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My Bash Terminal is stuck after a bad command.

Even opening new shell instances (cmd T) starts the same hangup ending with a [Process completed] message.

It's rendering bash terminal unusable (cannot type or run any other process). How can I kill the hangup process?

Note: ^C, ^D, ^Z do not work.

enter image description here

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This is on macOS, right?

As it's difficult to edit the file from a terminal (owing to the fact that the shell will immediately exit), open the file you previously modified (probably ~/.bashrc, ~/.bash_profile, or ~/.profile), from the Finder, in a text editor, and correct the error.

You should be able to toggle the listing of hidden files in any "Open File" dialog box, or in the Finder itself, by pressing ⌘ CMD+⇧ SHIFT+..

Another option is simply to rename the file that you think is causing the issue. Again, do this from the Finder.


Speculating on the cause:

You may have inadvertently executed exit, possibly unconditionally, or through following some logic branching. Or you may have used set -e or set -o errexit and then had a utility exit with a non-zero exit status (i.e. failing).

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  • Might be easier to simply rename the potentially offending file(s) rather than trying to shoehorn them into TextEdit without accidentally making them non-plaintext files.
    – DopeGhoti
    Sep 26 '17 at 20:18
  • @DopeGhoti That's another good option.
    – Kusalananda
    Sep 26 '17 at 20:23
  • probably calling exec xyz
    – user282164
    May 31 '19 at 3:19
  • 1
    @OlegzandrDenman That would probably have changed the terminal's tab name, but it still says -bash (i.e. it's a bash login shell process running).
    – Kusalananda
    May 31 '19 at 7:58

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