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Mac OS X in a Nutshell by Chris Stone, Chuck Toporek, Jason McIntosh

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tcsh in Detail

The default user shell on Mac OS X systems is tcsh. If you want to use bash, or zsh, you first need to change your default. Each user’s shell preference is kept in the NetInfo database. Unlike other Unix systems, you cannot set the user’s default shell when creating a new user account using the Accounts preferences panel (see Chapter 5). If the user account already exists, you can change the default shell using NetInfo Manager, or the chsh command (see Chapter 25) in the Terminal.

Syntax

This section describes the many symbols peculiar to tcsh. The topics are arranged as follows:

  • Special files

  • Filename metacharacters

  • Quoting

  • Command forms

  • Redirection forms

Special Files

Filename

Description

~/.cshrc or ~/.tcshrc

Executed at each instance of shell startup. For tcsh, if there is no ~/.tcshrc, uses ~/.cshrc if present.

~/.login

Executed by login shell after .cshrc at login.

~/.cshdirs

Executed by login shell after .login (tcsh).

~/.logout

Executed by login shell at logout.

/etc/passwd

Source of home directories for ~name abbreviations.

Filename Metacharacters

Characters

Meaning

*

Match any string of 0 or more characters.

?

Match any single character.

[ abc ...]

Match any one of the enclosed characters; a hyphen can be used to specify a range (e.g., a-z, A-Z, 0-9).

{ abc,xxx,...}

Expand each comma-separated string inside braces.

~

Home directory for the current user.

~ name

Home directory of username.

Examples

% ls new*

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