Linux GNU Screen

Tutorial to use Linux GNU screen in Linux based operating system.

Linux Screen or GNU Screen is a terminal multiplexer that lets you use several virtual terminal inside a session.  It is useful when you need to deal with multiple programs from a command line. Programs continue to run when their window is currently not visible and even when the whole screen session is detached from the users terminal.

How To Use Linux GNU Screen

Install Linux GNU Screen

These days, the Linux Screen package is pre-installed on most of the Linux based operating systems. Run the following command to make sure that you have your copy of the Linux screen.

screen --version

You will see output something like this:

Screen version 4.8.0 (GNU) 16-Aug-30

If you don’t have Linux screen installed in your operating system, then follow the instructions below:

Install Linux Screen on Ubuntu and Debian based operating systems

sudo apt update
sudo apt install screen

Install Linux Screen on CentOS/RHEL and Fedora

sudo yum install screen

How To Start Linux Screen

Start a Linux screen with the following command:


It is always better to give a name to the sessions when you are going to run multiple screen sessions.

screen -S session_name

Some of the regularly used Linux screens commands:

  • Ctrl+a c Command to create a new window (with shell)
  • Ctrl+a " Command to list all window
  • Ctrl+a 0 Switch to window 0 (by number )
  • Ctrl+a A The command to rename the current window
  • Ctrl+a S Command to split current region horizontally into two regions
  • Ctrl+a | Split current region vertically into two regions
  • Ctrl+a tab Command to switch the input focus to the next region
  • Ctrl+a Ctrl+a Toggle between the current and previous region
  • Ctrl+a Q Close all regions but the current one
  • Ctrl+a X Command to close the current region


You can detach from the screen session at any time by running the following command:

Ctrl+a d
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