I always knew you could switch between Vim and Emacs bindings for Bash by modifying .inputrc.

I'm now realizing there are actually a few different useful options I've decided to turn on including:

set bell-style none
set colored-stats On
set show-all-if-ambiguous On

The comments in /etc/inputrc on my system provide some guidance as to what is possible but not all the options are shown there.

I'm also trying man readline but all I get is a really short page describing the program.

Is there somewhere I can see all the options which can be turned on and off via .inputrc?

  • 2
    Readline options are listed inside man bash.
    – user232326
    Jan 26, 2020 at 4:19
  • 3
    I get a really long man page with man 3 readline you many need to install some dev package to get this section 3 page.
    – Jasen
    Jan 26, 2020 at 9:35
  • 2
    there's also a readline-doc package in debian
    – Jasen
    Jan 26, 2020 at 9:38

2 Answers 2


You may want to check the bind Bash builtin command.

Use help bind to see the different options.

In particular, you could check the output of

  • bind -l : List names of functions.
  • bind -p : List functions and bindings in a form that can be reused as input.
  • bind -v : List variable names and values in a form that can be reused as input.

not certain it's complete, but the Archlinux page for readline(3) provides a fairly comprehensive list of options.

In addition to that there's the The GNU Readline Library documentation page which has a good deal on the syntax and commands. Again, hard to tell if it's comprehensive.

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