I'm looking for a program that turns an ASCII string into something like the "ascii art" below:

    .-"^`\                                        /`^"-.
  .'   ___\                                      /___   `.
 /    /.---.                                    .---.\    \
|    //     '-.  ___________________________ .-'     \\    |
|   ;|         \/--------------------------//         |;   |
\   ||       |\_)          Red Hat         (_/|       ||   /
 \  | \  . \ ;  |     Enterprise Linux     || ; / .  / |  /
  '\_\ \\ \ \ \ |                          ||/ / / // /_/'
        \\ \ \ \|    Server Release 5.3    |/ / / //
         `'-\_\_\     Codename Tikanga     /_/_/-'`
                '--------------------------'

I don't have a matching example but I would like the string be turned into some multi line text, like:

 __    __
/  |  /  |
|  |  |  |
|  |--|  |
|  |--|  |
|  |  |  | 
|_/   |_/

for the letter H and so on... I would like to use this to show certain warning messages, for example when the user is about to run a script that will delete the production database and so on...

Thanks!

closed as off-topic by EEAA Jun 10 '16 at 11:36

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up vote 61 down vote accepted
$ figlet you want figlet
                                         _      __ _       _      _   
 _   _  ___  _   _  __      ____ _ _ __ | |_   / _(_) __ _| | ___| |_ 
| | | |/ _ \| | | | \ \ /\ / / _` | '_ \| __| | |_| |/ _` | |/ _ \ __|
| |_| | (_) | |_| |  \ V  V / (_| | | | | |_  |  _| | (_| | |  __/ |_ 
 \__, |\___/ \__,_|   \_/\_/ \__,_|_| |_|\__| |_| |_|\__, |_|\___|\__|
 |___/                                               |___/            

  • +1 - Oh, how I love figlet. Proportional fonts SUCK... – Evan Anderson Dec 11 '09 at 15:00
  • 2
    There's a web front end for figlet at: bigtext.org – davey Dec 21 '09 at 20:27
  • bigtext.org seems to be no more – Des Horsley Feb 7 at 3:31
  • this works on osx using homebrew too! brew install figlet – Brad Parks Jul 30 at 16:52

There's also the old-school command "banner". It is crude but effective.

$ banner banner

######      #     #     #  #     #  #######  ######
#     #    # #    ##    #  ##    #  #        #     #
#     #   #   #   # #   #  # #   #  #        #     #
######   #     #  #  #  #  #  #  #  #####    ######
#     #  #######  #   # #  #   # #  #        #   #
#     #  #     #  #    ##  #    ##  #        #    #
######   #     #  #     #  #     #  #######  #     #

A bit of googling showed me that rpmfind knows where to find it (although rpmfind appears to be having problems themselves these days...)

Figlet can do that, and is in the Ubuntu Repos sudo apt-get install figlet:

"Using Figlet to Spice Up your Scripts" is a recent Linux Journal Article on the Topic.

  • Too sloooow :-) – Kyle Brandt Dec 11 '09 at 14:40
  • 2
    Maybe just too small? – chris Dec 11 '09 at 14:44

cowsay

$ cowsay cowsay makes banners
 ______________________
< cowsay makes banners >
 ----------------------
        \   ^__^
         \  (oo)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
                ||----w |
                ||     ||

$ cowsay -f tux cowsay is customisable
 ________________________
< cowsay is customisable >
 ------------------------
   \
    \
        .--.
       |o_o |
       |:_/ |
      //   \ \
     (|     | )
    /'\_   _/`\
    \___)=(___/

cowsay is amusingly '90s and provides a bunch of options for tweaking the cow's appearance. Read man cowsay.

It's still packaged for Ubuntu and Debian: sudo apt install cowsay

It is likely that your first example was created using boxes.

Toilet is even better. ;) I always used it as code banner for my applications

  ▞▀▖         ▐     ▜  ▙▗▌      ▗▐         
  ▌  ▙▀▖▌ ▌▞▀▘▜▀ ▝▀▖▐  ▌▘▌▞▀▖▛▀▖▄▜▀ ▞▀▖▙▀▖ 
  ▌ ▖▌  ▚▄▌▝▀▖▐ ▖▞▀▌▐  ▌ ▌▌ ▌▌ ▌▐▐ ▖▌ ▌▌   
  ▝▀ ▘  ▗▄▘▀▀  ▀ ▝▀▘ ▘ ▘ ▘▝▀ ▘ ▘▀▘▀ ▝▀ ▘   

There's a pretty good write-up of how to use it over on cyberciti.biz, titled: UNIX / Linux: Display Large Colourful Text Banner On Screen

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