Alacritty

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Alacritty is a simple, GPU-accelerated terminal emulator written in Rust. It supports scrollback, truecolor, copy/paste, clicking on URLS, and custom key bindings.

Installation

Install the alacritty package or alacritty-gitAUR for the development version.

Configuration

Alacritty searches for a configuration file at the following places in this order:

  • $XDG_CONFIG_HOME/alacritty/alacritty.yml
  • $XDG_CONFIG_HOME/alacritty.yml
  • $HOME/.config/alacritty/alacritty.yml
  • $HOME/.alacritty.yml

Copy the example configuration file at /usr/share/doc/alacritty/example/alacritty.yml to one of those places and uncomment the settings you want to change. Most settings take effect as soon as you save the file.

Colors

See the upstream wiki for a list of available color schemes. If your preferred color scheme is on the list, paste the provided code into your configuration file.

Font

If you do not want to use your system’s default font, you can specify a different font by changing the following lines:

font:
  normal:
    family: monospace
    style: Regular

  bold:
    family: monospace
    style: Bold

  italic:
    family: monospace
    style: Italic

  bold_italic:
    family: monospace
    style: Bold Italic

  size: 11

Substitute monospace with a font name from the output of

$ fc-list : family style

Note that some fonts do not provide an Italic style but an Oblique style instead.

Tips and tricks

Spawn new instance in same directory

Add the following lines to your configuration file to spawn a new instance of Alacritty in the current working directory by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Enter:

key_bindings:
  - { key: Return,   mods: Control|Shift, action: SpawnNewInstance }

"user@host:cwd" in window title bar

The window title bar shows "Alacritty" unlike other terminal emulators under Arch, which by default show "user@host:cwd". See FS#70752.

If you want the Arch default behavior to apply to all your users in Alacritty, you need to edit your /etc/bash.bashrc file.

Find the case statements which sets the $PROMPT_COMMAND for other terminals:

case ${TERM} in

  xterm*|rxvt*|Eterm|aterm|kterm|gnome*)
     PROMPT_COMMAND=${PROMPT_COMMAND:+$PROMPT_COMMAND; }'printf "\033]0;%s@%s:%s\007" "${USER}" "${HOSTNAME%%.*}" "${PWD/#$HOME/\~}"'

    ;;
  screen*)
    PROMPT_COMMAND=${PROMPT_COMMAND:+$PROMPT_COMMAND; }'printf "\033_%s@%s:%s\033\\" "${USER}" "${HOSTNAME%%.*}" "${PWD/#$HOME/\~}"'
    ;;
esac

Then edit the line xterm*|rxvt*|Eterm|aterm|kterm|gnome*) to add alacritty* so that it reads xterm*|rxvt*|Eterm|alacritty*|aterm|kterm|gnome*).

Vi mode and copy/paste

The vi mode allows moving around Alacritty's viewport and scrollback using the keyboard. By default you can toggle it using Ctrl+Shift+Space. To copy, you can either use a mouse to select and press Ctrl+Shift+c, or enter Vi mode, start a selection using v, move around with hjkl like in vim, and copy the selection with y. To paste, press Ctrl+Shift+v. To copy/paste to/from X clipboard, you can use a mouse selection to copy and a middle mouse click to paste.

Troubleshooting

Mouse not working properly in Vim

Add ttymouse=sgr to your .vimrc or switch to Neovim. Also see this issue.

Transparent border in dwm

With dwm, alacritty's borders become transparent. Adding this line to drw.c in the dwm source directory and recompiling fixes the issue:

if (!XftColorAllocName(...))
    die("error, cannot allocate color '%s'", clrname); /* Find this line */
dest->pixel |= 0xff << 24; /* Add this line */

Terminal functionality unavailable in remote shells

When connecting to a remote system from an Alacritty terminal, for instance over SSH, it can occur that the system does not have an entry for Alacritty in its terminfo database (/usr/share/terminfo/a/alacritty*). Therefore, all interactive terminal functionality does not work. This can be fixed by copying the terminfo for Alacritty to the remote server, as described in termite#Terminal issues with SSH.

On the local host, using Alacritty:

$ infocmp > alacritty.terminfo  # export Alacritty's Terminfo
$ scp alacritty.terminfo user@remote-host:~/  # or any other method to copy to the remote host

On the remote host, in the directory where you copied alacritty.terminfo:

$ tic -x alacritty.terminfo  # import Terminfo for current user
$ rm alacritty.terminfo  # optional: remove Terminfo file

Here is a one-liner version of the process above:

$ infocmp | ssh "$user@$host" 'tic -x /dev/stdin'
Note: After this, you will need to start a new SSH session to have the remote shell load the new Terminfo.

Alternatively, one can set the value of TERM in the configuration to xterm-256color instead of the default alacritty:

env:
  TERM: xterm-256color

Requires hardware supporting GLSL 3.30

You can force Alacritty to use software rendering by launching it with the environment variable LIBGL_ALWAYS_SOFTWARE=1 [1]:

$ LIBGL_ALWAYS_SOFTWARE=1 alacritty

No title bar on Wayland GNOME

When using Wayland GNOME the title bar could be empty and with strange icons [2].

Tango-inaccurate.pngThe factual accuracy of this article or section is disputed.Tango-inaccurate.png

Reason: Unsetting WAYLAND_DISPLAY runs the application with XWayland rather than native Wayland. (Discuss in Talk:Alacritty)

The workaround is to launch Alacritty with an empty WAYLAND_DISPLAY environment variable:

$ WAYLAND_DISPLAY= alacritty

Tango-inaccurate.pngThe factual accuracy of this article or section is disputed.Tango-inaccurate.png

Reason: Files under /usr/share should not be edited, they will be overwritten when the package is updated. (Discuss in Talk:Alacritty)

It is also possible to replace the two Exec lines in /usr/share/applications/Alacritty.desktop with this:

Exec=env WAYLAND_DISPLAY= alacritty

Different font size on multiple monitors

By default, Alacritty attempts to scale fonts to the appropriate point size on each monitor based on the Device pixel ratio. On some setups with multiple displays, this behavior can result in vastly different physical sizes [3], [4].

To view the existing device pixel ratio values for each monitor, run alacritty -v, move the child window to each monitor, and pay attention to the reported Device pixel ratio in the parent window.

Forcing a constant device pixel ratio using the WINIT_X11_SCALE_FACTOR environment variable may be sufficient to fix the different font size issue:

$ WINIT_X11_SCALE_FACTOR=1.66 alacritty