Alternative CLI Tools

starship prompt

Given how widespread usage of Linux and MacOS is in 2020, there are lots of newer alternative CLI tools that are reasonable substitutes for historic Unix utilities. In some cases these tools are also cross-platform and have Windows versions.


A top replacement is ytop built in Rust on top of the TUI library.



Starship is a cross platform prompt that changes context based on the content of the folder you are currently in. The prompt can display Java, Python, and git information as well as other data.

starship prompt

Since it is cross platform it also means you don’t have to maintain a .bashrc file and a Powershell profile separately, you can just use this.


Ripgrep recursively searches directories for a regex pattern, whilst respecting things such as choice of programming language, or the contents of your .gitignore file.



Bat is cat replacement with syntax highlighting, and line numbers:



Procs is an alternative to the venerable ps. A nice feature is Docker container information, and the option to specify the process name in the command line rather than piping through grep.



Each of these CLI tools is written in Rust. I don’t have any further comment to make on that at this time!