Recently I received an email that read as follows:
I would like to try out a bash shell scripting on a system but I don't have time to install Linux or buy new computer and install bash. How do I use bash?
If you would like to try bash under Windows use Cygwin.
If you don't have time or resources, get a free shell account from HP or another provider.
A shell account is a personal account that gives a user access to a Unix shell on another machine, usually through ssh or telnet.
HP offers free shell account under
=> Debian Linux
=> Mandriva Linux
=> Red Hat Linux
=> SuSE Linux
=> Tru64 UNIX.
Register free account here
Polarhome almost offer free shell account with $2 one time fee.
=> See the complete list of UNIX/Linux shell providers list @ Open Directory Project
This is the only way to try out a shell/shell scripting on a system for free.
Note: Most free shell providers do not allow IRC bots. If you need IRC bot buy a shell from a commercial provider (usually cost from US $3/month+).