Build Status

2018 project status: The BashSupport project will only receive fixes for major problems

BashSupport is fully developed in my spare time since 2009. I'm unable to provide full support for BashSupport and will concentrate on fixes for major problems.

Please let me know if you are interested in helping with the development. I will accept pull requests.


BashSupport adds Bash language support to IntelliJ based products. It supports IntelliJ Ultimate and Community editions, PHPStorm, WebStorm, RubyMine, PyCharm and others.


BashSupport is licensed under the terms of the Apache 2.0 license. Read the file LICENSE.txt for further details.

Please see NOTICE for further details about the license and included code of other developers.


For now, refer to the partially outdated Documentation.


See the Changelog for a list of the last changes in BashSupport.

Developer information


The command line build uses Gradle. The build definition is in build.gradle, it uses the ant file build.xml to re-generate the Bash lexer.

Build it and execute the unit tests by running:

./gradlew clean build


At first, you need to setup IntelliJ to work on BashSupport. BashSupport's release version in in the master branch. There are many other branches like idea-162.x which were used for versions before 1.7.0.

Development on Mac OS X and Linux has been tested. Developing and building on Windows should work.

Currently all builds starting with 162.x are supported.

The usual way for contributors to work is this:

Setup your IDE

These are the steps to setup IntelliJ to start with BashSupport development:

Contribution guidelines

Pull requests are highly welcome! If possible add a unit test for your change. Test cases are very important to make sure that BashSupport works on all the different platforms.

There is no fixed code style, but please follow the style you see in the source files, if possible.

If you need help to get started or to find out how a certain bug or feature could be done, please open a new issue and outline what you would like to achieve and what your difficulties are.

Documentation of plugin development

A highly recommended document is the Plugin SDK documentation.

Bash lexer

The lexer is defined as a JFlex lexer, the definition is in the file bash.flex in the package com.ansorgit.plugins.bash.lang.lexer. The actual lexing has to track several states, which makes the lexer definition quite difficult. There are lexer unit tests defined in the package com.ansorgit.plugins.bash.lang.lexer in the source directory "test".

Bash Parser

The parser is defined in com.ansorgit.plugins.bash.lang.parser and its subpackages. The entry point is the class "BashParser". The actual parsing is split into several smaller pieces. A piece usually implements the interface ParsingFunction.

Parsing Bash mostly is whitespace insensitive in most parts, but at some places the whitespace needs to be read by the parser, i.e. Bash is partly whitespace-sensitive. To achieve this a hack has been implemented (for further details see BashPsiBuilder.enableWhitespace).

Also, in Bash keywords are context-sensitive. The word if is a keyword if it's the first token on a line. If passed as parameter it's a normal word token. BashTokenRemapper remaps keywords to normal word tokens, depending on the context.

String parsing is quite adventureous in Bash. Strings can contain subshells which can contain strings (with even more nesting). So "$(echo "$a")" is a string nested inside of another string. The class "StringParsingState" is used by the lexer to track the state of string nesting.

Bash PSI

The Bash PSI definition is in com.ansorgit.plugins.bash.lang.psi . The entry point is the class BashPsiCreator, which is used to map a AST node to a newly created PSI node.


I'm using Yourkit to locate and fix performance issues of BashSupport. YourKit, LLC kindly provided a free open-source license of the YourKit Java Profiler.

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