Windows Terminal - Deeper Dive

Windows Terminal - Deeper Dive


I previously posted about my First Look at the Windows Terminal and it has been the most viewed post on my blog so far.

From my Analytics Dashboard

Little did I realise that I made that post on the day that Microsoft would announce the availability of version 1.0 just hours later. Talk about timing. so I thought I'd take a closer look at what makes the new Windows Terminal so interesting and how it might help me day to day.

Getting to know you

So, what is Windows Terminal?

The Windows Terminal is a modern, fast, efficient, powerful, and productive terminal application for users of command-line tools and shells like Command Prompt, PowerShell, and WSL.

Phew, that's a mouthful. So basically I can combine the everyday stuff I have to do on cmd, the jobs I have to use PS for and also start playing with WSL all in one.

When you first open Terminal, you're presented with a PowerShell prompt by default. Nothing unusual here and it's obvious what it's going to be used for. However, the first thing you'll notice is the tabs across the top. Clicking the dropdown arrow presents us with a few extra options.

Pressing the relevant Ctrl+Shift+# will open a new tab of that type and Ctrl+Tab will also allow you to cycle through any open tabs you have. This is really handy for those keyboard centric users who glide around windows without ever having to sniff the mouse.

Something else I quite like is the ability to search through anything that hasn't been cleared.

You can search Up/Down or match case.


The keen-eyed among you will have noticed a "Settings" option in the screenshot above. Where does this take you?

As you can see, there's quite a few options in here to configure various aspects such as how it looks to your perfect workflow. Some things you can configure:

  • Default Profile
  • Dark/Light Theme
  • Tab Settings
  • Launch Settings
  • Title Bar Settings
  • Selection Settings
  • Scroll Speed
  • Window Behaviour
  • Rendering Settings

For a full list and instructions on how to configure these items and more, head over to the Microsoft Docs:

Other than that, you can do pretty much whatever you could do before in each of the environments


So how do you get your hands on it? There's a few options.

Microsoft Store / Github Releases

Something to note is that the Github releases are packaged as .msix (or you can grab the source) but this will not automatically update when new versions are released.

Short Summary

While that wasn't much of a "deep" dive, it was a bit deeper than my previous post. There's not really much you can say.

I've installed it on my home Windows 10 machine and will be installing it on my work Windows 10 VM, especially to play with the Azure Cloud Shell. I probably won't customise it much from the default settings either unless I find something that really boosts productivity. But as I spend most of my time on macOS or Linux and only jump over to W10 to interact with Active Directory or run some PowerShell scripts most of the time, it's not something worth fiddling with.

If you'd like to chat more with me about this or anything else, head on over to Fosstodon and get in touch.

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