If you are a true command line-savvy person like me, you might notice that the Terminal application is almost always open on your Ubuntu. Even if it’s not, you might find it a hassle to open the Terminal again and again for frequent use. If that’s the case, we would recommend you a drop-down console called Tilda. It is a free, open-source and highly customizable GTK based drop-down terminal emulator for Linux. Tilda has no border window, title bar, menu bar or any maximize/minimize buttons. Its design was initially inspired by the classical terminals used in shooter games like Quake and Doom. The best thing about Tilda is that it can be pulled up and down using a single key.

In this article, we will explain how to install and use this easily accessible terminal emulator.

We will explain two ways for you to install Tilda on your ubuntu:

  • Through the Command Line-Terminal
  • Through the UI-Ubuntu Software manager

The commands and procedures mentioned in this article on a Ubuntu 18.04 LTS system.

Tilda Installation Through the Command Line

A Terminal-savvy person can choose to install Tilda through the command line as follows:

Open your Ubuntu Terminal either through system Dash or the Ctrl+Alt+T shortcut. Then enter the following command as root in order to install Tilda:

$ sudo apt-get install tilda

Please note that only an authorized user can add/remove and configure software on Ubuntu.

Installing Tilda

The system will prompt you with a Y/n option in order to begin the installation procedure. Please enter Y and hit Enter to begin. Tilda will then be installed on your system.

You can exit the Terminal by entering the exit command:

$ exit

Remove Tilda

In order to uninstall Tilda from your system, enter the following command as sudo:

$ sudo apt-get remove tilda

The system will prompt you with a Y/n option in order to begin the uninstall procedure. Please enter Y and hit Enter to begin. Tilda will then be removed from your system.

Tilda Installation Through the UI (Ubuntu Software Manager)

For a person who does not want to open the Command Line much, installing a software present in the Ubuntu repository through the UI is very simple. On your Ubuntu desktop Activities toolbar, click the Ubuntu Software icon.

Ubuntu Activities

The Ubuntu Software manager will open in the following view:

Software Manager

Click the search icon and enter Tilda in the search bar. The search results will list the Tilda entry as follows:

Search for Tilda application

Click the Install button to begin the installation process. The following authentication dialog will display for you to provide the authentication details for a sudo user as only an authorized user can install a software on Ubuntu.

Authenticate yourself as admin user

Enter your password and click the Authenticate button. After that, the installation process will begin, displaying a progress bar.

Tilda will then be installed to your system and you will get the following message after a successful installation:

Tilda successfully installed

Through the above dialog, you can choose to directly launch Tilda and even Remove is immediately for whatever reason.

Remove Tilda

You can uninstall Tilda through the Ubuntu Software manager by first searching for it through the Search button and then clicking the Remove button against it from the following view:

Remove Tilda with Software Manager

A dialog will ask you if you are sure about removing the software from your system. Please enter the Remove button to uninstall Tilda.

Confirm Removal

An authentication dialog will display for you to provide the authentication details for a sudo user as only an authorized user can install a software on Ubuntu. Enter your password and click the Authenticate button. After that, the uninstall process will begin, removing Tilda from your system.

How to Launch and Use Tilda?

You can launch Tilda through the Terminal application by entering the following command:

$ tilda

Or,

You can launch Tilda any time you want by entering ‘Tilda’ in Ubuntu Dash or access it from the Applications list.

Launch Tilda

When you open Tilda for the first time, it will open in the following view:

Tilda settings shown at first start of the app

This is the Tilda Configuration window through which you can make a lot of configurations. You can also open this window later any time by right-clicking on any empty space in Tilda and then selecting Preferences.

By default, Tilda always appears on top of all applications. You can, however, customize it as per your liking.

Tilda Console

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

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

Now you have a drop-down console installed on your system that you know how to make the best use of.

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