detached logo Detached

Detached is a simple terminal session manager that sits in your MacOS menu bar. Use it to create detachable terminal sessions that persist until you restart or logout. It’s an easy way for developers to monitor long-running terminal applications without them cluttering your view.


  • Creates detachable terminal sessions that you can close until you need them again
  • Menu bar icon tells you whether you have detached sessions
  • Uses either the built-in Terminal or iTerm


Starting a session

To start a session click the Detached icon in the menu bar and choose New Session… from the menu.

Starting a session in the terminal

If you already have a terminal window open, you can also create a session using GNU screen:

screen -S "My Session"

A caveat: When you start a session this way, Detached will not detect it until the session is detached, which you can do by closing the window.

Reattaching a session

Running sessions are listed at the top of the Detached menu. It’s only possible to reattached a detached session: When a session has a terminal attached to it, it will appear grayed out in the menu. Click a detached session name to reattach it in your terminal application and interact with it.


Open new sessions in a tab instead of a window

Enable this to start and reattach sessions in a tab in the last open window of your terminal emulator, or in a new window if one doesn’t exist.

Use iTerm instead of Terminal

Enable this to use the popular iTerm instead of Apple’s built-in Terminal application

Frequently Asked Questions

Why can’t Detached warn me about detached sessions when I log out/restart?

Detached sits in your menu bar only, and such apps cannot warn you to save sessions on logout. If we add an option to enable this, it will require Detached to be in your dock when it’s running. We decided that staying out of the way was more important.

This was a painful decision, as warning on logout was the original intent of the app. Let us know if this is a killer feature for you!

How can I enable simple scrollback in Detached sessions?

By default, GNU Screen (the software that enables the core functionality of Detached) requires a special command to view the scrollback. To enable touchpad/mouse scrolling functionality for new sessions, type this into your terminal:

echo 'termcapinfo xterm-color|xterm|xterms|xs|rxvt ti@:te@' >> ~/.screenrc

Why are there only two FAQs?

We haven’t been around long enough for anyone to ask us anything!