how to map pfkeys to screen -r cmds

Malcolm Kay malcolm.kay at
Sat Nov 15 16:15:16 PST 2003

On Sun, 16 Nov 2003 09:45, brunoc at wrote:
> On Saturday, November 15, 2003,Marty Landman wrote:
> >Thought I recently read something in the Handbook about being able to
> >switch screens easily using the pfkeys but didn't see the how of it. Today
> >learned the screen cmd following a tip from the fbds Diary but the
> >usefulness would be greatly enhanced with some quick way to go through the
> >screens. How hard is this effect to set up, either with or w/o screens?
> >Also I'm ssh'ing into my session in case that matters.
> >
> >Marty Landman   Face 2 Interface Inc 845-679-9387
> >Sign On Required: Web membership software for your site
> >Make a Website:
> Marty,
> to switch between screens (there are eight pre-configured
> virtual screens on FreeBSD,named /dev/stty0 to /dev/stty7,
> stty0 being also the console output for system messages),

I must say you seem to have a rather unusual FreeBSD setup.
On my 4.7-STABLE machine I believe the default number of 
virtual consoles is 16 with the first 12 having by default /dev entries
/dev/ttyv0 to /dev/ttyvb; certainly not /dev/stty0 ...
and are selectable with Alt-f1 to Alt-f12 when active.
By default the first 8 consoles are activated for login in /etec/ttys.
(When inside X you need Ctl-Alt-f1 etc. otherwise the combination gets
captured by X)

> you use the key combination Alt-Ctrl-F1 to Alt-Ctrl-F8,
> or Ctrl-F1 to Ctrl-F8 (the latter ones do not work if you want
> to switch to screen 0-8 while you are in your desktop
> environment or window manager).

Alt-f1 etc; not Ctl-f1 etc.

> If you started X-window,by using a window manager
> or a desktop environment,normally it uses virtual screen
> #10 (you can change the virtual screens in the /etc/ttys file).

X usually starts on the first inactive virtual terminal, which usually is  
/dev/ttyv8. If started through ttys then it actually ignores the virtual 
terminal number in the entry.
In this case you switch to the X display with Ctl-Alt-f9 or simply Alt-f9.

Virtual consoles not otherwise active can be used for input/output
consoles for your own programs. 

Malcolm Kay

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