I had this script:

spd-say "Hello, don't forget the trash bin."

So it reminded me of what I supposed to do, and I moved it to /usr/local/bin/ and the command trash pronounced the argument,then I set a crontab job, to make it remind me everyday what I wanted to do. But the crontab didn't work and I couldn't understand why(It does other jobs flawlessly).

Once I saw this message in my terminal:

You have new mail in /var/mail/root

at the end of which this line made me do a bad mistake:

/bin/sh: 1: trash: not found

I know that it was a silly thing to do but I did:

mv /usr/local/bin/trash /bin/sh

thinking that sh is a directory and I should move the script there in order to be executed.

Now, when I want to see a man page the system says:

"Hello, don't forget the trash bin."

And the output of cat sh is:

spd-say "Hello, don't forget the trash bin. "

Anyway, can I do anything or I have to reinstall my operating system?

  • 2
    I'm speculating, but cron jobs run with a very limited environment, including a $PATH with just a few directories. That might be why it works from the terminal, but not through cron. (In fact, when something works from a normal terminal but not through cron, that's the first thing I check.)
    – user
    Jul 14 '19 at 10:43
  • 1
    @ a CVn; I don't know what the problem is but when I replace spd-say by echo and set the crontab job: trash > ~/Desktop/trash.txt**, it works & a file is created on my Desktop. I think I should ask about it in another question.
    – user833907
    Jul 14 '19 at 18:17
  • Yes, if you want to ask about that, please do ask it as a separate question.
    – user
    Jul 14 '19 at 18:19
  • 'Now, when I want to see a man page the system says: "Hello, don't forget the trash bin."' To be fair, most man docs are rubbish (or difficult to understand) Jul 14 '19 at 18:46
  • 8
    @LogicalBranch I disagree; I love them;they're powerful, off-line guides.
    – user833907
    Jul 14 '19 at 18:47

In Ubuntu systems, /bin/sh is a symbolic link to the dash shell by default:

$ ls -l /bin/sh
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 4 Jul  7  2018 /bin/sh -> dash

So (assuming your terminal emulator uses the bash shell, and didn't get broken by your mistake) all you need to do is re-create the link:

sudo ln -sf dash /bin/sh
  • 14
    OP: mv /usr/local/bin/trash /bin/sh, sh: You could not live with your own failure, where did that bring you? Back to me. Jul 14 '19 at 18:51
  • 2
    @LogicalBranch how do you only have 1 upvote for that masterpiece? Jul 15 '19 at 2:36
  • 4
    @vikarjramun it sounds like a masterpiece but i just dont quite get it...
    – Nacht
    Jul 15 '19 at 6:23
  • @Nacht it's from Avengers: Endgame; a line from the villain, Thanos.
    – Cullub
    Jul 15 '19 at 14:57
  • @Cullub Oooooh..... thanks... I'm pretty sure I get it now...
    – Nacht
    Jul 16 '19 at 1:03

No, you don't have to reinstall your system. /bin/sh is only a softlink to your shell. readlink -f /bin/sh /bin/bash In my case bash. Move your script and make a softlink to your favorite shell.

  • 10
    /bin/sh should actually point to /bin/dash. If you want to change the system shell, use sudo dpkg-reconfigure dash, per How Can I Make /bin/sh point to /bin/bash?. Also note the system shell is not the default interactive shell.
    – wjandrea
    Jul 14 '19 at 19:43

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