Bash 5.1 allows a very straight forward way to display associative arrays by using the K value as in ${arr[@]@K}: $ declare -A arr $ arr=(k1 v1 k2 v2) $ printf "%s\n" "${arr[@]@K}" k1 "v1" k2 "v2" From the Bash 5.1 description document: hh. Is there a way of reading the last element of an array with bash? I solved this just cleaning/declaring the statusCheck associative array before the cicle: Referencing an array variable without a subscript is equivalent to referencing with a subscript of 0. An array in BASH is like an array in any other programming language. An "associative array" variable (declare -A) is an array of key-value pairs whose values are indexed by a keyword. There is no maximum limit on the size of an array, nor any requirement that members be indexed or assigned contiguously. The null string is a valid value. Any reference to a variable using a valid subscript is legal, and bash will create an array if necessary. In BASH script it is possible to create type types of array, an indexed array or associative array. In addition to variables, bash functions can be assigned attributes which affect their behavior. Bash, however, includes the ability to create associative arrays, and it treats these arrays the same as any other array. Print all elements, each quoted separately. Declaring an Array and Assigning values. Any variable may be used as an array; the declare builtin will explicitly declare an array. bash documentation: Accessing Array Elements. An array variable is considered set if a subscript has been assigned a value. Sudo code: declare … stored in a variable) In bash, array is created automatically when a variable is used in the format like, name[index]=value. 11 Count number of elements in bash array, where the name of the array is dynamic (i.e. No problem with bash 4.3.39 where appenging an existent key means to substisture the actuale value if already present. You can then set the key-value pairs of the userinfo associative array individually: userinfo[name]="armin" userinfo[shell]=bash userinfo[website]="scriptingosx.com" When you set the value for an existing key again , it will overwrite the existing value: You can see here that the first assignment, the one done via the list incorrectly adds the key as a\ b rather than simply as a b.. Before ending I want to point out another feature that I just recently discovered about bash arrays: the ability to extend them with the += operator. Questions: I need to loop over an associative array and drain the contents of it to a temp array (and perform some update to the value). echo "${array[@]}" Print all elements as a single quoted string (For more information, see arrays in bash). Arrays are indexed using integers and are zero-based. 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