General keyboard topics, including keyboard hardware and keyboard functionality in software.

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267
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3answers
155k views

How to unfreeze after accidentally pressing Ctrl-S in a terminal?

It's a situation that has happened quite often to me: after I press (with a different intention) Ctrl-S in a terminal, the interaction (input or output) with it is frozen. It's probably a kind of "...
78
votes
4answers
15k views

What is the point of Ctrl-S?

Ctrl+S stops all output to the terminal which can be restarted with Ctrl+Q. But, why does Ctrl+S exist in the first place? What problem was trying to be solved by putting that control sequence in ...
45
votes
2answers
6k views

How do keyboard input and text output work?

Suppose I press the A key in a text editor and this inserts the character a in the document and displays it on the screen. I know the editor application isn't directly communicating with the hardware (...
37
votes
7answers
25k views

How do I get current keyboard layout?

I'm wondering is there any command line tool, that returns current keyboard layout. I have XkbLayout set to us, ru. Update: setxkbmap returns layout settings, not selected layout. E.g.: $ setxkbmap ...
37
votes
6answers
46k views

How to get keycodes for xmodmap?

I'm trying to use xmodmap to remap Alt / Super keys on Dell L100 keyboard, and have trouble getting the keycodes. For instance, using xev doesn't give me keycode for Alt FocusOut event, serial 36, ...
36
votes
3answers
9k views

ESC key causes a small delay in terminal due to its Alt+ behavior

My terminal setup is gnome-terminal + tmux + zsh with vi bindings. In applications like vim or even in the zsh's command line vi editing mode, I need to frequently hit the ESC key but there is a ...
23
votes
1answer
1k views

Can another program on X capture my root password while I type it in a virtual terminal?

Usually I only install open source programs on my linux box because I don't trust closed source applications. Recently I had to use Dropbox for a university project. I created a separate linux account ...
22
votes
12answers
6k views

Keep NumLock always on

I have standard keyboard with numerical keys on the right side (I guess it's called 104-key keyboard). I want to use the numerical keys only as numerical keys. That means, I don't want the NumLock to ...
20
votes
5answers
5k views

Is there any reason why I get ^[[A when I press up arrow at the console login screen?

Whenever I'm at the console login, I press up arrow intentionally to see the previously typed commands. But I see this ^[[A. But when I press Ctrl Alt Print Screen Scroll Lock Pause Break Page Up ...
20
votes
8answers
10k views

Disable Keyboard & Mouse input on unix (under X)

How can one programmatically "freeze" the Keyboard & Mouse temporarily, so that no one could mess with the system? There are several possibilities where this is useful. For instance, I have a ...
19
votes
3answers
8k views

How to fix Ctrl + arrows in Vim?

I am using Putty -> Suse box -> vim 7.2 combo for editing and want to remap Ctrl + arrows combo to a particular task. But for some reason, Vim ignores the shortcut and goes into insert mode and ...
18
votes
3answers
3k views

How can I keep control+d from disconnecting my session?

I regularly ssh to a centos 5 box. Somehow they keys are mapped so that control+d will log me out of my current shell. If I am sudo'ed to another use it puts me back to the previous user. If I am not ...
17
votes
2answers
5k views

What does raw/unraw keyboard mode mean?

In the magic sysrq key combinations, there is the combination alt+sysrq+r which, according to wikipedia, does the following: Switch the keyboard from raw mode, the mode used by programs such as ...
17
votes
1answer
2k views

Switch between numbers and symbols on caps lock

Is it possible to set caps lock to switch between inserting numbers and the symbols they normally trigger when one holds shift? e.g. when you normally press the 9 key, you get a ( unless caps lock is ...
16
votes
4answers
28k views

How to inject keystrokes via a shell script?

I'm trying to inject keystrokes into the input daemon so as to simulate typing from a Bash script. Is this possible, and if so, how can I make it happen?
16
votes
1answer
4k views

What is the Mode_switch modifier for?

