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   Linux FAQ > 10. Frequently Encountered Error Messages
Question:  10.2. Unknown Terminal Type ``linux'' and Similar.

In early kernels the default console terminal type has changed from "console" to "linux." You must edit /etc/termcap to change the line reading:




(there may be an additional "dumb" in there—if so it should be removed.)

To get the editor to work you may need type:

   $ TERM=console

(for bash and ksh), or

   $ setenv TERM console

for csh or tcsh.

Some programs use /usr/lib/terminfo instead of /etc/termcap. For these programs you should upgrade your terminfo package, which is part of ncurses.

The same is true for X terminal displays. If your distribution sets the TERM to something strange like xterm-24-color, you can simply reset it to a generic value from the command line:

   $ TERM="xterm"; export TERM

This FAQ is from Linux Frequently Asked Questions with Answers, maintained by Robert Kiesling

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