This is from the Zsh FAQ:
2.5: Similarities with bash
The Bourne-Again Shell, bash, is another enhanced Bourne-like shell; the most obvious
difference from zsh is that it does not attempt to emulate the Korn shell. Since both
shells are under active development it is probably not sensible to be too specific
here. Broadly, bash has paid more attention to standards compliancy (i.e. POSIX) for
longer, and has so far avoided the more abstruse interactive features (programmable
completion, etc.) that zsh has.
I've used them both, but prefer Bash now days because the machines I work on default to bash consistently. The standards-compliancy comment is important to me because that means consistency between OSes.
Zsh has nice autocompletion abilities, but I kept finding cases where it didn't know what I wanted. That was several years ago, so it might have improved since then.
I've found that enabling "vi-mode" (
set -o vi) in Bash makes it a much nicer command-line environment than it normally is, so I do that immediately in my
When writing shell scripts I don't ever program in either bash or zsh - I program using sh (
/bin/sh), because it's the lowest common denominator and the least likely to have compatibility issues. That's just an old habit that has stood me well.