After a long time using usual the Mac terminal I came to understanding that more advanced tool is needed for many common aspects of daily work.
For example: some commands autosuggestions which will remember your previous commands and be smart enough to repeat them depending on a situation. Another requirement from a UI-lover part of my soul- good syntax highlighting.
The best, if such tool wouldn’t require much time for setup and configuration to start working out of the box.
I decided to try Fish Shell as one of my biggest requirements installation without need of long configuration. It’s really something Fish was designed for.
If you are interested in Z shell starting guide and plugins- you can watch nice manuals from Wes Bos.
Looking for the best terminal option
As I use Mac, there is not bad terminal inside OS X.
But sometimes you might need even more features:
- activate and focus terminal pressing HotKey anywhere,
- showing images right in the terminal (the best- together with animated GIFs),
- split panels ability
- flexible solution to have tons of setting in case you want to setup it exactly as you want.
There are a couple options but only one of them is good IMO- ITerm.
So you can just download/install it and use ITerm instead of the terminal.
Fish installation and first impressions
Just download and install Fish Shell from the official site: http://fishshell.com/
After that start Fish from your terminal running:
Try playing with autosuggestions and tabs- hope you’ll like it.
If you want to change your default terminal to Fish,
you have to add Fish to valid login shells. For that to the
/etc/shells file add the afterward line
(requires administrative rights)
And then make Fish your default shell with
chsh -s /usr/local/bin/fish
Only one problem I noticed after doing that- my environment variables and aliases from
~/.bash_profile were not imported.
Ofc. you are free to declare Fish-specific variables/aliases but it’s not something I would like to do,
especially if one day I’ll switch to another shell or back to Bash.
After short research I just found an easy way to reuse them.
The missing config to reuse Bash variables and aliases in Fish
To reuse Bash vars and aliases we would just parse
~/.bash_profile and reapply them for Fish.
For that add the following scripts to the Fish config at
# REUSE ALIASES FROM ~/.bash_profile egrep "^alias " ~/.bash_profile | while read e set var (echo $e | sed -E "s/^alias ([A-Za-z0-9_-]+)=(.*)\$/\1/") set value (echo $e | sed -E "s/^alias ([A-Za-z0-9_-]+)=(.*)\$/\2/") # remove surrounding quotes if existing set value (echo $value | sed -E "s/^\"(.*)\"\$/\1/") # evaluate variables. we can use eval because we most likely just used "$var" set value (eval echo $value) # set an alias alias $var="$value" end # REUSE ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES FROM ~/.bash_profile egrep "^export " ~/.bash_profile | while read e set var (echo $e | sed -E "s/^export ([A-Z0-9_]+)=(.*)\$/\1/") set value (echo $e | sed -E "s/^export ([A-Z0-9_]+)=(.*)\$/\2/") # remove surrounding quotes if existing set value (echo $value | sed -E "s/^\"(.*)\"\$/\1/") if test $var = "PATH" # replace ":" by spaces. this is how PATH looks for Fish set value (echo $value | sed -E "s/:/ /g") # use eval because we need to expand the value eval set -xg $var $value continue end # evaluate variables. we can use eval because we most likely just used "$var" set value (eval echo $value) #echo "set -xg '$var' '$value' (via '$e')" switch $value case '`*`'; # executable set NO_QUOTES (echo $value | sed -E "s/^\`(.*)\`\$/\1/") set -x $var (eval $NO_QUOTES) case '*' # default set -xg $var $value end end
After that open a new tab and enjoy your Bash stuff working in Fish:
The script idea was taken from the SuperUser discussion , improved and added with aliases import.
Other additions to the config
NVM (Node Version Manager) doesn’t work in Fish out of the box
For that in the terminal run:
cd ~/.config/fish ### copy the project files git clone git://github.com/passcod/nvm-fish-wrapper.git nvm-wrapper
and edit your Fish config file:
adding nvm.fish there:
Open a new tab and try running
Repeat previous command and last command option are missed in Fish
If you a big fun of usage
sudo !! when previous command requires administrative rights
!$ to repeat the last command option you’ll notice they have to be added to Fish.
Fortunately the community already created a special page for this- Bash Refugees
To add them back just create/edit the Fish user key binding:
and add the following:
function bind_bang switch (commandline -t) case "!" commandline -t $history; commandline -f repaint case "*" commandline -i ! end end function bind_dollar switch (commandline -t) case "!" commandline -t "" commandline -f history-token-search-backward case "*" commandline -i '$' end end function fish_user_key_bindings bind ! bind_bang bind '$' bind_dollar end
The default Fish intro is quite annoying IMO:
Welcome to fish, the friendly interactive shell Type help for instructions on how to use fish
If you wish to remove it just add:
set fish_greeting ""
After that I started using Fish without even noticing I fully switched to it.
There might be some additional problems/disadvantages for you but for me Fish exactly solves problems it was supposed to and so far I’m happy with it.