3 min read

Yesterday, the team behind iTerm2, the GPL-licensed terminal emulator for macOS, announced the release of iTerm2 3.3.0. It is a major release with many new features such as the new Python scripting API, a new scriptable status bar, two new themes, and more.

iTerm2 is a successor to iTerm and works on all macOS. It is an open source replacement for Apple’s Terminal and is highly customizable as comes with a lot of useful features.

Major highlights in iTerm2 3.3.0

  • A new Python scripting API which can control iTerm2 and extend its behavior has been added. It allows users to write Python scripts easily, thus enabling them to do extensive configuration and customization in iTerm2 3.3.0.
  • A new scriptable status bar has been added with 13 built-in configurable components.
  • iTerm2 3.3.0 comes with two new themes. The first theme is called as Minimal and it helps reducing visual cluster. The second theme can move tabs into the title bar, thus saving space while maintaining the general appearance of a macOS app and is called Compact.

Other new features in iTerm2 3.3.0

  • The session, tab and window titles have been given a new appearance to make it more flexible and comprehensible. It is now possible to configure these titles separately and also to select what type of information it shows per profile. These titles are integrated with the new Python scripting API.
  • The tabs title has new icons, which either indicates a running app or a fixed icon per profile.
  • A new tool belt called ‘Actions’ has been introduced in iTerm2 3.3.0. It provides shortcuts  to frequent actions like sending a snippet of a text.
  • A new utility ‘it2git’ which allows the git status bar component to show git state on a remote host, has been added.
  • New support for crossed-out text (SGR 9) and automatically restarting a session when it ends has also been added in iTerm2 3.3.0.

Other Improvements in iTerm2 3.3.0

  • Many visual improvements
  • Updated app icon
  • Various pages of preferences have been rearranged to make it more visually appealing
  • The password manager can be used to enter a password securely
  • A new option to log Automatic Profile Switching messages to the scripting console has been added
  • The long scrollback history’s performance has been improved

Users love the new features in iTerm2 3.3.0 release, specially the new Python API, the scriptable status bar and the new Minimal mode.

A user on Hacker News comments, “First off, wow love the status bar idea.”

Another user on Hacker News says “Kudos to Mr. Nachman on continuing to develop a terrific piece of macOS software! I’ve been running the 3.3 betas for a while and some of the new functionality is really great. Exporting a recording of a terminal session from the “Instant Replay” panel is very handy!”

Few users are not impressed with iTerm2 3.3.0 features and are comparing it with the Terminal app.

A comment on Hacker News reads, “I like having options but wouldn’t recommend iTerm. Apple’s Terminal.app is more performant rendering text and more responsive to input while admittedly having somewhat less unnecessary features.

In fact, iTerm is one of the slowest terminals out there! iTerm used to have a lot of really compelling stuff that was missing from the official terminal like tabs, etc that made straying away from the canonical terminal app worth it but most of them eventually made their way to Terminal.app so nowadays it’s mostly just fluff.”

For the full list of improvements in iTerm2 3.3.0, visit the iTerm2 changelog page.

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