Microsoft announced that it is open-sourcing Terminal Chat and invites developers from the open-source community to engage with and contribute to the development of AI within a terminal application.

This move aligns with the team’s desire to let users and developers shape the future of AI in the Windows Terminal, fostering a collaborative environment for innovation, according to the company in a blog post

Terminal Chat, currently available in Windows Terminal Canary, enables users to engage in conversations with an AI service directly within the terminal. This feature empowers users to receive intelligent suggestions, such as looking up commands or understanding error messages, all while maintaining the context of their terminal session.

The Terminal Chat feature in Windows Terminal currently relies on users providing their own Azure OpenAI Service endpoint and key, as it does not come with its own large-language model. Users interested in using Terminal Chat can find the code in the feature/llm branch of the Windows Terminal repository on GitHub. Additionally, the latest build of Windows Terminal Canary, featuring Terminal Chat, is available for download from the GitHub repository.

To set up Terminal Chat in Windows Terminal Canary, users must manually add an AI service endpoint and key to the Terminal Chat settings. At present, Terminal Chat exclusively supports the Azure OpenAI Service. To obtain the necessary Azure OpenAI Service endpoint and key, users are required to create and deploy an Azure OpenAI Service resource.