I’m finding I need to do more stuff talking to a serial port, and picocom seems to be the best terminal emulator I’ve found for Mac OS X. I was previously using screen, which is shipped with Mac OS X and makes for a good terminal program, but screen doesn’t play well with the scrollback buffer in Mac OS X’s Terminal app.
Picocom is available as part of the MacPorts project, so is trivial to install on any system with the Developer Tools and MacPorts installed. If you don’t have these prerequisites, installing a couple of gig of Developer Tools just to compile and install a terminal emulator that’s a few tens of kb in size seems like overkill.
I’ve built this binary installer package for picocom 1.6 so that I can easily install picocom on any system I need to. It installs in /opt/local/bin by default, but this could be easily moved to /usr/local/bin if you want somewhere that’s in the default path.
It installs just two files – /opt/local/bin/picocom and /opt/local/share/man/man8/picocom.8.gz
Picocom is invoked to talk to a serial port like so:
picocom --baud 38400 /dev/tty.usbserial-FTC9PP16
To exit from picocom type Ctrl+A, Ctrl+X