Release notes

fish 3.4.1 (released March 25, 2022)

This release of fish fixes the following problems identified in fish 3.4.0:

  • An error printed after upgrading, where old instances could pick up a newer version of the fish_title function, has been fixed (#8778)

  • fish builds correctly on NetBSD (#8788) and OpenIndiana (#8780).

  • nextd-or-forward-word, bound to Alt-Right Arrow by default, was inadvertently changed to move like forward-bigword. This has been corrected (#8790).

  • funcsave -q and funcsave --quiet now work correctly (#8830).

  • Issues with the csharp and nmcli completions were corrected.

If you are upgrading from version 3.3.1 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.4.0 (included below).

fish 3.4.0 (released March 12, 2022)

Notable improvements and fixes

  • fish’s command substitution syntax has been extended: $(cmd) now has the same meaning as (cmd) but it can be used inside double quotes, to prevent line splitting of the results (#159):

    foo (bar | string collect)
    # can now be written as
    foo "$(bar)"
    # and
    foo (bar)
    # can now be written as
    foo $(bar)
    # this will still split on newlines only.
  • Complementing the prompt command in 3.3.0, fish_config gained a theme subcommand to show and pick from the sample themes (meaning color schemes) directly in the terminal, instead of having to open a Web browser. For example fish_config theme choose Nord loads the Nord theme in the current session (#8132). The current theme can be saved with fish_config theme dump, and custom themes can be added by saving them in ~/.config/fish/themes/.

  • set and read learned a new option, --function, to set a variable in the function’s top scope. This should be a more familiar way of scoping variables and avoids issues with --local, which is actually block-scoped (#565, #8145):

    function demonstration
        if true
            set --function foo bar
            set --local baz banana
        echo $foo # prints "bar" because $foo is still valid
        echo $baz # prints nothing because $baz went out of scope
  • string pad now excludes escape sequences like colors that fish knows about, and a new --visible flag to string length makes it use that kind of visible width. This is useful to get the number of terminal cells an already colored string would occupy, like in a prompt. (#8182, #7784, #4012):

    > string length --visible (set_color red)foo
  • Performance improvements to globbing, especially on systems using glibc. In some cases (large directories with files with many numbers in the names) this almost halves the time taken to expand the glob.

  • Autosuggestions can now be turned off by setting $fish_autosuggestion_enabled to 0, and (almost) all highlighting can be turned off by choosing the new “None” theme. The exception is necessary colors, like those which distinguish autosuggestions from the actual command line. (#8376)

  • The fish_git_prompt function, which is included in the default prompts, now overrides git to avoid running commands set by per-repository configuration. This avoids a potential security issue in some circumstances, and has been assigned CVE-2022-20001 (#8589).

Deprecations and removed features

  • A new feature flag, ampersand-nobg-in-token makes & only act as background operator if followed by a separator. In combination with qmark-noglob, this allows entering most URLs at the command line without quoting or escaping (#7991). For example:

    > echo foo&bar # will print "foo&bar", instead of running "echo foo" in the background and executing "bar"
    > echo foo & bar # will still run "echo foo" in the background and then run "bar"
    # with both ampersand-nobg-in-token and qmark-noglob, this argument has no special characters anymore
    > open

    As a reminder, feature flags can be set on startup with fish --features ampersand-nobg-in-token,qmark-noglob or with a universal variable called fish_features:

    > set -Ua fish_features ampersand-nobg-in-token
  • $status is now forbidden as a command, to prevent a surprisingly common error among new users: Running if $status (#8171). This applies only to $status, other variables are still allowed.

  • set --query now returns an exit status of 255 if given no variable names. This means if set -q $foo will not enter the if-block if $foo is empty or unset. To restore the previous behavior, use if not set -q foo; or set -q $foo - but this is unlikely to be desireable (#8214).

  • _ is now a reserved keyword (#8342).

  • The special input functions delete-or-exit, nextd-or-forward-word and prevd-or-backward-word replace fish functions of the same names (#8538).

  • Mac OS X 10.9 is no longer supported. The minimum Mac version is now 10.10 “Yosemite.”

Scripting improvements

  • string collect supports a new --allow-empty option, which will output one empty argument in a command substitution that has no output (#8054). This allows commands like test -n (echo -n | string collect --allow-empty) to work more reliably. Note this can also be written as test -n "$(echo -n)" (see above).

  • string match gained a --groups-only option, which makes it only output capturing groups, excluding the full match. This allows string match to do simple transformations (#6056):

    > string match -r --groups-only '(.*)fish' 'catfish' 'twofish' 'blue fish' | string escape
    'blue '
  • $fish_user_paths is now automatically deduplicated to fix a common user error of appending to it in when it is universal (#8117). fish_add_path remains the recommended way to add to $PATH.

  • return can now be used outside functions. In scripts, it does the same thing as exit. In interactive mode,it sets $status without exiting (#8148).

  • An oversight prevented all syntax checks from running on commands given to fish -c (#8171). This includes checks such as exec not being allowed in a pipeline, and $$ not being a valid variable. Generally, another error was generated anyway.

  • fish_indent now correctly reformats tokens that end with a backslash followed by a newline (#8197).

  • commandline gained an --is-valid option to check if the command line is syntactically valid and complete. This allows basic implementation of transient prompts (#8142).

  • commandline gained a --paging-full-mode option to check if the pager is showing all the possible lines (no “7 more rows” message) (#8485).

  • List expansion correctly reports an error when used with all zero indexes (#8213).

  • Running fish with a directory instead of a script as argument (eg fish .) no longer leads to an infinite loop. Instead it errors out immediately (#8258)

  • Some error messages occuring after fork, like “text file busy” have been replaced by bespoke error messages for fish (like “File is currently open for writing”). This also restores error messages with current glibc versions that removed sys_errlist (#8234, #4183).

  • The realpath builtin now also squashes leading slashes with the --no-symlinks option (#8281).

  • When trying to cd to a dangling (broken) symbolic link, fish will print an error noting that the target is a broken link (#8264).

  • On MacOS terminals that are not granted permissions to access a folder, cd would print a spurious “rotten symlink” error, which has been corrected to “permission denied” (#8264).

  • Since fish 3.0, for loops would trigger a variable handler function before the loop was entered. As the variable had not actually changed or been set, this was a spurious event and has been removed (#8384).

  • math now correctly prints negative values and values larger than 2**31 when in hex or octal bases (#8417).

  • dirs always produces an exit status of 0, instead of sometimes returning 1 (#8211).

  • cd "" no longer crashes fish (#8147).

  • set --query can now query whether a variable is a path variable via --path or --unpath (#8494).

  • Tilde characters (~) produced by custom completions are no longer escaped when applied to the command line, making it easier to use the output of a recursive complete -C in completion scripts (#4570).

  • set --show reports when a variable is read-only (#8179).

  • Erasing $fish_emoji_width will reset fish to the default guessed emoji width (#8274).

  • The la function no longer lists entries for “.” and “..”, matching other systems defaults (#8519).

  • abbr -q returns the correct exit status when given multiple abbreviation names as arguments (#8431).

  • command -v returns an exit status of 127 instead of 1 if no command was found (#8547).

  • argparse with --ignore-unknown no longer breaks with multiple unknown options in a short option group (#8637).

  • Comments inside command substitutions or brackets now correctly ignore parentheses, quotes, and brackets (#7866, #8022, #8695).

  • complete -C supports a new --escape option, which turns on escaping in returned completion strings (#3469).

  • Invalid byte or unicode escapes like \Utest or \xNotHex are now a tokenizer error instead of causing the token to be truncated (#8545).

Interactive improvements

  • Vi mode cursors are now set properly after Control-C (#8125).

  • funced will try to edit the whole file containing a function definition, if there is one (#391).

  • Running a command line consisting of just spaces now deletes an ephemeral (starting with space) history item again (#8232).

  • Command substitutions no longer respect job control, instead running inside fish’s own process group (#8172). This more closely matches other shells, and improves Control-C reliability inside a command substitution.

  • history and __fish_print_help now properly support less before version 530, including the version that ships with macOS. (#8157).

  • help now knows which section is in which document again (#8245).

  • fish’s highlighter will now color options (starting with - or --) with the color given in the new $fish_color_option, up to the first --. It falls back on $fish_color_param, so nothing changes for existing setups (#8292).

  • When executing a command, abbreviations are no longer expanded when the cursor is separated from the command by spaces, making it easier to suppress abbreviation expansion of commands without arguments. (#8423).

  • fish_key_reader’s output was simplified. By default, it now only prints a bind statement. The previous per-character timing information can be seen with a new --verbose switch (#8467).

  • Custom completions are now also loaded for commands that contain tildes or variables like ~/bin/fish or $PWD/fish (#8442).

  • Command lines spanning multiple lines will not be overwritten by the completion pager when it fills the entire terminal (#8509, #8405).

  • When redrawing a multiline prompt, the old prompt is now properly cleared (#8163).

  • Interactive completion would occasionally ignore the last word on the command line due to a race condition. This has been fixed (#8175).

  • Propagation of universal variables from a fish process that is closing is faster (#8209).

  • The command line is drawn in the correct place if the prompt ends with a newline (#8298).

  • history learned a new subcommand clear-session to erase all history from the current session (#5791).

  • Pressing Control-C in fish_key_reader will no longer print the incorrect “Press [ctrl-C] again to exit” message (#8510).

  • The default command-not-found handler for Fedora/PackageKit now passes the whole command line, allowing for functionality such as running the suggested command directly (#8579).

  • When looking for locale information, the Debian configuration is now used when available (#8557).

  • Pasting text containing quotes from the clipboard trims spaces more appropriately (#8550).

  • The clipboard bindings ignore X-based clipboard programs if the DISPLAY environment variable is not set, which helps prefer the Windows clipboard when it is available (such as on WSL).

  • funcsave will remove a saved copy of a function that has been erased with functions --erase.

  • The Web-based configuration tool gained a number of improvements, including the ability to set pager colors.

  • The default fish_title prints a shorter title with shortened $PWD and no more redundant “fish” (#8641).

  • Holding down an arrow key won’t freeze the terminal with long periods of flashing (#8610).

  • Multi-char bindings are no longer interrupted if a signal handler enqueues an event. (#8628).

New or improved bindings

  • Escape can now bound without breaking arrow key bindings (#8428).

  • The Alt-H binding (to open a command’s manual page) now also ignores command (#8447).

Improved prompts

  • The fish_status_to_signal helper function returns the correct signal names for the current platform, rather than Linux (#8530).

  • The prompt_pwd helper function learned a --full-length-dirs N option to keep the last N directory components unshortened. In addition the number of characters to shorten each component should be shortened to can now be given as -d N or --dir-length N. (#8208):

    > prompt_pwd --full-length-dirs 2 -d 1 ~/dev/fish-shell/share/tools/web_config


  • Added completions for:

  • Improvements to many completions, especially for git aliases (#8129), subcommands (#8134) and submodules (#8716).

  • Many adjustments to complete correct options for system utilities on BSD and macOS.

  • When evaluating custom completions, the command line state no longer includes variable overrides (var=val). This unbreaks completions that read commandline -op.

Improved terminal support

  • Dynamic terminal titles are enabled on WezTerm (#8121).

  • Directory history navigation works out of the box with Apple Terminal’s default key settings (#2330).

  • fish now assumes Unicode 9+ widths for emoji under iTerm 2 (#8200).

  • Skin-tone emoji modifiers (U+1F3FB through U+1F3FF) are now measured as width 0 (#8275).

  • fish’s escape sequence removal now also knows Tmux’s wrapped escapes.

  • Vi mode cursors are enabled in Apple (#8167).

  • Vi cursor shaping and $PWD reporting is now also enabled on foot (#8422).

  • ls will use colors also on newer versions of Apple (#8309).

  • The Delete and Shift-Tab keys work more reliably under st (#8352, #8354).

Other improvements

  • Fish’s test suite now uses ctest, and has become much faster to run. It is now also possible to run only specific tests with targets named test_$filename - make only runs the test. (#7851)

  • The HTML version of the documentation now includes copy buttons for code examples (#8218).

  • The HTML version of the documentation and the web-based configuration tool now pick more modern system fonts instead of falling back to Arial and something like Courier New most of the time (#8632).

  • The Debian & Ubuntu package linked from is now a single package, rather than split into fish and fish-common (#7845).

  • The macOS installer does not assert that Rosetta is required to install fish on machines with Apple Silicon (#8566).

  • The macOS installer now cleans up previous .pkg installations when upgrading. (#2963).

For distributors

  • The minimum version of CMake required to build fish is now 3.5.0.

  • The CMake installation supports absolute paths for CMAKE_INSTALL_DATADIR (#8150).

  • Building using NetBSD curses works on any platform (#8087).

  • The build system now uses the default linker instead of forcing use of the gold or lld linker (#8152).

fish 3.3.1 (released July 6, 2021)

This release of fish fixes the following problems identified in fish 3.3.0:

  • The prompt and command line are redrawn correctly in response to universal variable changes (#8088).

  • A superfluous error that was produced when setting the PATH or CDPATH environment variables to include colon-delimited components that do not exist was removed (#8095).

  • The Vi mode indicator in the prompt is repainted correctly after Ctrl-C cancels the current command (#8103).

  • fish builds correctly on platforms that do not have a spawn.h header, such as old versions of OS X (#8097).

A number of improvements to the documentation, and fixes for completions, are included as well.

If you are upgrading from version 3.2.2 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.3.0 (included below).

fish 3.3.0 (released June 28, 2021)

Notable improvements and fixes

  • fish_config gained a prompt subcommand to show and pick from the sample prompts directly in the terminal, instead of having to open a webbrowser. For example fish_config prompt choose default loads the default prompt in the current session (#7958).

  • The documentation has been reorganized to be easier to understand (#7773).

Deprecations and removed features

  • The $fish_history value “default” is no longer special. It used to be treated the same as “fish” (#7650).

  • Redirection to standard error with the ^ character has been disabled by default. It can be turned back on using the stderr-nocaret feature flag, but will eventually be disabled completely (#7105).

  • Specifying an initial tab to fish_config now only works with fish_config browse (eg fish_config browse variables), otherwise it would interfere with the new prompt subcommand (see below) (#7958).

Scripting improvements

  • math gained new functions log2 (like the documentation claimed), max and min (#7856). math functions can be used without the parentheses (eg math sin 2 + 6), and functions have the lowest precedence in the order of operations (#7877).

  • Shebang (#!) lines are no longer required within shell scripts, improving support for scripts with concatenated binary contents. If a file fails to execute and passes a (rudimentary) binary safety check, fish will re-invoke it using /bin/sh (#7802).

  • Exit codes are better aligned with bash. A failed execution now reports $status of 127 if the file is not found, and 126 if it is not executable.

  • echo no longer writes its output one byte at a time, improving performance and allowing use with Linux’s special API files (/proc, /sys and such) (#7836).

  • fish should now better handle cd on filesystems with broken stat(3) responses (#7577).

  • Builtins now properly report a $status of 1 upon unsuccessful writes (#7857).

  • string match with unmatched capture groups and without the --all flag now sets an empty variable instead of a variable containing the empty string. It also correctly imports the first match if multiple arguments are provided, matching the documentation. (#7938).

  • fish produces more specific errors when a command in a command substitution wasn’t found or is not allowed. This now prints something like “Unknown command” instead of “Unknown error while evaluating command substitution”.

  • fish_indent allows inline variable assignments (FOO=BAR command) to use line continuation, instead of joining them into one line (#7955).

  • fish gained a --no-config option to disable configuration files. This applies to user-specific and the systemwide (typically in /etc/fish/, and configuration snippets (typically in conf.d directories). It also disables universal variables, history, and loading of functions from system or user configuration directories (#7921, #1256).

  • When universal variables are unavailable for some reason, setting a universal variable now sets a global variable instead (#7921).

