process the command history list
fc [ -r ] [ -e editor ]
[ first [ last ] ]
fc -l [ -nr ]
[ first [ last ] ]
fc -s [ old=new ]
[ command ]
fc enables you to list, edit, and re-execute commands that
you have previously entered into your shell. By default, the last
128 commands are kept in a history list file .sh_history
in your home directory.
The default action of fc is to invoke an editor on the
last command run. You may then edit this command; on exiting the
editor, the shell runs the new command. You can also edit a
contiguous range of previous commands, in the order they were
originally run, or in reverse order.
Other options to fc allow you to list previous commands
without editing or running them, or to run a specified command
without editing it.
Commands in the history list may be referenced by their number in
the list, a relative negative number, or the first few characters in
The arguments first and last select the commands
you wish to list or edit:
If a number falls outside those in the history list, fc
uses the first command in the list for first or the last
command for last.
a positive number selects that numbered command in the history list
a negative number selects the command corresponding to that number
of previous commands (-1 means the last command)
a string matches the most recent command beginning with that string
fc takes the following options:
Use editor to edit a list of commands. The environment
variable FCEDIT specifies the default editor; if this is
null or not set,
is invoked instead. first specified by itself invokes the
editor on that command only. If no first and
last commands are specified, only the previous command is
edited. When you exit the editor, the shell invokes the edited list
List the specified commands and their command numbers without
editing or executing them. If no first and last
commands are specified, fc displays the previous 16
Do not display command numbers when using -l.
Reverse the order of the commands listed with -l, or to be
edited. This is equivalent to specifying values for first
and last where the first command was run after
the last command.
Re-execute the previous command, or a specified command
without editing it. Specifying old=new replaces
the first occurrence of an old string in the command with
a new string.
The default editor to use with fc. If null or not set, and
the -e option is not used, fc uses ed.
The pathname to be used for the history list file. If not set, the
file $HOME/.sh_history is used.
The number of previous commands that are accessible in the history
list file. If not set, fc uses a default value of 128.
fc normally returns the exit status of the commands it
executes; it may also return the following values:
successful listing using the -l option
an error occurred in fc
Set up an independent history list file for a shell:
editor on the last 10 commands:
fc -e vi -10 -1
Repeat the previous example, but reverse the order of the commands:
fc -e vi -1 -10
The following command is equivalent to the previous one:
fc -r -e vi -10 -1
Create an alias to re-execute the last command entered:
alias r="fc -s"
and then re-execute it with added options:
fc -s -- -FC
The command history substitution mechanism described here is built
The command history substitution mechanism built into
differs substantially from that described here.
An fc command that causes editing or re-execution is not
entered into the history list itself; the commands that it runs are
put in the list.
If the editor returns a non-zero exit status, fc does not
run the commands, and they are not entered into the history list.
Variable assignments and redirection on the command line act on both
fc and any commands it executes (including the command
editor). As a consequence, redirection of the standard output or
input of fc may not work as expected.
default pathname of a user's command history file
fc is conformant with:
ISO/IEC DIS 99452:1992, Information technology Portable Operating System Interface (POSIX) Part 2: Shell and Utilities (IEEE Std 1003.21992);
X/Open CAE Specification, Commands and Utilities, Issue 4, 1992.
© 2003 Caldera International, Inc. All rights reserved.
SCO OpenServer Release 5.0.7 -- 11 February 2003