Daniel Watrous on Software Engineering

A Collection of Software Problems and Solutions

Software Engineering

HP-UX shows strange characters for vi, top

I’ve been working on some HP-UX systems recently and had way too much trouble finding the solution to an issue with how vi, top and other functions displayed in the terminal. For example, when I would start vi rather than blanking the screen, it would just overwrite the lowest line in the terminal with 23y0C1A0y0C~0y0CC56C64C72C. It appeared that vi commands would work, but I couldn’t see anything that was happening.

My initial attempt at setting the term failed to produce any results. The final solution is pretty easy: I changed my shell to ksh. To make it permanent I ran this command:

chsh username /usr/bin/ksh

that shell defaults to xterm for TERM. Everything now works the way I would expect. I really hope this helps someone save some time that I lost.

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