Snova: an utility to build commands

Snova (снова) comes from the Russian language where it means "again". It is a simple command line utility that helps me build the commands.

I frequently find myself in a situation where I need to execute a simple command but I keep forgetting the arguments and flags I need to pass. Then I need to get back to the man pages. The problem is that some commands like find or grep have a lot (really a lot) of flags. But what if I need just one flag that I use all the time?


  1. First, you select a command (e.g grep)

    ➤ snova
    > Find lines in a file (grep)
      Find files or directories (find)
      Set git email address (git)
      Send an HTTP request (curl)
    Pick a command:
  2. Second, you type the required arguments (e.g a file path)

    ➤ snova
    Command: grep [OPTIONS] PATTERN PATH
    PATH: ./some-file
  3. Lastly, you pick optional flags (e.g case insensitive matching)

    ➤ snova
    Command: grep [OPTIONS] PATTERN PATH
    > Case insensitive matching
      Invert match (return non-matching lines)
      Print NUM lines after the matched line
      Print NUM lines before the matched line
      Search files recursively
    grep  one ./some-file

Whenever there is a list of options you can filter it out by typing. Select an option with Enter. If you don't want to choose anything then simply hit ctrl-d.

Some arguments require numerical input. They will not accept any other text (e.g -A flag in grep command).


Snova comes with a few builtin commands configured in defs/builtin.toml. You can extend those commands with custom ones. Simply place a configuration file under $HOME/.config/snova/commands.toml.

This is a sample configuration file that describes all possible options:

# My custom commands

# This is a command template. Arguments in square brackets mean they are optional.
template = "curl [_OPTIONS_] _URL_"
# A command description.
description = "Send an HTTP request (*curl*)"

# Specify which values to accept (string/number/path)
groups.URL.expect = "string"
# OPTIONS group expects flags
groups.OPTIONS.flags = [
  # Define a flag template. A template can either include an argument or not.
  # If you specified an argument then you can set which values an argument can expect (string/number/path).
  # Set multiple to true if this flag could be specified more than once.
  # Set suggest to a list of suggested options. Note, that user can still specify a custom option. These values are mostly for guidance and help.
  { template = "*-H* _VALUE_", description = "Include a header (e.g -H \"Content-Type: application/json\")", expect = "string", multiple = true },
  { template = "*-X* _METHOD_", description = "Set a request method", expect = "string", suggest = ["GET", "POST", "PUT", "DELETE", "HEAD", "PATCH"]  },
  { template = "-v", description = "Verbose logging" },

You can also specify suggest values on a command argument.

groups.VALUE.expect = "string"
groups.VALUE.suggest = ["one", "two"]