  • $last_pid now contains the process ID of the last process in the pipeline, allowing it to be used in scripts (#5036, #5832, #7721). Previously, this value contained the process group ID, but in scripts this was the same as the running fish’s process ID.

  • process-exit event handlers now receive the same value as $status in all cases, instead of receiving -1 when the exit was due to a signal.

  • process-exit event handlers for PID 0 also received JOB_EXIT events; this has been fixed.

  • job-exit event handlers may now be created with any of the PIDs from the job. The handler is passed the last PID in the job as its second argument, instead of the process group.

  • Trying to set an empty variable name with set no longer works (these variables could not be used in expansions anyway).

  • fish_add_path handles an undefined PATH environment variable correctly (#8082).

Interactive improvements

  • Commands entered before the previous command finishes will now be properly syntax highlighted.

  • fish now automatically creates and the configuration directories in $XDG_CONFIG_HOME/fish (by default ~/.config/fish) if they do not already exist (#7402).

  • $SHLVL is no longer incremented in non-interactive shells. This means it won’t be set to values larger than 1 just because your environment happens to run some scripts in $SHELL in its startup path (#7864).

  • fish no longer rings the bell when flashing the command line. The flashing should already be enough notification and the bell can be annoying (#7875).

  • fish --help is more helpful if the documentation isn’t installed (#7824).

  • funced won’t include an entry on where a function is defined, thanks to the new functions --no-details option (#7879).

  • A new variable, fish_killring, containing entries from the killring, is now available (#7445).

  • fish --private prints a note on private mode on startup even if $fish_greeting is an empty list (#7974).

  • fish no longer attempts to lock history or universal variable files on remote filesystems, including NFS and Samba mounts. In rare cases, updates to these files may be dropped if separate fish instances modify them simultaneously. (#7968).

  • wait and on-process-exit work correctly with jobs that have already exited (#7210).

  • __fish_print_help (used for --help output for fish’s builtins) now respects the LESS environment variable, and if not set, uses better default pager settings (#7997).

  • Errors from alias are now printed to standard error, matching other builtins and functions (#7925).

  • ls output is colorized on OpenBSD if colorls utility is installed (#8035)

  • The default pager color looks better in terminals with light backgrounds (#3412).

  • Further robustness improvements to the bash history import (#7874).

  • fish now tries to find a Unicode-aware locale for encoding (LC_CTYPE) if started without any locale information, improving the display of emoji and other non-ASCII text on misconfigured systems (#8031). To allow a C locale, set the variable fish_allow_singlebyte_locale to 1.

  • The Web-based configuration and documentation now feature a dark mode if the browser requests it (#8043).

  • Color variables can now also be given like --background red and -b red, not just --background=red (#8053).

  • exit run within fish_prompt now exits properly (#8033).

  • When attempting to execute the unsupported POSIX-style brace command group ({ ... }) fish will suggest its equivalent begin; ...; end commands (#6415).

New or improved bindings

  • Pasting in Vi mode puts text in the right place in normal mode (#7847).

  • Vi mode’s u is bound to undo instead of history-search-backward, following GNU readline’s behavior. Similarly, Control-R is bound to redo instead of history-search-backward, following Vim (#7908).

  • s in Vi visual mode now does the same thing as c (#8039).

  • The binding for "*y now uses fish_clipboard_copy, allowing it to support more than just xsel.

  • The Control-Space binding can be correctly customised (#7922).

  • exit works correctly in bindings (#7967).

  • The F1 binding, which opens the manual page for the current command, now works around a bug in certain less versions that fail to clear the screen (#7863).

  • The binding for Alt-S now toggles whether sudo is prepended, even when it took the commandline from history instead of only adding it.

  • The new functions fish_commandline_prepend and fish_commandline_append allow toggling the presence of a prefix/suffix on the current commandline. (#7905).

  • backward-kill-path-component Control-W) no longer erases parts of two tokens when the cursor is positioned immediately after /. (#6258).

Improved prompts

  • The default Vi mode prompt now uses foreground instead of background colors, making it less obtrusive (#7880).

  • Performance of the “informative” git prompt is improved somewhat (#7871). This is still slower than the non-informative version by its very nature. In particular it is IO-bound, so it will be very slow on slow disks or network mounts.

  • The sample prompts were updated. Some duplicated prompts, like the various classic variants, or less useful ones, like the “justadollar” prompt were removed, some prompts were cleaned up, and in some cases renamed. A new “simple” and “disco” prompt were added (#7884, #7897, #7930). The new prompts will only take effect when selected and existing installed prompts will remain unchanged.

  • A new prompt_login helper function to describe the kind of “login” (user, host and chroot status) for use in prompts. This replaces the old “debian chroot” prompt and has been added to the default and terlar prompts (#7932).

  • The Web-based configuration’s prompt picker now shows and installs right prompts (#7930).

  • The git prompt now has the same symbol order in normal and “informative” mode, and it’s customizable via $__fish_git_prompt_status_order (#7926).


  • Added completions for:

  • Improvements to plenty of completions!

  • Commands that wrap cd (using complete --wraps cd) get the same completions as cd (#4693).

  • The --force-files option to complete works for bare arguments, not just options (#7920).

  • Completion descriptions for functions don’t include the function definition, making them more concise (#7911).

  • The kill completions no longer error on MSYS2 (#8046).

  • Completion scripts are now loaded when calling a command via a relative path (like ./git) (#6001, #7992).

  • When there are multiple completion candidates, fish inserts their shared prefix. This prefix was computed in a case-insensitive way, resulting in wrong case in the completion pager. This was fixed by only inserting prefixes with matching case (#7744).

Improved terminal support

  • fish no longer tries to detect a missing new line during startup, preventing an erroneous from appearing if the terminal is resized at the wrong time, which can happen in tiling window managers (#7893).

  • fish behaves better when it disagrees with the terminal on the width of characters. In particular, staircase effects with right prompts should be gone in most cases (#8011).

  • If the prompt takes up the entire line, the last character should no longer be chopped off in certain terminals (#8002).

  • fish’s reflow handling has been disabled by default for kitty (#7961).

  • The default prompt no longer produces errors when used with a dumb terminal (#7904).

  • Terminal size variables are updated for window size change signal handlers (SIGWINCH).

  • Pasting within a multi-line command using a terminal that supports bracketed paste works correctly, instead of producing an error (#7782).

  • set_color produces an error when used with invalid arguments, rather than empty output which interacts badly with Cartesian product expansion.

For distributors

  • fish runs correctly on platforms without the O_CLOEXEC flag for open(2) (#8023).

fish 3.2.2 (released April 7, 2021)

This release of fish fixes a number of additional issues identified in the fish 3.2 series:

  • The command-not-found handler used suggestions from pacman on Arch Linux, but this caused major slowdowns on some systems and has been disabled (#7841).

  • fish will no longer hang on exit if another process is in the foreground on macOS (#7901).

  • Certain programs (such as lazygit) could create situations where fish would not receive keystrokes correctly, but it is now more robust in these situations (#7853).

  • Arguments longer than 1024 characters no longer trigger excessive CPU usage on macOS (#7837).

  • fish builds correctly on macOS when using new versions of Xcode (#7838).

  • Completions for aura (#7865) and tshark (#7858) should no longer produce errors.

  • Background jobs no longer interfere with syntax highlighting (a regression introduced in fish 3.2.1, #7842).

If you are upgrading from version 3.1.2 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.2.1 and 3.2.0 (included below).

fish 3.2.1 (released March 18, 2021)

This release of fish fixes the following problems identified in fish 3.2.0:

  • Commands in key bindings are run with fish’s internal terminal modes, instead of the terminal modes typically used for commands. This fixes a bug introduced in 3.2.0, where text would unexpectedly appear on the terminal, especially when pasting (#7770).

  • Prompts which use the internal __fish_print_pipestatus function will display correctly rather than carrying certain modifiers (such as bold) further than intended (#7771).

  • Redirections to internal file descriptors is allowed again, reversing the changes in 3.2.0. This fixes a problem with Midnight Commander (#7769).

  • Universal variables should be fully reliable regardless of operating system again (#7774).

  • fish_git_prompt no longer causes screen flickering in certain terminals (#7775).

  • fish_add_path manipulates the fish_user_paths variable correctly when moving multiple paths (#7776).

  • Pasting with a multi-line command no longer causes a __fish_tokenizer_state error (#7782).

  • psub inside event handlers cleans up temporary files properly (#7792).

  • Event handlers declared with --on-job-exit $fish_pid no longer run constantly (#7721), although these functions should use --on-event fish_exit instead.

  • Changing terminal modes inside works (#7783).

  • set_color --print-colors no longer prints all colors in bold (#7805)

  • Completing commands starting with a - no longer prints an error (#7809).

  • Running fish_command_not_found directly no longer produces an error on macOS or other OSes which do not have a handler available (#7777).

  • The new type builtin now has the (deprecated) --quiet long form of -q (#7766).

It also includes some small enhancements:

  • help and fish_config work correctly when fish is running in a Chrome OS Crostini Linux VM (#7789).

  • The history file can be made a symbolic link without it being overwritten (#7754), matching a similar improvement for the universal variable file in 3.2.0.

  • An unhelpful error (“access: No error”), seen on Cygwin, is no longer produced (#7785).

  • Improvements to the rsync completions (#7763), some completion descriptions (#7788), and completions that use IP address (#7787).

  • Improvements to the appearance of fish_config (#7811).

If you are upgrading from version 3.1.2 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.2.0 (included below).

fish 3.2.0 (released March 1, 2021)

Notable improvements and fixes

  • Undo and redo support for the command-line editor and pager search (#1367). By default, undo is bound to Control+Z, and redo to Alt+/.

  • Builtins can now output before all data is read. For example, string replace no longer has to read all of stdin before it can begin to output. This makes it usable also for pipes where the previous command hasn’t finished yet, like:

    # Show all dmesg lines related to "usb"
    dmesg -w | string match '*usb*'
  • Prompts will now be truncated instead of replaced with "> " if they are wider than the terminal (#904). For example:

    ~/dev/build/fish-shell-git/src/fish-shell/build (makepkg)>

    will turn into:

    …h-shell/build (makepkg)>

    It is still possible to react to the COLUMNS variable inside the prompt to implement smarter behavior.

  • fish completes ambiguous completions after pressing Tab even when they have a common prefix, without the user having to press Tab again (#6924).

  • fish is less aggressive about resetting terminal modes, such as flow control, after every command. Although flow control remains off by default, enterprising users can now enable it with stty (#2315, #7704).

  • A new “fish_add_path” helper function to add paths to $PATH without producing duplicates, to be used interactively or in (#6960, #7028). For example:

    fish_add_path /opt/mycoolthing/bin

    will add /opt/mycoolthing/bin to the beginning of $fish_user_path without creating duplicates, so it can be called safely from or interactively, and the path will just be there, once.

  • Better errors with “test” (#6030):

    > test 1 = 2 and echo true or false
    test: Expected a combining operator like '-a' at index 4
    1 = 2 and echo true or echo false

    This includes numbering the index from 1 instead of 0, like fish lists.

  • A new theme for the documentation and Web-based configuration (#6500, #7371, #7523), matching the design on

  • fish --no-execute will no longer complain about unknown commands or non-matching wildcards, as these could be defined differently at runtime (especially for functions). This makes it usable as a static syntax checker (#977).

  • string match --regex now integrates named PCRE2 capture groups as fish variables, allowing variables to be set directly from string match (#7459). To support this functionality, string is now a reserved word and can no longer be wrapped in a function.

  • Globs and other expansions are limited to 512,288 results (#7226). Because operating systems limit the number of arguments to commands, larger values are unlikely to work anyway, and this helps to avoid hangs.

  • A new “fish for bash users” documentation page gives a quick overview of the scripting differences between bash and fish (#2382), and the completion tutorial has also been moved out into its own document (#6709).

Syntax changes and new commands

  • Range limits in index range expansions like $x[$start..$end] may be omitted: $start and $end default to 1 and -1 (the last item) respectively (#6574):

    echo $var[1..]
    echo $var[..-1]
    echo $var[..]

    All print the full list $var.

  • When globbing, a segment which is exactly ** may now match zero directories. For example **/foo may match foo in the current directory (#7222).

Scripting improvements

  • The type, _ (gettext), . (source) and : (no-op) functions are now implemented builtins for performance purposes (#7342, #7036, #6854).

  • set and backgrounded jobs no longer overwrite $pipestatus (#6820), improving its use in command substitutions (#6998).

  • Computed (“electric”) variables such as status are now only global in scope, so set -Uq status returns false (#7032).

  • The output for set --show has been shortened, only mentioning the scopes in which a variable exists (#6944). In addition, it now shows if a variable is a path variable.

  • A new variable, fish_kill_signal, is set to the signal that terminated the last foreground job, or 0 if the job exited normally (#6824, #6822).

  • A new subcommand, string pad, allows extending strings to a given width (#7340, #7102).

  • string sub has a new --end option to specify the end index of a substring (#6765, #5974).

  • string split has a new --fields option to specify fields to output, similar to cut -f (#6770).

  • string trim now also trims vertical tabs by default (#6795).

  • string replace no longer prints an error if a capturing group wasn’t matched, instead treating it as empty (#7343).

  • string subcommands now quit early when used with --quiet (#7495).

  • string repeat now handles multiple arguments, repeating each one (#5988).

  • printf no longer prints an error if not given an argument (not even a format string).

  • The true and false builtins ignore any arguments, like other shells (#7030).

  • fish_indent now removes unnecessary quotes in simple cases (#6722) and gained a --check option to just check if a file is indented correctly (#7251).

  • fish_indent indents continuation lines that follow a line ending in a backslash, |, && or ||.

  • pushd only adds a directory to the stack if changing to it was successful (#6947).

  • A new fish_job_summary function is called whenever a background job stops or ends, or any job terminates from a signal (#6959, #2727, #4319). The default behaviour can now be customized by redefining it.

  • status gained new dirname and basename convenience subcommands to get just the directory to the running script or the name of it, to simplify common tasks such as running (dirname (status filename)) (#7076, #1818).

  • Broken pipelines are now handled more smoothly; in particular, bad redirection mid-pipeline results in the job continuing to run but with the broken file descriptor replaced with a closed file descriptor. This allows better error recovery and is more in line with other shells’ behaviour (#7038).

  • jobs --quiet PID no longer prints “no suitable job” if the job for PID does not exist (eg because it has finished) (#6809, #6812).

  • jobs now shows continued child processes correctly (#6818)

  • disown should no longer create zombie processes when job control is off, such as in (#7183).

  • command, jobs and type builtins support --query as the long form of -q, matching other builtins. The long form --quiet is deprecated (#7276).

  • argparse no longer requires a short flag letter for long-only options (#7585) and only prints a backtrace with invalid options to argparse itself (#6703).

  • argparse now passes the validation variables (e.g. $_flag_value) as local-exported variables, avoiding the need for --no-scope-shadowing in validation functions.

  • complete takes the first argument as the name of the command if the --command/-c option is not used, so complete git is treated like complete --command git, and it can show the loaded completions for specific commands with complete COMMANDNAME (#7321).

  • set_color -b (without an argument) no longer prints an error message, matching other invalid invocations of this command (#7154).

  • exec no longer produces a syntax error when the command cannot be found (#6098).

  • set --erase and abbr --erase can now erase multiple things in one go, matching functions --erase (#7377).

  • abbr --erase no longer prints errors when used with no arguments or on an unset abbreviation (#7376, #7732).

  • test -t, for testing whether file descriptors are connected to a terminal, works for file descriptors 0, 1, and 2 (#4766). It can still return incorrect results in other cases (#1228).

  • Trying to execute scripts with Windows line endings (CRLF) produces a sensible error (#2783).

  • Trying to execute commands with arguments that exceed the operating system limit now produces a specific error (#6800).

  • An alias that delegates to a command with the same name no longer triggers an error about recursive completion (#7389).

  • math now has a --base option to output the result in hexadecimal or octal (#7496) and produces more specific error messages (#7508).

