Set terminal tab title using fish shell

Posted on November 12, 2018 by rainbyte
Tags: fish, shell

Approach #1: setting the title by hand

When there are many terminal tabs opened, it is really useful to give them meaninful names.

Fish shell allows setting the current tab’s title creating a fish_title function.

If we want to name our tab FOO, we could just write this in the terminal:

function fish_title
    echo "FOO"

After entering the code, the function will be exported and the new title will be used.

The problem with this way is that writing the function each time is tedious.

There is an easy way to overcome this problem.

Approach #2: using a helper function

We could write a helper which export the fish_title function for us.

I call this helper set_title, but other name could be used as well.

First we need to write the helper function:

function set_title
    set -l title $argv[1]
    function fish_title --inherit-variable title
        echo "$title"

Now we can test it, eg. to name our tab BAR we could call it this way: set_title BAR

Finally, to save the function persistently, we execute this: funcsave set_title

How does it work?

Each time we execute set_title, it will re-export the fish_title function.

We need to make the title variable available inside fish_title scope.

The trick is using the --inherit-variable option, which will solve this for us.

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