BASH Shell: How to run several commands in Sequence or all at once

by on February 6, 2007 · 5 comments· LAST UPDATED February 6, 2007

in , ,

A quick question:

How do I run several commands in Sequence or all at once?

If you need to run several commands chain them with a ; (semi colon). It is a control operator or metacharacter.
General Syntax:

Commands separated by a ; are executed sequentially; the shell waits for each command to terminate in turn. The return status is the exit status of the last command executed.
$ clear;date

Run command all at once

To run several commands all at once by putting an ampersand & at the end of the command line. For example start backup script:
# /root/ &

Now you don't have to wait finishing /root/ script.

Putting it all together

There might be thousands of *.bak file. You need to goto each directory and list all files in /tmp/list directory:
# for d in "/home/sales /home/dbs /data1"; do find $d -iname "*.bak" >> /tmp/list; done &

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 mike February 6, 2007 at 8:05 pm

Put commands on one line separated by ‘&&’ (no quotes), so if one command exits with exit status 1, then the remaining commands will not execute.


2 kiran May 28, 2013 at 2:54 pm

I have a shell script
where I got 5 commands in each line. when I run the script I want that to be executed all the commands at same time. Not one after one.
Is there any way ?



3 Viktor March 8, 2015 at 10:53 am

you could use :
process1 &
process2 &
process3 &
process4 &
process5 &
process6 &
process7 &
process8 &
this would start 8 processess in paralell (in background)


4 ShavedApe June 3, 2013 at 7:49 pm

Anyone know how to do this in windows?


5 Matt June 21, 2013 at 6:15 pm

Double Ampersands.

dir c:\ && dir d:\


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