CLI Prompt in macOS with .zshrc

Are you looking to take your macOS shell customization to the next level? Delving into the intricacies of configuring your Zsh prompt can greatly enhance your command-line experience. In this guide, we’ll explore advanced tips for customizing your Zsh prompt in your .zshrc file, using features like dynamic date and time stamps and personalized message lines.

Dynamic Date and Time Stamps

One of the most common customizations for the Zsh prompt is to include a dynamic date and time stamp. This allows you to see the current date and time right in your prompt. Here’s how you can achieve this in your .zshrc:

export PS_TIME=$(date '+%Y/%m/%d (%a) %H:%M:%S')
export PS1="___________________ $PS_TIME | @${USER} | BE BETTER EVERYDAY"$'\n'$(pwd)$'\n'$'~\n'

In this configuration:

  • PS_TIME is set using the date command to generate a formatted date and time stamp.
  • PS1 is set to include PS_TIME in the prompt, along with other customized messages.
  • The $'\n' syntax is used to insert newline characters for better formatting.

Personalized Message Lines

Another advanced customization is to include personalized message lines in your Zsh prompt. These messages can provide motivational quotes, reminders, or any other information you find helpful. Here’s an example of how you can add a personalized message line to your prompt:

export PS_TIME=$(date '+%Y/%m/%d (%a) %H:%M:%S')
export PS1="___________________ $PS_TIME | @${USER} | BE BETTER EVERYDAY"$'\n'$(pwd)$'\n'$'~\n'

In this example, the message “BE BETTER EVERYDAY” is included in the prompt to serve as a daily reminder.


Customizing your Zsh prompt allows you to tailor your command-line environment to suit your preferences and workflow. By incorporating dynamic date and time stamps, personalized message lines, and other advanced features, you can create a prompt that not only looks great but also enhances your productivity and motivation.

Experiment with different configurations and find what works best for you. With these advanced tips, you’ll be well on your way to mastering your Zsh prompt customization.

If you have any questions or want to share your own Zsh prompt customizations, feel free to leave a comment below!