  • math learned bitwise functions bitand, bitor and bitxor, used like math "bitand(0xFE, 5)" (#7281).

  • math learned tau for those who don’t like typing “2 * pi”.

  • Failed redirections will now set $status (#7540).

  • fish sets exit status in a more consistent manner after errors, including invalid expansions like $foo[.

  • Using read --silent while fish is in private mode was adding these potentially-sensitive entries to the history; this has been fixed (#7230).

  • read can now read interactively from other files, and can be used to read from the terminal via read </dev/tty (if the operating system provides /dev/tty) (#7358).

  • A new fish_status_to_signal function for transforming exit statuses to signal names has been added (#7597, #7595).

  • The fallback realpath builtin supports the -s/--no-symlinks option, like GNU realpath (#7574).

  • functions and type now explain when a function was defined via source instead of just saying Defined in -.

  • Significant performance improvements when globbing, appending to variables or in math.

  • echo no longer interprets options at the beginning of an argument (eg echo "-n foo") (#7614).

  • fish now finds user configuration even if the HOME environment variable is not set (#7620).

  • fish no longer crashes when started from a Windows-style working directory (eg F:\path) (#7636).

  • fish -c now reads the remaining arguments into $argv (#2314).

  • The pwd command supports the long options --logical and --physical, matching other implementations (#6787).

  • fish --profile now only starts profiling after fish is ready to execute commands (all configuration is completed). There is a new --profile-startup option that only profiles the startup and configuration process (#7648).

  • Builtins return a maximum exit status of 255, rather than potentially overflowing. In particular, this affects exit, return, functions --query, and set --query (#7698, #7702).

  • It is no longer an error to run builtin with closed stdin. For example count <&- now prints 0, instead of failing.

  • Blocks, functions, and builtins no longer permit redirecting to file descriptors other than 0 (standard input), 1 (standard output) and 2 (standard error). For example, echo hello >&5 is now an error. This prevents corruption of internal state (#3303).

Interactive improvements

  • fish will now always attempt to become process group leader in interactive mode (#7060). This helps avoid hangs in certain circumstances, and allows tmux’s current directory introspection to work (#5699).

  • The interactive reader now allows ending a line in a logical operators (&& and ||) instead of complaining about a missing command. (This was already syntactically valid, but interactive sessions didn’t know about it yet).

  • The prompt is reprinted after a background job exits (#1018).

  • fish no longer inserts a space after a completion ending in ., , or - is accepted, improving completions for tools that provide dynamic completions (#6928).

  • If a filename is invalid when first pressing Tab, but becomes valid, it will be completed properly on the next attempt (#6863).

  • help string match/replace/<subcommand> will show the help for string subcommands (#6786).

  • fish_key_reader sets the exit status to 0 when used with --help or --version (#6964).

  • fish_key_reader and fish_indent send output from --version to standard output, matching other fish binaries (#6964).

  • A new variable $status_generation is incremented only when the previous command produces an exit status (#6815). This can be used, for example, to check whether a failure status is a holdover due to a background job, or actually produced by the last run command.

  • fish_greeting is now a function that reads a variable of the same name, and defaults to setting it globally. This removes a universal variable by default and helps with updating the greeting. However, to disable the greeting it is now necessary to explicitly specify universal scope (set -U fish_greeting) or to disable it in (#7265).

  • Events are properly emitted after a job is cancelled (#2356).

  • fish_preexec and fish_postexec events are no longer triggered for empty commands (#4829, #7085).

  • Functions triggered by the fish_exit event are correctly run when the terminal is closed or the shell receives SIGHUP (#7014).

  • The fish_prompt event no longer fires when read is used. If you need a function to run any time read is invoked by a script, use the new fish_read event instead (#7039).

  • A new fish_posterror event is emitted when attempting to execute a command with syntax errors (#6880, #6816).

  • The debugging system has now fully switched from the old numbered level to the new named category system introduced in 3.1. A number of new debugging categories have been added, including config, path, reader and screen (#6511). See the output of fish --print-debug-categories for the full list.

  • The warning about read-only filesystems has been moved to a new “warning-path” debug category and can be disabled by setting a debug category of -warning-path (#6630):

    fish --debug=-warning-path
  • The enabled debug categories are now printed on shell startup (#7007).

  • The -o short option to fish, for --debug-output, works correctly instead of producing an invalid option error (#7254).

  • fish’s debugging can now also be enabled via FISH_DEBUG and FISH_DEBUG_OUTPUT environment variables. This helps with debugging when no commandline options can be passed, like when fish is called in a shebang (#7359).

  • Abbreviations are now expanded after all command terminators (eg ; or |), not just space, as in fish 2.7.1 and before (#6970), and after closing a command substitution (#6658).

  • The history file is now created with user-private permissions, matching other shells (#6926). The directory containing the history file was already private, so there should not have been any private data revealed.

  • The output of time is now properly aligned in all cases (#6726, #6714) and no longer depends on locale (#6757).

  • The command-not-found handling has been simplified. When it can’t find a command, fish now just executes a function called fish_command_not_found instead of firing an event, making it easier to replace and reason about. Previously-defined __fish_command_not_found_handler functions with an appropriate event listener will still work (#7293).

  • Control-C handling has been reimplemented in C++ and is therefore quicker (#5259), no longer occasionally prints an “unknown command” error (#7145) or overwrites multiline prompts (#3537).

  • Control-C no longer kills background jobs for which job control is disabled, matching POSIX semantics (#6828, #6861).

  • Autosuggestions work properly after Control-C cancels the current commmand line (#6937).

  • History search is now case-insensitive unless the search string contains an uppercase character (#7273).

  • fish_update_completions gained a new --keep option, which improves speed by skipping completions that already exist (#6775, #6796).

  • Aliases containing an embedded backslash appear properly in the output of alias (#6910).

  • open no longer hangs indefinitely on certain systems, as a bug in xdg-open has been worked around (#7215).

  • Long command lines no longer add a blank line after execution (#6826) and behave better with Backspace (#6951).

  • functions -t works like the long option --handlers-type, as documented, instead of producing an error (#6985).

  • History search now flashes when it found no more results (#7362)

  • fish now creates the path in the environment variable XDG_RUNTIME_DIR if it does not exist, before using it for runtime data storage (#7335).

  • set_color --print-colors now also respects the bold, dim, underline, reverse, italic and background modifiers, to better show their effect (#7314).

  • The fish Web configuration tool (fish_config) shows prompts correctly on Termux for Android (#7298) and detects Windows Services for Linux 2 properly (#7027). It no longer shows the history variable as it may be too large (one can use the History tab instead). It also starts the browser in another thread, avoiding hangs in some circumstances, especially with Firefox’s Developer Edition (#7158). Finally, a bug in the Source Code Pro font may cause browsers to hang, so this font is no longer chosen by default (#7714).

  • funcsave gained a new --directory option to specify the location of the saved function (#7041).

  • help works properly on MSYS2 (#7113) and only uses cmd.exe if running on WSL (#6797).

  • Resuming a piped job by its number, like fg %1, works correctly (#7406). Resumed jobs show the correct title in the terminal emulator (#7444).

  • Commands run from key bindings now use the same TTY modes as normal commands (#7483).

  • Autosuggestions from history are now case-sensitive (#3978).

  • $status from completion scripts is no longer passed outside the completion, which keeps the status display in the prompt as the last command’s status (#7555).

  • Updated localisations for pt_BR (#7480).

  • fish_trace output now starts with -> (like fish --profile), making the depth more visible (#7538).

  • Resizing the terminal window no longer produces a corrupted prompt (#6532, #7404).

  • functions produces an error rather than crashing on certain invalid arguments (#7515).

  • A crash in completions with inline variable assignment (eg A= b) has been fixed (#7344).

  • fish_private_mode may now be changed dynamically using set (#7589), and history is kept in memory in private mode (but not stored permanently) (#7590).

  • Commands with leading spaces may be retrieved from history with up-arrow until a new command is run, matching zsh’s HIST_IGNORE_SPACE (#1383).

  • Importing bash history or reporting errors with recursive globs (**) no longer hangs (#7407, #7497).

  • bind now shows \x7f for the del key instead of a literal DEL character (#7631)

  • Paths containing variables or tilde expansion are only suggested when they are still valid (#7582).

  • Syntax highlighting can now color a command as invalid even if executed quickly (#5912).

  • Redirection targets are no longer highlighted as error if they contain variables which will likely be defined by the current commandline (#6654).

  • fish is now more resilient against broken terminal modes (#7133, #4873).

  • fish handles being in control of the TTY without owning its own process group better, avoiding some hangs in special configurations (#7388).

  • Keywords can now be colored differently by setting the fish_color_keyword variable (fish_color_command is used as a fallback) (#7678).

  • Just like fish_indent, the interactive reader will indent continuation lines that follow a line ending in a backslash, |, && or || (#7694).

  • Commands with a trailing escaped space are saved in history correctly (#7661).

  • fish_prompt no longer mangles Unicode characters in the private-use range U+F600-U+F700. (#7723).

  • The universal variable file, fish_variables, can be made a symbolic link without it being overwritten (#7466).

  • fish is now more resilient against mktemp failing (#7482).

New or improved bindings

  • As mentioned above, new special input functions undo (Control+_ or Control+Z) and redo (Alt-/) can be used to revert changes to the command line or the pager search field (#6570).

  • Control-Z is now available for binding (#7152).

  • Additionally, using the cancel special input function (bound to Escape by default) right after fish picked an unambiguous completion will undo that (#7433).

  • fish_clipboard_paste (Control+V) trims indentation from multiline commands, because fish already indents (#7662).

  • Vi mode bindings now support dh, dl, c0, cf, ct, cF, cT, ch, cl, y0, ci, ca, yi, ya, di, da, d;, d,, o, O and Control+left/right keys to navigate by word (#6648, #6755, #6769, #7442, #7516).

  • Vi mode bindings support ~ (tilde) to toggle the case of the selected character (#6908).

  • Functions up-or-search and down-or-search (Up and Down) can cross empty lines, and don’t activate search mode if the search fails, which makes them easier to use to move between lines in some situations.

  • If history search fails to find a match, the cursor is no longer moved. This is useful when accidentally starting a history search on a multi-line commandline.

  • The special input function beginning-of-history (Page Up) now moves to the oldest search instead of the youngest - that’s end-of-history (Page Down).

  • A new special input function forward-single-char moves one character to the right, and if an autosuggestion is available, only take a single character from it (#7217, #4984).

  • Special input functions can now be joined with or as a modifier (adding to and), though only some commands set an exit status (#7217). This includes suppress-autosuggestion to reflect whether an autosuggestion was suppressed (#1419)

  • A new function __fish_preview_current_file, bound to Alt+O, opens the current file at the cursor in a pager (#6838, #6855).

  • edit_command_buffer (Alt-E and Alt-V) passes the cursor position to the external editor if the editor is recognized (#6138, #6954).

  • __fish_prepend_sudo (Alt-S) now toggles a sudo prefix (#7012) and avoids shifting the cursor (#6542).

  • __fish_prepend_sudo (Alt-S) now uses the previous commandline if the current one is empty, to simplify rerunning the previous command with sudo (#7079).

  • __fish_toggle_comment_commandline (Alt-#) now uncomments and presents the last comment from history if the commandline is empty (#7137).

  • __fish_whatis_current_token (Alt-W) prints descriptions for functions and builtins (#7191, #2083).

  • The definition of “word” and “bigword” for movements was refined, fixing (eg) vi mode’s behavior with e on the second-to-last char, and bigword’s behavior with single-character words and non-blank non-graphical characters (#7353, #7354, #4025, #7328, #7325)

  • fish’s clipboard bindings now also support Windows Subsystem for Linux via PowerShell and clip.exe (#7455, #7458) and will properly copy newlines in multi-line commands.

  • Using the *-jump special input functions before typing anything else no longer crashes fish.

  • Completing variable overrides (foo=bar) could replace the entire thing with just the completion in some circumstances. This has been fixed (#7398).

Improved prompts

  • The default and example prompts print the correct exit status for commands prefixed with not (#6566).

  • git prompts include all untracked files in the repository, not just those in the current directory (#6086).

  • The git prompts correctly show stash states (#6876, #7136) and clean states (#7471).

  • The Mercurial prompt correctly shows untracked status (#6906), and by default only shows the branch for performance reasons. A new variable $fish_prompt_hg_show_informative_status can be set to enable more information.

  • The fish_vcs_prompt passes its arguments to the various VCS prompts that it calls (#7033).

  • The Subversion prompt was broken in a number of ways in 3.1.0 and has been restored (#6715, #7278).

  • A new helper function fish_is_root_user simplifies checking for superuser privilege (#7031, #7123).

  • New colorschemes - ayu Light, ayu Dark and ayu Mirage (#7596).

  • Bugs related to multiline prompts, including repainting (#5860) or navigating directory history (#3550) leading to graphical glitches have been fixed.

  • The nim prompt now handles vi mode better (#6802)

Improved terminal support

  • A new variable, fish_vi_force_cursor, can be set to force fish_vi_cursor to attempt changing the cursor shape in vi mode, regardless of terminal (#6968). The fish_vi_cursor option --force-iterm has been deprecated.

  • diff will now colourize output, if supported (#7308).

  • Autosuggestions appear when the cursor passes the right prompt (#6948) or wraps to the next line (#7213).

  • The cursor shape in Vi mode changes properly in Windows Terminal (#6999, #6478).

  • The spurious warning about terminal size in small terminals has been removed (#6980).

  • Dynamic titles are now enabled in Alacritty (#7073) and emacs’ vterm (#7122).

  • Current working directory updates are enabled in foot (#7099) and WezTerm (#7649).

  • The width computation for certain emoji agrees better with terminals (especially flags). (#7237).

  • Long command lines are wrapped in all cases, instead of sometimes being put on a new line (#5118).

  • The pager is properly rendered with long command lines selected (#2557).

  • Sessions with right prompts can be resized correctly in terminals that handle reflow, like GNOME Terminal (and other VTE-based terminals), upcoming Konsole releases and Alacritty. This detection can be overridden with the new fish_handle_reflow variable (#7491).

  • fish now sets terminal modes sooner, which stops output from appearing before the greeting and prompt are ready (#7489).

  • Better detection of new Konsole versions for true color support and cursor shape changing.

  • fish no longer attempts to modify the terminal size via TIOCSWINSZ, improving compatibility with Kitty (#6994).


  • Added completions for

    • 7z, 7za and 7zr (#7220)

    • alias (#7035)

    • alternatives (#7616)

    • apk (#7108)

    • asciidoctor (#7000)

    • avifdec and avifenc (#7674)

    • bluetoothctl (#7438)

    • cjxl and djxl (#7673)

    • cmark (#7000)

    • create_ap (#7096)

    • deno (#7138)

    • dhclient (#6684)

    • Postgres-related commands dropdb, createdb, pg_restore, pg_dump and pg_dumpall (#6620)

    • dotnet (#7558)

    • downgrade (#6751)

    • gapplication, gdbus, gio and gresource (#7300)

    • gh (#7112)

    • gitk

    • groups (#6889)

    • hashcat (#7746)

    • hikari (#7083)

    • icdiff (#7503)

    • imv (#6675)

    • john (#7746)

    • julia (#7468)

    • k3d (#7202)

    • ldapsearch (#7578)

    • lightdm and dm-tool (#7624)

    • losetup (#7621)

    • micro (#7339)

    • mpc (#7169)

    • Metasploit’s msfconsole, msfdb and msfvenom (#6930)

    • mtr (#7638)

    • mysql (#6819)

    • ncat, nc.openbsd, nc.traditional and nmap (#6873)

    • openssl (#6845)

    • prime-run (#7241)

    • ps2pdf{12,13,14,wr} (#6673)

    • pyenv (#6551)

    • rst2html, rst2html4, rst2html5, rst2latex, rst2man, rst2odt, rst2pseudoxml, rst2s5, rst2xetex, rst2xml and rstpep2html (#7019)

    • spago (#7381)

    • sphinx-apidoc, sphinx-autogen, sphinx-build and sphinx-quickstart (#7000)

    • strace (#6656)

    • systemd’s bootctl, coredumpctl, hostnamectl (#7428), homectl (#7435), networkctl (#7668) and userdbctl (#7667)

    • tcpdump (#6690)

    • tig

    • traceroute and tracepath (#6803)

    • windscribe (#6788)

    • wireshark, tshark, and dumpcap

    • xbps-* (#7239)

    • xxhsum, xxh32sum, xxh64sum and xxh128sum (#7103)

    • yadm (#7100)

    • zopfli and zopflipng (#6872)

  • Lots of improvements to completions, including:

    • git completions can complete the right and left parts of a commit range like or left...right.

