The majority of Linux administrators and some of the regular Linux users prefer to use the command line to perform daily operations. However, you may find it tedious to open the terminal over and over again. In this case, we recommend a tool called Tilda. Tilda is an open-source and highly customizable GTK-based drop-down console for Linux. Tilda runs in the background while you can show and hide it with a single keystroke. It has no border window, no title bar, no menu bar, and no maximize/minimize buttons. The classic terminals used in shooter games like Quake and Doom originally inspired the design. The best thing about Tilda is its flexibility; you can customize its behavior and appearance with simple shortcuts.

In this article, we will explain how to install and use a drop-down Tilda console.

We will explain two ways to install Tilda on Debian:

  • Through the command line terminal
  • About the UI-Debian Software Manager

We have run the commands and procedures mentioned in this article on a Debian 10 system.

Tilda Installation Through the Command Line

If you prefer to install Tilda via command line, here is the procedure. Note that only an authorized user can install or remove any application from the Linux system.

To launch the command-line Terminal application in your OS, go to the Activities tab in the top left corner of your desktop. Then in the search bar, type terminal. From the result that appears, click on the Terminal icon to open.

Tilda is available in the official repositories of Debian OS, so you can easily install it via apt command. In the Terminal, execute the following command as sudo in order to install Tilda:

$ sudo apt-get install tilda

When prompted for the password, enter the sudo password.

Install Tilda

The system might prompt for confirmation with Y/n option, hit y and then Enter to confirm. After that, the Tilda will be installed on your system.

Now close the Terminal by typing the exit command:

$ exit

Remove Tilda

In case you want to remove Tilda from your system, execute the following command in Terminal:

$ sudo apt-get remove tilda

The system might prompt for confirmation with Y/n option, hit y and then Enter to confirm. After that, the Tilda will be removed from your system.

Remove Tilda

Tilda Installation Through the UI (Synaptic Package Manager)

If you are not comfortable using the command line for installation, you can use the following UI way through the Synaptic Package Manager.

Execute the following command in Terminal in order to install the Synaptic package manager in your system.

$ sudo apt install synaptic

Once installed, launch the Synaptic Package Manager. To do so, hit the super key and in the search bar that appears, type Synaptic. Then click on the Synaptic Package Manager to open it.

When the Synaptic Package Manager window opens, search for the Tilda application. To do so, click the Search icon as follows:

Package manager

The following Find dialog box will appear, type tilda and click the Search button.

Search for Tilda

When the search result appears, right-click the Tilda application and select Mark for Installation.

Mark for installation

Now click the Apply button.

Apply software selection

A confirmation dialog box will appear, click on the Apply button to confirm.

Tilda to be installed

Now the package will be installed and you will see the following message:

Changes applied

Remove Tilda

In case you want to remove Tilda application from your system, follow the below procedure:

From the left menu in Synaptic Manager, go to Status > Installed. It will list all the installed applications on your system. Scroll down to find the Tilda application.

Then right-click the Tilda application and select Mark for Complete Removal.

Mark for complete removal

The confirmation dialog box will appear. Click on the Apply button to confirm. After that, the package will be completely removed from your system.

Choose package

Launch Tilda

To launch Tilda, you can either use the command line Terminal or the GUI.

In order to launch the Tilda via command-line Terminal, use the following command:

$ tilda

To launch Tilda via GUI, hit the super key on your keyboard and type tilda in the search bar. When the search result appears, click on the Tilda icon to open it.

Launch Tilda

The following view appears when you open the Tilda application for the first time. This is Tilda configuration window, where you can do a lot of configurations related to color, appearance, font size, keybinding, scrolling and much more.

Tilda config options

To open the configuration window later at any time, right-click anywhere in the Tilda window and select Preferences.

Tilda drop-down console

By default, the Tilda will appear at the top left corner. However, you can customize it as per your preferences.

Using Tilda

Here is a list of shortcuts that you will be mostly using while operating Tilda:

ShortcutPurpose
F1Use this shortcut to hide/show Tilda
Shift+Ctrl+TUse this shortcut to open a new tab
Shift+Ctrl+WUse this shortcut to close an active tab
Ctrl+pageupUse this shortcut to navigate to the previous tab
Ctrl+pagedownUse this shortcut to navigate to the next tab
Shift+Ctrl+pageupUse this shortcut to move the tab left
Shift+Ctrl+pagedownUse this shortcut to move the tab right
Shift+Ctrl+CUse this shortcut to copy text from the Tilda window
Shift+Ctrl+VUse this shortcut to paste text to the Tilda window
<ALT>1 to <ALT>0Use these shortcut to go to tab 1, tab 2 and so on till tab 10
Shift+Ctrl+FUse this shortcut to search for text
Shift+Ctrl+QUse this shortcut to quit Tilda
F11Use this shortcut to toggle to full screen
F12Use this shortcut to toggle transparency

That is all there is to it! In this article, you have learned how to install and use a drop-down console Tilda on your Debian system. Hope you found this article useful!

How to Install and Use Tilda – a drop-down console for Debian 10