PuTTY wish cygwin-terminal-window

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summary: Use PuTTY as a local GUI terminal app for the Cygwin shell
class: wish: This is a request for an enhancement.
difficulty: taxing: Needs external things we don't have (standards, users etc)
priority: low: We aren't sure whether to fix this or not.
fixed-in: 0.76

It would be nice to be able to use PuTTY as a local terminal window application for Cygwin shell sessions: a sort of local xterm-alike (or rather, pterm-alike).

There are programs derived from the PuTTY code which do this directly (in particular mintty), so one option is to use those instead. However, those also make other changes from PuTTY's defaults, which you might not like.

If you prefer to use the original upstream PuTTY, the way to achieve this is to have two processes: PuTTY to provide the GUI terminal, and a subprocess linked against Cygwin to talk to the pty.

As of PuTTY 0.76, the recommended way to do this is using the 'Bare ssh-connection' protocol supported by PuTTY, with the subprocess being a Cygwin-compiled version of the psusan tool in the Unix PuTTY distribution which acts as a server for that protocol. This not only allows you to run a Cygwin terminal session, but also to forward Pageant to the Cygwin environment so that the Cygwin SSH client can also find it.

Since psusan is fully productised as part of the 0.76 Unix PuTTY tool set, we're declaring this wishlist item to be as done as it's going to be. The only significant improvement possible in principle would be to make PuTTY itself do the whole job of talking to Cygwin pty devices – but in order to do that it would have to be linked against the Cygwin standard library, and that's too specialist a thing to make the standard putty.exe do.

Our Links page links to a modified version of PuTTY called PuTTYcyg, which was able to act as a Cygwin local terminal (again using a helper process linked against Cygwin) before PuTTY proper could do so.

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Audit trail for this wish.
(last revision of this bug record was at 2021-12-29 16:30:25 +0000)