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In Unix-like and some other operating systems, the pwd command (print working directory) [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] writes the full pathname of the current working directory to the standard output. [6] [7] [8] [9] [10]

The command is a shell builtin in most Unix shells such as Bourne shell, ash, bash, ksh, and zsh. It can be implemented easily with the POSIX C functions getcwd() and/or getwd().

The equivalent on DOS (COMMAND.COM) and Microsoft Windows (cmd.exe) is the "cd" command with no arguments. Windows PowerShell provides the equivalent "Get-Location" cmdlet with the standard aliases "gl" and "pwd". The OpenVMS equivalent is "show default".


If the following is input into a terminal:

$ pwd

and the computer prints out /home/foobar, that means that the directory the user is currently in is /home/foobar. In the following example, the user is located in the directory /usr/local/bin, uses the command pwd, uses the command cd .. to move back to the parent directory and then uses pwd again:

$ pwd
$ cd ..
$ pwd

See also


  1. [1], UNIX TIME-SHARING SYSTEM: UNIX PROGRAMMER’S MANUAL Seventh Edition, Volume 1 (January, 1979) by Bell labs, Page 142
  2. [2], Minux MAN page
  3. [3], Linux MAN page
  4. [4], GNU Coreutils MAN page
  5. [5], Bell Labs Plan 9 MAN page
  6. [6], POSIX Standard (IEEE Std 1003.1) MAN page
  7. [7], DEC OSF/1 MAN page
  8. [8], Apple OS X MAN page
  9. [9], OpenBSD MAN page
  10. [10], OpenSolaris MAN page