Does not work well: rlwrap + rxvt + cmd

Andrew DeFaria
Wed Aug 24 15:40:00 GMT 2011

On 08/24/11 08:07, Ronald Fischer wrote:
> I would like to run cmd.exe within a rxvt terminal on Windows 7.
My question is why? Why do you want to run cmd.exe?
> Problem is that calling the cmd.exe command history does not work (it 
> seems that the cursor keys are not passed properly to cmd.exe).
> In one thread in this mailing list, it was recommended to wrap the 
> rxvt call by rlwrap:
> rlwrap rxvt -e cmd.exe
> However, this doesn't solve the problem.
> Any other suggestions?
My suggestion would be to abandon cmd.exe altogether. This is not some 
smug response or anything like that. Simply put, I have not found a 
single thing that I need to have cmd.exe around to do it. In fact the 
only time I go into cmd.exe is to proof to others "See it fails in 
straight cmd.exe too".

I also find the cmd shell and command language inferior in that there's 
nothing special or even convenient in cmd that can't be done even 
quicker and better in bash. Now that's a subjective opinion and can be 
considered smug but it's held with literally years of using Cygwin and 
Unix/Linux systems together. It's demonstrable that scripts you might 
develop for bash under Cygwin work equally as well if you simply move 
them onto say Linux, Solaris, HP-UX, FreeBSD, etc. (sans the obvious 
non-portable things you might do with Cygwin specific executables like 
cygpath as well as Windows pathnames or other assumptions. Suffice to 
say, however, that you can program in that portability). I know - I do 
it all the time.

Given the above I must question again - why do you want to run cmd.exe?
> Maybe any alternative to the standard Windows console? On Windows XP I 
> used the sourceforge-project Console2, but on Windows 7 it crashes so 
> often, that I am looking for a different solution.
> In particular, I like with rxvt (and with Console2) the ease of 
> copyiing and pasting text, in particular text spanning more than one 
> line. 
I used rxvt for a long time. I too enjoy the copy and paste semantics 
and the ability to resize the term and it just works correctly. 
Additionally rxvt pays attention to ~/.Xdefaults settings which is 
convenient. However I've since switched to mintty. You should check it out.

As the other guy said, I don't think that running cmd.exe will work with 
the arrows because cmd.exe is expecting access to the console in a 
"Windows way". That said, and if you're hellbent on using cmd.exe, I 
vaguely recall another terminal emulator program (not a Cygwin thing 
mind you) called, I believe just "Terminal" (Good luck googling that!) 
which (insert fuzzy memory here) I believe used a hidden cmd console 
window to allow the Windows program the proper console environment while 
translating that to the non-hidden Terminal window. That might work...
Andrew DeFaria <>
It's not an optical illusion. It just looks like one.

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