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I did something to my PATH.

I was trying to add some new path and now none of the command like open ~/.bash_profile work, and echo $PATH only shows one path which is /Application/Filename.

Is there a way to fix this? This is my Mac OS X Lion.

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If you messed up your ~/.bash_profile you can always edit it by supplying the absolute path to the editor:

/usr/bin/nano ~/.bash_profile

Remove any changes to PATH and press CtrlO, then . Overwrite the file and reload your shell. Your path settings should be restored.

Other files that set your PATH on OS X are:

  • ~/.bash_login (if ~/.bash_profile doesn't exist)
  • ~/.profile (if ~/.bash_login doesn't exist)
  • /etc/profile
  • Everything in /etc/paths.d/
  • Finally, for GUI apps: ~/.MacOSX/environment.plist

Always remember to use the correct formatting for your new PATH, depending on whether you want your custom binaries to take precedence over system binaries:

export PATH=/some/other/path:$PATH

… or the other way 'round:

export PATH=$PATH:/some/other/path
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Alternatively, open .bash_profile in any GUI text editor, e.g. TextEdit, by pressing Cmd-Shift-. in the Open… dialog to display hidden files and folders. – Daniel Beck Sep 11 '12 at 18:37
awesome thanks. that worked :) – sudesh Sep 11 '12 at 18:43
one fore question though, i do the export PATH.... on the terminal, and every time i reload the terminal the path is not set. how do i make it the permanent path ? – sudesh Sep 11 '12 at 19:03
never mind i answered my own question. i used /usr/bin/nano ~/.bash_profile and wrote the path there, saved it and restarted the terminal, now everything is working fine. – sudesh Sep 11 '12 at 19:05

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