conspy (1) - Linux Manuals

conspy: virtual console spy tool


conspy - virtual console spy tool


conspy [ options ] [ console ]


Conspy allows the user to take control of a Linux virtual console. The user can see what is displayed on the console and their keystrokes are sent to it.

To exit from conspy press the escape key three times in quick succession.


-V, --version
Print the program's version and exit.
-v, --viewonly
Don't send keystrokes to the virtual console.
If supplied, console must be a number in the range 1 .. 63, corresponding to the virtual console device /dev/tty1 .. /dev/tty63. If not supplied the currently active virtual console is opened and tracked.


Conspy will not pass keystrokes to a virtual console whose keyboard is configured to send scan codes. X configures its keyboard like this. If the terminal does not have at least 64 colours no colour will be displayed. Conspy ignores the mouse. Conspy may display some non-ASCII characters incorrectly. Conspy does not handle displays larger than 16000 characters (eg 200 rows x 80 columns).

Conspy depends on terminfo and curses working correctly for your terminal, and sometimes they don't. Konsole is/was one example of where they don't. Typing control-L will redraw the screen, which usually fixes the mess created. It also sends a control-L to the virtual console, of course.


/dev/ttyX, /dev/vc/X
The characters typed are sent to this device. The latter is for devfs. It is only used if the former does not exist.
/dev/vcsaX, /dev/vcc/aX
The display of the virtual console is read from here. The latter is for devfs. It is only used if the former does not exist.


Russell Stuart, <russell-conspy [at]>.