In Ubuntu's (and other Linux systems) terminal, CTRL+x+e, which opens an editor to allow you to edit your command at leisure, with multiline support, and once you save and exit, it would return to terminal with the full command ready to execute.

I've tried the same combination in Terminal (both with Cmd and CTRL) and it didn't do anything.

Googling the combination + macOS just gave me random tutorials about useful keyboard shortcuts in terminal and in macOS in general.

Does anyone know of the equivalent key combination for the MacOS Terminal? Does it even exist?

1 Answer 1


Control+X+E works on the macOS Terminal. Generally CTRL is not substituted for Cmd in terminal commands.

  • Equivalent in vi-mode: press letter v
    – Yoric
    Commented Jan 6, 2019 at 16:15
  • 2
    Yes but note this is not a property of terminal but if the shell you are using so default is bash and it works but not with other shells
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Jan 6, 2019 at 16:51
  • 1
    @Mark Seems to work with zsh as well at the very least. Commented Jan 6, 2019 at 18:11
  • Try tcsh (and xonsh is a bit buggy ie it should work but does not)
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Jan 6, 2019 at 18:34
  • 1
    @Noumenon just checked and this still works for me (on zsh on mac) Commented May 1, 2021 at 15:29

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