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Re: ANSI bg colour outside of prompt area

Thanks so much Guys!

I completely understand, changing the terminal background doesn't look like it's something that is supposed to be able to be done.
} PROMPT=$'%K{yellow}%{\e[J%}'"$PROMPT"
Thank you very much, This works!! Unfortunately, within tmux it only colours the prompt. Outside of it though it works beautifully. I have a feeling you're right though, if I'm going to get this to work reliably I'll have to see if I can sandwich a little function into st's source for changing the value of the background colour.

It's a little out of my league for now, but it's something to look forward to as I learn a little more :).

Just in case you're curious, I do have custom colours set up in my terminal, but I used to use this to quickly switch the terminal background colour to white if I was in a dark room and someone flicked a light on. It's kind of petty, but it was a nifty little trick that made it easier to see the screen when there was a glare on it.

As a workaround for now I have a little alias that switches the value of the background colour in st's config.h, and recompiles it. It's not quite the same as toggling it in the terminal I'm working in, but it's not terribly difficult to open a new terminal with a different background colour.

A great week/weekend to all of you,


On Sun, Feb 22, 2015 at 11:10:07AM -0800, Bart Schaefer wrote:
On Feb 22,  8:23am, junkcommander0@xxxxxxxxx wrote:
} I was wondering if anyone has had any success setting BG colours in
} their terminal with ANSI escape sequences or with some other method.

If you're using a graphical desktop with terminal emulators for shell
windows, you'd typically want to do this via the emulator configuration
instead of by sending ANSI sequences.  E.g.

   xterm -fg yellow -bg black

This gives you a lot more variety of possible colors to chose from; you
can use the entire graphical color palette rather than being limited to
what the emulator defines as e.g. "bold + yellow" for ANSI.

However ...

} I had some aliases with escape sequences that I used for bash and shell
} that would change the background colour. The colour was never reset, and
} clearing the screen would change the entire terminal's background
} colour.
} In zsh, the background color gets reset once the characters have been
} printed.

That's intentional so that a misbehaving program can't e.g. cause your
prompt to become invisible by changing the background to the same color
as your prompt foreground.

Also ZLE emits a "clear to end of screen" before printing the prompt to
remove anything that another program might have left behind.  This is
to keep your prompt from getting obscured by overstriking something.
However, combined with the color reset, that has the effect of restoring
the default background color for everything below the prompt position.

So the trick is to emit the clear-screen again after changing the color
in the prompt.


However if you run something like "man" that applies it own boldface or
underlining to the text, you'll see the default colors get restored in
the middle of the output.  This happens in bash too.  You will be much
better off changing the terminal's idea of the defaults.

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