You can use your Nintendo DS to

Like a fully-featured text-terminal.

This is no great feat, but I wanted to lay out the advantages at the beginning. Since some people seemed interested in this, I've made a little guide on how to do this.


You need a Linux PC. Anywhere within range of your Nintendo DS. At your house or at your friend's, it doesn't matter. Doing this, you can use your Nintendo DS as a terminal, and you can let your server do all the work. It has more memory and processing power than your DS, and doesn't run out of batteries, allowing you to keep programs going indefinitely.

Before we continue, you need to have sshd installed on your box. In Ubuntu (and probably any other distro with a package manager), this can be done by installing the package "openssh-server". Once your computer finishes installation and configuration, you can SSH in. You will want to install the following programs on your box for the best SSH experience: * Screen for handling programs. See below.

Why Screen?

Screen is the most important part of the package.

You need screen to

It sounds complicated, but is simple -- here's a quick guide.

Quick Guide

Start screen the first time with


And end it with

 Ctrl+A D

That detaches it, meaning it will run in the background instead of actually closing. It also automatically detaches if you shut down your Nintendo DS or get disconnected.

If you want to resume it, use

 screen -r

And all of your applications will still be running.

If you are connecting from another PC and want to connect to the already connected screen, type

 screen -x

To create a new shell,

 Ctrl+A C

You can create as many shells as you want, but you can only access ten directly.

Switch to your shells with

 Ctrl+A <NUMBER>

Where <NUMBER> is the number of your shell. It starts with 0 and continues on if you create new shells.

You can also switch to the next shell with

 Ctrl+A <spacebar>

And you can switch to the previous shell with

 Ctrl+A <backspace>

That's all you need to know about screen. It has manymore features. So check out the official doku for features like how to split your screen, or get a funky status bar.

Nearly Finished

To start the SSH session on your DS, type:

 ssh yourusername@yourcomputer'sip

Obviously, you will replace the username and youcomputer'sip with the username you set up and the ip of the host computer.

Now just start your applications and get used to them. They may be text based, but they are every bit as powerful as the graphical ones.

Make yourself a .bashrc or something (depends on your shell) which sets:


Be sure to use the right language with LANG, but retain the .ASCII part; it controls the character set.

With those settings, execute CenterICQ with

 centericq -a

or naim with


For ASCII mode and display correctness.

Now you have your kick-butt remote Linux text console. You can even telnet to it with your server and have a "local" console.

Have fun with it :).