Playing with xmodmap I encountered a modifier key I hadn't heard of: Mode_switch. It seems to have something to do with inserting special characters. I assigned it to a key but it seems to have no ...
16
votes
2answers
614 views

Linux kernel dropping custom keyboard scan codes

I have a vintage IBM 122 key model M keyboard that I am adapting for use on a modern computer. I am using a Teensy 2.0 to do the encoding and to handle the USB side of things. I borrowed the firmware ...
15
votes
3answers
1k views

Manipulating X key and pointer grabs on the command line

What command line tools exist to list and manage X server grabs? (That's grab as in key and pointer grabs, i.e. restricting the use of a particular key or mouse button to a particular application, or ...
15
votes
4answers
3k views

Remap CapsLock to Escape and Control System Wide

Is it possible to remap the CapsLock key system wide such that when the CapsLock button is pressed by itself it acts as the escape key and when pressed with another key it acts as the control key?
14
votes
2answers
4k views

How to tell which keyboard was used to press a key?

I frequently work on pairing stations where there are multiple keyboards installed. I can use setxkbmap with -device <ID> to set the layout for a specific keyboard (using an ID from xinput), but ...
13
votes
6answers
3k views

how to type “smart quotes” (U+201C, U+201D)

It's like this: “ (U+201C) ” (U+201D).
13
votes
2answers
5k views

Record every keystroke and store in a file

I need to record every keystroke and store in a file in the user directory ~, when using my account, I am not sudoer and I cannot install programs (like logKeys) in any way. How could I do so using ...
13
votes
3answers
8k views

How to prevent the caps-lock toggle effect, without remapping or disabling it?

I have an X11 program that grabs caps-lock, and uses it. The problem is, I want to disable the regular caps-lock toggling, but doing so seems to disable the key. So whatever X11 gets for a caps-lock ...
13
votes
3answers
9k views

How does keyboard mapping work in Linux? [duplicate]

I have always had trouble with understanding the way keyboard mapping and related things are put together in Linux. When things break, it makes my blood boil if I have to sift through endless ...
12
votes
1answer
463 views

Recovering from Sys Rq + r

I had a really bad lockup of my X server and had to do a Sys Rq + r to release my keyboard from X and get into a console. I was able to kill the process that was locking up my system, and continue my ...
12
votes
2answers
4k views

How to remap the Context Menu key to the Super key

This keyboard has only one super key, so I want to remap the menu key to make up for that.
12
votes
2answers
4k views

Adjusting keyboard sensitivity in a command line terminal?

When using a tty login shell by entering Ctrl-Alt-F1 from an Ubuntu 12.04 install on a laptop the keyboard seems overly sensitive and if my finger lingers for a moment on a button I end up with ...
12
votes
2answers
6k views

Mapping key combination with xmodmap

I'm trying to achieve the following mapping keycode 135 = <Ctrl-C> Is it possible to achieve this in some way?
12
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I write a “idempotent” .Xmodmap

Currently I have an .Xmodmap file that changes my Command to Ctrl, then changes my Ctrl to Super (I'm running Linux on a Mac). It works quite well, when only run once but on successive runs (for ...
12
votes
1answer
854 views

Get the keycode of a key, from a custom made keyboard

I'm trying to transform a Minitel to a computer with a Raspberry Pi. This is a minitel: So I soldered the matrix of the minitel keyboard to a usb keyboard pcb, like this: Everything is working ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Fix Fn-keys for keyboard illumination

I've tried following the Ubuntu hotkeys/media keys troubleshooting guide and /usr/share/doc/udev/README.keymap.txt.gz to make the Fn keys work. After copying the map file and modifying /lib/udev/rules....
11
votes
4answers
5k views

How do I type the degree symbol under X11 (using a default English keyboard layout)?

I'm trying to put in an email the temperature outside in degrees. On my Mac, the degree symbol (°) is Option+Shift+8. But I'm writing the email in Thunderbird on an Ubuntu 10.10 with the default US ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

In awesome window manager, how can I make key bindings send keyboard events?

I don't think that title probably helps very much, but here's my issue: I'm using the awesome window manager and am trying to make my key bindings to be similar in flavor to OSX for special keys. I'...
11
votes
2answers
4k views

Map “windows” key on keyboard to “ctrl”

I am on Ubuntu and using a Microsoft keyboard. I want to map my Win key to a Ctrl key. How can I do that?
11
votes
2answers
5k views

Is it possible for a daemon (i.e. background) process to look for key-presses from a USB keyboard?

