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I set up an Ubuntu 12 server (on rackspace cloud using their preconfigured image) and created a non-root user. When I log in as the standard user, pressing [TAB] at the terminal outputs an actual tab and pressing [UP] outputs ^[[A . If I log in as root however, [UP] enters my last command and [TAB] autocompletes.

The .bashrc files look exactly the same between the two users. I really don't know where else to look.

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Check /etc/passwd if that user has /bin/bash as shell and not something else. – ott-- Jun 18 '12 at 17:25
you're right, it was set as /bin/sh. why don't you post that as an answer so i can accept it? – hackerhasid Jun 18 '12 at 17:53
up vote 3 down vote accepted

As per request posted as reply: Check /etc/passwd if that user has /bin/bash as shell and not something else.

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i haven't used linux seriously in a number of years. things have changed a lot. i remember having to configure something to get my backspace working properly and so i just figured that this was probably similar. thanks for your help! – hackerhasid Jun 18 '12 at 23:36

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