How to Install Terminator on Ubuntu 22.04 | 20.04

Terminator is a sophisticated terminal emulator program designed for users requiring a more advanced and customizable environment than traditional terminal emulators. Created with the Linux community in mind, Terminator is compatible with most Linux distributions, including Ubuntu. This powerful tool has gained popularity due to its numerous features and customizability, making it an ideal choice for developers, system administrators, and power users. The following introduction highlights the key features and benefits of using Terminator:

  • Multiple Terminal Windows: Terminator allows users to manage multiple terminal windows within a single interface, providing the ability to split the screen vertically and horizontally. This feature improves productivity by enabling users to multitask and monitor various processes simultaneously.
  • Customizable Interface: The flexible interface of Terminator allows users to personalize their terminal experience. Users can tailor the interface to suit their preferences and needs with various customization options, such as modifying font size, colors, and window borders.
  • Advanced Keyboard Shortcuts: Terminator provides a comprehensive set of keyboard shortcuts, enabling users to perform tasks more efficiently. These shortcuts allow easy navigation between terminal windows, quick resizing, and convenient access to frequently used commands.
  • Tab Support: Terminator supports tabs, making it simple for users to manage multiple terminal sessions without cluttering their workspace. Users can easily switch between tabs or group them for better organization.
  • Profiles and Layouts: Users can create and save custom profiles and layouts, which can be applied to individual terminal windows or the entire interface. This feature allows users to maintain a consistent working environment tailored to their specific requirements.
  • Extensible Functionality: Terminator supports plugins and extensions, enabling users to enhance the functionality of the terminal emulator by adding new features and tools to suit their needs.

The following guide will demonstrate how to install Terminator on Ubuntu 22.04 Jammy Jellyfish or Ubuntu 20.04 Focal Fossa using the default Ubuntu repository or importing the Terminator Team LaunchPAD PPA for a much-updated version.

Section 1: Install Terminator with Ubuntu Repository

Step 1: Update Ubuntu

Before installing Terminator, you must update your Ubuntu system to ensure you have the latest available packages. Open the terminal and run the following command:

sudo apt update

This command fetches the package information from all configured sources, which helps ensure you install the most recent Terminator version in the Ubuntu repository.

Step 2: Install Terminator

Once your Ubuntu system is up to date, proceed with installing Terminator using the following command:

sudo apt install terminator

This command searches for the Terminator package within the Ubuntu repository and installs it with any required dependencies.

Section 2: Install Terminator with Terminator Team PPA

Step 1: Update Ubuntu

As with the previous method, start by updating your Ubuntu system with the following command:

sudo apt update

Updating your system ensures that you have access to the latest packages before proceeding with the installation.

Step 2: Import Terminator Team PPA

To install Terminator using the Terminator Team PPA, you must first import the PPA into your system’s software sources. Execute the following command:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gnome-terminator/ppa -y

This command adds the Terminator Team PPA to your system, allowing you to access a more updated version of the software than the one available in the default Ubuntu repository.

Step 3: Update Packages Index

After importing the Terminator Team PPA, update the packages index to include the new PPA’s package information:

sudo apt update

This command ensures that your system is aware of the latest package versions available from the Terminator Team PPA.

Step 4: Install Terminator

With the updated packages index, install Terminator from the newly added PPA using the following command:

sudo apt install terminator

This command installs Terminator from the Terminator Team PPA, providing you with the latest version and terminal emulator features.

Section 3: Launch Terminator on Ubuntu Linux

CLI Method:

To launch Terminator using the command-line interface (CLI), open your default terminal emulator and type the following command:


Press Enter and Terminator will launch, providing you with an advanced terminal emulator experience.

GUI Method:

If you prefer to launch Terminator using the graphical user interface (GUI), follow these steps:

  1. Click on the Activities menu or the Show Applications icon located at the bottom left corner of your Ubuntu desktop, depending on your Ubuntu version.
  2. In the search bar, type Terminator. As you type, the search results will be filtered and the Terminator icon should appear.
  3. Click on the Terminator icon to launch the application.

Example of Terminator application icon on Ubuntu Linux:

Example of Terminator once opened on Ubuntu Linux:

Section 4: Getting Started with Terminator on Ubuntu Linux

This section will provide an overview of tips and tricks to help you get started with Terminator on Ubuntu Linux. These tips cover general usage, customization, and other helpful insights to enhance your experience with this powerful terminal emulator.

General Tips

  • Terminal Management: Terminator allows you to manage multiple terminal windows by splitting the screen both vertically and horizontally. To split the screen vertically, press Ctrl + Shift + O. To split the screen horizontally, press Ctrl + Shift + E.
  • Switch Between Terminals: Easily navigate between terminals using the Ctrl + Shift + N or Ctrl + Shift + P key combinations.
  • Tab Management: Open a new tab with Ctrl + Shift + T and switch between tabs using Ctrl + Tab or Ctrl + Shift + Tab.
  • Copy and Paste: To copy and paste text in Terminator, use Ctrl + Shift + C and Ctrl + Shift + V, respectively.
  • Zoom In/Out: Adjust the font size by zooming in and out with Ctrl + + and Ctrl + -, respectively. Reset the zoom level with Ctrl + 0.


  • Preferences: Access the preferences menu by right-clicking anywhere within the Terminator window and selecting Preferences. From here, you can customize various aspects of Terminator, such as fonts, colors, and keyboard shortcuts.
  • Profiles: Create and manage custom profiles to maintain a consistent working environment. Profiles can be accessed and edited from the Profiles tab within the preferences menu.
  • Layouts: Design and save custom layouts to organize your terminal windows according to your needs. You can manage layouts in the Layouts tab within the preferences menu.

Additional Tips

  • Fullscreen Mode: Enter fullscreen mode with F11 and exit by pressing F11 again.
  • Close a Terminal: Close the current terminal with Ctrl + Shift + W.
  • Quake Mode: Enable Quake mode by adding the --quake option when launching Terminator. This mode will make Terminator behave like a drop-down terminal, appearing and disappearing with a keypress.

Keyboard Shortcuts Overview

ActionKey Combination
Split VerticallyCtrl + Shift + O
Split HorizontallyCtrl + Shift + E
Switch Next TerminalCtrl + Shift + N
Switch Previous TerminalCtrl + Shift + P
New TabCtrl + Shift + T
Next TabCtrl + Tab
Previous TabCtrl + Shift + Tab
CopyCtrl + Shift + C
PasteCtrl + Shift + V
Zoom InCtrl + +
Zoom OutCtrl + -
Reset ZoomCtrl + 0
Fullscreen ModeF11
Close TerminalCtrl + Shift + W

Conclusion: Installing Terminator on Ubuntu Linux

This guide has provided an in-depth introduction to Terminator, a powerful and customizable terminal emulator for Ubuntu Linux. We covered the installation process using the default Ubuntu repository and the Terminator Team PPA, along with methods for launching the application through the command-line interface and the graphical user interface. Furthermore, we provided essential tips and tricks for getting started with Terminator, showcasing its features and customizability. Following this guide, you can maximize your experience with Terminator on Ubuntu Linux and enjoy a more advanced and efficient terminal environment.

Additional Resources and Links

To learn more about Terminator and explore its extensive features, refer to the following official resources:

  • Terminator Official Website: Visit the official Terminator website for the latest news, updates, and information about the project.
  • Terminator Documentation: Access the comprehensive Terminator documentation to explore its features, configuration options, and detailed guides on various aspects of the terminal emulator.
  • Terminator GitHub Repository: Check out the Terminator GitHub repository to view the source code, report issues, and contribute to the project.

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