Building, installing and using Finch on Ubuntu

Ethan Blanton elb at
Wed Sep 12 16:14:46 EDT 2007

Bill Fassler spake unto us the following wisdom:
> I am trying to use Finch (a regular version on a Ubuntu box).  I
> untarred a fresh untouched tarball and compiled and built with typical
> commands: (I.E. ./configure --disable-gtkui; make; make install).  I
> see the finch binary in /usr/local/bin as I expect, but can't seem to
> launch it any way other than from a terminal and then the ncurses
> interface pops up (inside the terminal) and I can use the tab key to
> navigate a little, but all the functionality I should have as
> described on your "how to use finch" page doesn't seem to be there.
> For one example F10 pulls down the terminal menu and not Finch's menu
> (obviously a binding issue).  I can use ALT-A to bring up the accounts
> and I can select a protocol, but then nothing seems to happen. I can't
> seem to figure out how to use it following the directions. I assume
> things might work better if I could get it to launch independently and
> not nested inside a terminal.  Can anyone tell me what I am doing
> wrong?

The whole *point* of Finch is that it runs inside a terminal.  Your
terminal should have some way to tell it not to trap keys, but to pass
them to the application; another option is selecting a terminal which
does not have this ignorant flaw.  (I believe most of us would
recommend rxvt-unicode.)


The laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws [that have no remedy
for evils].  They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor
determined to commit crimes.
		-- Cesare Beccaria, "On Crimes and Punishments", 1764
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