I called zsh from Bash for the first time in my machine after installing it. Then I followed the instructions in the menu from the configuration function and saved the changes.

So far so good, I can now use zsh. However I would like to start making manual changes to .zshrc, but I would like to know if adding manual entries to .zshrc will prevent me from running the configuration function again in the future.

Is there a syntax that I could try to stick to to make sure I can run this configuration function again? Is there any value in this?

1 Answer 1


The lines added by the automatic configuration function are marked in your ~/.zshrc:

# Lines configured by zsh-newuser-install
# End of lines configured by zsh-newuser-install

As long as you don't edit these lines or anything in between, you can keep using the configuration interface, and it'll edit the lines between these markers. Add whatever you want before or after the markers. Usually you'll want your stuff to go after the end marker, so that it isn't overridden by settings from the configuration interface.

  • Thanks Gilles, I just re-checked and my configuration function didn't generate those lines automatically for me. I wonder if this is a relatively recent feature? I'm running zsh 4.2.6 (x86_64-redhat-linux-gnu) Aug 26, 2011 at 14:28
  • @AmV What does the configuration function do? Are we even talking about the same thing (zsh-newuser-install, which runs automatically if you don't have a ~/.zshrc yet, at least on some distributions)? Try this: create an empty directory, e.g. mkdir ~/foo, and run HOME=~/foo zsh. Answer some questions in the configuration interface and see what file it creates in ~/foo. Aug 26, 2011 at 16:56
  • Thanks @Guilles. I just tried that, and on my local machine: zsh 4.3.10-dev-2-cvs (i686-pc-linux-gnu) on Ubuntu 11.04 works exactly as you said, but on a remote machine that I have access to: zsh 4.2.6 (x86_64-redhat-linux-gnu) on Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server release 5.1 (Tikanga) it doesn't. Thanks anyways, I think your post still answers my question. Aug 26, 2011 at 17:21

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