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I could have sworn that there was once a setting for this in the gnome-terminal "Profile".

And then in some version of Ubuntu, that setting disappeared, and I had to use System ➜ Preferences ➜ Keyboard to uncheck "Cursor blinks in text fields".

Well, neither of those seems to be working now. So how do I make the cursor stop blinking?

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up vote 17 down vote accepted

Yes, there is a setting hidden in gconf.
Open gconf-editor, navigate to /apps/gnome-terminal/profiles/Default, find cursor_blink_mode and change its value to off.

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Thanks; that did it. Although one of the valid settings (the default, actually) is supposed to be "system". Is that just broken? – Nemo Jun 20 '11 at 1:55
I don't think it's broken, as the cursor is supposed to blink by default, or rather by design, and not only in Terminal. There is a system wide setting for that in the Keyboard control window. Not sure if you can turn it off from there though. – mikewhatever Jun 20 '11 at 2:26
As I mentioned in my question, I thought I disabled it globally under the Keyboard settings... But it did not have any effect on gnome-terminal. Which makes me wonder what "system" setting cursor_blink_mode is referring to. Anyway, my problem is fixed. Thanks again. – Nemo Jun 20 '11 at 2:30
@Nemo "system" probably refers to the value of the cursor-blink "gsetting", which you can query like so: gsettings get org.gnome.desktop.interface cursor-blink. There are other cursor-related gsettings that you could tweak as well, like cursor-blink-timeout, cursor-size, etc. – Maxy-B Jan 5 '14 at 18:20
I am trying to find the possible alternatives to "off" and "system". I still want a blinking cursor in the active terminal, only not in all the other ones. – Gauthier Oct 29 '14 at 9:07

You can disable the blinking also from the command line (gconf-editor is not installed by default):

 gconftool-2 --set /apps/gnome-terminal/profiles/Default/cursor_blink_mode --type string off

For newer versions of gnome-terminal, the command has changed:

gsettings set org.gnome.Terminal.Legacy.Profile:/org/gnome/terminal/legacy/profiles:/:$(gsettings get org.gnome.Terminal.ProfilesList default|tr -d \')/ cursor-blink-mode off
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You can send an escape sequence to the terminal (any POSIX compatible, I think) setting the current cursor character using tput:

tput civis    # invisible
tput cnorm    # normal    (usually an underscore)
tput cvvis    # very      (usually a rectangle)
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