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Use screen Command To Create Multiple Terminal Sessions

Discussion in 'Unix' started by pradeep, Aug 30, 2012.

  1. pradeep

    pradeep Team Leader

    Apr 4, 2005
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    Kolkata, India
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    The GNU/Linux screen program is quite unknown, except for geeks & *nix experts, it helps you create multiple terminal sessions from a single one and lets you detach from the screen, at the same time maintaining the sessions as if you had never left the session and you can attach/connect to the session anytime you want afterwards.

    Another feature of the screen program is that it allows multiple people to use the same sessions, thereby providing a terminal session 'sharing' feature. In this article we'll be looking into using screen to create and manage multiple sessions.

    Using screen Command

    First let's look at starting a screen session, it can be simply started with,

    $ screen
    but, that will have a arbitrary screen session name chosen by the screen program. So, this would be more suited,

    $ screen -S my_tail_log 
    This will immediately start a new session and attach it, in case you want to start a screen in detached mode, useful for startup scripts, try this

    $ screen -dm -S my_tail_log
    To resume a detached screen,

    $ screen -r my_tail_log
    To attach to an already attached running screen (say for sharing, multiple users can attach to the same session)

    $ screen -x my_tail_log
    To create a new window inside a screen when attached to it, use Ctrl + A and then C.

    To view the list of running windows in a screen and select one from the list, use Ctrl + A and then ".

    To change a window's title, use Ctrl + A and then capital A.

    To detach from a screen, use Ctrl + A and then D.

    To list all the running screens,

    $ screen -ls
    You can use multiple windows inside a screen to work on different things, say one for editing code, another for executing the programs, and another one to view logs/debugging etc. It's very easy to share working while on a teleconferencing call and all users can see, execute & discussion commands and outputs.

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