byobu: screen & tmux with terminal session sharing

Byobu is heavily influenced by GNU Screen and Tmux, two efficient terminal multiplexers. It comes with several improvements like enhanced profiles, convenient keybindings, configuration utilities, and toggle-able system status notifications for both the GNU Screen window manager and the Tmux terminal multiplexer. Byobu can handle multiple terminal sessions simultaneously. But its main power lies in the ability to share a terminal session among multiple users. Here’s how to do terminal session sharing with byobu.

To start the first session, run

$ byobu

All subsequent users interested in the session can just run byobu (yes, same command) and connect to the first session. It works even if you are connected remotely over ssh. This session can be controlled by everyone who connected to it.

Common keybindings

 F2 - Create a new window
 F3 - Move to previous window
 F4 - Move to next window
 F5 - Reload profile
 F6 - Detach from this session
 F7 - Enter copy/scrollback mode
 F8 - Re-title a window
 F9 - Configuration Menu
 F12 -  Lock this terminal
 shift-F2 - Split the screen horizontally
 ctrl-F2 - Split the screen vertically
 shift-F3 - Shift the focus to the previous split region
 shift-F4 - Shift the focus to the next split region
 shift-F5 - Join all splits
 ctrl-F6 - Remove this split
 ctrl-F5 - Reconnect GPG and SSH sockets
 shift-F6 - Detach, but do not logout
 alt-pgup - Enter scrollback mode
 alt-pgdn - Enter scrollback mode
 Ctrl-a $ - show detailed status
 Ctrl-a R - Reload profile
 Ctrl-a ! - Toggle key bindings on and off
 Ctrl-a k - Kill the current window
 Ctrl-a ~ - Save the current window's scrollback buffer

Many options are available to customize byobu from the Configuration Menu (F9).

Byobu is available in the default repos of major distros. To install byobu on Ubuntu:

$ sudo apt-get install byobu

Webpage: byobu

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *