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Re: Window Titling

From: Dave Wood
Subject: Re: Window Titling
Date: Wed, 1 Jul 2020 13:56:00 +0100

On 01/07/20 00:24,
Dan Mahoney (Gushi) <> put forth the proposition:
> On Tue, 30 Jun 2020, Dan Mahoney (Gushi) wrote:
> > All,
> >
> > I'm using the \033k hack to auto-title my windows in the listing brought
> > up by ctrl-a " (and also in the statusline).
> >
> > Is there a way to embed color information into this screen (for example,
> > I might want any window with a root shell to have a red title).
> Instead, I directly print the escape sequences IN my .bashrc/cshrc to give
> me useful window titles like where I'm sshing from/to, etc.  (This seems
> important given the above context), rather than having screen try to parse
> the output of my shell and guess about what the title should be.
> As an example, in cshrc I do:
> alias postcmd   'printf "\033%s%s %s %s\033\\" "k" "\!#:0" "\!#:$"
> "[$HOST]"'
> (This gives me a title like ssh hostname, where the command could be ssh -v
> -v -t hostname)
> The screen manual should certainly make mention of this method, and include
> examples for bash and the like.  I'm willing to contribute text and
> examples.  Is this a better question for screen-dev?
> -Dan

>From the section THE VIRTUAL TERMINAL in the list of control
sequences in the screen manual:

ESC k                      A.k.a. Definition String

Which is what you're doing with \033k (\033 is escape).

You can shorten it to \ek in printf and the \033\\ is:

ESC \                 (A)  String Terminator

Which can also be shortened to \e\.  A second \ is needed to escape
the closing quote.

So the quick way to change the title with a string would be:

printf "\ek%s\e\\" "title string"

Unfortunately, there isn't a way to change the colour, at least not
up to the version that I have (4.6.2), however you can change the
bell and monitor colours using the `rendition' definitions, but of
course it would only change colour when a bell or message is
received.  Colours in the hardstatus can be set using \005{} in a
printf statement, with the screen colour definitions inside the
braces, e.g.:

printf "%b" "\005{ck}Some Status Text"

Or similar, which would make black text (k) on a cyan background (c).
You need the %b rather than %s for the control code to be printed

You can find the relevant section with:

man screen | less -p "THE VIRTUAL TERMINAL"

Hope this helps,


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