What are the best alternatives to Terminal for Mac OS X?

asked by Anonymous
122 contributors
11 solutions
  1. 21


    Powerful replacement for mac OS Terminal, supporting 24-bit color and iTerm2 color schemes.



    Jonathan Berry
    Written on February 5, 2017
    "MacTerm is in beta but shows a lot of potential and comes with a ton of features. Administrators can use it to set up really flexible user accounts. I use it to access the UNIX server at school."
  2. 16


    Byobu is a GPLv3 open source text-based window manager and a terminal multiplexer.



    Raymond Tucker
    Written on January 20, 2017
    "If you're looking for a different Terminal for your Mac OS X, then you should give a try to Byobu. I saw it running on my friend's Mac and I simply loved it because it provides great enhancements to the GNU screen!"
  3. 15

    #3The XQuartz project

    The XQuartz project
    The XQuartz project is an open-source effort to develop a version of the X.Org X Window System that runs on OS X. Together with supporting libraries and applications, it forms the X11.app that Apple shipped with OS X versions 10.5 through 10.7.



    Parakram Verma
    Written on January 17, 2017
    "I was looking for a more versatile terminal for my Mac and I tried the The XQuartz project. It has worked great for me, with more features that I didn't know I needed!"


Did you know that Macintosh computers are the first computers to be sold with the mouse? When Apple released the first Macintosh computer in 1984, it came complete with a graphical user interface, a built-in screen, and a mouse. The invention of the computer mouse, the external handheld pointing device, is credited to Stanford Research Institute and Augmentation Research Center scientist Douglas Engelbart, who wanted to improve the pen-like stylus and create a better device that can help computer users in pointing and clicking on the interface.

Basing on the trackball with a stationary box built by a Royal Canadian Navy Digital Automated Tracking and Resolving system engineer named Kenyon Taylor, Englebart and his team created a small moveable box with a trackball that relays the user's motion to the graphical user interface. Engelbart and his team called it a mouse because it was a box with a cord that connects it to a computer. In 1965, the invention was released and was praised for its simplicity, and soon many innovators created similar devices. It took almost 20 years before the mouse was embraced by computer companies, but the success of the first Apple computer made the mouse almost necessary for them. In modern times, computer mice have evolved, as most mice now use laser light for tracking instead of the old trackball. Some mice are wireless, come with a backlight, and some come with customizable buttons.

  1. 13


    ZTerm is a terminal emulation program for the Macintosh. It's still a useful utility for those systems that only offer dial-up connections and for connecting to devices through a serial port, like many routers.



    Samuel Wade
    Written on January 15, 2017
    "ZTerm was a good find for me when I needed software to serve as a terminal replacement for OS X. It is a useful utility for those connecting to devices through a serial port. "
  2. 12


    Hyper™ it's an HTML/JS/CSS terminal that creates a beautiful and extensible experience for command-line interface users.

    Windows, Mac


    Juan Hudson
    Written on March 19, 2017
    "As a command line interface user, I found Hyper to be extremely useful. The process of using Hyper is extremely fast and stable. Using Hyper increased my productivity at work. I'm extremely glad I downloaded Hyper! "
  3. 11


    ZOC is a professional ssh client and terminal emulator for Windows and Mac OS

    Windows, Mac


    Abhinav Pillai
    Written on March 7, 2017
    "Terminal is not an easy piece of software to work with. Almost nobody knows the ins and outs. So it's hard to get good information. I was able to skip it altogether but installing ZOC. It completely replaces Terminal on my Macbook Pro. It's way more intuitive and therefore user-friendly than the junk software it replaces."
  4. 7



    Cool-RetroTerm is a terminal emulator which mimics the look and feel of the old cathode tube screens. It has been designed to be eye-candy, customizable, and reasonably lightweight.




    Jorge Luis Paredes
    Written on May 5, 2017
    "Cool Retro Term is a great alternative to Terminal for the Mac operating system. It makes your inputs look old school and retro rather than just showing boring code. It's designed to catch the eye and is a great emulator for people who are sick of the same Terminal screen."
  5. 6


    Cathode is a fully customizable terminal app with a look inspired by classic computers.



    Ryan Hart
    Written on May 15, 2017
    "I was looking for a new terminal app for my mac, and decided to give Cathode a try. I like how customizable this is - so many options for different preferences. It's easy to use and so far I am happy with it."
  6. 5


    tmux lets you switch easily between several programs in one terminal, detach them (they keep running in the background) and reattach them to a different terminal.



    Víctor Hugo Rangel
    Written on May 3, 2017
    "This is great! And not too hard to compile. It functions pretty well. "
  7. 4



    TreeTerm is a software for Mac that combines the functionalities and capabilities of a terminal and a file manager. It saves you from having to open different terminal tabs every time you want to issue a unix-command.



    $9.9- Free trial available

    Hans Voorsten
    Written on December 21, 2017
    "TreeTerm removes the need to navigate around my file-system with finder and then open e terminal tab there or cd to it in the terminal app. The file-tree and the terminal are just always in sync."
  8. 1


    Term2 is a replacement for Terminal and the successor to iTerm. It works on Macs with mac OS 10.8 or newer. iTerm2 brings the terminal into the modern age with features you never knew you always wanted.



    Steven Guerrero
    Written on May 15, 2017
    "ITerm2 looks like an interesting solutions for tech-savvy people to have more features on terminal. Terminal itself is not very useful, in my opinion, but I am not a computer programmer. The website mostly has the features in the screenshots section, however the screenshots do a good job at representing an idea of what the software is like. The software, from the images, looks in depth, and important for a programmer using mac. For a normal person, maybe not too useful. "


Best What are the best alternatives to Terminal for Mac OS X
1MacTermSoftware 21 Free
2ByobuSoftware 16 Free
3The XQuartz projectSoftware 15 Free
4ZTermSoftware 13 Free
5Hyper™Software 12 Free
6ZOCSoftware 11 Free
7Cool-RetroTermSoftware 7 Free
8CathodeSoftware 6 Paid
9tmuxSoftware 5 Free
10TreeTermSoftware 4 Paid

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