Talkd and the talk command

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Revision as of 03:44, 17 December 2013 by Snakeroot (Talk | contribs) (Using systemd directly)

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The "talk" command allows you to talk to other users on the same system, which is useful if you're both SSH'd in from somewhere. Using it is very simple; to talk to someone the command is just

$ talk <username> <tty>

Of course, you can talk to users on another system as well:

$ talk <username>@<hostname> <tty>

In either case, the tty is optional. It is used if you wish to talk to a local user who is logged in more than once to indicate the appropriate terminal name. "tty" is of the form 'ttyXX', or 'pts/X'.


Using xinetd

  1. First, install the inetutils package, which contains talk and talkd. These also rely on xinetd, so install that as well. You might also need the screen command; it's in the screen package.
    # pacman -S inetutils xinetd screen
  2. Configure the xinetd service entry by editing /etc/xinetd.d/talk and setting "disable = no".
  3. If you are using tcp_wrappers or something similar, add an entry to /etc/hosts.allow:
  4. Now start xinetd:
    # systemctl start xinetd.service
  5. If you're on the local system, you might need to start a screen session to make yourself show up on the "w" and "who" commands -- you need to show up there or talk won't work.
  6. Allow write access in your terminal if needed:
    $ mesg y

Talk should work now.

Using systemd directly

Starting from inetutils, talk.service and talk.socket files are provided. Just upgrade and then activate the talk daemon:

# systemctl start talk

Now, the Lennart is strong in you!