Getting Started with Windows Terminal

Microsoft recently announced the Windows Terminal, a new terminal application for command-line users. It's modern, efficient, fast and unlike any terminal Microsoft has produced before. The most important new feature, TABS!!

If you missed the original announcement go here for the details. In short the new Windows Terminal:

  • Is available in the Windows Store.
  • Is ope-source on Github.
  • It is a UWP application.
  • Has support for Tab so you can run Command Prompt, PowerShell, WSL, etc. at the same time.
  • It uses GPU acceleration so looks amazing and can render faster.
  • It's highly configurable with multiple profiles for each shell that can have different combinations of font styles, size, colors, etc.

Settings

Pressing Ctrl + , or clicking on settings in the menu will bring up profile.json. This reminds me a bit of how VS Code's configuration system works. The profiles node specifies the settings for each of the profile, such as PowerShell or Cmd.

"profiles" : 
    [
        {
            "acrylicOpacity" : 0.8,
            "closeOnExit" : true,
            "colorScheme" : "Campbell",
            "commandline" : "C:\\Program Files\\PowerShell\\6\\pwsh.exe",
            "cursorColor" : "#FFFFFF",
            "cursorShape" : "bar",
            "fontFace" : "Consolas",
            "fontSize" : 11,
            "guid" : "{574e775e-4f2a-5b96-ac1e-a2962a402336}",
            "historySize" : 9001,
            "icon" : "ms-appx:///ProfileIcons/{574e775e-4f2a-5b96-ac1e-a2962a402336}.png",
            "name" : "PowerShell Core",
            "padding" : "0, 0, 0, 0",
            "snapOnInput" : true,
            "startingDirectory" : "%USERPROFILE%",
            "useAcrylic" : false
        }
]

A bit later on you'll see schemes which is the color schemes you can use in your profiles.

"schemes" : 
    [
        {
            "background" : "#0C0C0C",
            "black" : "#0C0C0C",
            "blue" : "#0037DA",
            "brightBlack" : "#767676",
            "brightBlue" : "#3B78FF",
            "brightCyan" : "#61D6D6",
            "brightGreen" : "#16C60C",
            "brightPurple" : "#B4009E",
            "brightRed" : "#E74856",
            "brightWhite" : "#F2F2F2",
            "brightYellow" : "#F9F1A5",
            "cyan" : "#3A96DD",
            "foreground" : "#CCCCCC",
            "green" : "#13A10E",
            "name" : "Campbell",
            "purple" : "#881798",
            "red" : "#C50F1F",
            "white" : "#CCCCCC",
            "yellow" : "#C19C00"
        }
    ]

My Setup

Below is just one of my profiles, the PowerShell Core profile. Here are my requirements:

  • The Hasklig font - a monospaced font with ligatures.
  • Font size 11 - I must be getting old.
  • A small amount of transparency.
  • Solarized Dark Theme
{
    "acrylicOpacity" : 0.95,
    "closeOnExit" : true,
    "colorScheme" : "Solarized Dark",
    "commandline" : "C:\\Program Files\\PowerShell\\6\\pwsh.exe",
    "cursorColor" : "#FFFFFF",
    "cursorShape" : "bar",
    "fontFace" : "Hasklig",
    "fontSize" : 11,
    "guid" : "{574e775e-4f2a-5b96-ac1e-a2962a402336}",
    "historySize" : 9001,
    "icon" : "ms-appx:///ProfileIcons/{574e775e-4f2a-5b96-ac1e-a2962a402336}.png",
    "name" : "PowerShell Core",
    "padding" : "0, 0, 0, 0",
    "snapOnInput" : true,
    "startingDirectory" : "%USERPROFILE%",
    "useAcrylic" : true
}
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About Jacob Hodges