When using an xterm in reverse video mode (eg. -rv switch),
and an application that uses terminfo and ncurses to control
the screen (eg. 'screen' with vbell mode on), a visual-bell
will cause the xterm to lose its reverse video state.
The reason for this is that the terminfo file included with
the ncurses package (ncurses-4.2-18,
/usr/share/terminfo/x/xterm) defines a capability sequence
for flash (used by ncurses call 'flash()', to display a
visual bell) that is incorrect; the sequence given is in
fact 'reverse-video on, reverse-video off'. This sequence
will flash the screen, but it also forces the xterm into
reverse-video off mode, causing the bug. XTerm does not in
fact support this sequence (visual bell), although it will
perform a visual bell on receipt of an audible bell when
visual bell mode is enabled (-vb switch). This incorrect
sequence is not included in the termcap entry for xterm, and
so applications that work via this interface are not
To correct this simply decompile the terminfo file for xterm
(infocmp /usr/share/terminfo/x/xterm > xterm.src), remove
the flash capability with a text editor, and recompile the
entry (tic xterm.src).
I have verified that this does occur in the final release of Red Hat
assigned to pbrown
this has been fixed for the 6.1 ncurses.