How to Install and Use Midnight Commander 4.8.15 on Ubuntu and Derivatives

Midnight Commander, or MC, is a file manager released under the GNU license. Like every file manager, it enables the users to easily copy, move, delete and manage files and folders, having a full-screen text mode user interface.

The latest version available is Midnight Commander 4.8.15, which has been recently released, coming with the below changes.

Core:

  • Minimal version of GLib is 2.26.0
  • Use the PATH environment variable to search for the executable when opening pipe
  • Support more than 2 (up to 9) columns in file panel in brief mode
  • Clarify file sorting in “Unsorted” mode
  • WGroupbox: respect dialog’s colors
  • Highlight find file’s result in internal viewer

VFS:

  • s3 extfs vfs: bugfixes and improvements

Editor

  • Add hidden option to choose full or base file name in the status line

Misc:

  • Text alignment in Info panel
  • Select of menu file edit: change default button to “User”
  • Recognize .gmo files as well as .mo ones
  • Fix mc.pot comment tripping up Transifex and unportable inplace sed
  • A lot of code clean up
  • Documentation updates:
  • Spanish man and help: Diff Viewer section and minor fixes
  • VFS garbage collection

Fixes:

  • Various memory leaks
  • Linux kernel-specific segfault on startup
  • Lost of Panelize contents in some cases
  • Wrong highlight of search result in case of “Regular expression” and “Whole words”
  • “Whole words” search works only in Normal mode
  • View find results doesn’t jump to match line if file is too short to scroll page
  • SFTP VFS: segfault
  • Segfault in “Find file” due to invalid UTF-8 sequences
  • Bash variable ‘PROMPT_COMMAND’ in pantheon-terminal

How to Install and Use Midnight Commander 4.8.14 on Ubuntu and Derivatives

Installation instructions:

The latest Midnight Commander builds are available via some third party PPA, so installing MC and keeping it up to date on your Ubuntu system is piece of cake. You only need to add the PPA to your system, update the local repositories and install the mc package:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:eugenesan/ppa
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install mc

Optional, to remove mc, do:

$ sudo apt-get remove mc

The installation instructions should work on all the supported Ubuntu systems and derivatives: Ubuntu 15.10 Wily Werewolf, Ubuntu 15.04 Vivid Vervet, Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr, Linux Mint 17.3 Rosa, Linux Mint 17.2 Rafaela, Linux Mint 17.1 Rebecca, Linux Mint 17 Qiana, Pinguy OS 14.04, Elementary OS 0.3 Freya, Elementary OS 0.2 Luna, Deepin 2014, Peppermint 6, Peppermint 5, LXLE 14.04 and Linux Lite 2.

Midnight Commander usage tips:

As any other file managers, you can navigate inside it with the Up and Down arrow keys and open the highlighted files or folders by pressing Enter. Also, to switch to the other directory pane, press Tab.

Inside the file manager, if you need to perform multiple selections, hold the Shift Key and press the Up and Down arrow keys, to select the desired files.

To delete the highlighted file or folder press F8 and next answer “Yes” to confirm or “No” to cancel. To copy the highlighted files from one panel to another press F5, or if you need to move files from one panel to the other, use F6.

To view a highlighted file, press F3 and use the Up and Down arrow keys to scroll, if the file is long. To exit from the file viewer, either press F3 again or Esc two times.

To edit a file inside the built-in editor, press F4 after you have highlighted the file.

To view files inside archives, highlight the archive, press Enter and navigate by using the Up and Down arrow keys. This permits to copy certain files to and from the archive.

To run scripts, highlight the script and press Enter. To return to the FM, press Enter again.

Also, inside the file manager, if you need to open the Menu, you can either click it with the mouse or press F9. Once the menu is opened, use the Right and Left arrow keys to switch between menus and the Up and Down arrow keys to select one of the items and press Enter to activate the selected menu item.

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