July 7, 2021

what is .sh file shell script (bash/ksh) in Linux ubuntu

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What is .SH file shell script (bash/ksh) in Linux ubuntu

An .SH file is a script programmed for bash, a type of Unix shell (Bourne-Again SHell). It contains instructions written in the Bash language and can be executed by typing text commands within the shell’s command-line interface. Bash is a command language and Unix shell that replaces the Bourne shell, which is how it got the name Bourne-again. It is widely used by many Linux distributions and OS X.Linux or GNU / Linux are usually free, Unix-like multi-user operating systems that are based on the Linux kernel and essentially on GNU software.

In Linux Ubuntu, a .sh file refers to a shell script written in either the Bash (Bourne Again Shell) or KornShell (ksh) scripting language. A shell script is a text file containing a series of commands and instructions that are executed in sequence by the shell interpreter. These scripts automate tasks and provide a way to perform multiple commands without the need to enter them individually into the command-line interface.

The .sh extension is commonly used to denote shell scripts, making them easily identifiable. Here are some key points about .sh shell scripts in Linux Ubuntu:

  • Script Execution: Shell scripts can be executed by the shell interpreter directly or by using the “./” notation followed by the script filename in the terminal.
  • Shebang: The first line of a shell script typically starts with a shebang (#!) followed by the path to the shell interpreter (e.g., #!/bin/bash or #!/bin/ksh). This line tells the system which shell to use for interpreting and executing the script.
  • Command Execution: Shell scripts can execute various commands, including system commands, shell built-in commands, and other script files. They can perform file operations, process text, manage directories, handle variables, control flow with loops and conditionals, and interact with users.
  • Variables: Shell scripts use variables to store and manipulate data. Variables can be assigned values, and their values can be accessed and modified throughout the script. Shell scripts support both system-defined variables and user-defined variables.
  • Comments: Shell scripts allow the use of comments, which are lines that are ignored by the interpreter. Comments provide explanations, and documentation, or disable specific lines of code temporarily.
  • Control Structures: Shell scripts support control structures such as if-else statements, for and while loops, case statements, and functions. These structures enable conditional branching and iteration, allowing scripts to make decisions and repeat actions based on specific conditions.
  • Permissions: Before executing a shell script, you may need to ensure it has the proper execution permissions. Use the chmod command to set the execute permission, e.g., “chmod +x script.sh”.

Shell scripting is a powerful tool for automating tasks, configuring system settings, and creating custom utilities in Linux Ubuntu. The flexibility and versatility of shell scripts make them valuable for both system administrators and regular users.


NOTE: SH files may also be used to store scripts for other shell programs such as Bourne Shell, C-Shell, and Korn Shell. Apple Terminal is a Bash shell.

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