At the risk of some ridicule I suggest that you look at installing Webmin. It is a web based system administration tool that I find invaluable. The two most common complaints I encounter when I discuss its merits are ‘security’ and ‘transparency’.
The security issue is trivially dealt with. Install Webmin and configure it to listen on 127.0.0.1 using its standard port TCP10000. Install Firefox on the same host and then run firefox from an ‘ssh -Y’
session using the –noremote option. If you are totally paranoid then firewall TCP10000 as well, configure Webmin to use https only, and then only start the webmin service when you are performing maintenance.
There are less draconian measures that are in my opinion equally secure from a practical standpoint but I am sure that you can figure those out on your own.
The transparency issue is really unanswerable. There exists a school of thought that if you are going to administer a Linux system (or OS
of the proponent’s choice) then you should learn the command syntax of every command that you are called upon to use. This is the one-and-only path to enlightenment. Like upholding motherhood and promoting the wholesomeness of apple-pie this sort of moralizing really brooks no answer. You can guess my opinion on that line of puritanism.
As you have painfully discovered, infrequently used utilities and commands are difficult to deal with. The process of learning, or relearning, the correct arcana is particularly noisome given the notorious inconsistency of syntaxes across different utilities and the spotty coverage of up-to-date documentation. Google can be a dangerous guide given the wide variation of practice across differing flavours of *nix and the widespread aversion to providing dates on writings. In consequence I consign transparency arguments and their proponents to the religious fanatic file. Nothing personal but there is no point in arguing belief systems.
If you want to get infrequently performed sysadmin tasks done reliably and with a minimum of fuss use something like Webmin and get on with the rest of your life.