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Siegfried Lazarev
Siegfried Lazarev

How To Customize Your Terminal Prompt



In Linux, much of your work occurs from a command prompt, also known as the shell, or BASH (Bourne-Again Shell). The shell interprets your commands and passes them to the operating system for execution.




How To Customize Your Terminal Prompt


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Before you continue, reset your BASH prompt to the default. If you used the export command, log out and log back in. If you edited your /.bashrc file, place a # sign before each edit you made and save the file.


This tutorial provides some resources and direction to help you customize your command prompt for PowerShell or Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) using Oh My Posh. Oh My Posh provides theme capabilities for a fully customized command prompt experience providing Git status color-coding and prompts.


To set a Nerd Font for use with Oh My Posh and Terminal Icons, open the Windows Terminal settings UI by selecting Settings (Ctrl+,) from your Windows Terminal dropdown menu. Select the profile where you wish to apply the font, PowerShell for example, and then the Appearance tab. In the Font face drop-down menu, select CaskaydiaCove Nerd Font or whichever Nerd font you would like to use with your customized prompt.


Currently the recommended path for customizing WSL prompts with Oh My Posh uses the Homebrew package manager for installation. (Homebrew works with WSL now!) When installing Homebrew for Linux, be sure to follow Next steps instructions to add Homebrew to your PATH and to your bash shell profile script.


Do you have a cool prompt you want to share? Post yours in the comments, try to include both the export command as well as what the prompt will render as, to make it easier for others to determine if they want to try it or not.


In my new iMac with Lion, the terminal prompt was unknown34ce6f4c0ea5 bud$. From this discussion I discovered that the hostname being used was \h = unknown23de6f4c0da2. I replaced \h with my correct computer name as shown in the Sharing preference pane.


Bash will be restored to its default prompt thanks to the fact that you saved those default settings earlier. Note that any changes you make here are only temporary for the current Bash session, so you can always sign out and sign back in or close and reopen the terminal window to go back to your default prompt. But the above line makes it possible to easily get back to your default Bash prompt without the hassle of signing out or closing a window.


We just specify a single background color and then a single foreground text color here, which begins at the start of the prompt and is applied to all text in the prompt. However, you can specify as many color tags as you want in the variable to color different sections of your prompt however you like.


The background and foreground text colors keep going past the prompt unless you specify color code 00 clear the color information. You can also use this tag within the variable to reset formatting back to default somewhere in your prompt. For example, the following line would end all coloring before the \$ character.


My macOS Catalina version 10.15.7 TERMINAL has the following prompt line. Why does it end in a % rather than a $ as shown in the examples below:My terminal looks like this:MACK@Williams-MacBook-Pro %


I believe I have found my answer and more with the following video by Corey Schafer on how to customize your terminal - 17 minutes long and went into great detail on how to customize the prompt line, colors and content, etc.


Starship is a cross-shell prompt build using rust language. This is a very minimal and blazingly fast terminal prompt. The key reason for its popularity is its customizability. You can easily customize it using a TOML config file. If you are shifting to a different device or different shell, just move the config file to the appropriate location, and automatically your beautiful-looking shell becomes ready.


A module is a component in the terminal prompt, that gives you contextual information about the underlying operating system. For example, Nodejs is a module in the starship prompt. When we add this module to the config file, then it gives us different data points regarding the current installation of Nodejs in your environment.


Now as you know the basics of starship and how to customize it, you can add your desired module very easily. Keep in mind that any module will work if the files and folder related to this module will present at the given path. Simply, the python module will only be visible, if any python file is present inside the current working directory.


You can explore the official presets on this page. The above terminal prompt is uploaded by a user and available on the presets page. Now to make your terminal prompt look like this, open your starship config file and add this configuration to your file.


Restart your terminal and your terminal prompt look exactly like the prompt in the image. You can search for more terminal prompts presets and try which suits you the best. In the meantime, if you want to try out some bash tips and tricks, this article should be best suited for you.


There are many alternatives to starship you can find online. For zsh shell, oh-my-zsh is a very popular utility. Similarly, for fish shells, oh-my-fish is also a well-known tool people use to customize their shell prompt. Another one is spaceship. this is a customizable zsh prompt. Some other popular options are pure and synth-shell.


With a Terminal tailored to your specific requirements, you could run the whole of your computer from the Terminal or even update your Mac from the Terminal. Will you use the Terminal more if you are able to customize it? Let us know in the comments section below!


If you want to change the terminal's background and text color but are unsure which colors to pick, you can use a Python-based tool, Pywal. It automatically changes the color of the terminal based on your wallpaper or the image you provide to it.


Of course, it is easy to customize using the GUI while getting better control of what you can change. But, knowing the commands is also necessary in case you start using WSL or access a remote server using SSH; you can customize your experience no matter what.


Lately, I've been getting this question a lot: "how did you get your terminal to look the way it does?" If you've noticed my terminal and are curious about how I set it up, this is the tutorial for you! Of course, what you learn here will be enough to get you started on creating your own custom command prompt, as well!


When you installed oh-my-zsh, it was installed to /.oh-my-zsh. Pop that open. You'll see two folders of note: themes and templates. Inside templates, you'll find a file called zshrc.zsh-template This is a template for you /.zshrc file. If you've customized your terminal before, you'll know that the .bashrc file is where your customizations are stored when you're using a bash shell. The .zshrc is that same thing, except for the zsh shell. So open up that template file; you don't have to know what exactly is going on; after all, there are a lot of comments in the file that might not make sense. One thing here is important to use. Notice the line that says this:


Any other customizations you want to make to your zsh environment can be made in this file. If you use the terminal a lot, check out oh-my-zsh's plugins (in the plugins folder): a ton of useful stuff in there.


All right, let's get to work. We're going to have to write several functions, but we'll start with the PROMPT variable. It might not be noticeable when looking at the terminal, but there are actually three lines to my prompt. The first is a blank line, just to give me some breathing room. The second has all the information, and the third has the arrow. That third line is where you actually type the command. So, here's our start:


Most shells allow extensive customization of the terminal prompt. This is done by configuring your shell outside VS Code, typically by modifying the $PS1 variable, setting a $PROMPT_COMMAND or installing a plugin.


####Making your choice permanent####The change requires editing of .bashrcI suggest entering a second terminal to make changes to .bashrc - this provides an easy & accurate method to obtain the exact PS1 content


Once installed, launch the terminal. The interface is quite straightforward withtabs at the top and a dropdown menu for switching between the differentprofiles. By default, you get a profile for PowerShell, the Command prompt,any WSL distributions you haveinstalled, and Microsoft Azure.


You can launch the Windows Terminal from the File Explorer by typing wt andEnter in the address bar. This will launch a new terminal window inyour default user directory. To specify the current directory instead, use wt -d ..


The default profile is what appears when you launch a Windows terminal instanceor open a new tab. It should be initially set to a Windows PowerShell profile butyou can easily change it to some other profile such as the one for yourpreferred WSL distribution.Achieving this can be done by updating the value of the defaultProfileproperty in the settings.json file with the guid of your preferred profile.It can also be changed through the settings UI as shown below:


Before you install Starship, you need to make sure a Nerdfont is installed on your computer first to preventbroken glyphs from ruining your prompt. A good option is Cascadia Code (thedefault Windows terminal font) which can be downloaded from its GitHub releasespage. Oncedownloaded, extract the zip, and install all the font files contained in thettf/static folder.


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