Five Simple Steps towards a simple (but elegant) terminal setup
This tutorial assumes that you have homebrew and git installed. Jump to step 1 if you already have both. If you don’t, it’s as simple as:
$ git --version
and then running through the installer prompts. Alternatively it can be installed by installing Xcode Command Line Tools:
$ xcode-select --install
$ /usr/bin/ruby -e “$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install)"
You can also install homebrew-cask for super easy setup:
$ brew tap caskroom/cask
Step 1: Download and Install iTerm2
iTerm2 is a Mac OS terminal replacement, download it from here or install it using
homebrew by executing
$ brew install cask
$ brew cask install iterm2
Step 2(a): Introduce some colour
Now let’s change the default theme to something a little more “you”.
You can do this by pressing CMD+i (⌘+i) or through the iTerm preferences:
Iterm2 -> Preferences -> Profiles -> Colors
From here you can select an alternative from the
color presets drop-down menu (I really like Solarized Dark as an alternative setup).
Step 2(b): Introduce some more (interesting) colour
However, if you’d like a little more choice, head on over to this selection of open-source iTerm2 colour schemes and download your preferred presets from here https://github.com/mbadolato/iTerm2-Color-Schemes/tree/master/schemes.
I currently use Vaughn, so we will take that as our example. Before we can import this theme, we will need to go ahead and download it:
$ cd ~/Downloadshttps://raw.githubusercontent.com/mbadolato/iTerm2-Color-Schemes/master/schemes/Vaughn.itermcolors
And then we need to select the import option from the drop-down menu to import the theme.
Step 3: Install zsh
Now it’s time to install zsh and zsh-completions:
$ brew install zsh zsh-completions
Step 4(a): Install oh-my-zsh
This can be done through the command line via
$ sh -c "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/robbyrussell/oh-my-zsh/master/tools/install.sh)"
$ sh -c "$(wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/robbyrussell/oh-my-zsh/master/tools/install.sh -O -)"
Step 4(b): add zsh theme
Let’s go a little further and introduce yet more power to our terminal through a zsh theme. My preference is for Powerlevel9k.
You’ll need to
cd into your
.oh-my-zsh directory and then into
From here you will need to clone down your chose theme:
$ git clone https://github.com/bhilburn/powerlevel9k.git
You will then need to select this theme in your
~/.zshrc as below:
Already, you will see that PowerLevel9 offers an improved and more informative terminal but it can do a whole lot more, so make sure you check out some of these user made configs.
Step 5: nerd-fonts for Font Nerds
To be able to have prompts with additional icons, you need to install a special font set. Welcome to nerd-fonts!
This doc does a far better job than I have at explaining why we need special fonts at all, but the tl;dr is that it’s for cool icons!
$ brew tap caskroom/fonts
$ brew cask install font-NAME-OF-NERD-FONT
Once the download is complete, we need configure iTerm2 to use the font by going to:
iTerm2 -> Preferences -> Profiles -> Text -> Font -> Change Font
Select the name of your chosen font ( I use Droid Sans Mono Nerd Font Complete) from the drop-down menu.
I would also take this time to adjust the size and spacing of your font and to check the option for
use a different font for non-ASCII text.
You should also edit your
.zshrc file to include the following (documentation here):
And there we have it, 5 simple steps to creating a more personalised and improved terminal experience.