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Open a Second Console Session on Ubuntu Server

Ubuntu Server has the native ability to run multiple console sessions from the server console prompt. If you are working on the actual console and are waiting for a long running command to finish, there’s no reason why you have to sit and wait… you can just open another console and keep working.

Use the Alt+F1, Alt+F2, etc commands to open multiple consoles. There are 6 available tty consoles, using F1-F6.

For example, if I hit the key combination:

Alt+F3

I will see a new login window:

I find this very useful when you are compiling a package and wish to keep working on something else.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 12/13/06

Comments (2)

  1. Johan Westin

    Why not try the ‘screen’ command?!

  2. The Geek

    @Johan

    If you are on a server that doesn’t have screen installed, then this is still useful. This article was more of a basic skill that’s good for new Ubuntu users to know. Obviously you are a more advanced linux user =)

    I actually did write about the screen command in the article titled “Keep Your SSH Session Running when You Disconnect” that should be linked in the related how-to above.

    http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/ubuntu/keep-your-ssh-session-running-when-you-disconnect/

    Glad to have you here… if you have any tips on articles, drop me an email.

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