Welcome to the world of Bash scripting! In this lesson, we'll start with the basics, including what Bash is, why you should learn it, how to set up your environment, and running your very first Bash script.

Let's dive in!

What is Bash?

Bash stands for Bourne Again Shell. It is a command-line shell and scripting language commonly used in Unix-based operating systems, including Linux and macOS.

Bash is a powerful tool for interacting with your computer through the command line and automating tasks.

Key Points:

  • Bash is a command-line interpreter and scripting language.
  • It's the default shell on most Unix-like systems.
  • It provides a text-based interface to interact with your computer.

Why Learn Bash Scripting?

Now, you might be wondering, why should you invest your time in learning Bash scripting?

Advantages of Bash Scripting:

  1. Automation: Bash allows you to automate repetitive tasks, saving you time and effort.
  2. System Administration: It's a fundamental skill for system administrators to manage and configure systems efficiently.
  3. Scripting: You can write powerful scripts to perform complex operations and solve problems.
  4. DevOps: Bash is crucial in the DevOps world for tasks like server provisioning and deployment.
  5. Software Development: Many build and deployment processes involve Bash scripting.

In essence, learning Bash can open doors to various career opportunities and make you a more efficient and effective computer user.

Setting up a Bash Environment

Before we jump into writing Bash scripts, you need to set up your environment. Depending on your operating system, the setup process may vary:

On Linux:

  • Most Linux distributions come with Bash pre-installed.
  • Open a terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) to access Bash.

On macOS:

  • macOS also includes Bash.
  • Access it through the Terminal application (Applications > Utilities > Terminal).

On Windows with WSL (Windows Subsystem for Linux):

  • Install WSL from the Microsoft Store.
  • Choose a Linux distribution (e.g., Ubuntu) and follow the installation instructions.
  • Access Bash by launching the installed Linux distribution from the Start menu or using wsl from a command prompt.

Running Your First Bash Script

Let's get hands-on! We'll start by creating a simple "Hello World" Bash script.

  1. Open your preferred text editor. On Linux and macOS, you can use editors like Nano, Vim, or VSCode. On Windows with WSL, you can use editors inside WSL or a Windows text editor.
  2. Create a new file and name it hello.sh.
  3. Inside the file, type the following code:

#!/bin/bashecho "Hello, world!"

Save the file.

Now, let's make the script executable and run it in the terminal:

chmod +x hello.sh ./hello.sh

You should see the output:

Hello, world!

Congratulations! You've just created and run your first Bash script.

Key Points:

  • Create a Bash script by writing commands in a text file with a .sh extension.
  • Use the shebang line (#!/bin/bash) to specify the interpreter.
  • Make the script executable with chmod +x.
  • Run the script using ./scriptname.sh.
Photo by Roman Synkevych / Unsplash

Tagged in: