Take the 2-minute tour ×
Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

If you create an alias for example:

alias cls="clear"

It exists untill you kill terminall session. When you start a new terminal window the alias doesn't exist any more. How to create "permanent" alias, one that exists in every terminal session?

share|improve this question
3  
As for this particular example, ^L (Control-l) clears the screen as well. –  loevborg Aug 6 '10 at 16:10

5 Answers 5

up vote 49 down vote accepted

You can put such aliases in the ~/.bash_aliases file.

That file is loaded by ~/.bashrc. On Ubuntu 10.04, the following lines need to be uncommented to enable the use of ~/.bash_aliases. On Ubuntu 11.04 and later, it's already enabled:

if [ -f ~/.bash_aliases ]; then
    . ~/.bash_aliases
fi
share|improve this answer
5  
+1 I recommend this over editing ~/.bashrc. While indeed useful for a variety of other purposes, ~/.bashrc just has too many elements that could throw off a user who is unfamiliar with the peculiarities of Linux shells. –  ændrük Oct 6 '10 at 21:50
1  
example: echo "cls='clear'" >> ~/.bash_aliases && source ~/.bash_aliases –  hobs Sep 10 '12 at 15:56
    
@ændrük I actually find the profusion of shell config files confusing. In my mind it is easier if there is one fairly long config file with all the settings. –  haziz Dec 13 '12 at 7:14
    
@hobs it must be: echo "alias cls='clear'" >> ~/.bash_aliases && source ~/.bash_aliases –  Amir Ali Akbari Aug 15 '13 at 10:30
    
gracias for the correction –  hobs Aug 16 '13 at 17:48

Add your line into ~/.bashrc or into ~/.profile / ~/.bash_profile for remote logins.

If you want the command being executed for all users, put it into /etc/bash.bashrc.

Edit: In the latest versions of Ubuntu, ~/.bashrc automatically sources ~/.bash_aliases, so permanent aliases are best put into this file instead.

share|improve this answer
    
Thanks, it worked when I wrote in ~/.bachrc P.S. There is no ~/.profiles in my home directory. –  Zango Aug 6 '10 at 15:31
    
.profile might be .bash_profile now –  txwikinger Aug 6 '10 at 15:32
    
If the file in question does not exist, you can simply create it. –  Ryan Thompson Aug 6 '10 at 18:03
    
Thanks, I was wondering what's the difference between those two. (bashrc and bash_profile) –  e.m.fields Oct 6 '10 at 20:28

You can add the function below to your .bashrc file.

function permalias () 
{ 
  alias "$*";
  echo alias "$*" >> ~/.bash_aliases
}

Then open a new terminal or run source ~/.bashrc in your current terminal. You can now create permanent aliases by using the permalias command, for example permalias cls=clear.

share|improve this answer
    
Perfect! exactly what I was looking for. I renamed it "mkalias". –  TecBrat Jun 29 '13 at 14:57
1  
Usage Note: when I typed mkalias smount='sudo mount' the quotes were not litterally echoed, so my solution was mkalias "smount='sudo mount'" If you are aliasing a 2+ word command you'll need this too. –  TecBrat Jun 29 '13 at 22:04

Stick that command in the last line of your ~/.bash_profile

share|improve this answer
1  
Why not ~/.bashrc? –  mac9416 Aug 6 '10 at 15:23
    
bashrc is preferred, I understand, though not clear on why –  e.m.fields Oct 1 '10 at 18:46

See http://www.joshstaiger.org/archives/2005/07/bash_profile_vs.html for the difference between ~/.bash_profile and ~/.bashrc

~/.bashrc is run every time you open a new terminal, whereas ~/.bash_profile isn't. ~/.bashrc contains the following, which includes the ~/.bash_aliases file. This would be the most appropriate place to add your alias.

# Alias definitions.
# You may want to put all your additions into a separate file like
# ~/.bash_aliases, instead of adding them here directly.
# See /usr/share/doc/bash-doc/examples in the bash-doc package.

if [ -f ~/.bash_aliases ]; then
    . ~/.bash_aliases
fi
share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.