/antonmedv/walk/releases/download/v1.5.2/walk_linux_amd64 -O /usr/bin/walk
$ sudo chmod +x /usr/bin/walk
$ walk --version

After implementing any of the methods above for installation, continue by appending the following function to your shell configuration file:

Shell TypeWalk FunctionConfiguration file
For Bash/Zshfunction lk {
cd "$(walk "$@")"
}
Bash => “~/.bashrc
Zsh => “~/.zshrc
For Fishfunction lk
set loc (walk $argv); and cd $loc;
end
~/.config/fish/config.fish
For PowerShellfunction lk() {
cd $(walk $args)
}
~/.config/powershell/Micros
oft.PowerShell_profile.ps1

Once you’ve finished editing the functions in your shell configuration file, remember to reload or restart your terminal session to ensure that the changes take effect.

After completing those steps, you’re all set and can immediately execute the following command to check the version or initiate the walk prompt.

$ walk --version
$ walk

Output:

Walk terminal navigator - prompt

Enable Beautiful Icons via Nerd Fonts (optional)

Elevate your experience to the next level by displaying context-specific icons in the walk prompt based on the data type. To achieve this, begin by downloading one of the Nerd fonts (e.g., “DejaVuSansMono“).

$ wget https://github.com/ryanoasis/nerd-fonts/releases/download/v3.0.2/DejaVuSansMono.zip

To perform a user-specific installation, run:

$ mkdir -p ~/.local/share/fonts/
$ unzip DejaVuSansMono.zip -d ~/.local/share/fonts/DejaVuSansMono
$ fc-cache -f -v

To perform a system-level installation, run:

$ sudo unzip DejaVuSansMono.zip -d /usr/share/fonts/DejaVuSansMono
$ sudo fc-cache -f -v

After completing the task, navigate to the settings and switch your terminal’s default font to “DejaVu Sans Mono“.

Change the terminal font

Your task is complete. To view the font on the go, simply include the “--icons” flag. For a smoother experience, consider creating an alias line in your shell configuration file to bypass the need for “--icons” every time.

alias walk="walk --icons"

How to Use Walk on Linux

The usage of this command-line tool is remarkably straightforwardโ€”simply refer to the following keybindings for a quick grasp.

Key bindingUsage
Arrow keys or hjklNavigate through items
EnterEnter a directory
BackspaceExit from a directory
SpacePreview file or directory content without opening
/Perform a fuzzy search
ddDelete a file or directory
Ctrl+CExit without changing the directory
EscExit and change the directory

Now, initiate the walk prompt by executing the following command:

$ walk

Output:

Walk prompt

Now, the process of navigating, entering, and exiting from a file or directory is so self-explanatory that we can simply skip over it.

To easily perform a fuzzy search, just use the “/” key and start typing the name of the file or directory you’re searching for.

Performing fuzzy search in walk

To effortlessly delete a file or directory, just select it and tap the “dd” key.

Deleting file or directory in walk

If you’ve accidentally deleted an important file or directory, simply press the “u” key within 5 seconds to swiftly undo the changes.

Most of the features are quite user-friendly, making it easy for anyone to operate. Now, let’s explore how to uninstall this tool if you didn’t find it to your liking.

How to Remove Walk from Linux

The removal process is as straightforward as the installation; simply execute one of the following commands, depending on the method you used for installation:

$ brew uninstall walk                                                                 #For homebrew
$ snap remove walk                                                                   #For Snap
$ rm /path/to/binary                                                                 #For Go
$ pkg_delete walk                                                                      #In OpenBSD

If you use the walk binary for the installation, then remove it from your bin directory.

$ sudo rm /usr/bin/walk

Final Word

If you find this tool interesting, or if you have any questions or queries related to this article, then feel free to ask them in the comment section.

Till then, peace!

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