Recently I was looking for a way to run some commands that I used to do under Linux command line and I found the Termux app.
A few years back (well in 2009), I was very excited to see Nokia developing it’s own mobile OS called “Maemo” then “Meego”, a system based on Linux, sold with the Nokia N900, a smartphone with physical retractable keyboard and large screen.
I bought the phone and enjoyed having my Linux console in my pocket with all the useful allocations available.
When Nokia ditched its Linux OS, I turned to Android and at that time there was no proper alternative to provide a console to run Linux commands so I forgot about it.
When I needed to run some simple SSH commands from my phone two weeks ago, I found termux, a free application that provides a complete terminal interface on your phone.
- Running apt-get inside this app to install packages like ssh, dnsutils, nmap, etc.
- Long press on the keyboard shortcut on the drawer menu adds some keyboard shortcuts on top of the Android keyboard.
- Several sessions can be active simultaneously and it is possible to switch between them.
- Copy/paste and kill process operations are available with a long tap on the terminal screen.
- You cannot install packages like iwconfig which would provide awesome information on your WiFi, because it needs root access.
- I could not find how to repeat the last command quickly (i.e. equivalent of the up-arrow on a computer keyboard).
Check out the help pages of termux.com website to see what all the options are. It’s a light but powerful app to keep on your smartphone like a Swiss Army knife.