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A Pure Bash Powerline PS1 Command Prompt
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chris-marsh Bugfix for battery module. Reported by thatso:
I just recognized that the battery module throws up path not found errors for BAT1 because of a typo in the file pureline/pureline in line 274:


should read:

Latest commit 01951e5 Oct 5, 2018

PureLine - A Pure Bash Powerline PS1 Command Prompt

Pureline is currently in development and subject to frequent changes. Updates are likely to change the format of the configuration file and therefore break configuration files from previous versions. Please be aware when updating, it is highly likely you will need to change your config file!

A simple but powerful Powerline style prompt for the Bash shell written in Bash script.

Pureline was inspired by Bash-Powerline-Shell and is designed to make configuration easy, using either full 256 color or just the basic terminal colors - allowing colors to be set by the terminal (eg Xresources or profiles).

Default Install

Battery and Git Modules

Time and Python Virtual Modules

Jobs and Prompt Modules

SSH Module

Main Features

Modules for the PS1 prompt include (with some environment varibale options);

  • Time: shows the current time

    • PL_TIME_SHOW_SECONDS=true time format HH:MM:SS
    • PL_TIME_SHOW_SECONDS=false time format HH:MM
  • Battery: a battery power indicator

  • User: shows the user name with an option to show the hostname (or IP address)

    • PL_USER_SHOW_HOST=true 'username' or 'username@hostname'
    • PL_USER_USE_IP=false ''
  • SSH: visible only when on an SSH connection. Option to show the IP or hostname

    • PL_SSH_SHOW_HOST=true if true show the host, if false icon only
    • PL_SSH_USE_IP=true if true show the IP instead of hostname
  • Path: shows the current directory with options for;

    • PL_PATH_TRIM=0 Full path
    • PL_PATH_TRIM=1 Current,path
    • PL_PATH_TRIM=n Trim the path, 'n' being the number of trailing directories to retain
  • Read Only: an indicator for read only directories

  • Jobs: show the number of running background jobs

  • Virtual Environment: shows the name of an active python virtual environment

  • Git: shows only when the directory is a git repository. Options are;

    • PL_GIT_DIRTY_FG=Black
    • PL_GIT_DIRTY_BG=Yellow
    • PL_GIT_AHEAD=true
    • PL_GIT_MODIFIED=true
    • PL_GIT_STAGED=true
    • PL_GIT_STASH=true
  • Return Code: shows the return code when last command fails

  • Prompt: a simple prompt, useful after after a Newline

  • Newline: split the prompt across one or more lines

  • Git_stash: shows number of a git stash

  • Git_ahead_behind: status against upstream

All the modules are optional and can be enabled or disabled in a config file.

Unicode symbols used

  • Hard separator between modules
  • Soft separator betwen modules of the same color:
  • Read-only status of current directory:
  • Return code from previous bash command:
  • Number of background jobs: followed by number
  • Python Virtual Environment:λ
  • Battery indicator when charging:
  • Battery indicator when discharging:
  • Git Branch: & Git Stash: 🐿
  • Number of modified files in git repo:
  • Number of staged files in git repo:
  • Number of conflicted files in git repo:



  • Some of the unicode symbols require a special font to be used in your terminal. Please use one of the powerline fonts available at:

  • Almost all current terminals have the unicode support needed by PureLine. If you have used PowerLine fonts before, then you already know if Pureline will be supported in your terminal. But if you do have issues with any of the symbols, try testing a different terminal, eg, uxterm in place of xterm.


Git Clone

$ cd ~
$ git clone
$ cp pureline/example-config.conf ~/.pureline.conf
  • In your .bashrc or .profile, whichever is used, source the pureline script as follows:

    source ~/pureline/pureline ~/.pureline.conf

The powerline fonts need more effort to work on tty screens, so a useful tip is to only source PureLine if you are on a gui;

if [ "$TERM" != "linux" ]; then
    source ~/pureline/pureline ~/.pureline.conf


Some example configuration files are provided. The config file contains lines which are sourced by PureLine. The modules to be used are listed in the PL_MODULES environment variablee;

    declare -a PL_MODULES=(
        # Module                Background  Foreground
        'user_module            Yellow      Black'
        'path_module            Blue        Black'
        'read_only_module       Red         White'

To remove a module, comment or delete the relevant line. You can rearrange the modules in any order you prefer. The first two parameters are background and foreground colors which can be customized. Some modules may have additional options.

Default Colors

The colors default colors available are:

  • Black
  • Green
  • Yellow
  • Blue
  • Purple
  • Cyan
  • White

Using these colors, your command prompt will use the color theme of your terminal.

Custom 256 Colors

You can also define your own custom colors in the config file;

colors[Orange]='\[\e[38;5;208m\]'           # 256 Col Orange Foreground
colors[On_Orange]='\[\e[48;5;208m\]'        # 256 Col Orange Background
colors[LightGrey]='\[\e[38;5;250m\]'        # 256 Col Light Grey Foreground
colors[On_LightGrey]='\[\e[48;5;250m\]'     # 256 Col Light Grey Background
colors[DarkGrey]='\[\e[38;5;240m\]'         # 256 Col Dark Grey Foreground
colors[On_DarkGrey]='\[\e[48;5;240m\]'      # 256 Col Dark Grey Background

The colors must be defined in pairs of background and foreground colors.

Developing New Modules

New modules can be easily created by following a template from existing functions. For example:

function time_module {
    local bg_color=$1                  # Set the background color
    local fg_color=$2                  # Set the foregropund color
    local content="\t"                 # Set the content to be displayed
    PS1+=$(section_end $bg_color)
    PS1+=$(section_content $fg_color $bg_color " $content ")

The $content variable can be modified to show any output wanted on the prompt

Additional resources

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