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Command line showing strange fonts.


I screwed up something on a remote server and I haven’t a clue how to fix it.  Long story short I was using cat to view a file which just kept on going and going and going so understandably I tried using Ctrl+C (quite a few times) which didn't help.  Now whenever I connect back to the server I see, now pardon my lack of professionalizm here but this is the best way to describe it as "squiggly wigglies".  My coworker suggested using Ctrl+U or Ctrl+Q or Ctrl+O... (yes we ended up trying the entire alphabet including Ctrl+P and Ctrl+D which logged us out).  

Please help, I'm desperate here, as I really need to get back on that server.

Much thanks,
1 Solution
kasiencjaAuthor Commented:
Hmm, I need to clarify my last point.  I can get on the server, since the obvious first things are username and password, but I cannot understand anything I see.


This is a common problem.  I have it also when I cat a binary file.  My question is:  is this in a full terminal or just in an Xterminal?

If it is in a full terminal, you will need to log out (just type in exit) and then go to another terminal and kill the getty process for that terminal.  If it does not work, a reboot may be in order to clear up that terminal.

If it is an xterm terminal, you are in luck, just close that xterminal and start a new one, problem solved.

I know of no way to recover a bash or xterm that has been corrupted (for lack of a better word) by cat'ing a binary file.


Karl Heinz KremerCommented:
Try "reset" or, if this does not work "cat /bin/ls"

If neither of these commands work, it is possible that you actually changed the font for your console.
I think reset as suggested by khkremer should work for you

when you see the username/password prompt (irrespective of whether you understand it or not) just type in your username and password (let it appear as squiggly wiggles, it does not matter) ... Once you are logged in, type "reset" and hit enter ...

This point onwards, it should be all ok
You can also try:

stty cooked


stty sane

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