This manual page is part of the POSIX Programmer's Manual. The Linux
implementation of this interface may differ (consult the corresponding Linux
manual page for details of Linux behavior), or the interface may not be
implemented on Linux.
type — write a description of command type
The type utility shall indicate how each argument would be interpreted if
used as a command name.
The following operand shall be supported:
The following environment variables shall affect the execution of type:
- A name to be interpreted.
The standard output of type contains information about each operand in an
unspecified format. The information provided typically identifies the operand
as a shell built-in, function, alias, or keyword, and where applicable, may
display the operand's pathname.
The standard error shall be used only for diagnostic messages.
The following exit values shall be returned:
- Provide a default value for the internationalization variables that are
unset or null. (See the Base Definitions volume of POSIX.1‐2017,
Section 8.2, Internationalization Variables for the
precedence of internationalization variables used to determine the values
of locale categories.)
- If set to a non-empty string value, override the values of all the other
- Determine the locale for the interpretation of sequences of bytes of text
data as characters (for example, single-byte as opposed to multi-byte
characters in arguments).
Determine the locale that should be used to affect the format and contents
of diagnostic messages written to standard error.
- Determine the location of message catalogs for the processing of
- Determine the location of name, as described in the Base
Definitions volume of POSIX.1‐2017, Chapter 8,
- Successful completion.
- An error occurred.
The following sections are informative.
Since type must be aware of the contents of the current shell execution
environment (such as the lists of commands, functions, and built-ins processed
by hash), it is always provided as a shell regular built-in. If it is
called in a separate utility execution environment, such as one of the
nohup type writer
find . -type f | xargs type
it might not produce accurate results.
The Base Definitions volume of POSIX.1‐2017, Chapter
8, Environment Variables
Portions of this text are reprinted and reproduced in electronic form from IEEE
Std 1003.1-2017, Standard for Information Technology -- Portable Operating
System Interface (POSIX), The Open Group Base Specifications Issue 7, 2018
Edition, Copyright (C) 2018 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics
Engineers, Inc and The Open Group. In the event of any discrepancy between
this version and the original IEEE and The Open Group Standard, the original
IEEE and The Open Group Standard is the referee document. The original
Standard can be obtained online at http://www.opengroup.org/unix/online.html .
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