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I often find myself with 6 ort 7 parallel tasks, with each requiring several terminals.

My ideal UI would be a hierarchical tab setup - a tab for each group of terminals, where I could name the tab, and it would be restored on startup. What's the closest thing to this?

I'm open to using any terminal app, iterm etc, not just the default terminal.app.

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You can use Window Groups. Start each group of terminals and save the group from Window -> Save Windows As Group...

  • Thanks, that's a good feature to know. Still interested to know if there's any way to combine all groups into a single window. I updated the question to clarify that I can use iterm etc too. – mahemoff Feb 20 '12 at 12:28
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Although it's a slightly different way to solve the problem, "Screen" is very popular and if it's not available by default it should be easy to install.

It's an app that runs inside a single window (tab) and let's you create many different sessions inside that tab.

It isn't quite what you were asking for, but it does allow some grouping and also you can "Detach" an entire group of terminal sessions at once and reconnect to them later with a single command--running apps will still be running and you can browse their output as though you had been there all the time.

It's not a great answer to your question, but it's really usable and if you are used to using it does solve your problem (just not in the exact way you asked)

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