I have several reasons to think that my terminal behaves like a console.

I use GNOME Terminal 3.18.3.

When I open vim from my terminal on fedora 23, the following warning is emitted: "Vim: Warning: Output is not to a terminal".

When I open the manual for a command, it does not switch the terminal in "reading" mode. What I mean by that is that it does not put me on the manual page where I could scroll using HJKL and quit using q. Instead, it just prints the content of the manual as the result of a command like ls in one fell swoop.

Commands like ls are not colored.

I think this happened after I tried using my computer using Ctrl+Alt+F3 (from the console).

How can I set my terminal back to its previous state?

  • A console interface is a terminal so to understand your problem, please specify how you access it. Commented Jul 22, 2016 at 5:17
  • I use GNOME Terminal, the default graphical terminal of fedora. I launched it from the graphical interface.
    Commented Jul 22, 2016 at 5:22
  • @MMCXCVII 2197?
    – andy256
    Commented Jul 22, 2016 at 5:37
  • @andy256 something you <<8?
    – Jasen
    Commented Jul 22, 2016 at 5:46

1 Answer 1


You are likely (attempting) to redirect the output of your shell to a file, e.g., something like

bash -i | tee foo
$ vim
Vim: Warning: Output is not to a terminal

While you can read (most) commands from the keyboard via that approach, the output is no longer a terminal. You can recover by closing that shell and capturing output in a different way: the script command can capture output sent to a terminal without interfering with it. For example

script -c bash foo

will write all of the text sent to the terminal while running that bash command, and the output will still be a terminal (rather than a pipe or a file).

Further reading:

  • Where is the redirection supposed to be? I checked the file .bashrc and .bash_profile and did not see any mention of the redirection you mentioned. Also, it might be useful for you to know that when I login from the console (using Ctrl+Alt+F3), the following appears: -bash: sh/zsh: No such file or directory
    Commented Aug 6, 2016 at 9:31
  • And when I open a terminal window, before anything the following appears: cat: /tmp/x: No such file or directory
    Commented Aug 6, 2016 at 23:30
  • That is likely in your .bashrc or files that it sources. If you are unsure about that, you could rename your .bashrc file temporarily, and open a new window. Commented Aug 6, 2016 at 23:35
  • Thank you very much, I renamed .bashrc and .bash_profile and all the warnings have been removed. In addition, I can see manual pages normally. I will remove the lines of code I am unsure of one by one to see which one was the cause.
    Commented Aug 6, 2016 at 23:39
  • Great solution, is there any way to separate output for stdout and stderr?
    – calbertts
    Commented Jan 2, 2020 at 11:35

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