Linux Commands

Best Way to Split Your Linux Terminal

If you’re a programmer or developer, you probably feel that one terminal window is not enough. You need to open a new tab or new terminal window and constantly switch between them while working on something. It eventually makes the work quite hectic.

The same problem is also faced by system administrators as well as database administrators because they need at least five terminal windows to carry out respective work.

Terminal does have tabs, but they don’t make work any more comfortable, so some terminal multiplexers are introduced. These multiplexers help split the terminal window horizontally as well as vertically. So, in this article, we’re going to have a look at some multiplexers that will help you split your Linux terminal.

1. tmux

tmux is arguably one of the most used multiplexers out there. It is quite a reliable screen splitter that helps you split the Linux terminal window and adjust the window’s size. It is a keyboard-centric multiplexer. Which means all the function and customizations can be carried out right from the keyboard.

Install tmux

$ sudo apt-get install tmux

To Run tmux

$ tmux new -s dev

Keyboard Shortcuts:

  • CTRL + B + % : Vertical Split.
  • CTRL + B + “ : Horizontal Split.
  • CTRL + B + O : Make other shell active.
  • CTRL + B + D : To Detach from tmux.
  • CTRL + B + ? : Help.

2. Konsole

Konsole is the default terminal that ships-in pre-installed with the KDE Plasma Desktop, and it is a highly customizable terminal and powerful. It is a feature-rich terminal and can be split horizontally as well as vertically.

You will find it quite similar to tmux, but you have to split it using the mouse. Splitting options are available in the View menu. Like tmux, you can detach or reattach terminal windows in konsole.

To Install Konsole

$ sudo apt-get update -y
$ sudo apt-get install -y konsole

3. Screen

The screen is a shell multiplexer from GNU. It is quite a reliable and capable shell multiplexer. You can split-screen both vertically and horizontally and detach and reattach the screen from the running session.

To Install Screen

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install screen

To Start Screen

$ screen

Keyboard Shortcuts

  • CTRL + A + | : Vertical Split
  • CTRL + A + S : Horizontal Split
  • CTRL + A + TAB : To make other shell active
  • CTRL + A + D : Detach from screen
  • CTRL + A + ? : Help

4. Terminator

Terminator is a terminal emulator for Linux and its distros. It has a lot of similarities to the default Terminal in Ubuntu. But it has some of its own features too, that you won’t find in default Terminal.

These features let you flexibly align your workspace to suit your requirements.

To Install Terminator

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gnome-terminator
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install terminator

You can run/launch the terminal from the Unity dashboard or app menu.

Keyboard Shortcuts

  • CTRL + SHIFT + O : Split Terminal Horizontally.
  • CTRL + SHIFT + E : Split Terminal Vertically.
  • CTRL + SHIFT + W : Close Current Panel.
  • CTRL + SHIFT + T : Open New Tab.

5 Tilix

Tilix, previously known as Terminix, is a GTK+ 3 based terminal emulator for Linux and its distros. It is a feature-rich terminal and offers features to split Terminal horizontally as well as vertically.

In split-screen mode, you will find this terminal emulator very useful.

To Install Tilix

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/terminix
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install tilix

You will find separate tabs to split the window horizontally and vertically at the top of the tilix emulator window. Here you don’t have any keyboard shortcuts to split window, but this terminal emulator is quite reliable and powerful.

So, these are the best possible and reliable ways into which you can split your Linux terminal. Have any queries or suggestions? Feel free to ping us at @linuxhint and @SwapTirthakar.

About the author

Swapnil Tirthakar

A Software Engineer who loves football and passionate about traveling. I often spend my free time playing with gadgets and exploring new possibilities in tech world. I am Linux enthusiast and have about 6 years of experience in web development. I have good command on Python, Java, SQL and system security.