HOWTO: screen command quickstart

Screen is a window manager for unix shells. It’s useful when logged in to a remote server because it allows you to have more than one shell running through the same terminal window. So you don’t have to log in multiple times through SSH to, for example, run a long running command in one shell and continue working in another.

This is just a quick note to help remember the most common commands. For more information see man screen.

Getting in and out
Start screen
Type screen in the terminal
Detach from a screen session (session remains open)
Ctrl+a d
Reattach to an open screen session
screen -D -R
Quit screen completely (session closed)
Ctrl+a Ctrl+\

Controlling windows
Create a new window with a shell and switch to it:
Ctrl+a c
List currently open windows for selection:
Ctrl+a ”
Close current window:
Ctrl+a k

Controlling Regions

Using regions allows you to display more than one shell on your terminal.
Split the current region into 2 new ones (note: new region will be blank, you need to switch to it then select a window to display in it):
Ctrl+a S
Switch focus to the next region:
Ctrl+a TAB
Remove the current region:
Ctrl+a X

That should be enough to get started.

Unceremoniously stolen from:


3 Responses to “HOWTO: screen command quickstart”

  1. celpjefscycle Says:

    Thanks for information.
    many interesting things

  2. gdavis33 Says:

    Modify ~/.screenrc to only contain the following. It will keep your window list open at all times.

    caption always “%3n %t%? @%u%?%? [%h]%?%=%c”
    hardstatus alwaysignore
    hardstatus alwayslastline ‘%{bW}%-w%{.wB}%n %t%{-}%+w %=%{.w}’

  3. GNU Screen config (.screenrc) « Says:

    […] Programme laufen dabei weiter. Das hier soll jedoch keine Screen Anleitung werden, denn davon gibt es schon jede Menge im Netz. Im Prinzip wollte ich hier nur mal meine kleine Config […]

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