Maximize Your Terminal Usage with Terminator

Terminator is a simple program that allows you to load multiple terminals and arrange them in grid. It is useful when you need to access to various terminals at the same time.

Some of the feature in Terminator includes:

  • Arrange terminals in grid
  • multiple tabs
  • drag and drop reordering of terminal
  • keyboard shortcuts
  • config file to override gnome-terminal setting

To install terminator, simply type the following command in your terminal:

sudo apt-get install terminator

Go to “Applications -> Accessories -> Terminator”

To split terminator horizontal, right click and select “Split Horizontally”.

split terminator horizontally

Similarly, to split terminator vertically, select “Split Vertically”.

split terminator vertically

You can also drag and drop the terminal to rearrange them or to resize them to your liking.

Terminator multiple grid

Customizing the Terminator

There are many things that you can personalize in Terminator. You can set the font type, font size, background color, transparency level, background images, and many others options. You can also define custom shortcut key for easier and faster handling of the application.


terminator transparent background

Go to your “Home” folder. Press Ctrl + H to display the hidden files.

Click on the “.config” folder. If the “terminator” folder does not exist, create a new folder and name it “terminator”.

Open your text editor (gedit). Save the new file with the name “config” (without any extension) in the “/home/.config/terminator” folder.

To personalize terminator, simply paste the option to the “config” file and set its respective value. For example, if you want to set the background to display image, paste the following code and set the respective value for each option:

background_type = image
background_image = /home/damien/wallpaper/nature.jpg

Setting custom shortcut key

The default shortcut key for Terminator follows that of the Gnome Terminal. If you want to overwrite the default setting and define your own shortcut key, insert the placeholder to the “config” file, follow by the respective shortcut key command. For example, to change the split horizontal shortcut key to Ctrl + Shift + H,

split_horiz = <Ctrl><Shift>H

Damien Oh started writing tech articles since 2007 and has over 10 years of experience in the tech industry. He is proficient in Windows, Linux, Mac, Android and iOS, and worked as a part time WordPress Developer. He is currently the owner and Editor-in-Chief of Make Tech Easier.

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