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Is there any tool/command in Linux that I can use to run a command in more than one tab simultaneously? I want to run the same command: ./myprog argument1 argument2 simultaneously in more than one shells (I want to increase this so as to put my code under stress later on) to check if the mutexes are working fine in a threaded program.

I am kind of looking for something like what wall does. I can think of using tty's, but that just seems like a lot of pain if I have to scale this to many more shells.

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"Any time you find yourself doing a repetitive task that involves a computer, automate it" — me. I think you may be doing yourself a disservice by using multiple terminal tabs for load testing because you'd have to watch them all which is tedious. Better to have one program which spawns child myprog instances and aggregates their output for you. – msw Sep 4 '13 at 1:07
Normal multi-threading isn't going to have a mutex between processes...? – Aaron D. Marasco Sep 4 '13 at 1:17
@msw: Yeah but what if I wanted to see what the end user would see when he ran the same command from his terminal and when I scaled that to say 100, what would they see on their screen? Isn't that a valid thing to determine? – Arpith Sep 4 '13 at 1:24
@AaronD.Marasco: I want to check the mutexes I have put in, in the user space. – Arpith Sep 4 '13 at 1:30
So run 99 instances under one supervisor and run a 100th in a terminal. I concede that you might be able to watch 100 terminals simultaneously, if so, I'm impressed. – msw Sep 4 '13 at 2:34

12 Answers 12

up vote 18 down vote accepted

As mavillan already suggested, just use terminator. It allows to display many terminals in a tiled way. When enabling the broadcasting feature, you can enter the very same command simultaneously on each terminal.

Here is an example with the date command broadcasted to a grid of 32 terminals.


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Damn this is awesome! – 5chdn Jul 15 '14 at 21:11
How can I easily open 32 terminals? – Annan Sep 25 '15 at 16:38
@Annan Terminator supports custom layouts, have a look to unix.stackexchange.com/a/168445/2594 and askubuntu.com/a/178242/18306 – jlliagre Sep 25 '15 at 19:58

You can do something like:

for ((i=0; i<$max_processes; i++))
    /path/to/myprog arg1 arg2 > /tmp/myprog.${i}.log &

Or if the output of each command is relevant during execution, you can setup screen.

vi ~/.screenrc
screen -t inst1    1 /path/to/myprog arg1 arg2
screen -t inst2    2 /path/to/myprog arg1 arg2
screen -t inst3    3 /path/to/myprog arg1 arg2
screen -t inst4    4 /path/to/myprog arg1 arg2

The screen requires more manual work.

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Could you expand more on the screen solution? More in line with what I want... – Arpith Sep 4 '13 at 1:25
why not just tail -f the log file instead of setting up a hundred screens. – Lie Ryan Sep 4 '13 at 3:07
@Arpith the screen spawn several terminals in a single one. If you want to see all of them in "real time" then you can use screen. Although personally I would go with logfiles, you can set up your prog to send a message or actually have your own prog writing a logfile for each instance (ex: myprog.pid.log) – BitsOfNix Sep 4 '13 at 20:03
@LieRyan because unless you're logging with something like syslog you have to log to a separate file for each process. If you simply try to have 20+ processes write to the same file at the same time you're going to have a bad time. – Sammitch Sep 4 '13 at 23:55
@Sammitch: tail -f *.log – Lie Ryan Sep 5 '13 at 1:42


Another tool to add to the list is one called multixterm. It uses xterm terminals. You can invoke it like so:

$ multixterm

And once up you'll be presented with a GUI.

                                                         ss of gui

You can then start spinning up xterm windows by clicking the new xterm button. Here for example I've invoked 2. If you then click on the primary window, you can start typing commands in both windows simultaneously:

   ss of xtems


Appears to only be available on Ubuntu, looks similar to multixterm.


The purpose of keyboardcast is to allow you to send keystrokes to multiple X windows at once. This allows you, for example, to control a number of terminals connected to different but similar hosts for purposes of mass- administration.

You can also select non-terminals. If you come up with a reasonable use for this ability I'd be interested in hearing about it.

The program can select windows to send to either by matching their titles (using a substring) or by clicking on them (in a method similar to GIMP's screenshot feature).

The program also features the ability to spawn off multiple instances of gnome-terminal executing a single command on multiple arguments (for example executing 'ssh' on several hosts). The gnome-terminals are invoked with the profile 'keyboardcast' if it exists (so, for example, your font size can be smaller).

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You could use a tool like MobaXterm and it will allow you to connect simultaneously and then paste your commands into all of your windows.

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If you only want to see output from the 100th program execution:


args="argument1 argument2"
for i in $(seq $max); do
    if [ $i -lt $max ]; then
        exec $prog $args &> /dev/null &
        exec $prog $args
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Try Terminator (emulator terminal). It can have many shell sessions in the same window and you can broadcast a command to all of them.


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tmux has this capability. (along with many other useful capabilities in the same vein)

Can be done via:

:setw synchronize-panes on
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could you please shortly describe how tmux does that - or paste a link? thx! – eli Mar 21 at 12:06
:setw synchronize-panes on – Michael Martinez Mar 22 at 0:52

You can control konsole through DCOP. An example is from here:


checkfile() {
  if [ ! -f $1 ]; then
    echo "could not find $1"
    exit 99
    echo "OK"

# Check for App1 XML
echo -n "Checking for App 1 XML... "
checkfile ${DEVROOT}/${XMLA}

# Check for App2 XML
echo -n "Checking for App 2 XML... "
checkfile ${DEVROOT}/${XMLB}

# Launch Konsole
echo -n "Launching konsole... "
K=$(dcopstart konsole-script)

[ -z "${K}" ] && exit 98
# Create second tab and resize
SDA=$(dcop $k konsole currentSession)
SDB=$(dcop $k konsole newSession)
dcop $K $SDA setSize 121x25

# Let bash login, etc.
sleep 1

# Rename the tabs
dcop $K $SDA renameSession "App 1"
dcop $K $SDB renameSession "App 2"

# Start services, letting user watch
echo -n "starting app1... "
dcop $K konsole activateSession $SDA
dcop $K $SDA sendSession "echo -ne '\033]0;DEV (${hostname})\007' && clear && starter $XMLA"
sleep 2
echo -n "starting app2... "
dcop $K konsole activateSession $SDB
dcop $K $SDB sendSession "echo -ne '\033]0;DEV (${hostname})\007' && clear && starter $XMLB"
echo done.
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+1 for DCOP. I had no idea! – Arpith Sep 4 '13 at 1:28
sh <<-STRESS & 
$( printf 'myprog &\n%.0b' \
    `seq 1 ${MAX_CONCURRENT_PROCS}` )
echo "$!"

I agree with the comment @msw makes above. This will write you a script to be launched by a backgrounded sh process and print out the child sh process's pid so you can monitor it and its children as it works.

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You can start processes in the background with nohup.


nohup ./myprog -arg1 -arg2 &


[1] 1769    
nohup: ignoring input and appending output to 'nohup.out'

Remember to kill the task later with the given PID:

kill 1769

To bring the process in the foreground you must enter the jobnumber, in this case [1]:

fg %1
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I'm a KDE user, with konsole 2.13.2 on KDE 4.13.3 you can do this:

  1. open konsole

  2. split view vertically enter image description here

  3. write simultaneously on each terminal inside the window enter image description here

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