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I created a new profile for gnome-terminal and I can switch between "Implicit" profile and the new created profile as you can see in the below image:

Switch between profiles in gnome-terminal

Now I wonder how can I switch between profiles using a command-line/script or maybe using a shortcut for this.

Note: Solutions like:

gnome-terminal --tab-with-profile=Implicit && exit 

are excluded because I prefer not to close and open another terminal or get another terminal window in this process of changing the profile.

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With gconftool-2 you can set the profile whose changes are immediate . Have you checked this out-->… – Stormvirux Aug 7 '13 at 20:10
@Stormvirux No... So can you explain how to use gconftool or gconftool-2 to switch the profile? I don't see a good answer/explanation there. – Radu Rădeanu Aug 7 '13 at 20:18
duplicate question:… – Jakob Oct 7 '15 at 12:45
up vote 4 down vote accepted

To switch to the "implicit" profile:

xdotool key Alt+t p Return

To switch to the second profile:

xdotool key Alt+t p Down Return

xdotool Install xdotool is not installed by default in Ubuntu, so it must to be installed first.

Of course, for these commands can be added custom keyboard shortcuts.

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That's not a shortcut. You are only simulating the keypresses, is only mnemonics of the application. – Braiam Nov 14 '13 at 18:44
@Braiam Yes, it's not a shortcut, I can see. It's a command-line (see man xdotool for more info) as I asked, which is working exactly as I wish and I am happy with this answer until something better will appear. ;) – Radu Rădeanu Nov 14 '13 at 18:58
You seriously should consider suggesting that in the bugtracker... – Braiam Nov 14 '13 at 19:00
@Braiam As I told you, I'm ok with this solution, it's working like a charm. Regarding your suggestion, there is one in this sense from 2002 (modified in 2010: "It would be extra nice if I can use exactly two keystrokes to open the profile of my choice." - see this comment). So, why do you think that I should add a new one? Do you like duplicates? – Radu Rădeanu Nov 14 '13 at 20:49

There is no shortcut that allows you to change the profile within the terminal (without navigating the menus as you said in comments), without the use of the GUI. Quoting the manual (stable, development 3.9):

You can change the profile in your current Terminal tab or window by selecting a profile from Terminal ▸ Change Profile.

(You can propose this as suggestion in the bug tracker)

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Actually, there is a shortcut: Alt+T followed by P, Up Arrow or Down Arrow and Enter. But this is a little bit long... – Radu Rădeanu Aug 7 '13 at 20:33
@RaduRădeanu Alt + T doesn't work in my terminal 3.8.3 :/ – Braiam Aug 7 '13 at 20:49
@RaduRădeanu I guess alt+t is in fact using the GUI, it's just not using mouse. – moon.musick Aug 19 '13 at 20:10
@Braiam If you are using non-English version of the gnome-terminal, press alt and see what letter is being highlighted for your language version of 'Terminal' (it's 5th item in my Polish version, just left of 'Help'), then use that letter with alt. – moon.musick Aug 19 '13 at 20:14
@moon.musick I'm using the Debian version of gnome-terminal 3.8.3, and seem that it doesn't have the Alt modifier to access the menus. – Braiam Sep 9 '13 at 16:27

Depending on your purpose, you may find this script to be useful:

It does a sort of monkey patch and generates a new profile for each terminal, then sets some environment variables to expose a program for switching the theme of the profile for your current terminal.

Hopefully the example safe_ssh script will make things clear :-). I've been using it for just over a year now and it's helped me not destroy the company's live database ^_^

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If you have a list of servers that you access often, I believe the easiest solution would be to simply invoke a second window just for that box's session.

First, make a separate gnome-terminal profile for each remote location that you use often. Then, in each profile, specify that the terminal should execute the SSH login command for that box, instead of a plain shell.

ssh alice@athena

Finally, write a short script to kick off a new remote window given a profile ID.

if [[ $# -ne 1 ]] ; then
  echo "Give me a server/profile name!"
  exit 1
gnome-terminal --window-with-profile=$1
exit 0

Using this strategy you can "infinitely" vary the look of each box's terminal window, and kick them off from a single "control" terminal. For example, if we call this script "rlv", then we can spawn a remote window by simply invoking the script with a profile name.

>> rlv athena

If you ever fat-finger a host name, or neglect to set up a profile for that host, then you'll just get another default-profile window on the local box. There's a way to code the script to avoid this, by putting the login into the script itself, rather than in the gnome-terminal :

if [[ $# -ne 1 ]] ; then
  echo "Give me a server/profile name!"
  exit 1
gnome-terminal --window-with-profile=$1 -e "ssh $1"
exit 0

...but then you lose the flexibility of defining your login username for that box. That additional feature of the script I leave as an exercise to the reader.

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I was looking to do the same and finally got a script working, I put it up on my GitHub.

Like I explain in the, it doesn't actually switch, but loads a profiles configuration into the Default profile. To do this, the configuration of each profile is saved to file on the first run of the script. The script makes it seem like you're switching between profiles, which is good enough for me. Hope it helps anyone...

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I've just noticed that my original solution has been already rejected in the question. While there seems no simple way to change the profile, you can change background / foreground color by using setterm command.

So, this setterm -term linux -background black -foreground green would give you black background with green text. The only problem is that ls has colorized output, so you might wanna turn ls coloring off. Otherwise it resets to previous color scheme

Original post: There is a sort-of way around. From man gnome-terminal :


             Open a new window containing a  tab  with  the
             given profile.  More than one of these options
             can be provided.

Here's example from my machine. I have three profiles: B&G(black on green), ForPrinting(black font, white background), and Default. So what I do is in current window type gnome-terminal --window-with-profile=ForPrinting . Then I can either kill old window from command line or switch and close it graphically.

B&G profile doesn't work. Probably because & is not a valid character, so keep that in mind when naming profiles.

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