Patch GNU Nano to Disable Titlebar

You are here: Andrew Ho > Software > Nano > Nano Disable Titlebar

The GNU Nano editor is somewhat wasteful on screen vertical whitespace, eating up five rows by default for non-file content:

  • One line is used as a titlebar.
  • One empty line separates the titlebar from the main edit window.
  • One status line underneath the edit window shows command results.
  • Two lines of context-sensitive help are underneath the status line.

In recent versions of Nano, you can turn off the empty line separating the titlebar from the main edit window with the morespace option (-O command line flag), and turn off the context-sensitive help with the nohelp option (-x command line flag).

The titlebar following patch (which happens to be applied on top of the bracket flashing for GNU nano patch that I also maintain) also allows disabling the titlebar, so you get maximum editing space (only one non-editing status bar line at the bottom).

This is most useful if you use a ~/.nanorc file that includes the following:

set notitlebar
set morespace
set nohelp

But you can also invoke a maximum-screen-size Nano with the following command:

nano -OOx

You can download the patch below either as a diff that you can apply using GNU Patch, or as a complete source distribution.


The patch file happens to be against nano-2.2.6p.tar.gz, my patched variant Nano that implements bracket flashing; but you can also apply just the parts of the patch that touch the src directory directly to the Nano 2.2.6 distribution if you just want this change, and no bracket flashing.

See Also

To get bracket flashing, most useful for programmers:

Andrew Ho (