How can I scroll in bash using only the keyboard? If it's not possible in bash, are there any other shells that support this?

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    This is not a feature of the shell, it's a feature of the terminal emulator. See What is the exact difference between a 'terminal', a 'shell', a 'tty' and a 'console'? What terminal are you using? – Gilles Jan 5 '13 at 17:22
  • 1
    I think this is too broad. As mentioned, scrolling is a terminal emulator feature, not a shell feature. There are really very many terminal emulators many of which implement scrolling in different ways, or not at all. – Anko May 11 '15 at 17:39
  • On that score: For a question specifically about GNOME Terminal, although the questioner initially also did not specify the terminal emulator program, see unix.stackexchange.com/questions/460422 . – JdeBP Aug 14 '18 at 11:42
  • If anyone finds an answer for Ubuntu on WSL I'd be grateful. Current answers don't help. – Bram Vanroy Sep 9 at 16:41

In "terminal" (not a graphic emulator like gterm), Shift+PageUp and Shift+PageDown work.

  • 4
    Shift+Uparrow and shift+Downarrow also work for line at a time scrolling. – Joe Jan 13 '13 at 7:03
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    for me its ctrl-shift+Uparrow – Hermann Ingjaldsson Sep 9 '16 at 10:43

I use the default terminal in Ubuntu 14 (bash) and to scroll by page it is Shift + PageUp or Shift + PageDown to go up/down a whole page.

Ctrl + Shift + Up or Ctrl + Shift + Down to go up/down by line.


This depends on your terminal emulator, not the shell you are using. I personally use GNU Screen. From the description:

Screen is a full-screen window manager that multiplexes a physical terminal between several processes, typically interactive shells.

You can use C-a [ to enter scrollback mode. From here, you can scroll with the keyboard and even copy and paste. The mode can be exited from by using the Esc key.


Keyboard: Apple/Mac

Terminal/Emu: OSX Terminal

Shell: bash

fn + up_arrow: page up
fn + down_arrow: page down
cmd + up_arrow: line up
cmd + down_arrow: line down
  • 2
    This adds nothing, appears to be mac specific (which would not be a bad thing if properly marked as such), and does not apply to bash but to the terminal emulator (which would be useful if we knew what it was). – hildred Aug 8 '15 at 15:51
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    I have no key marked fn, nor one marked cmd. – Anthon Aug 8 '15 at 17:32
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    @Anthon Because you don't use a mac? OP never specified operating system in the question. – DisplayName Jan 2 '16 at 14:03
  • for ITerm you can use either fn with either shift, command, or option plus the arrows for direction – lacostenycoder Feb 27 at 19:19
  • cmd + up is helpful 👍 – killscreenmike Mar 10 at 6:07

In most terminals that I known you can use Shift+PageUp and Shift+DownDown for scrolling. Note that some terminals don't support scrolling, or use a very limited history buffer. In the latter case, you may want to increase the limit, if it is configurable.

As an alternative, use a pager; for example, less.


On FreeBSD, you can use Scroll Lock to toggle screen scrolling mode. Press it once, then use Up/Down, PgUp/PgDown, Home/End to scroll. Press it again to jump back down and resume typing.


If you use VirtureBoxVM on Mac OS, press SHIFT + fn + up_arrow ( or down_arrow) to roll.


There is an another way to show everything in terminal organized write to the last to any command " | less " and by clicking SPACE BUTTON you can scroll down an up.


  • ps aux
  • ps aux | less

  • ps fax

  • ps fax | less

Linux on Apple / Mac Keyboard (at least on MacBook Pro)

  • Page-up: shift+fn+UpArrow
  • Page-down: shift+fn+DownArrow
  • Line-up: shift+control+UpArrow
  • Line-down: shift+control+DownArrow
  • Home: shift+fn+LeftArrow
  • End: shift+fn+RightArrow

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