Linux / Unix Shell Script: Get The Current Directory

I am working on a shell script. I need to find out the current working directory. How do I get the current working directory under Bash or Ksh shell running on Linux or Unix like operating systems?

You can use shell variable called PWD or pwd built-in command to get the current working directory. The cd command sets the following shell variable:
Tutorial details
Difficulty Easy (rss)
Root privileges No
Requirements Bash/Ksh
Time N/A
[a] OLDPWD The previous working directory as set by the cd command. [b] PWD The current working directory as set by the cd command. [c] pwd command – Print the name of the current working directory.


The syntax is:

echo "The current working directory: $PWD"
echo "The previous current working directory: $OPLDPWD"
## use pwd command ##
## or ##
echo "My working dir: $_mydir"

Shell script example

The following script use $PWD twice to set default and provide information to the sys admins.

# Purpose: Set file permission to read-only
# Author: nixCraft <> under GPL v2.0+
# ---------------------------------------------------------------
# DocumentRoot permissions 
# Apache user/group
## If $1 is not passed, set to the current working dir using $PWD
## Die if $dir does not exists
[ ! -d "$_dir" ] && { echo "Error: Directory $_dir not found."; exit 2; }
## Get confirmation 
echo "I will change file permission for the webserver dir and files to restrictive read-only mode."
read -p "The current working dir is ${PWD}. Are you sure (y / n) ?" ans
## Lowercase $ans and compare it 
if [ "${ans,,}" == "y" ]
      chown -R ${_user}:${_group} "$_dir"
      chmod -R $_fp "$_dir"

🐧 Get the latest tutorials on Linux, Open Source & DevOps via RSS feed or Weekly email newsletter.

🐧 1 comment so far... add one

CategoryList of Unix and Linux commands
File Managementcat
FirewallAlpine Awall CentOS 8 OpenSUSE RHEL 8 Ubuntu 16.04 Ubuntu 18.04 Ubuntu 20.04
Network Utilitiesdig host ip nmap
OpenVPNCentOS 7 CentOS 8 Debian 10 Debian 8/9 Ubuntu 18.04 Ubuntu 20.04
Package Managerapk apt
Processes Managementbg chroot cron disown fg jobs killall kill pidof pstree pwdx time
Searchinggrep whereis which
User Informationgroups id lastcomm last lid/libuser-lid logname members users whoami who w
WireGuard VPNAlpine CentOS 8 Debian 10 Firewall Ubuntu 20.04
1 comment… add one
  • Kumar Sep 26, 2013 @ 6:14

    i want Unix Shell Script: Get The full Directory path.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Use HTML <pre>...</pre> for code samples. Problem posting comment? Email me @