Command line interface (CLI) is a text-based interface in which user types commands and operating system responds to those commands. Command line interface is an old method of interaction with the operating system. Now graphical user interface (GUI) is used in a latest operating system in which user interacts with graphical elements like buttons, text boxes, mouse clicks etc. in the modern operating system both CLI and GUI are used.
Usually, technical people use command line interface who knows lots of commands to work with.
Advantages of command line interface (CLI)
Faster to use: If you know commands used in CLI then it is faster to use CLI than GUI. Some commands give output faster.
Do not need windows: In some cases running CLI does not require to have windows installed on your system. For example, running commands on booting your computer.
Less Memory required: As it is a text-based interface so it consumes low RAM to run while GUI requires a high specification for running.
Can run on the low resolution: This type of interface can also run on low-resolution screen. The text can adapt according to screen size.
Low CPU processing: Command line interface uses low CPU power.
Disadvantages of Command line interface (CLI)
Must remember the sequence of commands: If you are running several commands and accidentally type an incorrect command then you have to start the process from the beginning.
Difficult for the novice: It is difficult for a newcomer to use CLI because it requires knowledge to use commands.
No suggestion: There is no suggestion or autocomplete system in using CLI. So you must know basic commands to work with.
Spelling problem: There is no guidance if you type wrong spelling and doing so will result in starting from scratch.
High learning curve: Learning CLI is a long-term process. You can start with basic commands but using advanced commands is difficult to remember and requires a lot of practice.
Unknown conventions: In CLI there are unknown conventions used like many commands are unusual as compared to GUI.
More strain on eyes: As CLI as same color combination so working for long period of time give high strain to eyes
Examples of CLI
- MS-DOS (Windows)
- Apple DOS (Mac)
- Most of the applications have both CLI and GUI support
- UNIX has now support for both CLI and GUI