System Administration Tool I Didn’t Know I Needed


Every now and again you run across a utility that you didn’t know that you needed. The Google Command Line (HT: Everything Sysadmin) is one such tool. It provides access to a number of Google services, and looks to be something that is going to grow over the years and become powerful. Right now it’s very handy if you need to work a lot with Picassa, Blogger, Google Docs, Contacts, Calendars, or YouTube (see some more examples.)

It requires Python, which I don’t have installed on my Windows machine but I did have on my Mac. It installed fine with the standard Python on the Mac and after some confusion about my user account (I regularly log into Google with 3 different accounts) I was able to get it working and it’s pretty slick. 

I downloaded Python and installed it on my Windows 7 workstation to see if I could get it working. Clearly I was missing a step somewhere because I couldn’t quite get it to run, but it appears to be that I’m missing some Python libraries that are installed on my Mac. I didn’t spend much time troubleshooting it because I will only be using it from my Mac, anyway.

What intrigues me most about it is the gdata API libraries for Python that it uses which I didn’t know existed. Now that I know about them, I can think of a number of interesting uses. There’s a lot more in the libraries than is exposed through the command line tool. Some powerful Google services that I didn’t even know existed. I’m going to curl up with a hot cuppa and read though them and get some fun ideas.