    • Completion scripts for custom Git subcommands like git-xyz are now loaded with Git completions. The completions can now be defined directly on the subcommand (using complete git-xyz), and completion for git xyz will work. (#7075, #7652, #4358)

    • make completions no longer second-guess make’s file detection, fixing target completion in some cases (#7535).

    • Command completions now correctly print the description even if the command was fully matched (like in ls<TAB>).

    • set completions no longer hide variables starting with __, they are sorted last instead.

  • Improvements to the manual page completion generator (#7086, #6879, #7187).

  • Significant performance improvements to completion of the available commands (#7153), especially on macOS Big Sur where there was a significant regression (#7365, #7511).

  • Suffix completion using __fish_complete_suffix uses the same fuzzy matching logic as normal file completion, and completes any file but sorts files with matching suffix first (#7040, #7547). Previously, it only completed files with matching suffix.

For distributors

  • fish has a new interactive test driver based on pexpect, removing the optional dependency on expect (and adding an optional dependency on pexpect) (#5451, #6825).

  • The CHANGELOG was moved to restructured text, allowing it to be included in the documentation (#7057).

  • fish handles ncurses installed in a non-standard prefix better (#6600, #7219), and uses variadic tparm on NetBSD curses (#6626).

  • The Web-based configuration tool no longer uses an obsolete Angular version (#7147).

  • The fish project has adopted the Contributor Covenant code of conduct (#7151).

Deprecations and removed features

  • The fish_color_match variable is no longer used. (Previously this controlled the color of matching quotes and parens when using read).

  • fish 3.2.0 will be the last release in which the redirection to standard error with the ^ character is enabled. The stderr-nocaret feature flag will be changed to “on” in future releases.

  • string is now a reserved word and cannot be used for function names (see above).

  • fish_vi_cursor’s option --force-iterm has been deprecated (see above).

  • command, jobs and type long-form option --quiet is deprecated in favor of --query (see above).

  • The fish_command_not_found event is no longer emitted, instead there is a function of that name. By default it will call a previously-defined __fish_command_not_found_handler. To emit the event manually use emit fish_command_not_found.

  • The fish_prompt event no longer fires when read is used. If you need a function to run any time read is invoked by a script, use the new fish_read event instead (#7039).

  • To disable the greeting message permanently it is no longer enough to just run set fish_greeting interactively as it is no longer implicitly a universal variable. Use set -U fish_greeting or disable it in with set -g fish_greeting.

  • The long-deprecated and non-functional -m/--read-mode options to read were removed in 3.1b1. Using the short form, or a never-implemented -B option, no longer crashes fish (#7659).

  • With the addition of new categories for debug options, the old numbered debugging levels have been removed.

For distributors and developers

  • fish source tarballs are now distributed using the XZ compression method (#5460).

  • The fish source tarball contains an example FreeDesktop entry and icon.

  • The CMake variable MAC_CODESIGN_ID can now be set to “off” to disable code-signing (#6952, #6792).

  • Building on on macOS earlier than 10.13.6 succeeds, instead of failing on code-signing (#6791).

  • The pkg-config file now uses variables to ensure paths used are portable across prefixes.

  • The default values for the extra_completionsdir, extra_functionsdir and extra_confdir options now use the installation prefix rather than /usr/local (#6778).

  • A new CMake variable FISH_USE_SYSTEM_PCRE2 controls whether fish builds with the system-installed PCRE2, or the version it bundles. By default it prefers the system library if available, unless Mac codesigning is enabled (#6952).

  • Running the full interactive test suite now requires Python 3.5+ and the pexpect package (#6825); the expect package is no longer required.

  • Support for Python 2 in fish’s tools (fish_config and the manual page completion generator) is no longer guaranteed. Please use Python 3.5 or later (#6537).

  • The Web-based configuration tool is compatible with Python 3.10 (#7600) and no longer requires Python’s distutils package (#7514).

  • fish 3.2 is the last release to support Red Hat Enterprise Linux & CentOS version 6.

fish 3.1.2 (released April 29, 2020)

This release of fish fixes a major issue discovered in fish 3.1.1:

  • Commands such as fzf and enhancd, when used with eval, would hang. eval buffered output too aggressively, which has been fixed (#6955).

If you are upgrading from version 3.0.0 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.1.1, 3.1.0 and 3.1b1 (included below).

fish 3.1.1 (released April 27, 2020)

This release of fish fixes a number of major issues discovered in fish 3.1.0.

  • Commands which involve . ( ... | psub) now work correctly, as a bug in the function --on-job-exit option has been fixed (#6613).

  • Conflicts between upstream packages for ripgrep and bat, and the fish packages, have been resolved (#5822).

  • Starting fish in a directory without read access, such as via su, no longer crashes (#6597).

  • Glob ordering changes which were introduced in 3.1.0 have been reverted, returning the order of globs to the previous state (#6593).

  • Redirections using the deprecated caret syntax to a file descriptor (eg ^&2) work correctly (#6591).

  • Redirections that append to a file descriptor (eg 2>>&1) work correctly (#6614).

  • Building fish on macOS (#6602) or with new versions of GCC (#6604, #6609) is now successful.

  • time is now correctly listed in the output of builtin -n, and time --help works correctly (#6598).

  • Exported universal variables now update properly (#6612).

  • status current-command gives the expected output when used with an environment override - that is, F=B status current-command returns status instead of F=B (#6635).

  • test no longer crashes when used with “nan” or “inf” arguments, erroring out instead (#6655).

  • Copying from the end of the command line no longer crashes fish (#6680).

  • read no longer removes multiple separators when splitting a variable into a list, restoring the previous behaviour from fish 3.0 and before (#6650).

  • Functions using --on-job-exit and --on-process-exit work reliably again (#6679).

  • Functions using --on-signal INT work reliably in interactive sessions, as they did in fish 2.7 and before (#6649). These handlers have never worked in non-interactive sessions, and making them work is an ongoing process.

  • Functions using --on-variable work reliably with variables which are set implicitly (rather than with set), such as “fish_bind_mode” and “PWD” (#6653).

  • 256 colors are properly enabled under certain conditions that were incorrectly detected in fish 3.1.0 ($TERM begins with xterm, does not include “256color”, and $TERM_PROGRAM is not set) (#6701).

  • The Mercurial (hg) prompt no longer produces an error when the current working directory is removed (#6699). Also, for performance reasons it shows only basic information by default; to restore the detailed status, set $fish_prompt_hg_show_informative_status.

  • The VCS prompt, fish_vcs_prompt, no longer displays Subversion (svn) status by default, due to the potential slowness of this operation (#6681).

  • Pasting of commands has been sped up (#6713).

  • Using extended Unicode characters, such as emoji, in a non-Unicode capable locale (such as the C or POSIX locale) no longer renders all output blank (#6736).

  • help prefers to use xdg-open, avoiding the use of open on Debian systems where this command is actually openvt (#6739).

  • Command lines starting with a space, which are not saved in history, now do not get autosuggestions. This fixes an issue with Midnight Commander integration (#6763), but may be changed in a future version.

  • Copying to the clipboard no longer inserts a newline at the end of the content, matching fish 2.7 and earlier (#6927).

  • fzf in complex pipes no longer hangs. More generally, code run as part of command substitutions or eval will no longer have separate process groups. (#6624, #6806).

This release also includes:

  • several changes to improve macOS compatibility with code signing and notarization;

  • several improvements to completions; and

  • several content and formatting improvements to the documentation.

If you are upgrading from version 3.0.0 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.1.0 and 3.1b1 (included below).

Errata for fish 3.1

A new builtin, time, was introduced in the fish 3.1 releases. This builtin is a reserved word (like test, function, and others) because of the way it is implemented, and functions can no longer be named time. This was not clear in the fish 3.1b1 changelog.

fish 3.1.0 (released February 12, 2020)

Compared to the beta release of fish 3.1b1, fish version 3.1.0:

  • Fixes a regression where spaces after a brace were removed despite brace expansion not occurring (#6564).

  • Fixes a number of problems in compiling and testing on Cygwin (#6549) and Solaris-derived systems such as Illumos (#6553, #6554, #6555, #6556, and #6558).

  • Fixes the process for building macOS packages.

  • Fixes a regression where excessive error messages are printed if Unicode characters are emitted in non-Unicode-capable locales (#6584).

  • Contains some improvements to the documentation and a small number of completions.

If you are upgrading from version 3.0.0 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.1b1 (included below).

fish 3.1b1 (released January 26, 2020)

Notable improvements and fixes

  • A new $pipestatus variable contains a list of exit statuses of the previous job, for each of the separate commands in a pipeline (#5632).

  • fish no longer buffers pipes to the last function in a pipeline, improving many cases where pipes appeared to block or hang (#1396).

  • An overhaul of error messages for builtin commands, including a removal of the overwhelming usage summary, more readable stack traces (#3404, #5434), and stack traces for test (aka [) (#5771).

  • fish’s debugging arguments have been significantly improved. The --debug-level option has been removed, and a new --debug option replaces it. This option accepts various categories, which may be listed via fish --print-debug-categories (#5879). A new --debug-output option allows for redirection of debug output.

  • string has a new collect subcommand for use in command substitutions, producing a single output instead of splitting on new lines (similar to "$(cmd)" in other shells) (#159).

  • The fish manual, tutorial and FAQ are now available in man format as fish-doc, fish-tutorial and fish-faq respectively (#5521).

  • Like other shells, cd now always looks for its argument in the current directory as a last resort, even if the CDPATH variable does not include it or “.” (#4484).

  • fish now correctly handles CDPATH entries that start with .. (#6220) or contain ./ (#5887).

  • The fish_trace variable may be set to trace execution (#3427). This performs a similar role as set -x in other shells.

  • fish uses the temporary directory determined by the system, rather than relying on /tmp (#3845).

  • The fish Web configuration tool (fish_config) prints a list of commands it is executing, to help understanding and debugging (#5584).

  • Major performance improvements when pasting (#5866), executing lots of commands (#5905), importing history from bash (#6295), and when completing variables that might match $history (#6288).

Syntax changes and new commands

  • A new builtin command, time, which allows timing of fish functions and builtins as well as external commands (#117).

  • Brace expansion now only takes place if the braces include a “,” or a variable expansion, meaning common commands such as git reset HEAD@{0} do not require escaping (#5869).

  • New redirections &> and &| may be used to redirect or pipe stdout, and also redirect stderr to stdout (#6192).

  • switch now allows arguments that expand to nothing, like empty variables (#5677).

  • The VAR=val cmd syntax can now be used to run a command in a modified environment (#6287).

  • and is no longer recognised as a command, so that nonsensical constructs like and and and produce a syntax error (#6089).

  • math‘s exponent operator,’^‘, was previously left-associative, but now uses the more commonly-used right-associative behaviour (#6280). This means that math '3^0.5^2' was previously calculated as’(30.5)2’, but is now calculated as ‘3(0.52)’.

  • In fish 3.0, the variable used with for loops inside command substitutions could leak into enclosing scopes; this was an inadvertent behaviour change and has been reverted (#6480).

Scripting improvements

  • string split0 now returns 0 if it split something (#5701).

  • In the interest of consistency, builtin -q and command -q can now be used to query if a builtin or command exists (#5631).

  • math now accepts --scale=max for the maximum scale (#5579).

  • builtin $var now works correctly, allowing a variable as the builtin name (#5639).

  • cd understands the -- argument to make it possible to change to directories starting with a hyphen (#6071).

  • complete --do-complete now also does fuzzy matches (#5467).

  • complete --do-complete can be used inside completions, allowing limited recursion (#3474).

  • count now also counts lines fed on standard input (#5744).

  • eval produces an exit status of 0 when given no arguments, like other shells (#5692).

  • printf prints what it can when input hasn’t been fully converted to a number, but still prints an error (#5532).

  • complete -C foo now works as expected, rather than requiring complete -Cfoo.

  • complete has a new --force-files option, to re-enable file completions. This allows sudo -E and pacman -Qo to complete correctly (#5646).

  • argparse now defaults to showing the current function name (instead of argparse) in its errors, making --name often superfluous (#5835).

  • argparse has a new --ignore-unknown option to keep unrecognized options, allowing multiple argparse passes to parse options (#5367).

  • argparse correctly handles flag value validation of options that only have short names (#5864).

  • read -S (short option of --shell) is recognised correctly (#5660).

  • read understands --list, which acts like --array in reading all arguments into a list inside a single variable, but is better named (#5846).

  • read has a new option, --tokenize, which splits a string into variables according to the shell’s tokenization rules, considering quoting, escaping, and so on (#3823).

  • read interacts more correctly with the deprecated $IFS variable, in particular removing multiple separators when splitting a variable into a list (#6406), matching other shells.

  • fish_indent now handles semicolons better, including leaving them in place for ; and and ; or instead of breaking the line (#5859).

  • fish_indent --write now supports multiple file arguments, indenting them in turn.

  • The default read limit has been increased to 100MiB (#5267).

  • math now also understands x for multiplication, provided it is followed by whitespace (#5906).

  • math reports the right error when incorrect syntax is used inside parentheses (#6063), and warns when unsupported logical operations are used (#6096).

  • functions --erase now also prevents fish from autoloading a function for the first time (#5951).

  • jobs --last returns 0 to indicate success when a job is found (#6104).

  • commandline -p and commandline -j now split on && and || in addition to ; and & (#6214).

  • A bug where string split would drop empty strings if the output was only empty strings has been fixed (#5987).

  • eval no long creates a new local variable scope, but affects variables in the scope it is called from (#4443). source still creates a new local scope.

  • abbr has a new --query option to check for the existence of an abbreviation.

  • Local values for fish_complete_path and fish_function_path are now ignored; only their global values are respected.

  • Syntax error reports now display a marker in the correct position (#5812).

  • Empty universal variables may now be exported (#5992).

  • Exported universal variables are no longer imported into the global scope, preventing shadowing. This makes it easier to change such variables for all fish sessions and avoids breakage when the value is a list of multiple elements (#5258).

  • A bug where for could use invalid variable names has been fixed (#5800).

  • A bug where local variables would not be exported to functions has been fixed (#6153).

  • The null command (:) now always exits successfully, rather than passing through the previous exit status (#6022).

  • The output of functions FUNCTION matches the declaration of the function, correctly including comments or blank lines (#5285), and correctly includes any --wraps flags (#1625).

  • type supports a new option, --short, which suppress function expansion (#6403).

  • type --path with a function argument will now output the path to the file containing the definition of that function, if it exists.

  • type --force-path with an argument that cannot be found now correctly outputs nothing, as documented (#6411).

  • The $hostname variable is no longer truncated to 32 characters (#5758).

  • Line numbers in function backtraces are calculated correctly (#6350).

  • A new fish_cancel event is emitted when the command line is cancelled, which is useful for terminal integration (#5973).

Interactive improvements

  • New Base16 color options are available through the Web-based configuration (#6504).

  • fish only parses /etc/paths on macOS in login shells, matching the bash implementation (#5637) and avoiding changes to path ordering in child shells (#5456). It now ignores blank lines like the bash implementation (#5809).

