a-Shell 17+

Local Unix terminal (with ssh‪)‬

Nicolas Holzschuch

Designed for iPad

    • Free



a-Shell is a complete local terminal emulator, allowing to run most Unix commands on you iOS device. You can transfer files using scp and curl, edit them with vim and ed, process them using grep, awk and sed. You can work with git repositories using lg2. 
Most commands are compiled for iOS native Arm64 format, making them fast and well integrated with iOS underlying BSD Unix.

a-Shell includes Python, Lua, Perl, JavaScript, C, C++ for programming and TeX (texlive 2023, with Tikz and LuaTeX) for text processing.

There are also multiple network utilities: nslookup, ping, whois, ifconfig... Type help for help, help -l to get the full list of commands.

a-Shell can be controlled from Shortcuts: run commands in order, process files in a-Shell, get the results as text or files, transfer files to other apps...

a-shell uses iOS 13+ “multiple windows” ability, so you can run multiple shells at the same time, with different commands, in different directories. You can edit a file in one window with vim and process it in the other with python.

Compile your C or C++ programs to webAssembly using clang or clang++, and execute the resulting binary. A complete webAssembly SDK is included (WASI-libc).

a-Shell is the complete version. If you need a smaller app, and you don't need a C compiler, a TeX engine, or numpy and matplotlib, there is a-Shell mini.

What’s New

Version 1.15.0

- In-Extension Shortcuts have access to the same information as In-App Shortcuts (bookmarks, Python files, etc)
- ffmpeg updated to version 7.0.0
- LLVM/clang updated to version 18.1.5
- webAssembly commands can now use interactive keyboard input
- fixed multiple bugs.

Ratings and Reviews

4.6 out of 5
362 Ratings

362 Ratings

NeoYokel ,

The notable boundary-pusher of local command line functions on iOS/iPadOS

There are now quite a few terminal emulator-esque apps on the App Store, but I've been using a-Shell since it was joined only by Blink (from which it was forked) and iSH. As it was then, a-Shell remains the only one of these with which one can actually accomplish command line tasks *locally* beyond screwing around. I am ultimately not a command line native, and I don't have the basic theory beneath my use of Python scripts, yet I've been able to accomplish startlingly powerful things within this app, thanks in large part to gracious and immediately-available support via the project's Discord server.

If you've found yourself here by way of a Siri Shortcut's requirement, I would encourage you to take the time to investigate the commands said shortcut(s) run - try running them yourself!

Stevo3985 ,

Seems like just a scam app and a lot of disappointment

It sure promises a LOT of features I need, but I guess I’ll stick with the Alpine Linux container in iSH, cuz this app won’t even recognize my text inputs. I am not an iOS noob, and my day, I am a systems engineer for a network video company. I NEED these utilities on my iPhone, but not a single item can be used in the full @-shell and the mini is incapable of doing anything from inside the container where it exists. I couldn’t even run a simple SCP, rsync, or even ssh session to try and move files from a remote server. If this app isn’t a scam, it needs a lot of work, cuz I have worked through a whole week worth of remedy attempts, and have tried to reboot, reinstall, even factory reset and restored my iPhone from DFU mode (you read that correctly, I need this badly enough that I went scorched earth and started from scratch, and STILL cannot get this app to respond to my iPhone 13 Pro text inputs from any of my 3 keyboards) 🤦‍♂️

Fix it and I’ll fix my review. PLEASE!!!!

Developer Response ,

For actual help, there is: e-mail: another_shell@icloud.com, github issues: https://github.com/holzschu/a-shell/issues or discussions: https://github.com/holzschu/a-shell/discussions discord: https://discord.gg/cvYnZm69Gy and twitter: https://twitter.com/a_shell_ios
All of these offer a faster response time than appStore reviews (I do respond to all queries). I'll need a more accurate description of the symptoms, though.

michexta ,

a-Shell is a must-have for bringing the full power of a terminal interface to your iOS device.

a-Shell is an outstanding terminal interface app for iOS, boasting a user-friendly design and powerful features. It supports a wide range of Linux commands, enabling seamless interaction with servers and local files. Its robust performance ensures smooth operation, even with complex scripts, and regular updates enhance its reliability and security.

Whether for professional development or personal projects, a-Shell is a must-have for bringing the full power of a terminal interface to your iOS device.

App Privacy

The developer, Nicolas Holzschuch, indicated that the app’s privacy practices may include handling of data as described below. For more information, see the developer’s privacy policy.

Data Not Collected

The developer does not collect any data from this app.

Privacy practices may vary, for example, based on the features you use or your age. Learn More

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