This is kind of a 2 part question and you'll understand why when done reading. To start, I was trying to figure how to cause an "enter" action inputted into standard output so that the script can inject a password into standard input (yes, I'm aware there are ssh-keys. It's more for the challenge of doing it). First, how do you do an "enter" in a bash script? I feel like \n is different in a small way. And, what does \e do. It's not documented in man bash.

To help clarify, I'm attempting to perform an "enter" functionality that would start an openssh-client connection.


ssh miphix@foo.bar [options] [interpreted enter command/token]
&& sleep 5s
&& echo "supersecretpassword" [interpreted enter command/token]

quickly followed by what other dreamy piles of fairy dust i can come up with.

  • 2
    You don't "input" into STDOUT (it's standard output), so what do you mean exactly? And what are you trying to do more specifically? \e introduces a generic escape sequence which is interpreted by the terminal and not by the shell.
    – kos
    Dec 2, 2015 at 2:49
  • I think maybe you need to use a semicolon ; just a guess.
    – mchid
    Dec 2, 2015 at 4:10
  • mchid it appears that there is no definition in man for ';' as a reserved function. Is this a SHell reservation for "sudo" scripts?
    – Miphix
    Dec 2, 2015 at 11:46

1 Answer 1


Try this:

echo -ne '\n' | <command>

or just literally send to take advantage of implicit newline of echo:

echo | <command>
  • I think you're trying to say <command> | echo
    – Miphix
    Dec 2, 2015 at 11:48
  • No, I mean echo | <command>
    – Tung Tran
    Dec 2, 2015 at 13:32
  • Ok, not to be combative or inflammatory. Would you be so kind as to either expand on the logic, or link to an example? >echo "secretpassword" | ssh miphix@foo.bar
    – Miphix
    Dec 2, 2015 at 17:56

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