  • The locale is now reloaded when the LOCPATH variable is changed (#5815).

  • read no longer keeps a history, making it suitable for operations that shouldn’t end up there, like password entry (#5904).

  • dirh outputs its stack in the correct order (#5477), and behaves as documented when universal variables are used for its stack (#5797).

  • funced and the edit-commandline-in-buffer bindings did not work in fish 3.0 when the $EDITOR variable contained spaces; this has been corrected (#5625).

  • Builtins now pipe their help output to a pager automatically (#6227).

  • set_color now colors the --print-colors output in the matching colors if it is going to a terminal.

  • fish now underlines every valid entered path instead of just the last one (#5872).

  • When syntax highlighting a string with an unclosed quote, only the quote itself will be shown as an error, instead of the whole argument.

  • Syntax highlighting works correctly with variables as commands (#5658) and redirections to close file descriptors (#6092).

  • help works properly on Windows Subsytem for Linux (#5759, #6338).

  • A bug where disown could crash the shell has been fixed (#5720).

  • fish will not autosuggest files ending with ~ unless there are no other candidates, as these are generally backup files (#985).

  • Escape in the pager works correctly (#5818).

  • Key bindings that call fg no longer leave the terminal in a broken state (#2114).

  • Brackets (#5831) and filenames containing $ (#6060) are completed with appropriate escaping.

  • The output of complete and functions is now colorized in interactive terminals.

  • The Web-based configuration handles aliases that include single quotes correctly (#6120), and launches correctly under Termux (#6248) and OpenBSD (#6522).

  • function now correctly validates parameters for --argument-names as valid variable names (#6147) and correctly parses options following --argument-names, as in “--argument-names foo --description bar” (#6186).

  • History newly imported from bash includes command lines using && or ||.

  • The automatic generation of completions from manual pages is better described in job and process listings, and no longer produces a warning when exiting fish (#6269).

  • In private mode, setting $fish_greeting to an empty string before starting the private session will prevent the warning about history not being saved from being printed (#6299).

  • In the interactive editor, a line break (Enter) inside unclosed brackets will insert a new line, rather than executing the command and producing an error (#6316).

  • Ctrl-C always repaints the prompt (#6394).

  • When run interactively from another program (such as Python), fish will correctly start a new process group, like other shells (#5909).

  • Job identifiers (for example, for background jobs) are assigned more logically (#6053).

  • A bug where history would appear truncated if an empty command was executed was fixed (#6032).

New or improved bindings

  • Pasting strips leading spaces to avoid pasted commands being omitted from the history (#4327).

  • Shift-Left and Shift-Right now default to moving backwards and forwards by one bigword (words separated by whitespace) (#1505).

  • The default escape delay (to differentiate between the escape key and an alt-combination) has been reduced to 30ms, down from 300ms for the default mode and 100ms for Vi mode (#3904).

  • The forward-bigword binding now interacts correctly with autosuggestions (#5336).

  • The fish_clipboard_* functions support Wayland by using wl-clipboard (#5450).

  • The nextd and prevd functions no longer print “Hit end of history”, instead using a bell. They correctly store working directories containing symbolic links (#6395).

  • If a fish_mode_prompt function exists, Vi mode will only execute it on mode-switch instead of the entire prompt. This should make it much more responsive with slow prompts (#5783).

  • The path-component bindings (like Ctrl-w) now also stop at “:” and “@”, because those are used to denote user and host in commands such as ssh (#5841).

  • The NULL character can now be bound via bind -k nul. Terminals often generate this character via control-space. (#3189).

  • A new readline command expand-abbr can be used to trigger abbreviation expansion (#5762).

  • A new readline command, delete-or-exit, removes a character to the right of the cursor or exits the shell if the command line is empty (moving this functionality out of the delete-or-exit function).

  • The self-insert readline command will now insert the binding sequence, if not empty.

  • A new binding to prepend sudo, bound to Alt-S by default (#6140).

  • The Alt-W binding to describe a command should now work better with multiline prompts (#6110)

  • The Alt-H binding to open a command’s man page now tries to ignore sudo (#6122).

  • A new pair of bind functions, history-prefix-search-backward (and forward), was introduced (#6143).

  • Vi mode now supports R to enter replace mode (#6342), and d0 to delete the current line (#6292).

  • In Vi mode, hitting Enter in replace-one mode no longer erases the prompt (#6298).

  • Selections in Vi mode are inclusive, matching the actual behaviour of Vi (#5770).

Improved prompts

  • The Git prompt in informative mode now shows the number of stashes if enabled.

  • The Git prompt now has an option ($__fish_git_prompt_use_informative_chars) to use the (more modern) informative characters without enabling informative mode.

  • The default prompt now also features VCS integration and will color the host if running via SSH (#6375).

  • The default and example prompts print the pipe status if an earlier command in the pipe fails.

  • The default and example prompts try to resolve exit statuses to signal names when appropriate.

Improved terminal output

  • New fish_pager_color_ options have been added to control more elements of the pager’s colors (#5524).

  • Better detection and support for using fish from various system consoles, where limited colors and special characters are supported (#5552).

  • fish now tries to guess if the system supports Unicode 9 (and displays emoji as wide), eliminating the need to set $fish_emoji_width in most cases (#5722).

  • Improvements to the display of wide characters, particularly Korean characters and emoji (#5583, #5729).

  • The Vi mode cursor is correctly redrawn when regaining focus under terminals that report focus (eg tmux) (#4788).

  • Variables that control background colors (such as fish_pager_color_search_match) can now use --reverse.


  • Added completions for

  • Lots of improvements to completions.

  • Selecting short options which also have a long name from the completion pager is possible (#5634).

  • Tab completion will no longer add trailing spaces if they already exist (#6107).

  • Completion of subcommands to builtins like and or not now works correctly (#6249).

  • Completion of arguments to short options works correctly when multiple short options are used together (#332).

  • Activating completion in the middle of an invalid completion does not move the cursor any more, making it easier to fix a mistake (#4124).

  • Completion in empty commandlines now lists all available commands.

  • Functions listed as completions could previously leak parts of the function as other completions; this has been fixed.

Deprecations and removed features

  • The vcs-prompt functions have been promoted to names without double-underscore, so __fish_git_prompt is now fish_git_prompt, __fish_vcs_prompt is now fish_vcs_prompt, __fish_hg_prompt is now fish_hg_prompt and __fish_svn_prompt is now fish_svn_prompt. Shims at the old names have been added, and the variables have kept their old names (#5586).

  • string replace has an additional round of escaping in the replacement expression, so escaping backslashes requires many escapes (eg string replace -ra '([ab])' '\\\\\\\$1' a). The new feature flag regex-easyesc can be used to disable this, so that the same effect can be achieved with string replace -ra '([ab])' '\\\\$1' a (#5556). As a reminder, the intention behind feature flags is that this will eventually become the default and then only option, so scripts should be updated.

  • The fish_vi_mode function, deprecated in fish 2.3, has been removed. Use fish_vi_key_bindings instead (#6372).

For distributors and developers

  • fish 3.0 introduced a CMake-based build system. In fish 3.1, both the Autotools-based build and legacy Xcode build system have been removed, leaving only the CMake build system. All distributors and developers must install CMake.

  • fish now depends on the common tee external command, for the psub process substitution function.

  • The documentation is now built with Sphinx. The old Doxygen-based documentation system has been removed. Developers, and distributors who wish to rebuild the documentation, must install Sphinx.

  • The INTERNAL_WCWIDTH build option has been removed, as fish now always uses an internal wcwidth function. It has a number of configuration options that make it more suitable for general use (#5777).

  • mandoc can now be used to format the output from --help if nroff is not installed, reducing the number of external dependencies on systems with mandoc installed (#5489).

  • Some bugs preventing building on Solaris-derived systems such as Illumos were fixed (#5458, #5461, #5611).

  • Completions for npm, bower and yarn no longer require the jq utility for full functionality, but will use Python instead if it is available.

  • The paths for completions, functions and configuration snippets have been extended. On systems that define XDG_DATA_DIRS, each of the directories in this variable are searched in the subdirectories fish/vendor_completions.d, fish/vendor_functions.d, and fish/vendor_conf.d respectively. On systems that do not define this variable in the environment, the vendor directories are searched for in both the installation prefix and the default “extra” directory, which now defaults to /usr/local (#5029).

fish 3.0.2 (released February 19, 2019)

This release of fish fixes an issue discovered in fish 3.0.1.

Fixes and improvements

  • The PWD environment variable is now ignored if it does not resolve to the true working directory, fixing strange behaviour in terminals started by editors and IDEs (#5647).

If you are upgrading from version 2.7.1 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.0.1, 3.0.0 and 3.0b1 (included below).

fish 3.0.1 (released February 11, 2019)

This release of fish fixes a number of major issues discovered in fish 3.0.0.

Fixes and improvements

  • exec does not complain about running foreground jobs when called (#5449).

  • while loops now evaluate to the last executed command in the loop body (or zero if the body was empty), matching POSIX semantics (#4982).

  • read --silent no longer echoes to the tty when run from a non-interactive script (#5519).

  • On macOS, path entries with spaces in /etc/paths and /etc/paths.d now correctly set path entries with spaces. Likewise, MANPATH is correctly set from /etc/manpaths and /etc/manpaths.d (#5481).

  • fish starts correctly under Cygwin/MSYS2 (#5426).

  • The pager-toggle-search binding (Ctrl-S by default) will now activate the search field, even when the pager is not focused.

  • The error when a command is not found is now printed a single time, instead of once per argument (#5588).

  • Fixes and improvements to the git completions, including printing correct paths with older git versions, fuzzy matching again, reducing unnecessary offers of root paths (starting with :/) (#5578, #5574, #5476), and ignoring shell aliases, so enterprising users can set up the wrapping command (via set -g __fish_git_alias_$command $whatitwraps) (#5412).

  • Significant performance improvements to core shell functions (#5447) and to the kill completions (#5541).

  • Starting in symbolically-linked working directories works correctly (#5525).

  • The default fish_title function no longer contains extra spaces (#5517).

  • The nim prompt now works correctly when chosen in the Web-based configuration (#5490).

  • string now prints help to stdout, like other builtins (#5495).

  • Killing the terminal while fish is in vi normal mode will no longer send it spinning and eating CPU. (#5528)

  • A number of crashes have been fixed (#5550, #5548, #5479, #5453).

  • Improvements to the documentation and certain completions.

Known issues

There is one significant known issue that was not corrected before the release:

  • fish does not run correctly under Windows Services for Linux before Windows 10 version 1809/17763, and the message warning of this may not be displayed (#5619).

If you are upgrading from version 2.7.1 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.0.0 and 3.0b1 (included below).

fish 3.0.0 (released December 28, 2018)

fish 3 is a major release, which introduces some breaking changes alongside improved functionality. Although most existing scripts will continue to work, they should be reviewed against the list contained in the 3.0b1 release notes below.

Compared to the beta release of fish 3.0b1, fish version 3.0.0:

  • builds correctly against musl libc (#5407)

  • handles huge numeric arguments to test correctly (#5414)

  • removes the history colouring introduced in 3.0b1, which did not always work correctly

There is one significant known issue which was not able to be corrected before the release:

  • fish 3.0.0 builds on Cygwin (#5423), but does not run correctly (#5426) and will result in a hanging terminal when started. Cygwin users are encouraged to continue using 2.7.1 until a release which corrects this is available.

If you are upgrading from version 2.7.1 or before, please also review the release notes for 3.0b1 (included below).

fish 3.0b1 (released December 11, 2018)

fish 3 is a major release, which introduces some breaking changes alongside improved functionality. Although most existing scripts will continue to work, they should be reviewed against the list below.

Notable non-backward compatible changes

  • Process and job expansion has largely been removed. % will no longer perform these expansions, except for %self for the PID of the current shell. Additionally, job management commands (disown, wait, bg, fg and kill) will expand job specifiers starting with % (#4230, #1202).

  • set x[1] x[2] a b, to set multiple elements of an array at once, is no longer valid syntax (#4236).

  • A literal {} now expands to itself, rather than nothing. This makes working with find -exec easier (#1109, #4632).

  • Literally accessing a zero-index is now illegal syntax and is caught by the parser (#4862). (fish indices start at 1)

  • Successive commas in brace expansions are handled in less surprising manner. For example, {,,,} expands to four empty strings rather than an empty string, a comma and an empty string again (#3002, #4632).

  • for loop control variables are no longer local to the for block (#1935).

  • Variables set in if and while conditions are available outside the block (#4820).

  • Local exported (set -lx) vars are now visible to functions (#1091).

  • The new math builtin (see below) does not support logical expressions; test should be used instead (#4777).

  • Range expansion will now behave sensibly when given a single positive and negative index ($foo[5..-1] or $foo[-1..5]), clamping to the last valid index without changing direction if the list has fewer elements than expected.

  • read now uses -s as short for --silent (à la bash); --shell’s abbreviation (formerly -s) is now -S instead (#4490).

  • cd no longer resolves symlinks. fish now maintains a virtual path, matching other shells (#3350).

  • source now requires an explicit - as the filename to read from the terminal (#2633).

  • Arguments to end are now errors, instead of being silently ignored.

  • The names argparse, read, set, status, test and [ are now reserved and not allowed as function names. This prevents users unintentionally breaking stuff (#3000).

  • The fish_user_abbreviations variable is no longer used; abbreviations will be migrated to the new storage format automatically.

  • The FISH_READ_BYTE_LIMIT variable is now called fish_byte_limit (#4414).

  • Environment variables are no longer split into arrays based on the record separator character on startup. Instead, variables are not split, unless their name ends in PATH, in which case they are split on colons (#436).

  • The history builtin’s --with-time option has been removed; this has been deprecated in favor of --show-time since 2.7.0 (#4403).

  • The internal variables __fish_datadir and __fish_sysconfdir are now known as __fish_data_dir and __fish_sysconf_dir respectively.


With the release of fish 3, a number of features have been marked for removal in the future. All users are encouraged to explore alternatives. A small number of these features are currently behind feature flags, which are turned on at present but may be turned off by default in the future.

A new feature flags mechanism is added for staging deprecations and breaking changes. Feature flags may be specified at launch with fish --features ... or by setting the universal fish_features variable. (#4940)

  • The use of the IFS variable for read is deprecated; IFS will be ignored in the future (#4156). Use the read --delimiter option instead.

  • The function --on-process-exit switch will be removed in future (#4700). Use the fish_exit event instead: function --on-event fish_exit.

  • $_ is deprecated and will removed in the future (#813). Use status current-command in a command substitution instead.

  • ^ as a redirection deprecated and will be removed in the future. (#4394). Use 2> to redirect stderr. This is controlled by the stderr-nocaret feature flag.

  • ? as a glob (wildcard) is deprecated and will be removed in the future (#4520). This is controlled by the qmark-noglob feature flag.

Notable fixes and improvements

Syntax changes and new commands

  • fish now supports && (like and), || (like or), and ! (like not), for better migration from POSIX-compliant shells (#4620).

  • Variables may be used as commands (#154).

  • fish may be started in private mode via fish --private. Private mode fish sessions do not have access to the history file and any commands evaluated in private mode are not persisted for future sessions. A session variable $fish_private_mode can be queried to detect private mode and adjust the behavior of scripts accordingly to respect the user’s wish for privacy.

  • A new wait command for waiting on backgrounded processes (#4498).

  • math is now a builtin rather than a wrapper around bc (#3157). Floating point computations is now used by default, and can be controlled with the new --scale option (#4478).

  • Setting $PATH no longer warns on non-existent directories, allowing for a single $PATH to be shared across machines (eg via dotfiles) (#2969).

  • while sets $status to a non-zero value if the loop is not executed (#4982).

  • Command substitution output is now limited to 10 MB by default, controlled by the fish_read_limit variable (#3822). Notably, this is larger than most operating systems’ argument size limit, so trying to pass argument lists this size to external commands has never worked.

