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I currently have my prompt as

durrantm@Castle2012-Ubuntu-laptop01:~/Dropnot/webs/rails_apps/linker (master)

which I really like as it shows my username, machine, directory and git branch!

How can I shorten the machine part though?

i.e. how could In have it be:

durrantm@Castle...:~/Dropnot/webs/rails_apps/linker (master)

I tried various combination of h:0:6 but had no luck getting a correct syntax that would work.

My .bashrc uses this:

function parse_git_branch () {
  git branch 2> /dev/null | sed -e '/^[^*]/d' -e 's/* \(.*\)/ (\1)/'

PS1='\[\033[01;32m\]\u@\h\[\033[00m\]:\[\033[01;34m\]\w\[\033[00m\]$(parse_git_branch)\n\$ '
share|improve this question
Why not shorten the hostname itself? from Castle2012-Ubuntu-laptop01 to be castle2012, for example. – aularon Feb 8 '14 at 15:39
That's too easy ;) Yes that worked well. Thanks! – Michael Durrant Feb 8 '14 at 15:57
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Improving terdon's answer, you don't even need to invoke those two processes (hostname and cut). Just use bash's string manipulation:

PS1="\[\033[01;32m\]\u@${HOSTNAME:0:10}\[\033[00m\]:\[\033[01;34m\]\w\[\033[00m\]$(parse_git_branch)\n\$ "
share|improve this answer
If the - is to be the delimiter, the much better solution is ${HOSTNAME%%-*}. – Patrick Jul 3 '14 at 22:35

I have to agree with @aularon that it would make more sense to shorten your hostname, that's a ridiculously long name. However, you can also get what you want by parsing it:

## For example, take the first 10 chars of hostname
name=$(hostname | cut -c -10);

## Now use $name in your PS1 instead of \h
PS1="\[\033[01;32m\]\u@$name\[\033[00m\]:\[\033[01;34m\]\w\[\033[00m\]$(parse_git_branch)\n\$ "

That should produce a prompt like:

durrantm@Castle2012:~/Dropnot/webs/rails_apps/linker (master)
share|improve this answer
+1 I'm going with the hostname change but this info is useful and may help others. – Michael Durrant Feb 8 '14 at 15:58

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