How to Change from Bash to Tcsh Shell in OS X Terminal
Bash is the default shell in Mac OS X and has been since 10.3, it’s generally considered to be the de facto shell standard in the unix world. That said, there are some people who prefer to use the tcsh shell, or perhaps you just want to break away from the norm. Changing the default shell is pretty easy, but you will likely run into problems when running bash shell scripts. If you want to experiment with tcsh and use it as your default shell, here’s how to do it from the GUI in three easy steps:
Change the default shell from bash to tcsh as used by Terminal app in three steps:
- Launch Terminal.app
- From the Terminal menu, select preferences
- In preferences, select “execute this command” and type /bin/tcsh in place of /bin/bash
That’s it. Now anytime you open a new terminal it will be the tcsh shell. To revert back to bash, follow the same procedure but replace /bin/tcsh with /bin/bash.
Note: most shell scripts for OS X are written specifically for bash, and switching to tcsh will make many of these scripts no longer function properly.
If you simply want to experiment with the tcsh shell, try typing
at the Terminal prompt and you will load the tcsh shell temporarily.
To exit the tcsh shell this way, type
at the prompt and you will exit tcsh and be back in the bash shell. You can do this with any shell to temporarily test another out, be it bash, tcsh, sh, zsh, or others.