Fully featured telnet client for OSX?

Discussion in 'Apple' started by fishfry, Oct 1, 2003.

  1. fishfry

    fishfry Guest

    I sometimes have to telnet to two or more hosts at one time. What I can
    do with BetterTelnet is associate colors with a particular terminal,
    then associate that terminal to one or more of my telnet sessions. So
    for example when I connect to host A, the telnet window comes up with
    red lettering on a white background. When I telnet to host B, the
    window uses blue lettering. I get an instant visual reminder of which
    system I'm and I'm much less likely to type the wrong command into a

    I can't do this in Terminal.app. In Terminal I can set the text color
    to blue or green or whatever but I have to do it by hand after I've
    telnetted in. And I have to do it every single time.

    At one point I think there was a project to port NCSA Telnet to OSX but
    I don't think they got it working and I can now longer find it.

    The problem with using BetterTelnet is that it's a Classic app, and my
    10.2.6 system has a conflict between the energy saver and Classic that
    causes Classic apps to not be able to display any text if the system has
    ever been put to sleep. Apple has known about this bug for a long time
    but apparently it's too low priority for them to fix.

    Any suggestions for a replacement terminal client? Or are there clever
    ways to get Terminal.app to do what I want?
    fishfry, Oct 1, 2003
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  2. fishfry

    Jim Hill Guest



    Jim Hill, Oct 1, 2003
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  3. Heh. I just include the line
    set prompt='%m %~: '
    in my .cshrc on all the hosts (as well as the OSX machine I connect
    from). So I get immediate visual feedback in my prompts without
    annoying color clutter.
    David Eppstein, Oct 1, 2003
  4. fishfry

    Tom Stiller Guest

    ITerm, available from sourceforge.net, has pretty good AppleScript
    support. You can script it to change background and foreground colors
    based on the connected host.
    Tom Stiller, Oct 1, 2003
  5. fishfry

    Hugh Wolf Guest

    ["Followup-To:" header set to comp.sys.mac.apps.]

    Sure you can. Create a Terminal document with 'New Command' executing
    the telnet to host X, set up the colors and everything else as you
    want them, save the document. Launching the document will run a
    telnet session to host X in a window with the given settings. If you
    save the document in the default place it will show up in the
    'Library' submenu of the 'File' menu.

    I've been using color-coded windows in this way with Terminal.app
    since the 10.0 beta, though with ssh rather than telnet.
    Hugh Wolf, Oct 1, 2003
  6. fishfry

    Doc O'Leary Guest

    Only because you haven't bothered to save your session in Terminal.
    Nothing "clever" about that.
    Doc O'Leary, Oct 1, 2003
  7. I hope you mean you are using ssh?
    Others have told you how to go about this. I love the menu selection for
    help in Terminal: "Terminal Help." :) OS X's help is not the easiest to
    use (for me, anyway), but it is a heck of a lot better than the man pages.

    If I may ask a favor, please use ssh instead of telnet. It is much more
    nearly secure. My ISP will not even allow telnetting in.
    Phil Stripling, Oct 1, 2003
  8. fishfry

    Dave Hinz Guest

    Hey, that's kind of a interesting effect. Everytime someone says
    Jim seems to shudder.

    Is the reason for the shudder, Jim, one of aversion to command line,
    or to telnet as a connection protocol, or something else?

    Dave "Telnet" Hinz
    Dave Hinz, Oct 1, 2003
  9. fishfry

    spacemancw Guest

    Jim Hill is as helpful as tits on a bull ... shut the eff up unless u
    have some help to offer .... and I already know that ur predictable
    response is on it's way

    Anyway ... u can use Terminal

    Open a new window in terminal
    Go to File > Show Info
    Set your colors, fonts, Window title, etc
    Make sure the window now refelects these settings
    The File > Save
    and save as hostblah.term

    to the extention is .term for any of these configs that u wanna save

    Save the file in ~/Library/Application Support/Terminal/
    You may have to create the directory 'Terminal' in the Application
    Support directory.
    Now under File > Libray you will see this new config as an option.

    You can save the file anywhere u want. You can then open it by typing
    at the command line
    Hope this helps.
    spacemancw, Oct 3, 2003
  10. fishfry

    Susan Kayser Guest

    Getting back to his Subject question, IS there a good telnet (or ssh)
    client for OS X? One you can put on the Dock, instead of having to open
    Terminal first? I'm trying MacTelnet occasionally, but the author is
    still working on it.

