My typical login looks like this:

normal login

But when I start screen, I get just a bare bash environment - no environment variables, aliases, etc:

<code>screen</code> has default bash prompt

Why is that happening, and what can I do to fix it?

2 Answers 2


screen opens a new, independent shell.

If you want your prompts, aliases, environment variables and such, you will need to copy them over the .screenrc file from your .bashrc or .bash_profile

For more info, you can refer to the man page (man screen) or the documentation


Was pointed to /etc/screenrc by a friend. It doesn't exist on macOS.

So I copied a working /etc/screenrc to .screenrc and uncommented the following line:

# make the shell in every window a login shell
shell -$SHELL

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