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st is a simple terminal implementation for X by suckless. It is intended to serve as a lightweight replacement for xterm or urxvt. It currently supports 256 colors, true colors, most VT10X escape sequences, UTF-8, X11 copy/paste, anti-aliased fonts (using fontconfig), fallback fonts, resizing, shortcuts via config.h, and line drawing.


Install the st or st-gitAUR package.


st is configured through its config.h file, which is copied over from config.h at compile time. A default config.def.h is included with the source.

Consider maintaining your own PKGBUILD with your config.h.


To change the default shell for st, edit this line:

 static char shell[] = "/bin/sh";


To change the terminal type, edit this line:

 static char termname[] = "st-256color";

st will set the TERM variable with the value of termname.

Note: If you experience trouble with st, you can try to set termname to xterm or xterm-256color


Edit the following line as you prefer:

static char font[] = "Liberation Mono:pixelsize=12:antialias=false:autohint=false";

You can also pass the value of the font in the command line:

$ st -f "Liberation Mono:size=12"


Edit the following line to set foreground, background and cursor colors:

 static unsigned int defaultfg = 7;
 static unsigned int defaultbg = 0;
 static unsigned int defaultcs = 256;

The values refer to the *colorname[] array in the same file, you can use default color or add yours in #rrggbb, for example:

 static const char *colorname[] = {
   	/* 8 normal colors */
       /* 8 bright colors */
       [255] = 0,
       /* more colors can be added after 255 to use with DefaultXX */
  * Default colors (colorname index)
  * foreground, background, cursor
 static unsigned int defaultfg = 257;
 static unsigned int defaultbg = 258;
 static unsigned int defaultcs = 256;

Desktop entry

To simplify launching st with a decent font e.g. adobe-source-code-pro-fonts, you can also create a desktop entry:

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Simple Terminal
Comment=standard terminal emulator for the X window system
Exec=st -t "Suckless Terminal" -f "Source Code Pro:style=Semibold:size=16" -g "80x24"

The menu entry will appear as Simple Terminal in the System Tools application list.



DEL-Key not working properly in some Application

add following to ~/.inputrc or /etc/inputrc:

 set enable-keypad on

Backspace not working properly

Note: According to the FAQ, this behavior has been changed in the upstream, and the issue can be fixed upgrading to the latest version.

While virtual terminal and most popular terminal emulator for X bind backscape key to ^? escape sequence, older version of st bind it to ^H, as explained in older version of the FAQ.

If hitting the backspace key while typing on standard input of some programs (like read) prints ^H instead of erasing, you can fix that with:

stty erase '^H'

This will make the terminal interprets ^H as an erase command.

If you want to put the above command in a shell profile, you should consider checking the $TERM before launch it.

As of version 0-6, st interpret backspace as ^? by default. An exception is when Alt+BackSpace pressed, st sends ^[^H instead of ^[^? (FS#50000). This inconsistent behavior leads to bad experience, especially on Emacs when pressing Alt+BackSpace no longer delete a word backwards. To fix this, adding a line on config.h is needed.

       { XK_BackSpace,     Mod1Mask,       "\033\177",      0,    0,    0},

Rebuild the package to apply the change.


The background colour of text in vim will not fill in anything that is not a character

Try setting the value of termname in your config.h to st-256color and recompiling. And do not set the TERM var in your shell, at least not to st-256color as this seems to cause the issue.

Another solution, perhaps a better one, is to have the following lines in your .vimrc file:

if &term =~ '256color'
    " disable Background Color Erase (BCE) so that color schemes
    " render properly when inside 256-color tmux and GNU screen.
    " see also
    set t_ut=

See also