What is the executable of the GNOME Keyboard Preferences applet that lets you visualize available keyboard layouts? I am not running GNOME anymore, but I would still like to use that applet.

I know about the alternative program xkeycaps, but I have tried it and I would rather stick with the GNOME applet.

EDIT: I have realized that I am looking for the GNOME applet, not the GNOME 3 one. EDIT2: I have realized that the GNOME version doesn't matter.

1 Answer 1


It's gkbd-keyboard-display; you specify the layout to display using the -l parameter:

gkbd-keyboard-display -l fr\?oss
gkbd-keyboard-display -l us
gkbd-keyboard-display -l gb

In Debian and Ubuntu and derivatives it's part of the gkbd-capplet package.

In GNOME, the list of available keyboard layouts is handled directly by the "Region & Language" panel of the control centre:

gnome-control-center region

(in Debian and derivatives, that's in the gnome-control-center package). I'm not sure how well the control centre if you're not actually running GNOME.

Alternatively, you can get a list of the available layouts by looking in /usr/share/X11/xkb/rules/xorg.lst; the "layout" section lists the main layouts, and the "variant" section lists the variants.

  • This is almost what I was looking for and it could suffice, but... is it possible to go a step forward and choose from a list of available layouts, like the Keyboard Preferences lets you?
    – Eleno
    Commented Jun 18, 2016 at 9:22
  • @Elena I'm not sure how well it works outside GNOME, the list of available layouts is given by the control centre directly. You can also determine the available layouts from the xkb rules. See my updated answer for details... Commented Jun 18, 2016 at 9:52

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .