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ConEmu vs Windows Terminal: What are the differences?

Introduction

ConEmu and Windows Terminal are both command line interfaces for Windows operating system. While they have similarities, there are key differences that set them apart. In this Markdown code, we will explore and highlight those differences.

  1. Customization: ConEmu allows extensive customization with a variety of options such as choosing different shells, fonts, and colors. On the other hand, Windows Terminal provides limited customization options in comparison, with only the ability to set theme colors and background image.

  2. Tabs and Panes: ConEmu supports both tabs and panes, allowing users to have multiple terminals in one window. This feature is especially useful for multitasking and managing multiple command line sessions efficiently. Windows Terminal, however, only supports tabs, and not panes, meaning you can only have multiple terminals in separate tabs.

  3. Compatibility: ConEmu supports a wider range of shells, including CMD, PowerShell, Git Bash, and more. Windows Terminal, on the other hand, is designed to work specifically with PowerShell, CMD, and Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL), providing a more streamlined experience for these shells.

  4. GPU Acceleration: Windows Terminal utilizes GPU acceleration for rendering, resulting in smoother scrolling and improved performance when dealing with large outputs. ConEmu, on the other hand, does not utilize GPU acceleration and may sometimes experience slight lag or delays with large outputs.

  5. Link Highlighting: ConEmu has a feature that automatically highlights and makes URLs clickable in the terminal, allowing users to easily open links. Windows Terminal, however, does not have this feature, requiring users to manually copy and paste URLs into a web browser.

  6. Split-Screen Support: Windows Terminal natively supports split-screen layouts, allowing users to view multiple terminals side by side in a vertical or horizontal split. ConEmu, on the other hand, does not have native support for split-screen layouts and would require additional tools or configurations to achieve a similar effect.

In summary, ConEmu offers more customization options, extensive shell compatibility, and features like panes, link highlighting, and split-screen support, while Windows Terminal prioritizes a streamlined experience with GPU acceleration, native split-screen support, and limited customization options.

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Pros of ConEmu
Pros of Windows Terminal
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      Add almost any cli tool using profiles
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      Can be highly customized by using terminal preview
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      Free

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    What is ConEmu?

    It aims to be handy, comprehensive, fast and reliable terminal window where you may host any console application developed either for WinAPI (cmd, powershell, far) or Unix PTY (cygwin, msys, wsl bash).

    What is Windows Terminal?

    A new, modern, feature-rich, productive terminal application for command-line users. It includes many of the features most frequently requested by the Windows command-line community.

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    What companies use ConEmu?
    What companies use Windows Terminal?
    See which teams inside your own company are using ConEmu or Windows Terminal.
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    What tools integrate with ConEmu?
    What tools integrate with Windows Terminal?

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    What are some alternatives to ConEmu and Windows Terminal?
    PowerShell
    A command-line shell and scripting language built on .NET. Helps system administrators and power-users rapidly automate tasks that manage operating systems (Linux, macOS, and Windows) and processes.
    Cygwin
    It is a POSIX-compatible environment that runs natively on Microsoft Windows. Its goal is to allow programs of Unix-like systems to be recompiled and run natively on Windows with minimal source code modifications by providing them with the same underlying POSIX API they would expect in those systems.
    Hyper
    Hyper.sh is a secure container hosting service. What makes it different from AWS (Amazon Web Services) is that you don't start servers, but start docker images directly from Docker Hub or other registries.
    Putty
    It is an SSH and telnet client, developed originally by Simon Tatham for the Windows platform. It is open source software that is available with source code and is developed and supported by a group of volunteers.
    JavaScript
    JavaScript is most known as the scripting language for Web pages, but used in many non-browser environments as well such as node.js or Apache CouchDB. It is a prototype-based, multi-paradigm scripting language that is dynamic,and supports object-oriented, imperative, and functional programming styles.
    See all alternatives