I've been using the Atom editor on my iMac running High Sierra. I usually run it from the terminal by typing atom. I moved many of my apps to an external drive to free up disk space. I originally moved Atom but have since moved it back onto my startup volume.

Sometime during all this I have messed up something and now Atom no longer runs from the command line. I started Atom by double-clicking on the icon. I selected "Install shell command" from the Atom menu.

Previously I did that so I could run atom from the command line. Well, it didn't work this time. How can I tell what that menu option actually does? When I select "Install shell command", what does Atom actually do? And how do I find out what a command does?

If I knew what the Atom command does, I could maybe fix this. Most questions I've read that pertain to this offer alternative ways to run Atom from the command line. I know how to do that, I'm trying to get things back to the way it was before my messing around caused all of this.


Looks to me as though it's running


but you should be able to edit your ~/.bash_config and add the line

alias atom="/Applications/Atom.app/Contents/MacOS/Atom" then re-open terminal and you'll be able to launch atom by typing atom [filename], assuming your copy of Atom is installed in the /Applications folder

  • Yes, I know that. But that's a work around. I looking for the original way it was set up. Thank though. – Natsfan Jul 31 '18 at 13:58
  • As I said, it looks like the original way it's setup is by running /Applications/Atom.app/Contents/Resources/app/atom.sh – Scottmeup Jul 31 '18 at 14:56
  • I tried that but nothing happened. When I looked at atom.sh it was empty which probably explains my problem. I may just have to reload Atom. Unless someone solves this I'll accept your answer since it provided me the name and path to the .sh file. thanks again. – Natsfan Jul 31 '18 at 16:08
  • This is the up to date version as of time of writing github.com/atom/atom/blob/1.28-releases/atom.sh – Scottmeup Jul 31 '18 at 16:31
  • Wow. Big difference from an empty file! lol.. I might paste this into my version of atom.sh and see what happens. Thanks again. – Natsfan Jul 31 '18 at 16:36

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