Using XUbuntu 18.10 (but suspect same behaviour on earlier versions, now that I've noticed it!):

Open a terminal - default geometry is 80x24 as expected.

In that terminal, open a new tab (ctl-shift-T). Now geometry on both original terminals is maybe 96x24, sometimes 97x24! (As reported by 'tput cols' and/or echo $COLUMNS)

How can I get it to remain at 80xYY rather than 96xYY?

(Yes, have looked at the documentation, in ~/.config/xfce4/terminal/terminalrc and in /etc/xdg/xdg-xubuntu/xfce4/terminal/terminalrc, in the Preferences settings, etc!)

  • With Xubuntu 18.04, although opening a new tab in xfce4-terminal increases the overall size of the window to accommodate the row containing the tabs, the "data" area remains unchanged at 80x24. • PS: 18.10 will not be supported after July 18, 2019! – Justice for Monica Jul 17 at 14:13
  • Hmm, OK, Just double checked what I was doing: - if I just open terminal, then open new tab, you are correct - if I open terminal, then ctl-shift-+ to increase size of text (at this point 'tput cols' is 80) and then ctl-shift-T to add a tab, now 'tput cols' is 96 or 97.... (And yip, aware of the release/support schedule, thanks - just haven't quite got to 19.04 on the machine I have here!) – ColinB Jul 18 at 18:12

Turns out this is an up-stream bug in xfce4-terminal: https://bugzilla.xfce.org/show_bug.cgi?id=15785

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