4.17. Running Commands When You Log Out
Is there something you want to do every time you log out: run a program that deletes temporary files, asks you a question, or prints a fortune to your screen? If you use the C shell, make a file named .logout (Section 3.3) in your home directory and put the commands there. Before a login C shell exits, it will read that file. A login bash reads .bash_logout, and zsh reads .zlogout. But not all shells are login shells; you might want these shells to read your logout-type file, too. Section 3.18 shows a fix for the Bourne and Korn shells; Section 3.8 and Section 3.4 have background information.
Some ideas for your logout file are:
If you connect to this host over a network, with a slow modem or on a data switch -- and you don't see all the logout commands run before your connection closes -- try putting the command sleep 2 (Section 25.9) at the end of the file. That makes the shell wait two seconds before it exits, which gives output more time to get to your screen.
--JP and SJC
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