It’s very disappointing that it took Microsoft several years before decided to change and update its console window in Windows 10. This motivated system admins and developers to carry and use alternative console emulators in their USB sticks, or just do their work in the native command prompt in a not-so-convenient way. Cmder is a really handy console emulator with nice features in a cool and modern interface that is designed to make your tasks easier.
Before you download the program, you should note that there are two versions of it; the Mini version and the Full (msysgit) version. Their only difference is that the full version has all Unix commands ready in PATH so that you can use
git init or
cat instantly everywhere. So, if that’s not a problem with you, the mini version would do just fine, since it’s smaller as well.
After picking the version that’s more suitable for you, all you have to do is download it as a ZIP archive and extract it in a specified folder. There is no installation required, thus, you simply have to double-click on “Cmder.exe” in order to launch the program.
There are no malware (trojans, viruses, etc.) distributed along with the main program, and no 3rd-party advertised apps either.
Supported operating systems are all versions of Windows from XP and above (both 32 and 64-bit editions).
Cmder has a typical console window interface, with a black background and colorful fonts. It is certainly more appealing than the standard Windows command prompt though, especially due to the fact that it has the Monokai color scheme, something that really does make things a bit more interesting and pretty. A minor detail in its interface is the use of “λ” before every command, which is also the logo of the program and is similar to the Half-Life logo.
This program, as the developer says, is more of a software package than a separate app. It is based on Conemu, and has enhancements from Clink. Simply put, Conemu is a console emulator and Clink adds features to it, such as bash-style completion and Powertab. Cmder then, wraps up these functionalities in one application and provides them to the user in a well-organized manner which is both convenient and useful.
An important feature of Cmder is that the editing keys/keyboard shortcuts work normally (Ctrl+Z/Undo, Ctrl+C/Copy, Ctrl+X/Cut, Home, End, etc.), similarly to when you’re using any other application.
As I mentioned above, Clink is practically embedded in Cmder, which has support for tabs, allowing the user to run multiple command sessions at the same time.
The full version of Cmder has all UNIX commands ready in
PATH so that you can use them instantly and save precious time.
Other features include full command history and configurations regarding the tabs.
If you have Clink and Conemu, then this program won’t be much of an upgrade for you, since most of its functionalities come from those two apps.
Other descent alternatives are ConsoleZ (free), Console (free), minty (free), Take Command (paid, plus 64-bit version) and CMD++ (free). All of those are have more features than Windows command prompt itself.
Cmder could be described as an overall great console emulator for Windows that combines the features of Conemu and Clink in both a productive and attractive way.
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