Find out the starting directory of a script

echo "${0%/*}"
Invoked from within a shell script, this will print the directory in which the script resides. Doesn't depend on external tools, /proc/self/*, etc.. (`echo` is a shell builtin.) To see the *current working* directory of a script, use `pwd`.

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What Others Think

Being lazy I use pwd although echo $PWD would work as well.
penpen · 374 weeks and 4 days ago
Bummer... Sorry, didn't read carefully enough. My bad...
penpen · 374 weeks and 4 days ago
To be clear, I've edited the original post. `pwd` does indeed show the *current working directory*. This method (which uses shell special parameters) simply shows the *location* of the script.
mhs · 374 weeks and 3 days ago
what does this do that: dirname $0 doesn't?
tatsujin · 373 weeks and 4 days ago
@tatsujin Think you meant, "Doesn't this do that?" Answer: Yes, although invoking a separate `dirname` process is slightly more expensive.
mhs · 373 weeks and 3 days ago
This isn't meant to give present working directory (which you would already have in $PWD in sh or bash). Instead, this gives the directory of the script that was launched. It's more efficient than the the little fork of calling `/usr/bin/dirname $0`. I like it.
Mozai · 373 weeks and 1 day ago

What do you think?

Any thoughts on this command? Does it work on your machine? Can you do the same thing with only 14 characters?

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