cygwin essentials

July 21st, 2010

This isn't really appropriate for a blog entry, because it's bound to be updated over and over, but I need a place to keep these notes.

Essential packages (not including pre-selected):

  • xinit. Effectively what is called Cygwin/X. (Creates a new shortcut in the start menu called XWin Server that you probably should stick in your startup list.) With this you can run gvim, xterm etc.
  • binutils (if you want strings)
  • file
  • git, gitk
  • openssh
  • ping
  • python
  • rsync
  • vim, gvim
  • wget, curl
  • zip, unzip
  • make/patch

Decent terminals:

  • mintty
  • puttycyg (ie. putty modded to use locally) You have to get this one separately, but it has a nicer feel to it imo.
:: random entries in this category ::

5 Responses to "cygwin essentials"

  1. Jim says:

    You left out puttycyg, with unix-like mouse copying and pasting!

    Oh, and cron (one of the best reasons to install cygwin, along with openssh)

  2. numerodix says:

    Talk about bearing gifts, that's the exact thing I've been looking for, a decent term that supports copy/paste, keyboard bindings and the rest. Thanks a bunch!

  3. Andy says:

    Cygwin does ship with a decent terminal actually: mintty, to be found in the Shells category of Cygwin's setup.exe, or at

    It's based on PuTTY code too, but tailored specifically for Cygwin, aiming for a simpler user interface. It's also got improved xterm compatibility and some extra features such as window transparency or mousewheel scrolling in manpages.

  4. numerodix says:

    TWO terminals to choose from? You people spoil me!

    You really should try to lobby Cygwin to publicize this more, otherwise people like me wouldn't know there's something more usable to pick from than xterm.

  5. Andy says:

    Cygwin is an experiment in non-publicity. ;)