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dash is the Debian Almquist shell: a small, fast, and POSIX compliant shell. It is well-suited for startup scripts, and is used on Debian (and derivative distributions) as /bin/sh.

As some shell scripts may have "bashisms" in them, dash is not guaranteed to work as a /bin/sh replacement on Gentoo, out-of-the-box.

See the terminal emulator article for some general usage pointers, though dash is not often used in interactive mode.


USE flags

USE flags for app-shells/dash Debian Almquist Shell

libedit Use the libedit library (replacement for readline)
static !!do not set this during bootstrap!! Causes binaries to be statically linked instead of dynamically


root #emerge --ask app-shells/dash


See the article on on shell configuration for more info.


Garbled display

The output of a shell can, in some conditions, become corrupt. See the terminal emulator article for instructions to help fix this.

See also

  • Shell — command-line interpreter that offers a text-based interface to users.
  • Bash — the default shell on Gentoo systems and a popular shell program found on many Linux systems.
  • Fish — a smart and user-friendly command line shell for OS X, Linux, and the rest of the family.
  • Zsh — an interactive login shell that can also be used as a powerful scripting language interpreter.
  • Nushell — a new kind of shell for OS X, Linux, and Windows.