So I have been looking for a simple “terminal” program to run that will allow me to interface to my terminal node controller (TNC) that I use for packet on Amateur Radio. I’ve found two programs that work but each of them has some crazy side effects that limit their usefulness. Here is what I’ve found:
- Minicom – Minicom is a great little program that runs from the CLI and provides a simple interface to the TNC so I can interface directly with the device. It has problems, though. If you resize the screen you loose everything that was on your screen at the time. This is really annoying as I only resize the screen because of something ON the screen that I can’t read. Here’s the other kicker… if you operate in full-screen mode and you need to copy text from the window it includes all of the space behind the text to the edge of the window as spaces. So I have to limit my window if I want to copy something just so I don’t have to remove the spaces by hand next time.
- Screen – I have been a Screen user since I started seriously using Linux so I was very surprised when I found out that you could simply ‘screen /dev/ttyS0 19200’ to interface with whatever is on your Serial 0 port at 19200 baud. Pretty cool and it doesn’t have the same problems as Minicom. The problem it does have is that it isn’t sending the correct characters to the device. You can’t backspace and you confuse it a great deal if you accidentally hit an arrow key or something like that. Being that you can’t backspace, and thus delete any mistakes you may have made, it really limits the usefulness of the software.
I’m sure there are fixes for each of these problems but I’ve yet to come across it. Maybe someone else has another solution?