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Debug Your Shell Scripts With bashdb

Nov 24, 2008, 23:33 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Ben Martin)

"The Ubuntu Intrepid repository contains a package for bashdb, but there is no special bashdb package in the openSUSE 11 or Fedora 9 repositories. I built from source using version 4.0-0.1 of bashdb on a 64-bit Fedora 9 machine, using the normal ./configure; make; sudo make install commands.

"You can start the Bash Debugger using the bash --debugger foo.sh syntax or the bashdb foo.sh command. The former method is recommended except in cases where I/O redirection might cause issues, and it's what I used. You can also use bashdb through ddd or from an Emacs buffer.

"The syntax for many of the commands in bashdb mimics that of gdb, the GNU debugger. You can step into functions, use next to execute the next line without stepping into any functions, generate a backtrace with bt, exit bashdb with quit or Ctrl-D, and examine a variable with print $foo. Aside from the prefixing of the variable with $ at the end of the last sentence, there are some other minor differences that you'll notice. For instance, pressing Enter on a blank line in bashdb executes the previous step or next command instead of whatever the previous command was.

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