I’m using a Debian amd64 install with the default GNOME desktop. I’m aware that you can go into System | Preferences | Power Management, and choose to make the display go to sleep after a certain period of inactivity. However, I currently have that set to ‘Never’ because until I lock the screen, I don’t want the display to go to sleep. Once I lock the screen, though, I want it to go to sleep immediately unless/until it detects activity, or at least go to sleep after 1 minute or something. Is there a way I can configure it to do this only when I ‘Lock Screen’?

1 Answer 1


You could run a script:

gnome-screensaver-command --lock
xset dpms force off

Bind this to a key sequence and whenever you lock your screen, the display will turn off.

  • Hmm, would there be a way to get such a script to run when the default ctrl-alt-L key sequence is pressed; or even when you select the 'lock screen' GNOME menu option?
    – Jez
    Jul 5, 2011 at 10:24
  • In your Keyboard Preferences, change Lock to something else (eg., Ctrl-Shift-L) and map Ctrl-Alt-L to the script. You could edit the Menu entry the same way...
    – jasonwryan
    Jul 5, 2011 at 10:33
  • I tried xset dpms force on to force my CRT monitor never turn off, but it still does, any tip? Aug 2, 2014 at 6:43

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