Created: 2012-03-26 16:11
Updated: 2016-12-04 00:47
License: gpl-3.0

Lightweight split-screen terminal emulator with vim keys

This project needs maintainer, drop me a mail if interested.

FourTerm is ultra-lightweight terminal emulator with vim-like keyboard shortcuts for window navigation, active web and file links, search feature and sexy color "Solarized" scheme with day/night fast switching. It is based on ValaTerm and comparable to Terminator.



  • Very small (only about 35 kB binary on Intels).
  • Faster than Terminator (written in Vala/C).
  • Four terminals setup by default.
  • Starts ultra-fast. Exits even faster!
  • Built-in Solarized color scheme.
  • Dark/light color scheme switch using Super/Win + c combination.
  • Vim-like key mapping. Try Super/Windows key + hjkl.
  • Active terminal is highlighted.
  • Comes with Terminus font dependency and setting.
  • Allows to choose your font, scrollback, scrollbar and optional transparency.
  • Supports any number of terminal columns and rows.
  • No context menu, no cursor changes (easy to select even links).
  • Recognizes bactraces of Ruby and Python.
  • Right click opens browser or editor.

Keyboard shortcuts

  • previous term (ALT+LEFT, WIN+H, WIN+P)
  • next term (ALT+RIGHT, WIN+H, WIN+N)
  • bellow term (ALT+DOWN, WIN+J)
  • above term (ALT+UP, WIN+K)

Known bugs

  • Resizing do not work after upgrade to GTK+ 3.X. Do not resize. Send patches!

Planned features

  • More backtrace support (Perl, Java...) - SEND PATCHES!
  • Fedora packages.
  • Effective searching in the history. No more scrolling.


We will provide RPMs for Fedora very soon. See bellow on how to compile.

Run Requirements

  • glib-2.0 >= 2.6
  • gtk+-2.0 >= 2.16
  • vte >= 0.20

Build Requirements

  • valac >= 0.10.0 but >= 0.12.1 is better if you using vte >= 0.26
  • gcc or Clang/LLVM
  • intltool
  • gettext
  • pkg-config

How To Compile

Tutorial for Fedora:

# yum -y install git waf vala glib2-devel gtk3-devel vte3-devel
# git clone git://
# cd fouterm
# ./waf configure --with-gtk3
# ./waf
# build/fourterm

The same for other distributions. If you don't have waf package, you can use ./waf script instead of system-wide installation.


FourTerm was initially forked from ValaTerm, work of Jacques-Pascal Deplaix. Thanks!

  • Jacques-Pascal Deplaix
  • Lukas Zapletal
  • We want you!


Copyright © 2011 Jacques-Pascal Deplaix, © 2012 Lukas Zapletal

FourTerm is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program. If not, see

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