How to Connect to BBS from Mac, iPad, iPhone with MuffinTerm

Apr 2, 2023 - 1 Comment

Connecting to a BBS from Mac/iPad/iPhone with MuffinTerm

Remember the old days of BBS? Using a modem, you’d dial in to a BBS (bulletin board system) to connect and get online, where you could then play games, communicate with others through message boards and chat, and exchange information and files, all long before the days of the modern internet. While BBS’s are mostly obsoleted by more modern internet protocols and apps, it turns out they actually still exist out there, and you can connect to any active BBS through telnet and with fun retro apps like MuffinTerm.

MuffinTerm is a free app for Mac, iPhone, and iPad, which offers a very authentic classic BBS experience, complete with emulated nostalgia like scan lines, CRT screen curvature, simulated modem speeds, modem lights, virtual sticky notes, support for ANSI, PETSCII, and ATASCII terminal emulation, and more.

Sound like some retro fun? Well what are you waiting for, here’s how you can get MuffinTerm and connect to a BBS from your iPad, Mac, or iPhone.

How to Connect to BBS’s from Mac, iPhone, iPad

Using MuffinTerm makes connecting to a BBS super easy:

  1. Download MuffinTerm free from the App Store for Mac, iPhone, or iPad
  2. Use either the Quick Connect menu (or hit command+k) and enter the BBS name and server information you’d like to connect to, or if you prefer to use the command line use “telnet servername port”
  3. Connect to a BBS from MuffinTerm

  4. Connect, explore, and have flashbacks to the computing days of yesteryear!
  5. Connecting to a BBS from iPad/iPhone/Mac with MuffinTerm

How’s that for a taste of nostalgia?

MuffinTerm is a fantastic app that is totally free without any of the annoying ads or in-app purchases that render many other ‘free’ apps unusable or not-so-free afterall.

Where do I find an active BBS to connect to?

If you’re looking for a BBS to connect to, there are several lists available of active BBS’s that you can find through any major search engine, or try out:

Can you also simply connect to BBS’s through Telnet and the Terminal app on your Mac? Yes, absolutely, though you’ll have to install Telnet in modern MacOS versions since it was removed in favor of SSH a few years ago. But MuffinTerm offers such a fun retro experience, why not try it out and use it as a dedicated BBS app?

BBS connected with MuffinTerm

Enjoy some retro computing fun!


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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in Fun, Retro

One Comment

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  1. Diamond Dave says:

    Over 1000 Telnettable BBS systems at the Telnet BBS Guide.

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