Ubuntu – Using GNU Screen with 256 colors


I recently installed GNU screen on a machine I ssh into. How do I get GNU screen to use 256 colors?

So far, I've tried adding the following to my .screenrc:

term screen-256color


attrcolor b ".I"    # allow bold colors - necessary for some reason
termcapinfo xterm 'Co#256:AB=\E[48;5;%dm:AF=\E[38;5;%dm'   # tell screen how to set colors. AB = background, AF=foreground
defbce on    # use current bg color for erased chars

but neither worked.

In the login shell, before I start screen, when I run this script, which prints 256 colors, I get normal output. When I use the command tput colors I get the output 8.

When I start screen and run the script, I get 16 colors mapped to 256 colors – there are large blocks of solid color. When I run tput colors I get 256 (when term screen-256color is in my .screenrc).

edit: I got it to work – I didn't configure screen with the --enable-colors256 option.

Best Answer

I personally put it in ~/.bashrc

export TERM=xterm-256color

If that does not work, what terminal are you using ?