  • The machine hostname, where available, is now exposed as the $hostname reserved variable. This removes the dependency on the hostname executable (#4422).

  • Bare bind invocations in now work. The fish_user_key_bindings function is no longer necessary, but will still be executed if it exists (#5191).

  • $fish_pid and $last_pid are available as replacements for %self and %last.

New features in commands

  • alias has a new --save option to save the generated function immediately (#4878).

  • bind has a new --silent option to ignore bind requests for named keys not available under the current terminal (#4188, #4431).

  • complete has a new --keep-order option to show the provided or dynamically-generated argument list in the same order as specified, rather than alphabetically (#361).

  • exec prompts for confirmation if background jobs are running.

  • funced has a new --save option to automatically save the edited function after successfully editing (#4668).

  • functions has a new --handlers option to show functions registered as event handlers (#4694).

  • history search supports globs for wildcard searching (#3136) and has a new --reverse option to show entries from oldest to newest (#4375).

  • jobs has a new --quiet option to silence the output.

  • read has a new --delimiter option for splitting input into arrays (#4256).

  • read writes directly to stdout if called without arguments (#4407).

  • read can now read individual lines into separate variables without consuming the input in its entirety via the new /--line option.

  • set has new --append and --prepend options (#1326).

  • string match with an empty pattern and --entire in glob mode now matches everything instead of nothing (#4971).

  • string split supports a new --no-empty option to exclude empty strings from the result (#4779).

  • string has new subcommands split0 and join0 for working with NUL-delimited output.

  • string no longer stops processing text after NUL characters (#4605)

  • string escape has a new --style regex option for escaping strings to be matched literally in string regex operations.

  • test now supports floating point values in numeric comparisons.

Interactive improvements

  • A pipe at the end of a line now allows the job to continue on the next line (#1285).

  • Italics and dim support out of the box on macOS for and iTerm (#4436).

  • cd tab completions no longer descend into the deepest unambiguous path (#4649).

  • Pager navigation has been improved. Most notably, moving down now wraps around, moving up from the commandline now jumps to the last element and moving right and left now reverse each other even when wrapping around (#4680).

  • Typing normal characters while the completion pager is active no longer shows the search field. Instead it enters them into the command line, and ends paging (#2249).

  • A new input binding pager-toggle-search toggles the search field in the completions pager on and off. By default, this is bound to Ctrl-S.

  • Searching in the pager now does a full fuzzy search (#5213).

  • The pager will now show the full command instead of just its last line if the number of completions is large (#4702).

  • Abbreviations can be tab-completed (#3233).

  • Tildes in file names are now properly escaped in completions (#2274).

  • Wrapping completions (from complete --wraps or function --wraps) can now inject arguments. For example, complete gco --wraps 'git checkout' now works properly (#1976). The alias function has been updated to respect this behavior.

  • Path completions now support expansions, meaning expressions like python ~/<TAB> now provides file suggestions just like any other relative or absolute path. (This includes support for other expansions, too.)

  • Autosuggestions try to avoid arguments that are already present in the command line.

  • Notifications about crashed processes are now always shown, even in command substitutions (#4962).

  • The screen is no longer reset after a BEL, fixing graphical glitches (#3693).

  • vi-mode now supports ‘;’ and ‘,’ motions. This introduces new {forward,backward}-jump-till and repeat-jump{,-reverse} bind functions (#5140).

  • The *y vi-mode binding now works (#5100).

  • True color is now enabled in neovim by default (#2792).

  • Terminal size variables ($COLUMNS/$LINES) are now updated before fish_prompt is called, allowing the prompt to react (#904).

  • Multi-line prompts no longer repeat when the terminal is resized (#2320).

  • xclip support has been added to the clipboard integration (#5020).

  • The Alt-P keybinding paginates the last command if the command line is empty.

  • $cmd_duration is no longer reset when no command is executed (#5011).

  • Deleting a one-character word no longer erases the next word as well (#4747).

  • Token history search (Alt-Up) omits duplicate entries (#4795).

  • The fish_escape_delay_ms timeout, allowing the use of the escape key both on its own and as part of a control sequence, was applied to all control characters; this has been reduced to just the escape key.

  • Completing a function shows the description properly (#5206).

  • Added completions for

    • ansible, including ansible-galaxy, ansible-playbook and ansible-vault (#4697)

    • bb-power (#4800)

    • bd (#4472)

    • bower

    • clang and clang++ (#4174)

    • conda (#4837)

    • configure (for autoconf-generated files only)

    • curl

    • doas (#5196)

    • ebuild (#4911)

    • emaint (#4758)

    • eopkg (#4600)

    • exercism (#4495)

    • hjson

    • hugo (#4529)

    • j (from autojump #4344)

    • jbake (#4814)

    • jhipster (#4472)

    • kitty

    • kldload

    • kldunload

    • makensis (#5242)

    • meson

    • mkdocs (#4906)

    • ngrok (#4642)

    • OpenBSD’s pkg_add, pkg_delete, pkg_info, pfctl, rcctl, signify, and vmctl (#4584)

    • openocd

    • optipng

    • opkg (#5168)

    • pandoc (#2937)

    • port (#4737)

    • powerpill (#4800)

    • pstack (#5135)

    • serve (#5026)

    • ttx

    • unzip

    • virsh (#5113)

    • xclip (#5126)

    • xsv

    • zfs and zpool (#4608)

  • Lots of improvements to completions (especially darcs (#5112), git, hg and sudo).

  • Completions for yarn and npm now require the all-the-package-names NPM package for full functionality.

  • Completions for bower and yarn now require the jq utility for full functionality.

  • Improved French translations.

Other fixes and improvements

  • Significant performance improvements to abbr (#4048), setting variables (#4200, #4341), executing functions, globs (#4579), string reading from standard input (#4610), and slicing history (in particular, $history[1] for the last executed command).

  • Fish’s internal wcwidth function has been updated to deal with newer Unicode, and the width of some characters can be configured via the fish_ambiguous_width (#5149) and fish_emoji_width (#2652) variables. Alternatively, a new build-time option INTERNAL_WCWIDTH can be used to use the system’s wcwidth instead (#4816).

  • functions correctly supports -d as the short form of --description. (#5105)

  • /etc/paths is now parsed like macOS’ bash path_helper, fixing $PATH order (#4336, #4852) on macOS.

  • Using a read-only variable in a for loop produces an error, rather than silently producing incorrect results (#4342).

  • The universal variables filename no longer contains the hostname or MAC address. It is now at the fixed location .config/fish/fish_variables (#1912).

  • Exported variables in the global or universal scope no longer have their exported status affected by local variables (#2611).

  • Major rework of terminal and job handling to eliminate bugs (#3805, #3952, #4178, #4235, #4238, #4540, #4929, #5210).

  • Improvements to the manual page completion generator (#2937, #4313).

  • suspend --force now works correctly (#4672).

  • Pressing Ctrl-C while running a script now reliably terminates fish (#5253).

For distributors and developers

  • fish ships with a new build system based on CMake. CMake 3.2 is the minimum required version. Although the autotools-based Makefile and the Xcode project are still shipped with this release, they will be removed in the near future. All distributors and developers are encouraged to migrate to the CMake build.

  • Build scripts for most platforms no longer require bash, using the standard sh instead.

  • The hostname command is no longer required for fish to operate.

fish 2.7.1 (released December 23, 2017)

This release of fish fixes an issue where iTerm 2 on macOS would display a warning about paste bracketing being left on when starting a new fish session (#4521).

If you are upgrading from version 2.6.0 or before, please also review the release notes for 2.7.0 and 2.7b1 (included below).

fish 2.7.0 (released November 23, 2017)

There are no major changes between 2.7b1 and 2.7.0. If you are upgrading from version 2.6.0 or before, please also review the release notes for 2.7b1 (included below).

Xcode builds and macOS packages could not be produced with 2.7b1, but this is fixed in 2.7.0.

fish 2.7b1 (released October 31, 2017)

Notable improvements

  • A new cdh (change directory using recent history) command provides a more friendly alternative to prevd/nextd and pushd/popd (#2847).

  • A new argparse command is available to allow fish script to parse arguments with the same behavior as builtin commands. This also includes the fish_opt helper command. (#4190).

  • Invalid array indexes are now silently ignored (#826, #4127).

  • Improvements to the debugging facility, including a prompt specific to the debugger (fish_breakpoint_prompt) and a status is-breakpoint subcommand (#1310).

  • string supports new lower and upper subcommands, for altering the case of strings (#4080). The case changing is not locale-aware yet.- string escape has a new --style=xxx flag where xxx can be script, var, or url (#4150), and can be reversed with string unescape (#3543).

  • History can now be split into sessions with the fish_history variable, or not saved to disk at all (#102).

  • Read history is now controlled by the fish_history variable rather than the --mode-name flag (#1504).

  • command now supports an --all flag to report all directories with the command. which is no longer a runtime dependency (#2778).

  • fish can run commands before starting an interactive session using the new --init-command/-C options (#4164).

  • set has a new --show option to show lots of information about variables (#4265).

Other significant changes

  • The COLUMNS and LINES environment variables are now correctly set the first time fish_prompt is run (#4141).

  • complete’s --no-files option works as intended (#112).

  • echo -h now correctly echoes -h in line with other shells (#4120).

  • The export compatibility function now returns zero on success, rather than always returning 1 (#4435).

  • Stop converting empty elements in MANPATH to “.” (#4158). The behavior being changed was introduced in fish 2.6.0.

  • count -h and count --help now return 1 rather than produce command help output (#4189).

  • An attempt to read which stops because too much data is available still defines the variables given as parameters (#4180).

  • A regression in fish 2.4.0 which prevented pushd +1 from working has been fixed (#4091).

  • A regression in fish 2.6.0 where multiple read commands in non-interactive scripts were broken has been fixed (#4206).

  • A regression in fish 2.6.0 involving universal variables with side-effects at startup such as set -U fish_escape_delay_ms 10 has been fixed (#4196).

  • Added completions for:

  • Lots of improvements to completions.

  • Updated Chinese and French translations.

  • Improved completions for:

fish 2.6.0 (released June 3, 2017)

Since the beta release of fish 2.6b1, fish version 2.6.0 contains a number of minor fixes, new completions for magneto (#4043), and improvements to the documentation.

Known issues

  • Apple macOS Sierra 10.12.5 introduced a problem with launching web browsers from other programs using AppleScript. This affects the fish Web configuration (fish_config); users on these platforms will need to manually open the address displayed in the terminal, such as by copying and pasting it into a browser. This problem will be fixed with macOS 10.12.6.

If you are upgrading from version 2.5.0 or before, please also review the release notes for 2.6b1 (included below).

fish 2.6b1 (released May 14, 2017)

Notable fixes and improvements

  • Jobs running in the background can now be removed from the list of jobs with the new disown builtin, which behaves like the same command in other shells (#2810).

  • Command substitutions now have access to the terminal, like in other shells. This allows tools like fzf to work properly (#1362, #3922).

  • In cases where the operating system does not report the size of the terminal, the COLUMNS and LINES environment variables are used; if they are unset, a default of 80x24 is assumed.

  • New French (#3772 & #3788) and improved German (#3834) translations.

  • fish no longer depends on the which external command.

Other significant changes

  • Performance improvements in launching processes, including major reductions in signal blocking. Although this has been heavily tested, it may cause problems in some circumstances; set the FISH_NO_SIGNAL_BLOCK variable to 0 in your fish configuration file to return to the old behaviour (#2007).

  • Performance improvements in prompts and functions that set lots of colours (#3793).

  • The Delete key no longer deletes backwards (a regression in 2.5.0).

  • functions supports a new --details option, which identifies where the function was loaded from (#3295), and a --details --verbose option which includes the function description (#597).

  • read will read up to 10 MiB by default, leaving the target variable empty and exiting with status 122 if the line is too long. You can set a different limit with the FISH_READ_BYTE_LIMIT variable.

  • read supports a new --silent option to hide the characters typed (#838), for when reading sensitive data from the terminal. read also now accepts simple strings for the prompt (rather than scripts) with the new -P and --prompt-str options (#802).

  • export and setenv now understand colon-separated PATH, CDPATH and MANPATH variables.

  • setenv is no longer a simple alias for set -gx and will complain, just like the csh version, if given more than one value (#4103).

  • bind supports a new --list-modes option (#3872).

  • bg will check all of its arguments before backgrounding any jobs; any invalid arguments will cause a failure, but non-existent (eg recently exited) jobs are ignored (#3909).

  • funced warns if the function being edited has not been modified (#3961).

  • printf correctly outputs “long long” integers (#3352).

  • status supports a new current-function subcommand to print the current function name (#1743).

  • string supports a new repeat subcommand (#3864). string match supports a new --entire option to emit the entire line matched by a pattern (#3957). string replace supports a new --filter option to only emit lines which underwent a replacement (#3348).

  • test supports the -k option to test for sticky bits (#733).

  • umask understands symbolic modes (#738).

  • Empty components in the CDPATH, MANPATH and PATH variables are now converted to “.” (#2106, #3914).

  • New versions of ncurses (6.0 and up) wipe terminal scrollback buffers with certain commands; the C-l binding tries to avoid this (#2855).

  • Some systems’ su implementations do not set the USER environment variable; it is now reset for root users (#3916).

  • Under terminals which support it, bracketed paste is enabled, escaping problematic characters for security and convience (#3871). Inside single quotes ('), single quotes and backslashes in pasted text are escaped (#967). The fish_clipboard_paste function (bound to C-v by default) is still the recommended pasting method where possible as it includes this functionality and more.

  • Processes in pipelines are no longer signalled as soon as one command in the pipeline has completed (#1926). This behaviour matches other shells mre closely.

  • All functions requiring Python work with whichever version of Python is installed (#3970). Python 3 is preferred, but Python 2.6 remains the minimum version required.

  • The color of the cancellation character can be controlled by the fish_color_cancel variable (#3963).

  • Added completions for:

  • caddy (#4008)

  • castnow (#3744)

  • climate (#3760)

  • flatpak

  • gradle (#3859)

  • gsettings (#4001)

  • helm (#3829)

  • i3-msg (#3787)

  • ipset (#3924)

  • jq (#3804)

  • light (#3752)

  • minikube (#3778)

  • mocha (#3828)

  • mkdosfs (#4017)

  • pv (#3773)

  • setsid (#3791)

  • terraform (#3960)

  • usermod (#3775)

  • xinput

  • yarn (#3816)

  • Improved completions for adb (#3853), apt (#3771), bzr (#3769), dconf, git (including #3743), grep (#3789), go (#3789), help (#3789), hg (#3975), htop (#3789), killall (#3996), lua, man (#3762), mount (#3764 & #3841), obnam (#3924), perl (#3856), portmaster (#3950), python (#3840), ssh (#3781), scp (#3781), systemctl (#3757) and udisks (#3764).

fish 2.5.0 (released February 3, 2017)

There are no major changes between 2.5b1 and 2.5.0. If you are upgrading from version 2.4.0 or before, please also review the release notes for 2.5b1 (included below).

Notable fixes and improvements

  • The Home, End, Insert, Delete, Page Up and Page Down keys work in Vi-style key bindings (#3731).

fish 2.5b1 (released January 14, 2017)

Platform Changes

Starting with version 2.5, fish requires a more up-to-date version of C++, specifically C++11 (from 2011). This affects some older platforms:


For users building from source, GCC’s g++ 4.8 or later, or LLVM’s clang 3.3 or later, are known to work. Older platforms may require a newer compiler installed.

Unfortunately, because of the complexity of the toolchain, binary packages are no longer published by the fish-shell developers for the following platforms:

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux and CentOS 5 & 6 for 64-bit builds

  • Ubuntu 12.04 (EoLTS April 2017)

  • Debian 7 (EoLTS May 2018)

Installing newer version of fish on these systems will require building from source.

