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Old 11-01-2014, 03:51 PM   #1
MisterSnrub
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Registered: Mar 2013
Posts: 6

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How to add color to your bash prompt without screwing up long commands?


Normally my PS1 in bash is set as the following:

Code:
[mrsnrub@my-test-site ~]$ echo $PS1
[\u@\h \W]\$
With this normal setting I can run very long commands, like the following:

Code:
[mrsnrub@my-test-site ~]$ echo "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility,"
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility,
However, if I change PS1 to yellow text, like so:

Code:
[mrsnrub@my-test-site ~]$ export PS1="\e[1,33m[\u@\h: \W]\$ \e[m"
...I can no longer run very long commands:

As soon as the screen reaches what should be a line break, the text doesn't break, and the cursor overwrites the beginning of the same line:

Code:
 Tranquilmy-test-site ~]$ echo "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic
Why does this happen when all I'm doing is changing the color of the prompt?
 
Old 11-01-2014, 07:02 PM   #2
rknichols
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Registered: Aug 2009
Distribution: CentOS
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When your prompt string contains what would normally be printing characters that are actually part of an escape sequence, you need to bracket that portion of the string with the 2-character sequences \[ and \] to tell the shell that those characters do not advance the cursor position.
Code:
export PS1="\[\e[1;33m\][\u@\h: \W]\$ \[\e[m\]"

Last edited by rknichols; 11-01-2014 at 07:15 PM. Reason: Highlight changes
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 11-02-2014, 09:36 AM   #3
MisterSnrub
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Registered: Mar 2013
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Perfect!! Thank you so much!!
 
Old 11-03-2014, 10:22 AM   #4
GazL
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If you regularly resize your terminal windows, you might want to also add: shopt -s checkwinsize to your .bashrc. as that can also help bash to keep track of how long the terminal line is.
 
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