Thursday, July 16, 2009

s/screen/tmux

I've replaced GNU Screen with tmux as my preferred terminal
multiplexer. The main reason is that the defaults are better in tmux
and I don't have to worry about setting up a config file. For
example, with screen, I need a (rather simple) configuration file
to get the status line that I get with tmux by default. I also like
Ctrl-b better than Ctrl-a used by screen as Ctrl-a is a heavily
used key combination (emacs, terminals with emacs-like line editing
etc).

tmux seems to use less memory than screen and for me this is be a big
plus as there is very little RAM left on my VPSs when running the
various fastcgi and squeak processes.

The code for tmux is arguably better than that of screen and it is
under a BSD license. Recently it was imported into the Open BSD
base system. This is what Theo had to say about the software:
The most impressive thing about tmux, in my view, is how
frustrating the code audit was. In 2 hours, I found only one
or two nits that had very minor security consequences. It was
not accepted into the tree based on license alone. It is high
quality code.
Here's an interview with the author of tmux:

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