#gemini #client #gopher #cli

app ncgopher

An ncurses gopher and gemini client for the modern internet

9 releases (5 breaking)

0.6.0 Dec 3, 2023
0.5.0 Nov 7, 2022
0.4.0 May 23, 2022
0.3.0 Nov 21, 2021
0.1.2 Mar 14, 2020

#2 in #gopher


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ncgopher is a gopher, gemini and finger client for the modern internet. It uses ncurses and is written in Rust.


Gopher was developed in 1991 at the University of Minnesota, and named after the school's mascot. Gopher is a menu-driven interface that allows a user to browse for text information served off of various gopher servers.


Gemini is a new application-level internet protocol for the distribution of arbitrary files, with some special consideration for serving a lightweight hypertext format which facilitates linking between files.


Obligatory screenshot:




  • Gopher, gemini and finger support
  • Ncurses interface
  • Keyboard commands for navigation
  • Bookmarks support including custom title
  • History of visited gopher holes
  • Download of text files and gophermaps (Save as…)
  • Download of binary files
  • Menu for easy configuration
  • Mouse support in some terminals
  • TLS support
  • Darkmode!
  • External commands for HTML, images and Telnet
  • Vi-like search in text
  • Bookmarks, history and option to disable history recording


Arch Linux

Arch Linux users can install ncgopher using pacman:

sudo pacman -S ncgopher-git


NixOS users can install ncgopher using nix-env:

nix-env -iA nixos.ncgopher


NetBSD users can install ncgopher using pkgin:

pkgin install ncgopher

All other systems

ncgopher has no fancy installation process right now. There are some external dependencies which have to be installed. First and foremost you will of course need to have Rust installed. Further dependencies are the openssl, ncurses and sqlite3 libraries. If these are not installed, the build will fail but you will most likely be able to tell what is missing.

Debian-based Linux

sudo apt install build-essential pkg-config libssl-dev libncurses-dev libsqlite3-dev

Arch-based Linux

sudo pacman -S base-devel pkg-config openssl ncurses sqlite


doas pkg_add sqlite3 rust

MSYS2 (Windows, MINGW64 terminal)

pacman -S base-devel mingw-w64-x86_64-pkgconf mingw-w64-x86_64-rust mingw-w64-x86_64-ncurses mingw-w64-x86_64-openssl mingw-w64-x86_64-sqlite3

If you know how to install the listed dependencies on your operating system and it is not listed, please make a pull request to add it.

After installing these dependencies run

cargo install ncgopher

To install the latest development version:

git clone https://github.com/jansc/ncgopher.git
cd ncgopher
cargo build
cargo run

Key bindings

During alpha, the keybindings are not configurable and many operations are still not implemented.

Key Command
Arrow keys Move around in text
Enter Open the link under the cursor
Esc Go to menubar
Space Scroll down one page
g Open new URL
G Edit current URL
b Navigate back
q Close application
s Save current page
r Reload current page
i Show link under cursor
a Add bookmark for current page
l Go to next link
L Go to previous link
j Move one line down
k Move one line up
/ Search in text
n Move to next search result
N Move to previous search result

Mouse support

ncgopher supports mouse interaction for menus and buttons in dialogs. If you want to select text, most terminal support selection while pressing SHIFT.


The software is still in beta, and it is also my first application written in Rust. Expect lots of bugs and badly written Rust code.

If the application crashes, I'd be interested in a log file. To produce one, please rerun the program with the command line flag -d and a file name to store the log in, for example "error.log". It should look something like this: ncgopher -d error.log This will append log messages to error.log (the file will be created if it does not exist). With this, try to reproduce the bug and take note of the backtrace output.

If you know how to do that and you installed the source, you can run the program with RUST_BACKTRACE to get a backtrace too.


ncgopher is licensed under the BSD 2-clause license.

Copyright (c) 2019-2022 The ncgopher Authors. Parts of the status bar implementation are Copyright (c) 2019, Henrik Friedrichsen


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