[kwlug-disc] screen is keen

Richard Weait richard at weait.com
Mon Oct 25 07:40:20 EDT 2010

You might remember a presentation on the GNU utility, screen, from a
few meeting back.  You might have thought, "sure that seems nice and
all, but how do I add an animated wallpaper to it?"

Or you might have thought, "hunh? Paul says it gets confused by sudo.
I should probably remember that so it doesn't cause me trouble in the

Let this be a lesson to you.  Screen does get confused by sudo, so ssh
in as the user who should be using screen.  Thanks Paul for that tip
that, had I remembered earlier, would have saved me ten minutes.
Without your tip, I could have wasted hours.

So screen is keen.  I found it super-useful last week during a
conference call regarding some server stuff.  A developer and I used
the same screen to work on the project via the -x option.  We each
ssh'd in to the server as the same user.  I started a screen session.
He used screen -x to attach to the existing screen session. Then we
could each see what the other was typing, and all the results from
those commands.  This was a very handy way for two people with
different skill sets to collaborate on a project.  When combined with
a telephone call for a simultaneous voice connection, it felt very

Plus the whacky, "I'm going to press enter when you are typing your
password" hijinx.

So, it was good fun.  Screen is Keen.  Paul's presentation saved me some time.

Apparently screen will let different users attach to the same session,
but I haven't tried that yet.

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