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I basically want to set path for some of the variables in Unix. But the source command does not work here. Any suggestions of the same?

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    It would helpful if you could provide an example of what you are trying to do. – Faheem Mitha Dec 2 '15 at 9:48
  • you talking about environment variables? give a read at this post – lese Dec 2 '15 at 10:02
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    I understand that you're using Python. I think you're trying to use a bash command in Python. That obviously doesn't work since bash and python are different languages. But I don't understand what you're trying to do. Post your code, and explain what you want it to do. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Dec 2 '15 at 23:00
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I tried what you describe and the solution is to use . instead of source, which is basically an alias of the former.
You also must explicitly specify ./FILENAME if the file in the current directory.

Please see my example session:

Python 2.7.10 (default, Oct 14 2015, 16:09:02) 
[GCC 5.2.1 20151010] on linux2
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.
>>> import os
>>> os.system("source .bashrc")
sh: 1: source: not found
32512
>>> os.system(". .bash_aliases")
sh: 1: .: .bash_aliases: not found
512
>>> os.system(". ./.bash_aliases")
0
>>> os.system(". ~/.bash_aliases")
0
>>> os.system(". /home/USERNAME/.bash_aliases")
0

A return value of 0 indicates success.

However, I am not sure if sourcing a file this way produces the results you want, as this method runs the given command in a subshell and I am not sure if this also affects the shell session you want.

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