I've been mostly using Manjaro and Arch recently, but I'm trying to debug some possible hardware issues on Mint.

I have a number of bash scripts that no longer work in mint, because they start with #!/usr/bin/bash, but Mint has bash located at /bin/bash. Is there a way to incorporate some sort of redirect without having to change all my scripts?

For example, one of my first scripts I wrote to start practicing was just this:

#!/usr/bin/bash -x
cmatrix -bC red

Removing the /usr portion allows it to run fine in Mint, but is there a way to keep the same script and run it in both distros?.


There’s a relevant Q&A on Stack Overflow, See What is the preferred Bash shebang?, but I can’t find a good one here.

If you want your script to find bash anywhere on the PATH, whether /bin, /usr/bin, etc., use

#!/usr/bin/env bash

(This assumes /usr/bin/env exists.)

On most Linux distributions though, including those you mention, it’s safe to use


Some distributions also have /usr/bin/bash, but that’s the result of the /usr merge”/bin and /usr/bin now have the same contents in these distributions.

  • Yeah, I was hesitant to post on Stack Overflow as it seems more of a Linux thing than a scripting thing. If anything, I suppose I could put a symlink to direct per distro if the other one doesn't like the change. – Asinine Jun 17 '20 at 19:30

The following will require a one time change. #!/usr/bin/env bash will search your PATH for bash. You'll have to set -x separately though.

  • Sorry, not sure how that helps? This is my echo $PATH output: $ echo $PATH /usr/local/sbin:/usr/local/bin:/usr/sbin:/usr/bin:/sbin:/bin:/usr/games:/usr/local/games Edit: I was going to post on stackexchange, but I thought this was a distro issue. Should I head over there instead? – Asinine Jun 17 '20 at 1:51
  • You can have multiple versions of bash on a server. Production scripts may want to use the bash that comes installed on the server and you may want a newer version of bash for other scripts. For a detailed discussion, Take a look at stackoverflow.com/questions/16365130/… – rr0ss0rr Jun 18 '20 at 2:16

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