# Windows – Why is a percent sign appearing before each prompt on zsh in Windows

command linewindowszsh

I'm getting zsh set up in Windows and I'm getting a reverse (black on white (black terminal background)) percent symbol in the first character position in the line just above every prompt.

Usually that means there's no newline at the end of the file, for example when cat-ing a file.

It doesn't happen on my Mac or even on Mintty on Windows. But it does happen in ConEmu and the standard terminal app that CMD.EXE usually runs in.

I've already unset all my prompt strings as well as precmd() which I normally use to add a blank line above the prompt.

Any clue what it could be?

The relevant option probably is PROMPT_SP, explanaition from the manual

Attempt to preserve a partial line (i.e. a line that did not end with a newline) that would otherwise be covered up by the command prompt due to the PROMPT_CR option. This works by outputting some cursor-control characters, including a series of spaces, that should make the terminal wrap to the next line when a partial line is present (note that this is only successful if your terminal has automatic margins, which is typical).

When a partial line is preserved, by default you will see an inverse+bold character at the end of the partial line: a % for a normal user or a # for root. If set, the shell parameter PROMPT_EOL_MARK can be used to customize how the end of partial lines are shown.

So, either you do a

unsetopt PROMPT_SP


if you don't care about the covered up line (however in your case it seems to be a empty line, as you get the % sign at the beginning).

Or use

setopt PROMPT_CR
setopt PROMPT_SP
export PROMPT_EOL_MARK=""


which preserves partial lines, but removes the % -- at the cost of some empty lines over the prompt.

To make this permanent, update your ~/.zshrc.

This is a blind shot, as I cannot reproduce this behaviour in my cmd.exe.