OS X SnowLeopard

Starting with version 2.5, fish requires a C++11 standard library on OS X 10.6 (“SnowLeopard”). If this library is not installed, you will see this error: dyld: Library not loaded: /usr/lib/libc++.1.dylib

MacPorts is the easiest way to obtain this library. After installing the SnowLeopard MacPorts release from the install page, run:

sudo port -v install libcxx

Now fish should launch successfully. (Please open an issue if it does not.)

This is only necessary on 10.6. OS X 10.7 and later include the required library by default.

Other significant changes

  • Attempting to exit with running processes in the background produces a warning, then signals them to terminate if a second attempt to exit is made. This brings the behaviour for running background processes into line with stopped processes. (#3497)

  • random can now have start, stop and step values specified, or the new choice subcommand can be used to pick an argument from a list (#3619).

  • A new key bindings preset, fish_hybrid_key_bindings, including all the Emacs-style and Vi-style bindings, which behaves like fish_vi_key_bindings in fish 2.3.0 (#3556).

  • function now returns an error when called with invalid options, rather than defining the function anyway (#3574). This was a regression present in fish 2.3 and 2.4.0.

  • fish no longer prints a warning when it identifies a running instance of an old version (2.1.0 and earlier). Changes to universal variables may not propagate between these old versions and 2.5b1.

  • Improved compatiblity with Android (#3585), MSYS/mingw (#2360), and Solaris (#3456, #3340).

  • Like other shells, the test builting now returns an error for numeric operations on invalid integers (#3346, #3581).

  • complete no longer recognises --authoritative and --unauthoritative options, and they are marked as obsolete.

  • status accepts subcommands, and should be used like status is-interactive. The old options continue to be supported for the foreseeable future (#3526), although only one subcommand or option can be specified at a time.

  • Selection mode (used with “begin-selection”) no longer selects a character the cursor does not move over (#3684).

  • List indexes are handled better, and a bit more liberally in some cases (echo $PATH[1 .. 3] is now valid) (#3579).

  • The fish_mode_prompt function is now simply a stub around fish_default_mode_prompt, which allows the mode prompt to be included more easily in customised prompt functions (#3641).

Notable fixes and improvements

  • alias, run without options or arguments, lists all defined aliases, and aliases now include a description in the function signature that identifies them.

  • complete accepts empty strings as descriptions (#3557).

  • command accepts -q/--quiet in combination with --search (#3591), providing a simple way of checking whether a command exists in scripts.

  • Abbreviations can now be renamed with abbr --rename OLD_KEY NEW_KEY (#3610).

  • The command synopses printed by --help options work better with copying and pasting (#2673).

  • help launches the browser specified by the $fish_help_browser variable if it is set (#3131).

  • History merging could lose items under certain circumstances and is now fixed (#3496).

  • The $status variable is now set to 123 when a syntactically invalid command is entered (#3616).

  • Exiting fish now signals all background processes to terminate, not just stopped jobs (#3497).

  • A new prompt_hostname function which prints a hostname suitable for use in prompts (#3482).

  • The __fish_man_page function (bound to Alt-h by default) now tries to recognize subcommands (e.g. git add will now open the “git-add” man page) (#3678).

  • A new function edit_command_buffer (bound to Alt-e & Alt-v by default) to edit the command buffer in an external editor (#1215, #3627).

  • set_color now supports italics (--italics), dim (--dim) and reverse (--reverse) modes (#3650).

  • Filesystems with very slow locking (eg incorrectly-configured NFS) will no longer slow fish down (#685).

  • Improved completions for apt (#3695), fusermount (#3642), make (#3628), netctl-auto (#3378), nmcli (#3648), pygmentize (#3378), and tar (#3719).

  • Added completions for:

  • VBoxHeadless (#3378)

  • VBoxSDL (#3378)

  • base64 (#3378)

  • caffeinate (#3524)

  • dconf (#3638)

  • dig (#3495)

  • dpkg-reconfigure (#3521 & #3522)

  • feh (#3378)

  • launchctl (#3682)

  • lxc (#3554 & #3564),

  • mddiagnose (#3524)

  • mdfind (#3524)

  • mdimport (#3524)

  • mdls (#3524)

  • mdutil (#3524)

  • mkvextract (#3492)

  • nvram (#3524)

  • objdump (#3378)

  • sysbench (#3491)

  • tmutil (#3524)

fish 2.4.0 (released November 8, 2016)

There are no major changes between 2.4b1 and 2.4.0.

Notable fixes and improvements

  • The documentation is now generated properly and with the correct version identifier.

  • Automatic cursor changes are now only enabled on the subset of XTerm versions known to support them, resolving a problem where older versions printed garbage to the terminal before and after every prompt (#3499).

  • Improved the title set in Apple

  • Added completions for defaults and improved completions for diskutil (#3478).

fish 2.4b1 (released October 18, 2016)

Significant changes

  • The clipboard integration has been revamped with explicit bindings. The killring commands no longer copy from, or paste to, the X11 clipboard - use the new copy (C-x) and paste (C-v) bindings instead. The clipboard is now available on OS X as well as systems using X11 (e.g. Linux). (#3061)

  • history uses subcommands (history delete) rather than options (history --delete) for its actions (#3367). You can no longer specify multiple actions via flags (e.g., history --delete --save something).

  • New history options have been added, including --max=n to limit the number of history entries, --show-time option to show timestamps (#3175, #3244), and --null to null terminate history entries in the search output.

  • history search is now case-insensitive by default (which also affects history delete) (#3236).

  • history delete now correctly handles multiline commands (#31).

  • Vi-style bindings no longer include all of the default emacs-style bindings; instead, they share some definitions (#3068).

  • If there is no locale set in the environment, various known system configuration files will be checked for a default. If no locale can be found, en_US-UTF.8 will be used (#277).

  • A number followed by a caret (e.g. 5^) is no longer treated as a redirection (#1873).

  • The $version special variable can be overwritten, so that it can be used for other purposes if required.

Notable fixes and improvements

  • The fish_realpath builtin has been renamed to realpath and made compatible with GNU realpath when run without arguments (#3400). It is used only for systems without a realpath or grealpath utility (#3374).

  • Improved color handling on terminals/consoles with 8-16 colors, particularly the use of bright named color (#3176, #3260).

  • fish_indent can now read from files given as arguments, rather than just standard input (#3037).

  • Fuzzy tab completions behave in a less surprising manner (#3090, #3211).

  • jobs should only print its header line once (#3127).

  • Wildcards in redirections are highlighted appropriately (#2789).

  • Suggestions will be offered more often, like after removing characters (#3069).

  • history --merge now correctly interleaves items in chronological order (#2312).

  • Options for fish_indent have been aligned with the other binaries - in particular, -d now means --debug. The --dump option has been renamed to --dump-parse-tree (#3191).

  • The display of bindings in the Web-based configuration has been greatly improved (#3325), as has the rendering of prompts (#2924).

  • fish should no longer hang using 100% CPU in the C locale (#3214).

  • A bug in FreeBSD 11 & 12, Dragonfly BSD & illumos prevented fish from working correctly on these platforms under UTF-8 locales; fish now avoids the buggy behaviour (#3050).

  • Prompts which show git repository information (via __fish_git_prompt) are faster in large repositories (#3294) and slow filesystems (#3083).

  • fish 2.3.0 reintroduced a problem where the greeting was printed even when using read; this has been corrected again (#3261).

  • Vi mode changes the cursor depending on the current mode (#3215).

  • Command lines with escaped space characters at the end tab-complete correctly (#2447).

  • Added completions for:

  • Improved completions for aura (#3297), abbr (#3267), brew (#3309), chown (#3380, #3383),cygport (#3392), git (#3274, #3226, #3225, #3094, #3087, #3035, #3021, #2982, #3230), kill & pkill (#3200), screen (#3271), wget (#3470), and xz (#3378).

  • Distributors, packagers and developers will notice that the build process produces more succinct output by default; use make V=1 to get verbose output (#3248).

  • Improved compatibility with minor platforms including musl (#2988), Cygwin (#2993), Android (#3441, #3442), Haiku (#3322) and Solaris .

fish 2.3.1 (released July 3, 2016)

This is a functionality and bugfix release. This release does not contain all the changes to fish since the last release, but fixes a number of issues directly affecting users at present and includes a small number of new features.

Significant changes

  • A new fish_key_reader binary for decoding interactive keypresses (#2991).

  • fish_mode_prompt has been updated to reflect the changes in the way the Vi input mode is set up (#3067), making this more reliable.

  • fish_config can now properly be launched from the OS X app bundle (#3140).

Notable fixes and improvements

  • Extra lines were sometimes inserted into the output under Windows (Cygwin and Microsoft Windows Subsystem for Linux) due to TTY timestamps not being updated (#2859).

  • The string builtin’s match mode now handles the combination of -rnv (match, invert and count) correctly (#3098).

  • Improvements to TTY special character handling (#3064), locale handling (#3124) and terminal environment variable handling (#3060).

  • Work towards handling the terminal modes for external commands launched from initialisation files (#2980).

  • Ease the upgrade path from fish 2.2.0 and before by warning users to restart fish if the string builtin is not available (#3057).

  • type -a now syntax-colorizes function source output.

  • Added completions for alsamixer, godoc, gofmt, goimports, gorename, lscpu, mkdir, modinfo, netctl-auto, poweroff, termite, udisksctl and xz (#3123).

  • Improved completions for apt (#3097), aura (#3102),git (#3114), npm (#3158), string and suspend (#3154).

fish 2.3.0 (released May 20, 2016)

There are no significant changes between 2.3.0 and 2.3b2.

Other notable fixes and improvements

  • abbr now allows non-letter keys (#2996).

  • Define a few extra colours on first start (#2987).

  • Multiple documentation updates.

  • Added completions for rmmod (#3007).

  • Improved completions for git (#2998).

Known issues

  • Interactive commands started from fish configuration files or from the -c option may, under certain circumstances, be started with incorrect terminal modes and fail to behave as expected. A fix is planned but requires further testing (#2619).

fish 2.3b2 (released May 5, 2016)

Significant changes

  • A new fish_realpath builtin and associated function to allow the use of realpath even on those platforms that don’t ship an appropriate command (#2932).

  • Alt-# toggles the current command line between commented and uncommented states, making it easy to save a command in history without executing it.

  • The fish_vi_mode function is now deprecated in favour of fish_vi_key_bindings.

Other notable fixes and improvements

  • Fix the build on Cygwin (#2952) and RedHat Enterprise Linux/CentOS 5 (#2955).

  • Avoid confusing the terminal line driver with non-printing characters in fish_title (#2453).

  • Improved completions for busctl, git (#2585, #2879, #2984), and netctl.

fish 2.3b1 (released April 19, 2016)

Significant Changes

  • A new string builtin to handle… strings! This builtin will measure, split, search and replace text strings, including using regular expressions. It can also be used to turn lists into plain strings using join. string can be used in place of sed, grep, tr, cut, and awk in many situations. (#2296)

  • Allow using escape as the Meta modifier key, by waiting after seeing an escape character wait up to 300ms for an additional character. This is consistent with readline (e.g. bash) and can be configured via the fish_escape_delay_ms variable. This allows using escape as the Meta modifier. (#1356)

  • Add new directories for vendor functions and configuration snippets (#2500)

  • A new fish_realpath builtin and associated realpath function should allow scripts to resolve path names via realpath regardless of whether there is an external command of that name; albeit with some limitations. See the associated documentation.

Backward-incompatible changes

  • Unmatched globs will now cause an error, except when used with for, set or count (#2719)

  • and and or will now bind to the closest if or while, allowing compound conditions without begin and end (#1428)

  • set -ql now searches up to function scope for variables (#2502)

  • status -f will now behave the same when run as the main script or using source (#2643)

  • source no longer puts the file name in $argv if no arguments are given (#139)

  • History files are stored under the XDG_DATA_HOME hierarchy (by default, in ~/.local/share), and existing history will be moved on first use (#744)

Other notable fixes and improvements

  • Fish no longer silences errors in (#2702)

  • Directory autosuggestions will now descend as far as possible if there is only one child directory (#2531)

  • Add support for bright colors (#1464)

  • Allow Ctrl-J (cj) to be bound separately from Ctrl-M (cm) (#217)

  • psub now has a “-s”/“–suffix” option to name the temporary file with that suffix

  • Enable 24-bit colors on select terminals (#2495)

  • Support for SVN status in the prompt (#2582)

  • Mercurial and SVN support have been added to the Classic + Git (now Classic + VCS) prompt (via the new __fish_vcs_prompt function) (#2592)

  • export now handles variables with a “=” in the value (#2403)

  • New completions for:

    • alsactl

    • Archlinux’s asp, makepkg

    • Atom’s apm (#2390)

    • entr - the “Event Notify Test Runner” (#2265)

    • Fedora’s dnf (#2638)

    • OSX diskutil (#2738)

    • pkgng (#2395)

    • pulseaudio’s pacmd and pactl

    • rust’s rustc and cargo (#2409)

    • sysctl (#2214)

    • systemd’s machinectl (#2158), busctl (#2144), systemd-nspawn, systemd-analyze, localectl, timedatectl

    • and more

  • Fish no longer has a function called sgrep, freeing it for user customization (#2245)

  • A rewrite of the completions for cd, fixing a few bugs (#2299, #2300, #562)

  • Linux VTs now run in a simplified mode to avoid issues (#2311)

  • The vi-bindings now inherit from the emacs bindings

  • Fish will also execute fish_user_key_bindings when in vi-mode

  • funced will now also check $VISUAL (#2268)

  • A new suspend function (#2269)

  • Subcommand completion now works better with split /usr (#2141)

  • The command-not-found-handler can now be overridden by defining a function called __fish_command_not_found_handler in (#2332)

  • A few fixes to the Sorin theme

  • PWD shortening in the prompt can now be configured via the fish_prompt_pwd_dir_length variable, set to the length per path component (#2473)

  • fish no longer requires /etc/fish/ to correctly start, and now ships a skeleton file that only contains some documentation (#2799)

fish 2.2.0 (released July 12, 2015)

Significant changes

  • Abbreviations: the new abbr command allows for interactively-expanded abbreviations, allowing quick access to frequently-used commands (#731).

  • Vi mode: run fish_vi_mode to switch fish into the key bindings and prompt familiar to users of the Vi editor (#65).

  • New inline and interactive pager, which will be familiar to users of zsh (#291).

  • Underlying architectural changes: the fishd universal variable server has been removed as it was a source of many bugs and security problems. Notably, old fish sessions will not be able to communicate universal variable changes with new fish sessions. For best results, restart all running instances of fish.

  • The web-based configuration tool has been redesigned, featuring a prompt theme chooser and other improvements.

  • New German, Brazilian Portuguese, and Chinese translations.

Backward-incompatible changes

These are kept to a minimum, but either change undocumented features or are too hard to use in their existing forms. These changes may break existing scripts.

  • commandline no longer interprets functions “in reverse”, instead behaving as expected (#1567).

  • The previously-undocumented CMD_DURATION variable is now set for all commands and contains the execution time of the last command in milliseconds (#1585). It is no longer exported to other commands (#1896).

  • if / else conditional statements now return values consistent with the Single Unix Specification, like other shells (#1443).

  • A new “top-level” local scope has been added, allowing local variables declared on the commandline to be visible to subsequent commands. (#1908)

Other notable fixes and improvements

  • New documentation design (#1662), which requires a Doxygen version 1.8.7 or newer to build.

  • Fish now defines a default directory for other packages to provide completions. By default this is /usr/share/fish/vendor-completions.d; on systems with pkgconfig installed this path is discoverable with pkg-config --variable completionsdir fish.

  • A new parser removes many bugs; all existing syntax should keep working.

  • New fish_preexec and fish_postexec events are fired before and after job execution respectively (#1549).

  • Unmatched wildcards no longer prevent a job from running. Wildcards used interactively will still print an error, but the job will proceed and the wildcard will expand to zero arguments (#1482).

