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Viewglob FAQ

1. Does Viewglob run under Cygwin?

Not yet, but it's really close. There's only one known issue left to track down.

2. Any tips for running under OS X?

The 2.0.4 release fixed a bug introduced previously which broke the build in OS X, so it should be relatively straightforward now. Use fink to install GTK+, then your basic ./configure && make && make install. If you receive an error:

      configure: error: GTK+ 2.4.0+ is required to build Viewglob

Try running:

      fink rebuild gtk+2

If it's not working out for you, drop me a message. Thanks to John Magolske for his help.

3. What's a good way to start Viewglob with each new shell session?

If you want to do this, you can add something like the following to the end of your .bashrc:

if [ -z "$VG_VIEWGLOB_ACTIVE" ] && [ "$DISPLAY" ]
    then exec viewglob

Now Viewglob will always start with every interactive shell if it's running under X and if Viewglob isn't already active. Warning: this will only work as of version 1.0.2 (and will bring your machine to its knees if you try it on an older release).

4. How do I start each shell with its own display?

If you don't like terminals sharing the display, this little script should do the trick:



while true; do
    if $VGPING localhost $PORT
        then PORT=`expr $PORT + 1`

exec viewglob -p $PORT "$@"

Note that you may need to change the path to vgping depending on how it was installed.

5. How can you run Screen under Viewglob?

You can't right now, unfortunately. As it stands Screen will sometimes interfere with Viewglob's command line parsing, giving inaccurate results in the display. This is because Screen and Viewglob both use a certain terminal sequence as a semaphore -- whichever program sees it first strips it out before the other has a chance to read it. Hopefully in a future release I'll find another sequence which is equally compatible and doesn't interfere with screen.

6. How come Viewglob isn't highlighting for this weird command I typed?

Probably because you outsmarted it. Since there's no way for Viewglob to track the command line perfectly short of true shell integration, it must settle for examining the terminal's I/O and using heuristics.

For 95% of usage, this works surprisingly well. But if you spend a few minutes crafting a clever multiline command piecemeal using arcane shell features, it'll lose track (though only until the next prompt). Sometimes it knows it's lost, and says as much, sometimes it doesn't. You can tell for sure by checking the bottom of the display.

On the other hand, your wacky command line might contain a shell gimmick which Viewglob purposely doesn't expand. Among these:

  • Compound commands: because successive commands may see a changed filesystem;
  • Variables: because Viewglob doesn't track shell variable changes;
  • History expansion: because I haven't figured out a good way to do it ;-)
See the manpage for more information. NB: your command will always execute correctly (or at least the way you typed it), regardless of whether Viewglob understands what you're doing or not.
$Date: 2006/06/07 01:30:19 $Copyright 2004 Stephen Bach