Since updating to Big Sur, the history command (terminal) shows only the last 16 commands. Do you have any ideas how to get the full history back?

  • 2
    Which shell are you using?
    – nohillside
    Jul 2, 2021 at 14:39

4 Answers 4


I'm assuming that your shell is zsh, you can view your whole history by using the following command-

history 0

I am meeting this issue as well. It seems since recent updates the history command is set up to show only a bunch from the most recent entries, instead of the whole command history as it were. I can't seem to get help by RTFM or various attempted commands such as -h --help etc.

This is impractical for me, I would like to search the whole history using grep. In the meantime a workaround is to cat ~/.zsh_history

echo 'alias history="history 1"' >> ~/.zshrc && source ~/.zshrc && history
  • 1
    It would be beneficial to other users if you could edit in how this works and solves the OP's question.
    – agarza
    Aug 23, 2023 at 15:21

If you want to configure your history command to display full command History and everything since the start then follow these steps (assuming you have zsh shell):

  1. Open your Terminal.

  2. Make an alias of history to show since the first command, type:

    echo 'alias history="history 1"' >> ~/.zshrc

  3. Source your configuration file by typing:

    source ~/.zshrc

  4. Now finally type:


  • This is a duplicate of an existing answer to the same question apple.stackexchange.com/a/463490/221742 albeit split up. Can you explain why your solution is any different? It would have been of more benefit to edit the existing answer and add in the explanation steps. Nov 26, 2023 at 8:35

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