How to set Terminator as default terminal in Ubuntu 22.04 or 20.04

Get the simple steps to install and set the Terminator terminal as the default one on Ubuntu 22.04 Jammy Jellyfish or 20.04 Focal fossa to run the commands.

If you are looking for a great Terminal emulator for the GNOME desktop environment, the Terminator Terminal emulator is one of the best for you. Among other features of the Terminator emulator, it solves the problem associated with opening multiple tabs in a single Terminal window. You can seamlessly arrange the Terminal tabs with Terminator.

Terminator basically comes with a lot of customization options, which can help you arrange the Terminals in a grid-shaped arrangement, besides support for multiple tabs. With the number of key bindings, you can carry out the most common activities, and you can easily drag and drop tabs for the purpose of ordering them and enjoy a streamlined workflow. Terminator has support typing the same text in multiple Terminal instances at the same time, which can also be useful in certain situations. Learn how to install Terminator on Ubuntu 22.04 Linux.

Steps to set Terminator as the default terminal on Ubuntu

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

This tutorial is not just limited to Ubuntu systems. We can use it for Linux Mint, Debian, POP OS, Elementary, Zorin OS, and more…

Run command terminal

Open any installed command terminal on your Ubuntu Linux. It is because here in this tutorial we are going to use the command line to configure the default application. You can use the Ctlr+Alt+T keyboard shortcut.

Change the default terminal on Ubuntu to Terminator

Well, to change the default Ubuntu Terminal and set some other, we need to have at least one more Terminal emulator app apart from the one which comes with the system. For example, Ubuntu offers Gnome Terminal but now you have installed the Terminator and want any of them set as the default one. In such cases, an inbuilt utility of our Linux system, called update-alternatives can be used. We can use this utility to switch between the installed Terminal applications on our system to make any of them the default one. It is not limited to the terminal apps, we can use it for browsers and other applications as well. It is because this utility is responsible for setting up default applications in Ubuntu or Debian. Run the given command to change and select the default Ubuntu or Debian Terminal.

sudo update-alternatives --config x-terminal-emulator

As you run the above command, you will get the list of all existing Terminal-emulators with a provision to select any of them. For example:

There are 7 choices for the alternative x-terminal-emulator
 (providing /usr/bin/x-terminal-emulator).

  Selection    Path                             Priority   Status
  0            /usr/bin/alacritty                50        auto mode
  1            /usr/bin/alacritty                50        manual mode
* 2            /usr/bin/gnome-terminal.wrapper   40        manual mode
  3            /usr/bin/koi8rxterm               20        manual mode
  4            /usr/bin/lxterm                   30        manual mode
  5            /usr/bin/terminator               50        manual mode
  6            /usr/bin/uxterm                   20        manual mode
  7            /usr/bin/xterm                    20        manual mode

Press  to keep the current choice[*], or type selection number: 

What you have to do, is first find the “Selection” number of the Terminal that you want to set as the default one. After that type it and hit the Enter key. And you are done. For example, to set Terminator, we type – 5 and then press the Enter key. In the same way, use the Selection number assigned to Terminator on your Ubuntu 20.04 or 22.04 system.

Check whether Terminator is set as the default terminal or not

Once you are done with the previous steps, it’s time to check whether the default Terminal has been changed and set to the new one or not. For that, run the same command above given again but this time you will see the Asterik (*)  in front of the Terminal you have selected. This shows the changes are done, successfully.

Steps to set Terminator as the default terminal on Ubuntu

In the same way, we can change and set any terminal on Ubuntu 20.04 or 22.04 as the default one using the update-alternatives utility. If you have questions, the comment section is all yours.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.