I'm working on an embedded Linux project where I will be developing a program that will run automatically on bootup and interact with the user via a character display and some sort of button array. ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

Ctrl-a does not take me to the beginning of the prompt while I am working within a GNU screen

To navigate to the starting and end of a command, I usually use Ctrla and Ctrle. However, when I work within a GNU screen, those keybinding do not work becuase perhaps they are being used by the GNU ...
11
votes
4answers
7k views

Why is the US international keyboard layout on Debian different?

Edit: I realized that the "problem" was not only in Ubuntu but in Debian itself and Ubuntu just inherited it, so I had this migrated from Ask Ubuntu I have been using Linux on and off for 10 years, ...
11
votes
6answers
2k views

Disable Keyboard & Mouse Temporarily

I would like to know how one can disable the keyboard & mouse temporarily in OS X.
10
votes
4answers
2k views

How do I trigger autocomplete without a tab key?

I'm ssh-ing to my machine using my iPhone with an app called ServerAuditior. It doesn't have tab key. See screenshot. How do I trigger autocomplete without the tab key? I don't want to type a lot of ...
10
votes
4answers
5k views

Reassign Ctl and Alt keys - xmodmap error

I am attempting to remap my keyboard in order to make emacs usable. My ergonomic keyboard puts its single Control key in an isolated 4-key island way off to the left. The OS is Debian squeeze. Here ...
10
votes
2answers
7k views

command line retrieve list of all valid kbd layouts, variants and toggle options (to use with setxkbmap)

Is there a way from command line to retrieve the list of all available keyboard layouts and relative variants? I need to list all the valid layout/variants choices to be used then from setxkbmap. ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Script to quickly test all keyboard keys

I need to check some notebooks for bad keyboard keys, and so I'd like to speed that up as much as possible. I found nothing for this specific task, so my idea is a script that reads the pressed keys ...
10
votes
1answer
3k views

How can I type Unicode characters into KDE's Konsole terminal from a Gnome desktop?

I use Ubuntu.. In 'gnome-terminal', I can type Unicode Codepoints by first typing Ctrl-Shift-u followed by the Codepoint hex value, eg. C-S-u 2468 produces ⑨ konsole, my preferred terminal, does ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

keyboard hard remap keys?

I am trying to find a way to remap keyboard keys forcefully. I tried using xmodmap and setxkbmap, but they do not work for one specific application. Such commands work for other normal windowed/...
9
votes
4answers
14k views

Switch Fn key state

I have this issue with Lenovo Thinkcentre Edge. Its keyboard has Fn key, which acts in my Ubuntu (with Fluxbox) as if it is always "active/pressed". I can't use standard F1-F12 keys unless I hold ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

Relationship of keyboard layout and xmodmap

I'm using Xubuntu. Before login I can choose a keyboard layout. I'm using xmodmap for remapping some keys. I'm interested in two things: How the state of keyboard mapping changes (a) when I turn ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

How to force release of a keyboard modifiers

Sometimes, when I use synergy between my machines when one is using full-screen VirtualBox guest I get stuck with some weird key modifiers turned on. If they exist on my keyboard (like Shift_L) I can ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

How do I disable or change the caps lock key on my keyboard?

We have ergonomic keyboards at work which I'm not entirely used to. I seem to keep hitting the capslock key while I'm in vim and it's starting to annoy. How can I disable this key, and or change to to ...
9
votes
3answers
37k views

Does the Fn Lock (FnLk) on Thinkpad T440s work well with Linux?

I'm considering to buy a Lenovo Thinkpad T440s and to install Linux on it. According to the user guide and photos of T440s, to use F1-F12 you have to hold down the Fn key, or use Fn+Esc to enable "Fn ...
9
votes
1answer
11k views

monitoring events (keyboard, mouse) in X

Is it possible to display all events that are generated in Xorg? Such as keyboard pressed, mouse events...?