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Byobu, previously known as screen-profiles adds 'decorations' to your gnome terminal or xterm, or konsole:

Byobu is a Japanese term for decorative, multi-panel screens that serve as folding room dividers. As an open source project, Byobu is an elegant enhancement of the otherwise functional, plain, practical GNU Screen. Byobu includes an enhanced profile and configuration utilities for the GNU screen window manager, such as toggle-able system status notifications.

Among the things Byobu can display in your terminal are:
  • Screen windows list
  • Battery status
  • CPU count
  • CPU frequencies
  • Current date/time
  • Disk space
  • EC2 cost
  • Fan speed
  • hostname
  • IP Address
  • Load average
  • Mail count
  • Memory available/used
  • Network transfer speeds
  • Temperatures
  • Processes running (count)
  • Users logged-in (count)
  • Wifi quality
  • Updates available
So basically, it changes your terminal to something like this (I'm talking about the info at the bottom, not the image):


To install Byobu in Ubuntu, add the following PPA:

-Ubuntu Karmic:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:byobu/ppa

-Ubuntu Hardy, Intrepid and Jaunty:
sudo bash -c "echo 'deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/byobu/ppa/ubuntu YOUR_UBUNTU_VERSION_HERE main' >> /etc/apt/sources.list"
sudo apt-key adv --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys F430BBA5

Replacing YOUR_UBUNTU_VERSION_HERE with jaunty, intrepid or hardy.

And then, to install it:
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install byobu

To start it, open a terminal and type:

If you get this error:
Error: Can't open slave tty /dev/pts/1 -- Permission denied

run the following command:
sudo chmod a+rw /dev/pts/1

either for /dev/pts/1 or /dev/pts/0.

You can, of course, change the colors, modify the things to display and so on. You can access all these by pressing F9 and then selecting them from the menu:

byobu settingsbyobu

To start byobu every time you open a terminal, select the option in the Byobu settings to start at login, and also: in your Terminal, go to Edit > Profile preferences, under the "Title and Command" tab check the option to "Run command as login shell".

Here is a more customized Byobu:

byobu customized

For other Linux distributions, see the Byobu download page.