How To Install and Use Linux Minicom Command Tutorial with Examples?

minicom  is a little command-line based tool used to connect serial lines. In a more pragmatic definition, minicom can be used to connect modems, routers and switch console ports via the serial port. Minicom is very similar features and user interface to the TELIX.

Install For Debian, Ubuntu, Kali, Mint

We can install minicom with the following command for deb based distributions.

$ sudo apt install minicom -y
Install For Debian, Ubuntu, Kali, Mint
Install For Debian, Ubuntu, Kali, Mint

Install For Fedora, CentOS, RHEL

We can also install for rpm-based distributions like below.

$ sudo yum install minicom -y

List tty Devices

We generally use minicom with a physical port where it connects to a serial device like a switch, router, PBX, etc. Current PC configuration generally does not provides serial ports and prefer to use USB devices. We can use USB to serial converter. We can list existing serial lines or USB converted serial lines simply named tty with the following command.

$ dmesg | grep tty
List tty Devices
List tty Devices

We also learn from the output that the TTY device base baud rate is 115200. Alternatively, the device can be named ttyUSB because modern TYY devices are created with USB hardware to connect computers.

Start Minicom

We can start minicom without any option or parameter but providing a serial device is a better way. We will provide a USB-Serial converter which is located at /dev/ttyUSB0  . We should provide the sudo  command for root privileges.

$ sudo minicom /dev/ttyUSB0

Exit Minicom

After connecting minicom we may need to exit. But things work differently in minicom application. CTRL a  is used for special key and other keys are used for different actions. We can exit like below.

CTRL a, x
Exit Minicom
Exit Minicom

Help Menu

We can get help with the CTRL a, z  like below.

CTRL a, z
Help Menu
Help Menu

We can see that generic help information about different actions like Clear Screen ,Configure Minicom ,Send Files etc. listed in this help screen. All of the following options should be used with the CTRL+A keyboard shortcut.

Dialing directory..D  
run script (Go)….G
Clear Screen…….C                                                                  
Send files………S  
Receive files……R 
cOnfigure Minicom..O                                                             
comm Parameters….P  
Add linefeed…….A
Suspend minicom….J 
Capture on/off…..L  
Hangup………….H
eXit and reset…..X
send break………F 
 initialize Modem…M 
Quit with no reset.Q
Terminal settings..T 
 run Kermit………K
Cursor key mode….I
lineWrap on/off….W  
local Echo on/off..E
Help screen……..Z
Paste file………Y  
Timestamp toggle…N
scroll Back……..B
Add Carriage Ret…U                                         

List Current Serial Line Parameters

We can list current serial line communication parameters like below.

CTRL a, p
List Current Serial Line Parameters
List Current Serial Line Parameters

We can select the Speed ,Parity, Stopbits and Data options from this menu by using letters. For example, to select speed 111200 we will press the E key. We can change the parity to None with L, Even with M, Odd with N, Mark with O and Space with P keys.

Change Serial Line Parameters

We can change serial line parameters while starting the minicom. We need to provide the required options and values. Some of the most used options are as below.

$ sudo minicom -b 1200 -8 /dev/ttyUSB0

Setup Mode

minicom provides an easy way to set up serial line parameters in command line GUI. We can provide the -s option and enter

Setup Mode
Setup Mode

and enter the Serial port setup  menu like below.

Setup Mode
Setup Mode

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