6 Tui Alternatives To Gui Apps

Are you tired of bloated applications that eat up your system’s resources? Do you have a old computer that can barely run GUI applications? Then you will be happy to hear that there are a lot of applications that run entirely in the terminal, allowing them to be super speedy. I have been trying to move away form GUI applications in favor for TUI ones, so I am going to list and explain what apps that I’ve used to do almost all of my work entirely in a terminal.

Web Browser

This is the thing that will put a lot of people away from using mainly terminal applications. Many people ditch a terminal web browser in favor of something like FireFox or Qutebrowser, and that’s entirely fine. However, I have had a great experience using elinks as my primary web browser. It does not allow for you to use, Videos, Pictures, or Javascript. This means that a lot of websites will not work. However, the browser is super easy to learn and loads pages faster than any other browser I’ve used.

File Manager


Ranger is used by a lot of people. It allows you to do almost anything that you would be able to do with any other GUI file manager like Thunar or Caja. It makes use of vim-like keybindings to provide a intuitive experience to anyone who has ever used the Vim text editor.

Text Editor


Nano and Vim have been the gold standard for text editors for a long time. Nano is super simple, and can be used by almost anyone due to how simple all of the keybindings are. Vim however, is a lot more complicated. Most people learn vim and never use any other text editor again. Vim has so many keybinding that it is almost impossible to list what all of them are. However, with enough experience it is a super smooth and efficient text editor.

Word Processor


Believe it or not, I am actually writing this on WordGrinder right now. Wordgrinder has a lot of the functionality of AbiWord or LibreWord, while being super simple and distraction free. With spellcheck, layouts, the ability to export as .odt, and much more, this is a super versatile word processor that I would recommend to almost anyone.

Email Client


Mutt is one of the most amazing Email Clients that I have ever used. It comes chock-full of features like Color Coding, support for both POP3 and IMAP, and message threading. It is the fastest I’ve ever used, and has a very simple layout, allowing you to see, respond to, and delete emails without having any confusing menus or GUI in the way.

Music Player


Every once in a while you are going to want to listen to some music. MOC is a super easy music player that is no-nonsense. You simply choose a directory full of music, and from there you can make a playlist and listen to it. It supports mp3, mp4, wav, oog, and MIDI.


These apps have made it so that I rarely ever have to touch a single GUI app ever. Everything that I could possibly need to do can now be done in the terminal. So if you would like to speed up your system, or you just would like to try out something new, these apps are super great and will make a great addition to any computer.

If you would like to check out the web pages for all of these apps, check the links below.

Elinks: Click Me!

Ranger: Click Me!

Nano: Click Me!

Vim: Click Me!

Wordgrinder: Click Me!

Mutt: Click Me!

MOC: Click Me!

Written on October 1, 2021