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How can I change my shell?

The two supported shells on Athena are "tcsh" and "bash". Other shells (ksh, zsh, etc) are not supported. While you can set your shell to other shells, you will not receive the Athena system-wide initialization files by default.

You can change your shell by running:

joeuser@athena:~$ chsh
Changing login shell for joeuser.
Finger information last changed on 25-feb-2009 14:27:34
by user joeuser@ATHENA.MIT.EDU with chsh.
Current shell for joeuser is /bin/athena/tcsh.
New shell:

Enter one of "/bin/athena/tcsh" or "/bin/athena/bash" for your new shell. Once updated, the change will take up to 4 hours to take effect. You must also log out before the machine to take effect.

Accounts created before 9/2004
If your account was created in August 2004 or earlier and you're switching from tcsh to bash, then to get the standard Athena environment, you'll need to copy some dotfiles into your home directory. Run the following:
        cp /usr/prototype_user/.bash* ~

IS&T Contributions

Documentation and information provided by IS&T staff members

Last Modified:

September 07, 2016

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