GNU screen Quick Reference

Getting in

start a new screen session:


attach to a running session:

screen -r

the “ultimate attach”

screen -dRR

(Attaches to a screen session. If the session is attached elsewhere, detaches that other display. If no session exists, creates one. If multiple sessions exist, uses the first one.)

Escape key

All screen commands are prefixed by an escape key, by default C-a (that’s Control-a, sometimes written ^A). To send a literal C-a to the programs in screen, use

C-a a

Getting out


C-a d

exit screen: exit all of the programs in screen. force-exit screen:

C-a C-\ (not recommended)


See help:

C-a ? (lists keybindings)

Window Management

create new window:

C-a c

change to last active window:

C-a C-a

change to window by number:

C-a <number> (only for windows 0 to 9)

change to window by number or name:

C-a ' <number or title>

change to next window in list:

C-a n or C-a <space>

change to previous window in list:

C-a p

see window list:

C-a “

close current window: Close all applications in the current window (including shell) kill current window:

C-a K (not recommended)

Split screen

split display:

C-a S

jump to next display region:

C-a tab

remove current region:

C-a X

remove all regions but the current one:

C-a Q


redraw window:

C-a C-l

enter copy mode:

C-a [ (also used for viewing scrollback buffer)


C-a ]

monitor window for activity:

C-a M

monitor window for silence:

C-a _

enter digraph:

C-a C-v

lock (password protect) display:

C-a x

enter screen command:

C-a :

kohofer 2007/07/19 09:41

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