Parent: Applications


The midnight commander is an indispensable tool for working with files and the dir-tree. Install via

sudo apt-get install mc


export TERM="xterm-256color"

at the bottom (top, if ineffective) of your ~/.bashrc file. Thus you can load skins as in

mc -S sand256.ini



have the lines:


for preset skin. Newer mc version offer to choose a preset skin from within the menu and save it in the above ini file, relieving you of the above manual step.

Many people don't know that mc has a multi-window text-editor built-in (eerily disabled by default) with macro capability and all sorts of goodies. run

mc -e my.txt

to edit directly.

Be aware that many skins break the special characters for sorting filenames reverse up/down unless one works hard with locale parameters and what not. Few people in the world know how to do that properly. In below screenshot you see "arrowdown n" over the filename list to indicate sort order. In many xterm, you will get ??? instead so you might resort to unskin and go to "default skin" setting with ugly colours.

The below CTRL-O hotkey starts what mc calls a subshell. If you run mc a second time in a "subshell", mc will not remind you of the CTRL-O hotkey (as if the world only knows 3 hotkeys) but will start mc with no deeper "subshell" iteration possible, unless one modifies the sources.

important hotkeys

(1) CTRL-O - disappear the panels to work the CLI , CTRL-O again brings back the panels

(2) ALT NUM-x - tag all files or dirs (e.g. for later copying)

(3) INSERT or CTRL-T or RIGHT-click - tag one of above, nextline


CategoryCommandLine CategoryApplications CategorySoftware CategoryGNU

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mc (last edited 2015-09-20 14:43:47 by mail77)