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The Quick-n-Dirty Guide to Migrating from Eterm to mlterm

This guide demonstrates how to migrate from Eterm to Mlterm, probably because you want a lightweight, UTF-8-capable terminal emulator that can do transparency. Or at least that is why I switched.

Here are some of the details about the Eterm configuration that we are trying to mirror:

You must install Mlterm before you can use it! For help on this, see "The Quick-N-Dirty Guide to Finding and Installing Software" or your distribution's documentation.

Once you have Mlterm installed, you will need to write a very minimal config file before you are ready to actually use it. Here's how.

  1. In a terminal window, run the following command: mkdir ~/.mlterm
  2. Using your favourite text editor, edit the (new) file ~/.mlterm/main
  3. To enable transparent backgrounds with shading, add the following lines to ~/.mlterm/main:
    use_transbg = true
    brightness = 20
    fade_ratio = 75
    
  4. To setup the foreground colours, add the following lines:
    fg_color = white
    bg_color = black
    
  5. To remove all window decorations, add the following lines:
    scrollbar_mode = none
    borderless = true
    
  6. To fix the window geometry (remember, this is for a 1280x1024 FluxBox desktop, so your settings will need tweaking if your resolution is different or if your window manager / desktop environment has a bigger taskbar than does FluxBox), add the following lines:
    fontsize = 14
    geometry = 90x35
    
  7. For a visual bell, add the following lines:
    bel_mode = visual
    
  8. For a huge scrollback buffer, add the following lines:
    logsize = 4096
    
  9. To make Mlterm masquerade as Xterm, add the following lines:
    name = xterm
    
  10. Finally, there are a few areas where Mlterm's defaults are not the same as Eterm's. In keeping with the Rule of Least Surprise (AKA Principle of Least Astonishment), add the following lines:
    word_separators = " ,;="
    
    Actually, this changes one word delimiter from Eterm's defaults: the '@' character, which I don't want as a word boundary so I can select email addresses more easily.
    One other selection-related behaviour differs from Eterm: triple-clicking does select the entire line, but not the newline at the end. This is annoying. If you know how to fix it, please email me at jmglov***replace_with_at-sign***wmalumni.com.

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