Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Recovering a runaway console

Sometimes a program dies leaving your console in a totally unusable state. All you see is a bunch of random numbers and unreadable characters like this.
a normal Linux console Instead of seeing a normal console with a blinking cursor and bash prompt like this.
linux console with random characters

Don't worry, the solution is rather very simple. So, the next time your console goes haywire like this, just type reset (the console won't display what you are typing, since its still in an abnormal state) and press enter. Voila, the console is reinitialized and back in its normal state.

The reset command is the little brother of tset (terminal settings) command and is provided by ncurses-bin package.


  1. the same thing works for xterm too? i get these weezy chars in xterm somtimes and mostly n console..

  2. Yes, it works for xterm too. The screenshots in the post above are from a xterm console.


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