cursive 0.7.2

A TUI (Text User Interface) library focused on ease-of-use.

Cursive Build Status MIT licensed Gitter chat

Cursive is a TUI (Text User Interface) library for rust. It is currently based on jeaye's ncurses-rs, but other backends are available.

It allows you to build rich user interfaces for terminal applications.


It is designed to be safe and easy to use:

cursive = "0.7"

Or to use the latest git version:

cursive = { git = "" }

(You will also need ncurses installed - if it isn't already, check in your package manager. Make sure you install the ncursesw version if available, for UTF-8 support.)

extern crate cursive;

use cursive::Cursive;
use cursive::views::{Dialog, TextView};

fn main() {
    // Creates the cursive root - required for every application.
    let mut siv = Cursive::new();

    // Creates a dialog with a single "Quit" button
    siv.add_layer(Dialog::around(TextView::new("Hello Dialog!"))
                         .button("Quit", |s| s.quit()));

    // Starts the event loop.;

Cursive dialog example

Check out the other examples to get these results, and more:

(Colors may depend on your terminal configuration.)


These tutorials may help you get started with cursive:

Third-party views

Here are a few crates implementing new views for you to use:


  • Ease of use. Simple apps should be simple. Complex apps should be manageable.
  • Linux TTY Compatibility. Colors may suffer, and UTF-8 may be too much, but most features must work properly on a Linux TTY.
  • Flexibility. This library should be able to handle simple UI scripts, complex real-time applications, or even games.
    • In particular, it tries to have enough features to recreate these kind of tools:


  • Extreme performance. This is a simple layout library, guys, not compiz piped into libcaca. Unless you are running it on your microwave's microcontroller, it's not going to be slow. That being said, it should be expected to run at decent speed on raspberry pi-level hardware.
  • Multi-threaded UI. Callback methods are blocking - careful what you're doing in there! Feel free to use threads on your side, though.
  • Complete ncurses equivalent. You can access the underlying ncurses window when creating your own custom views, so you can do what you want with that, but the main library will probably only use a subset of the ncurses features. Also, using ncurses at all is not guaranteed, as other backends are considered.


First off, terminals are messy. A small set of features is standard, but beyond that, almost every terminal has its own implementation.


  • Colors: the basic 8-colors palette should be broadly supported. User-defined colors is not supported in the raw linux TTY, but should work in most terminals, although it's still kinda experimental.
  • UTF-8: Currently Cursive really expects a UTF-8 locale. It may eventually get patched to support window borders on other locales, but it's not a priority. There is initial support for wide characters. RTL support is planned, but still very early.


  • The key_codes example can be a useful tool to see how the library reacts to various key presses.
  • Keep in mind that if the terminal has shortcuts registered, they probably won't be transmitted to the app.
  • UTF-8 input should work fine in a unicode-enabled terminal emulator, but raw linux TTY may be more capricious.