    Susan K
    Susan Kayser, Oct 3, 2003
  11. Here's what I do to run an ssh session from the dock:

    1. Open a new Terminal window and configure it the way you like it.

    2. Save as "whatever.term" in /Users/yourself/Library/Application
    Support/Terminal/. You may have to create the folder "Terminal" if it
    isn't already there.

    3. Quit Terminal.

    4. Open somename.term with BBEdit or your favorite text editor. After
    the line:


    make the next line read:

    <string>ssh name.domain.com</string>

    where "name.domain.com" is where you want to ssh to on a regular basis.

    5. Save the file and drag it to the dock.

    6. Now just one click in the dock and you are up and running.

    7. Forget you ever heard of telnet!
    Thomas Russler, Oct 3, 2003
  12. fishfry

    Hugh Wolf Guest

    ["Followup-To:" header set to comp.sys.mac.apps.]
    Make a Terminal document running the command you want (ssh, telnet,
    lynx, emacs, whatever), save it, drag it into the Dock like any other

    There's really no magic to any of this. Termimal is just like any
    other osx app. The documents in this case run shell commands in a
    vt100-like terminal window.
    Hugh Wolf, Oct 3, 2003
  13. fishfry

    Hugh Wolf Guest

    ["Followup-To:" header set to comp.sys.mac.system.]
    If you use Run Command instead of New Shell you can skip all the
    manual text editing.
    Hugh Wolf, Oct 3, 2003
  14. fishfry

    Guest Guest

    Terminal.app lets you save a "terminal file" - a document which
    contains all the config info for an instance of a terminal window-
    with custom fonts, colors, transparancy, size, etc. And it can
    even have a default command embedded in it, too.

    Save one of those files, stick it in the dock and you're good
    to go.

    I've got several machines to which I regularly ssh, and for which
    I like different sized windows, etc. Each of them gets one of
    those terminal documents in my dock. Actually, I've got a custom
    icon on one of them, too.

    The file it saves is a .term file. It's a simple xml doc and
    you can open it up in a text editor if you like (ie. to add
    that automated command - the property you edit is the "execution

    Start up a Terminal.app window, customize as you like, hit
    Save As... from the file menu, and save that .term file.
    Then take a look at it.

    I, for one, very much prefer that my ssh program is separate
    from my terminal emulation program. Which is the case here.

    Terminal.app is really pretty good.
    Guest, Oct 3, 2003
  15. Well, you can put Terminal on the dock, which is what I do.
    Then its an easy step to type ssh "server-name" at the command line
    Expletive Deleted, Oct 3, 2003
  16. fishfry

    spacemancw Guest


    you can put Terminal in the Dock and have all the different colored
    configs as I described in my previous post. Terminal does it all. Some
    apps allow you to save a config which already has the name of the host
    and a username .. so all u need is to enter ur password .....
    but with Terminal you can write a small script for each host u need to
    connect to which does

    ssh -l username hostname .... or whatever .... (btw .. ya .. avoid
    telnet .. do ssh)

    that's not too much effort ...... I don't see adding another emulator
    when OS X already has what it takes.
    spacemancw, Oct 3, 2003
  17. fishfry

    Susan Kayser Guest

    Thanks, everyone. I'll give this a try.


    Susan Kayser, Oct 4, 2003
  18. X11 is an excellent solution to the original question (merits of telnet aside).
    Its hard to replace xterm with something better IMHO.

    You can put X11 in the dock and add menu items to the X11 Application
    menu, through customize, to telnet or ssh to a remote host. The commands
    below even color the screens differently and set the hostname on the xterm
    title bar.

    Example commands:

    xterm -title hosta.foobar.com -sb -bg black -fg wheat -fn 10x20 -ls -e telnet hosta.foobar.com

    xterm -title hostb.foobar.com -sb -bg green -fg yellow -fn 10x20 -ls -e telnet hostb.foobar.com

    read-the-signature, Oct 4, 2003
  19. fishfry

    fishfry Guest

    I've heard it's a lot of work getting X11 installed, is that true?
    fishfry, Oct 4, 2003
  20. Not for OSX. If you do not have it installed already, download it from
    here: http://www.apple.com/macosx/x11. You install and use it like
    any other OSX application. When you start it, see the X11 "Applications"
    menu and go to "Customize". Use "Add Item" and give each command a name and
    then put the xterm commands from above in the command column.

    read-the-signature, Oct 4, 2003
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