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Let's say I run this straight from a bash command line, where is this information actually being stored?

export PATH="/usr/local/bin:/usr/bin:/bin:/usr/bin/X11:/usr/games"
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1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

It goes into the environment for the current shell (stored in the RAM); you can see this by typing export.

If you quit the shell, then any changes you've made to the environment are lost. If you want changes to persist, then you should add them to the files that your shell will execute on startup (e.g. one of ~/.bash_profile, ~/.bashrc, etc.).

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And is the environment a text file stored on the system, or... how/where is that data stored? –  kylex Oct 28 '12 at 18:51
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No, it's just in RAM - if you quit the shell then any changes you've made are lost. If you want changes to persist, then you should add them to the files that your shell will execute on startup (e.g. one of ~/.bash_profile, ~/.bashrc, etc.) –  nickgrim Oct 28 '12 at 18:54
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(Perhaps you'll find the Bash Guide for Beginners helpful, especially chapter 3) –  nickgrim Oct 28 '12 at 18:56

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