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David S. Lawyer

v0.05, June 1998

This document explains what text terminals are, how they work, how to install and configure them, and provides some info on how to repair them. It may be of some use even if you don't have a terminal manual. While it's written for real terminals on a Linux system, some of it is also applicable to terminal emulation and/or other Unix-like systems.

1. Introduction

2. Quick Install

3. Why Use a Terminal ?

4. Overview of How Terminals Work (in Linux)

5. Terminal Special Files: /dev/tty... etc.

6. Some Details on How Terminals Work

7. Special Capabilities of Some Terminals

8. Notes by Brand Name

9. Serial Communications on EIA-232 (RS-232)

10. Flow Control (Handshaking)

11. Physical Connection

12. Set-Up (Configure) for both Computer & Terminal

13. Terminfo and Termcap (detailed)

14. Using the Terminal

15. Trouble-Shooting (software)

16. Repair & Diagnose

17. Appendix

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