  • The . command is deprecated and the source command is preferred (#310).

  • bind supports “bind modes”, which allows bindings to be set for a particular named mode, to support the implementation of Vi mode.

  • A new export alias, which behaves like other shells (#1833).

  • command has a new --search option to print the name of the disk file that would be executed, like other shells’ command -v (#1540).

  • commandline has a new --paging-mode option to support the new pager.

  • complete has a new --wraps option, which allows a command to (recursively) inherit the completions of a wrapped command (#393), and complete -e now correctly erases completions (#380).

  • Completions are now generated from manual pages by default on the first run of fish (#997).

  • fish_indent can now produce colorized (--ansi) and HTML (--html) output (#1827).

  • functions --erase now prevents autoloaded functions from being reloaded in the current session.

  • history has a new --merge option, to incorporate history from other sessions into the current session (#825).

  • jobs returns 1 if there are no active jobs (#1484).

  • read has several new options:

  • --array to break input into an array (#1540)

  • --null to break lines on NUL characters rather than newlines (#1694)

  • --nchars to read a specific number of characters (#1616)

  • --right-prompt to display a right-hand-side prompt during interactive read (#1698).

  • type has a new -q option to suppress output (#1540 and, like other shells, type -a now prints all matches for a command (#261).

  • Pressing F1 now shows the manual page for the current command (#1063).

  • fish_title functions have access to the arguments of the currently running argument as $argv[1] (#1542).

  • The OS command-not-found handler is used on Arch Linux (#1925), nixOS (#1852), openSUSE and Fedora (#1280).

  • Alt+. searches backwards in the token history, mapping to the same behavior as inserting the last argument of the previous command, like other shells (#89).

  • The SHLVL environment variable is incremented correctly (#1634 & #1693).

  • Added completions for adb (#1165 & #1211), apt (#2018), aura (#1292), composer (#1607), cygport (#1841), dropbox (#1533), elixir (#1167), fossil, heroku (#1790), iex (#1167), kitchen (#2000), nix (#1167), node/npm (#1566), opam (#1615), setfacl (#1752), tmuxinator (#1863), and yast2 (#1739).

  • Improved completions for brew (#1090 & #1810), bundler (#1779), cd (#1135), emerge (#1840),git (#1680, #1834 & #1951), man (#960), modprobe (#1124), pacman (#1292), rpm (#1236), rsync (#1872), scp (#1145), ssh (#1234), sshfs (#1268), systemctl (#1462, #1950 & #1972), tmux (#1853), vagrant (#1748), yum (#1269), and zypper (#1787).

fish 2.1.2 (released Feb 24, 2015)

fish 2.1.2 contains a workaround for a filesystem bug in Mac OS X Yosemite. #1859

Specifically, after installing fish 2.1.1 and then rebooting, “Verify Disk” in Disk Utility will report “Invalid number of hard links.” We don’t have any reports of data loss or other adverse consequences. fish 2.1.2 avoids triggering the bug, but does not repair an already affected filesystem. To repair the filesystem, you can boot into Recovery Mode and use Repair Disk from Disk Utility. Linux and versions of OS X prior to Yosemite are believed to be unaffected.

There are no other changes in this release.

fish 2.1.1 (released September 26, 2014)

Important: if you are upgrading, stop all running instances of fishd as soon as possible after installing this release; it will be restarted automatically. On most systems, there will be no further action required. Note that some environments (where XDG_RUNTIME_DIR is set), such as Fedora 20, will require a restart of all running fish processes before universal variables work as intended.

Distributors are highly encouraged to call killall fishd, pkill fishd or similar in installation scripts, or to warn their users to do so.

Security fixes

  • The fish_config web interface now uses an authentication token to protect requests and only responds to requests from the local machine with this token, preventing a remote code execution attack. (closing CVE-2014-2914). #1438

  • psub and funced are no longer vulnerable to attacks which allow local privilege escalation and data tampering (closing CVE-2014-2906 and CVE-2014-3856). #1437

  • fishd uses a secure path for its socket, preventing a local privilege escalation attack (closing CVE-2014-2905). #1436

  • __fish_print_packages is no longer vulnerable to attacks which would allow local privilege escalation and data tampering (closing CVE-2014-3219). #1440

Other fixes

  • fishd now ignores SIGPIPE, fixing crashes using tools like GNU Parallel and which occurred more often as a result of the other fishd changes. #1084 & #1690

fish 2.1.0

Significant Changes

  • Tab completions will fuzzy-match files. #568

    When tab-completing a file, fish will first attempt prefix matches (foo matches foobar), then substring matches (ooba matches foobar), and lastly subsequence matches (fbr matches foobar). For example, in a directory with files foo1.txt, foo2.txt, foo3.txt…, you can type only the numeric part and hit tab to fill in the rest.

    This feature is implemented for files and executables. It is not yet implemented for options (like --foobar), and not yet implemented across path components (like /u/l/b to match /usr/local/bin).

  • Redirections now work better across pipelines. #110, #877

    In particular, you can pipe stderr and stdout together, for example, with cmd ^&1 | tee log.txt, or the more familiar cmd 2>&1 | tee log.txt.

  • A single ``%`` now expands to the last job backgrounded. #1008

    Previously, a single % would pid-expand to either all backgrounded jobs, or all jobs owned by your user. Now it expands to the last job backgrounded. If no job is in the background, it will fail to expand. In particular, fg % can be used to put the most recent background job in the foreground.

Other Notable Fixes

  • alt-U and alt+C now uppercase and capitalize words, respectively. #995

  • VTE based terminals should now know the working directory. #906

  • The autotools build now works on Mavericks. #968

  • The end-of-line binding (ctrl+E) now accepts autosuggestions. #932

  • Directories in /etc/paths (used on OS X) are now prepended instead of appended, similar to other shells. #927

  • Option-right-arrow (used for partial autosuggestion completion) now works on iTerm2. #920

  • Tab completions now work properly within nested subcommands. #913

  • printf supports \e, the escape character. #910

  • fish_config history no longer shows duplicate items. #900

  • $fish_user_paths is now prepended to $PATH instead of appended. #888

  • Jobs complete when all processes complete. #876

    For example, in previous versions of fish, sleep 10 | echo Done returns control immediately, because echo does not read from stdin. Now it does not complete until sleep exits (presumably after 10 seconds).

  • Better error reporting for square brackets. #875

  • fish no longer tries to add /bin to $PATH unless PATH is totally empty. #852

  • History token substitution (alt-up) now works correctly inside subshells. #833

  • Flow control is now disabled, freeing up ctrl-S and ctrl-Q for other uses. #814

  • sh-style variable setting like foo=bar now produces better error messages. #809

  • Commands with wildcards no longer produce autosuggestions. #785

  • funced no longer freaks out when supplied with no arguments. #780

  • now works correctly in a directory containing spaces. #774

  • Tab completion cycling no longer occasionally fails to repaint. #765

  • Comments now work in eval’d strings. #684

  • History search (up-arrow) now shows the item matching the autosuggestion, if that autosuggestion was truncated. #650

  • Ctrl-T now transposes characters, as in other shells. #128

fish 2.0.0

Significant Changes

  • Command substitutions now modify ``$status`` :issue:`547`. Previously the exit status of command substitutions (like (pwd)) was ignored; however now it modifies $status. Furthermore, the set command now only sets $status on failure; it is untouched on success. This allows for the following pattern:

    if set python_path (which python)

    Because set does not modify $status on success, the if branch effectively tests whether which succeeded, and if so, whether the set also succeeded.

  • Improvements to PATH handling. There is a new variable, fish_user_paths, which can be set universally, and whose contents are appended to $PATH #527

    • /etc/paths and /etc/paths.d are now respected on OS X

    • fish no longer modifies $PATH to find its own binaries

  • Long lines no longer use ellipsis for line breaks, and copy and paste should no longer include a newline even if the line was broken #300

  • New syntax for index ranges (sometimes known as “slices”) #212

  • fish now supports an ``else if`` statement #134

  • Process and pid completion now works on OS X #129

  • fish is now relocatable, and no longer depends on compiled-in paths #125

  • fish now supports a right prompt (RPROMPT) through the fish_right_prompt function #80

  • fish now uses posix_spawn instead of fork when possible, which is much faster on BSD and OS X #11

Other Notable Fixes

  • Updated VCS completions (darcs, cvs, svn, etc.)

  • Avoid calling getcwd on the main thread, as it can hang #696

  • Control-D (forward delete) no longer stops at a period #667

  • Completions for many new commands

  • fish now respects rxvt’s unique keybindings #657

  • xsel is no longer built as part of fish. It will still be invoked if installed separately #633

  • __fish_filter_mime no longer spews #628

  • The –no-execute option to fish no longer falls over when reaching the end of a block #624

  • fish_config knows how to find fish even if it’s not in the $PATH #621

  • A leading space now prevents writing to history, as is done in bash and zsh #615

  • Hitting enter after a backslash only goes to a new line if it is followed by whitespace or the end of the line #613

  • printf is now a builtin #611

  • Event handlers should no longer fire if signals are blocked #608

  • set_color is now a builtin #578

  • man page completions are now located in a new generated_completions directory, instead of your completions directory #576

  • tab now clears autosuggestions #561

  • tab completion from within a pair of quotes now attempts to “appropriate” the closing quote #552

  • $EDITOR can now be a list: for example, set EDITOR gvim -f) #541

  • case bodies are now indented #530

  • The profile switch -p no longer crashes #517

  • You can now control-C out of read #516

  • umask is now functional on OS X #515

  • Avoid calling getpwnam on the main thread, as it can hang #512

  • Alt-F or Alt-right-arrow (Option-F or option-right-arrow) now accepts one word of an autosuggestion #435

  • Setting fish as your login shell no longer kills OpenSUSE #367

  • Backslashes now join lines, instead of creating multiple commands #347

  • echo now implements the -e flag to interpret escapes #337

  • When the last token in the user’s input contains capital letters, use its case in preference to that of the autosuggestion #335

  • Descriptions now have their own muted color #279

  • Wildcards beginning with a . (for example, ls .*) no longer match . and .. #270

  • Recursive wildcards now handle symlink loops #268

  • You can now delete history items from the fish_config web interface #250

  • The OS X build now weak links wcsdup and wcscasecmp #240

  • fish now saves and restores the process group, which prevents certain processes from being erroneously reported as stopped #197

  • funced now takes an editor option #187

  • Alternating row colors are available in fish pager through fish_pager_color_secondary #186

  • Universal variable values are now stored based on your MAC address, not your hostname #183

  • The caret ^ now only does a stderr redirection if it is the first character of a token, making git users happy #168

  • Autosuggestions will no longer cause line wrapping #167

  • Better handling of Unicode combining characters #155

  • fish SIGHUPs processes more often #138

  • fish no longer causes sudo to ask for a password every time

  • fish behaves better under Midnight Commander #121

  • set -e no longer crashes #100

  • fish now will automatically import history from bash, if there is no fish history #66

  • Backslashed-newlines inside quoted strings now behave more intuitively #52

  • Tab titles should be shown correctly in iTerm2 #47

  • scp remote path completion now sometimes works #42

  • The read builtin no longer shows autosuggestions #29

  • Custom key bindings can now be set via the fish_user_key_bindings function #21

  • All Python scripts now run correctly under both Python 2 and Python 3 #14

  • The “accept autosuggestion” key can now be configured #19

  • Autosuggestions will no longer suggest invalid commands #6

fishfish Beta r2

Bug Fixes

  • Implicit cd is back, for paths that start with one or two dots, a slash, or a tilde.

  • Overrides of default functions should be fixed. The “internalized scripts” feature is disabled for now.

  • Disabled delayed suspend. This is a strange job-control feature of BSD systems, including OS X. Disabling it frees up Control Y for other purposes; in particular, for yank, which now works on OS X.

  • fish_indent is fixed. In particular, the funced and funcsave functions work again.

  • A SIGTERM now ends the whole execution stack again (resolving #13).

  • Bumped the __fish_config_interactive version number so the default fish_color_autosuggestion kicks in.

  • fish_config better handles combined term256 and classic colors like “555 yellow”.

New Features

  • A history builtin, and associated interactive function that enables deleting history items. Example usage: * Print all history items beginning with echo: history --prefix echo * Print all history items containing foo: history --contains foo * Interactively delete some items containing foo: history --delete --contains foo

Credit to @siteshwar for implementation. Thanks @siteshwar!

fishfish Beta r1


  • No changes! All existing fish scripts, config files, completions, etc. from trunk should continue to work.

New Features

  • Autosuggestions. Think URL fields in browsers. When you type a command, fish will suggest the rest of the command after the cursor, in a muted gray when possible. You can accept the suggestion with the right arrow key or Ctrl-F. Suggestions come from command history, completions, and some custom code for cd; there’s a lot of potential for improvement here. The suggestions are computed on a background pthread, so they never slow down your typing. The autosuggestion feature is incredible. I miss it dearly every time I use anything else.

  • term256 support where available, specifically modern xterms and OS X Lion. You can specify colors the old way (‘set_color cyan’) or by specifying RGB hex values (‘set_color FF3333’); fish will pick the closest supported color. Some xterms do not advertise term256 support either in the $TERM or terminfo max_colors field, but nevertheless support it. For that reason, fish will default into using it on any xterm (but it can be disabled with an environment variable).

  • Web-based configuration page. There is a new function ‘fish_config’. This spins up a simple Python web server and opens a browser window to it. From this web page, you can set your shell colors and view your functions, variables, and history; all changes apply immediately to all running shells. Eventually all configuration ought to be supported via this mechanism (but in addition to, not instead of, command line mechanisms).

  • Man page completions. There is a new function ‘fish_update_completions’. This function reads all the man1 files from your manpath, removes the roff formatting, parses them to find the commands and options, and outputs fish completions into ~/.config/fish/completions. It won’t overwrite existing completion files (except ones that it generated itself).

Programmatic Changes

  • fish is now entirely in C++. I have no particular love for C++, but it provides a ready memory-model to replace halloc. We’ve made an effort to keep it to a sane and portable subset (no C++11, no boost, no going crazy with templates or smart pointers), but we do use the STL and a little tr1.

  • halloc is entirely gone, replaced by normal C++ ownership semantics. If you don’t know what halloc is, well, now you have two reasons to be happy.

  • All the crufty C data structures are entirely gone. array_list_t, priority_queue_t, hash_table_t, string_buffer_t have been removed and replaced by STL equivalents like std::vector, std::map, and std::wstring. A lot of the string handling now uses std::wstring instead of wchar_t *

  • fish now spawns pthreads for tasks like syntax highlighting that require blocking I/O.

  • History has been completely rewritten. History files now use an extensible YAML-style syntax. History “merging” (multiple shells writing to the same history file) now works better. There is now a maximum history length of about 250k items (256 * 1024).

  • The parser has been “instanced,” so you can now create more than one.

  • Total #LoC has shrunk slightly even with the new features.


  • fish now runs syntax highlighting in a background thread, so typing commands is always responsive even on slow filesystems.

  • echo, test, and pwd are now builtins, which eliminates many forks.

  • The files in share/functions and share/completions now get ‘internalized’ into C strings that get compiled in with fish. This substantially reduces the number of files touched at startup. A consequence is that you cannot change these functions without recompiling, but often other functions depend on these “standard” functions, so changing them is perhaps not a good idea anyways.

Here are some system call counts for launching and then exiting fish with the default configuration, on OS X. The first column is fish trunk, the next column is with our changes, and the last column is bash for comparison. This data was collected via dtrace.




























The large number of forks relative to bash are due to fish’s insanely expensive default prompt, which is unchanged in my version. If we switch to a prompt comparable to bash’s (lame) default, the forks drop to 16 with trunk, 4 after our changes.

The large reduction in lstat() numbers is due to fish no longer needing to call ttyname() on OS X.

We’ve got some work to do to be as lean as bash, but we’re on the right track.