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Thread: Tips/Tricks For Programming etc

Author Image Gerry Patterson. The world's most humble blogger
One world --- Or none!

Using mintty as a replacement for putty

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Date: Sun, 29 Sep 2018 20:00:00 +1000

If you have installed Cygwin lately, you will be familiar with the new improved terminal "mintty". This can be used as a light-weight replacement for putty.

It doesn't have all the bells and whistles that putty has, but mintty is a big improvement on the CMD console (which used to be the default for Cygwin).

I was not able to work out how to use mkshortcut to create an SSH login to a remote host (mkshortcut ships with cygutils) ... However I was able to create a CMD script that launches a SSH session (using a PUB certificate to login as follows:

  1. Create .ssh folder on target and transfer the pub key and update authorized_keys as per usual. Set it up so that SSH connects using your ceritificate.
  2. Backup the existing copy of .minttyrc (default location is ~/.minttyrc)
  3. Update the colour scheme and save it. Then move .minttyrc to a new location (e.g. ~/minttyrc.ssh01) and restore the backed up copy of ~/.minttyrc)
  4. Create a CMD shell script to launch your mintty SSH session:
    @echo off
    c:\cygwin\bin\mintty.exe -c c:\cygwin\home\user\minttyrc.ssh01 -i /Cygwin-Terminal.ico /usr/bin/ssh user@remote_host

If there was a way to use mintty for the Windows Ubuntu distribution (Bash on Ubuntu for Windows), it would greatly improve the Ubuntu experience on Windows 10 ... Unfortunately it does not seem to be possible with the latest release of mintty which seems to rely on Cygwin. And if you installed Cygwin, then there probably isn't much point in installing Bash on Ubuntu for Windows.

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