When I type
firefox in terminal, it starts Firefox but the terminal "hangs".
What is happening behind the scenes?
Can I open Firefox from terminal and keep on using the same terminal tab for other things without closing Firefox?
The terminal locks when you are running an application from it as long as the application is running. With the ampersand (&) you can start the application in the background and still use the terminal. Type:
user@host:~# firefox &
To start firefox in the background. Output of the application will still be in the terminal.
Or, if firefox is already running you can do this:
You should see your jobs like :
+ Stopped firefox.
(or number of your job)