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Linux.com: Shell Scripting

Oct 01, 2000, 18:31 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Samuli Kärkkäinen)

"The Unix shell, or the command shell, is the program that shows you the shell prompt and accepts commands such as ls /usr/bin. Compared to command shells on most other systems, the unix shell is a very complex program: a command like ls /usr/bin/ is in fact a statement in the shell language, using which it's possible to build quite complex programs."

"There are two primary dialects of shell languages: the Bourne shell (sh) and the C shell (csh). The Bourne shell was the original Unix shell, and as such is the simplest one the of general purpose Unix shells. Backwards compatible with sh are the GNU Bourne-Again shell (bash), the Korn shell (ksh), the Z shell (zsh) and some others. The program in /bin/sh is expected to execute the Bourne shell language. Bash is the standard shell in many Linux distributions. The C shell is so named because its syntax looks more like C than does syntax of sh. Backwards compatible with csh is its enhanced version tcsh (the letter t is obviously an arbitrary choice)."

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